Molly is about to turn 15 weeks old. She is a bundle of energy, and we are struggling to give her enough exercise, mental stimulation, and socialization. She attends puppy kindergarten once a week (one session left), and I plan to enroll her in further training when she finishes . We give her plenty of play time in the house, she has loads of toys (things to chew, balls, empty plastic juice bottles, tug toys, etc.) and in the back yard (not fenced, so we always have her on a leash), and trying to walk her at least twice a day. Walking with her is still a challenge (she's still distracted by EVERYTHING -- sticks, stones, leaves, etc). I can tell that she is bored and in need of interactions with people and other dogs. When she sees people, she naturally is VERY excited to say hello. Unfortunately, people don't accept the fact that I'm trying to teach her to not jump up on them hysterically, even when I explain that they should not pay any attention to her until she is sitting, not jumping & nipping. I give people a small treat to feed her ONLY when she is sitting, but people hardly ever wait until she has stopped jumping up (a very bad thing to reward with a treat!). So, please give me some specific ideas on how to safely give my dog access to people and dogs while she is on a leash (remember she's borderline uncontrollable with a collar & leash -- she HATES the Easy Walk Harness). I was thinking about once a week doggie day care. We're more convinced that she would benefit from a private training session. The clock is ticking, and I want to improve things for her before her critical socialization time runs out. Please help!
You need to find access to a safe, fenced area so she can RUN. Walks, especially if they're not even guaranteed, aren't going to do it at this age.
Group classes are always better than private IMO, unless you're dealing with a very specific issue like aggression. This is a normal, bored puppy.
Molly sounds great! My piece of advice would be a dog park. We have one near our house and it is amazing (we went to a different one but it was really gross). We don't have a fenced yard either and this gives Piper the opportunity to let loose and RUN! We have gone there since she was sixteen weeks. In the beginning we stuck to the small dog side since she is fairly submissive and by five months we were in the big dog park. I will admit it was kind of scary at first but all the other pet owners were great and really kept an eye on their dogs. Good luck-I really think Molly being able to run as fast as she wants, being able to jump and play chase will help wear her out!
I agree with nicole, you need to find a safe place to let her run. Do you have family or friends with a fenced yard you can go over and let her play in? fenced tennis court or baseball diamond?
I would caution going to a dog park with such a young dog (has she completed all her vaccinations yet?) There is no controlling dog sin that environment and you get good dogs an bad dogs. Puppies can sometimes really get bullied and lots of teenage dogs there may mean well but be scary and rough with a small puppy.
Can you ask people in your class for play dates? Maybe as the teacher to e-mail people in the class with your contact info if you don't want to ask them directly.
Look at Facebook or Meet-up for dog groups in your area and ask for smaller meet-ups with other dog owners. A few dogs at a time with dogs that are good with puppies to start.
walks are not exercise at that age, they are warm ups.
Honestly - talk to the trainer about her being "border line uncontrollable on leash" - that is not gonna improve and is likely to get worse as she ages.
can't edit my post but here'S a good article on dog parks:
The Dog Park â€“ It's not the â€śEasy Buttonâ€ť - DogSense Unleashed Blog
and a few more:
15 things humans do wrong at dog parks | MNN - Mother Nature Network
10 more things humans do wrong at dog parks | MNN - Mother Nature Network
At 1st our pup did not like the easy walker harness but with clicker and treat bag ready it has gotten better. The day care is always good for socialization as it is supervised and with similar sized pups or should be. Keep us posted!