I just got a 2 yr old lab who is one of the most gentle and willing to please dogs I have ever seen.
BUT there are some issues that I could use some advice on.
1. How long would you expect your 2 yr old lab to hold his " water" when you are not home. My first lab was great and could go for 12hrs but Logan does not do so well. This might be me adjusting my expectations.
2. He loves to retrieve tennis balls but I am having a hard time getting him to release. I swear I hear him giggle when he is moves his mouth away when I try to get his tennis ball. He is very cooperative on all other matters. He is a smart dog because he can adapt to new situations with little or no training.
3. He is very attached to me and is my shadow which I don't mind but my wife who loves animals kinda misses the attention and feels a little left out. What can I do to get him to pay attention to both of us?
BTW I had reservations about getting a 2 yr old dog but he really is a good dog and I would advise anybody to do the same. These small issues are easy to get over when weighed against the first 6 months of raising a puppy.
Thanks In Advance for your help!
How long a dog can hold it depends on the dog. One of mine has a tough time if he is not out every 5-6 hours. The other appears to be able to hold it indefinitely. 12 hours is way too long to expect most dogs to hold it.
On giving things back. You can start to teach that behavior by offering a trade to the dog. You give him a treat or a different toy when he gives you the ball. Pretty easy to get them to associate giving you the item with a positive experience for him.
If your wife wants to create a bond with the dog she should take part in training him or grooming him. Both build bonds.
Last edited by BigBrownDog; 12-15-2012 at 02:34 PM.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
My lab can hold it in a long while but prefers to pee more often (he will go as often as I take him out almost). My foster the shepherd, he doesn't pee much at all. But he also doesn't drink nearly as much as the lab. He will not pee on half the pee breaks we take, only when he has to. twelve hours is a very long time to hold it in though.
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
When you play fetch take two balls out instead of one. Show your dog the ball when he comes back with the first one. Your dog will probably dog it or probably be so intent on the ball in your hand that he will let you take the ball. This should keep you going until you work more on training your dog to release.
Training a dog to release when you want them to is all about communicating to your dog that you own EVERYTHING. You own the food that you give the dog so you make your dog sit before giving it to them. You take away the food whenever you like because you own it. You give your dog his toys and then take them away whenever you want. You want to sit where you dog is at (example the couch) your dog has to leave. Your dog wants to enter a room then your dog has to wait for permission. I even have my dog wait in the crate with the door open after I open it for her. As soon as your dog realizes everything belongs to you and your dog cannot do a thing about it then you will have no problem taking something away from him. The one exception to this is if you don't exercise and stimulate your dogs mind enough then all bets are off!
The bond between a human and a dog is often not free. Your wife should spend more time with your dog. Start with walks and proceed to training.
I can't really help with your dog holding it. My dog has to hold it for longer than an hour once every few months. I don't have her hold it for long than 4.5 hours at a time ever.
The idea of using treats (frozen green beans) worked! He releases his tennis ball every time!
Another way for him to bond with your wife would also be for her to feed him !