I have a 6 month chocolate lab, Lily, who gets into everything. I understand she is a puppy and that's what puppy's do. However, she has torn up my flooring in my bathroom. I live in an apartment, its one of those vinyl flooring's. She tore up my memory foam bed straight from the middle of it.. And she chewed up her 45 dollar dog bed that also had memory foam in it. I have been really patient with her. I try not to get mad or show anger to her because i know she is still a puppy. but i am stern with her and let her know what she did was wrong. And sometimes she knows she did wrong because she hides under the bed. Which also, shes is also taring the bottom of my box spring. But what am i doing wrong? She isn't cooped up in the house all the time. I take her for daily walks up to an hour, (aside from the 30 times i take her out to go pee lol ) and play with her outside for 45 mins to an hour on top of our walks and we visit the dog park two days a week. The funny part is, when she does these things, i am home. She has started this when i am doing just simple chores. Or whether im cooking, in the shower, doing work on the laptop. I work from home so its not like i am neglecting her or not giving her enough attention. She gets a lot of attention from both myself and husband. We bond well, shes a sweet girl. She is just in a real bad habit i cant seem to break. I've also spent so much money on toys and bones. Honestly probably around 300 dollars worth since i've had her. Please no bashing. I am simply just trying to figure this out and i came here for support and advice. Thank you xo
Get a crate. Yes, even if you are home. Don't treat it like a punishment, just crate her, give her a treat and go off to do your housework. Ignore any barks or cries - or put a frozen stuffed Kong in the crate to keep her busy - and when you are done and ready to spend time with her let her out with a barrage of "good girl" praises.
Or leash her and tether her to you - but that may not work depending on what you are trying to get done!
Punishment of any kind is futile unless you literally catch her in the act. Even 5 or 10 min later is futile. It confuses her as she will have no idea why you are upset.
Also teach "leave it" any time you see her go near something she is likely to destroy as soon as you leave the room, say "leave it" and treat her for following orders. You should also add "drop it" for times that "leave it" doesn't work, and treat her when she follows that as well.
She won't be a puppy much longer so you do need to nip this in the bud. Not a criticism, just a fact.
Diesel Dawg gave you great advice. I tethered Jack to me for about the first 6 weeks that he lived with us. That way you always know what they're up to. Even after I took the tether off, pups are like small children, if you don't see or hear them...they are probably into something. Also the crate will keep him out of trouble while you work. Just make sure he's not spending too much time in there. Good luck. Before you know you'll be saying "I remember when he was a puppy........."
Have you done any formal training with her? She sounds to me like she is under exercised, under trained and a teenager. What you describe is not really enough exercise to truly tire out a young athletic dog.
And use the crate.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
better supervision - use a tether so the pup is near you/moving with you, close doors, use baby gates so she cannot sneak off. crate when in the shower and when you leave.
work on mental stimulation. feed with toys like a stuffed long, kong wobbler, tug-a-jug or other.
add training to the routine - work her brain yoo.
get into training classes
make sure she has appropriate chew toys, antlers and nylabones are popular at my house.
Last edited by Tanya; 08-14-2013 at 07:13 AM.
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
You also need to prevent her from getting into the rooms where she has been destructive. Close doors or use baby gates. One of mine likes to transport shoes (does not chew them - just will pick them up and make a pile in another room). If I don't feel like going on a hunt for my shoes in the morning, I make sure to keep my bedroom door closed so he can't get at them. It's all about preventing the outcome you don't want.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
I have had a couple of busy Labs. One was 3.5 when I got him.
Crate when not able to supervise. or leash. You having a shower is their best time of day....all alone is perfect.
We had gates on all the doors until they are responsible.
Training. I liked to keep their minds busy. Play find games, or anything that keeps them busy.
I didn't leave any bedding with them except at night. Ernie is 11 and is still capable of chewing his bed. Still chews by throws and cushions.
They don't know they did wrong. They know the tone of your voice is different and not sure what it means. I tested this after reading It and you will see their head tilt or they back away if you pretend you are a little annoyed with them.
Some of the others may help here as I am not sure if 45mins to an hour is too long for a 6 month old with their joints still growing.
We used to over stimulate Kassa and she would be a menace. A trainer told us to give her time out in a crate and it made a huge difference. Even with Erns I find often the more he does the sillier he gets.
It does get better.
Supervision, obedience, exercise and crate. Simple really.
These pups can sure be trouble! Sophie ate the corners off my box spring too when she was a baby. She also got the bottom corners of my furniture. They are so fast! She would have it chewed before I could get to her! I also had teeth marks on my coffee table and my dresser! I too, am home. We are retired people. We worked through the tough puppy months, and kept training and reinforcing training. She was over a year old before we could trust her without a sitter when we weren't home. We just kept teaching drop it and leave it. We were already familiar with labby chewing before we got her. She wasn't our first. Luckily, our furniture was old and we had plans for new when she could be trusted. She turned 2 in April, and we got new furniture the same month. She is now well trained and a well behaved dog. But, puppy months can be tough. Just keep with it, teaching what behavior is expected. They really do want to please us. I found that a really loud "ACK" when she was chewing a no-no got her attention. I would tell her it was "naughty". She totally knows what naughty means. If we say Sophie, naughty when she is up to no good, she stops immediately. Yep, she's 2, well behaved, but can still find trouble from time to time.
Last edited by Sophiesmama; 08-14-2013 at 05:20 PM.
Sophie DOB 04/13/2011 6 mo
Sophie 15 months, with Skye