Just Labradors banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone--

I am new to this board but I am glad I found it as hopefully someone will be able to help. We have two labs, both of which will be a year old in May. Goliath we've had since he was 12wks old, Jake we just got back in February as a rescue, we're military and a soldier was being sent to Iraq and needed to find a home for his dog, so we took him in. The majority of this post will be about dear Jake. When we got him he was living in the back yard of this mans home and covered in his own feces, no food or water on the premesis and he was tied to a tree with your average rope. He took very well to our other lab and we thought we had it easy. We've had him since February and it seems as though he is getting worse as far as behavior goes. Our other lab was never like this, perhaps it's because we had him since he was little, but Jake definitely has behavioral issues that we need to fix, we just can't figure out what to do. He has taken to eating all of the woodwork in our apartment. He has single-handedly eaten an entire windowsil. He almost only does this when we are out of the house but we don't know how to keep him from this. We bought the bitter-yuck spray from petsmart but that doesn't seem to stop him at all. We have bought several chew toys for him, and he uses them when we're here, but as soon as we're gone he goes to work. In the beginning we were confused as to which one it was that was eating the woodwork and punishing both until Jake vomitted a pile of woodshavings one day. Now he's elevated to the point that he's now eating night-lights and pulling plates off the counter. No matter how soon we catch him and tell him no, it hasn't made a difference. He's ruining our place and we're in the process of building a new house, a major reason for our new house was the amount of land we would have for our dogs to run, but we don't want him to ruin the new place. We're also expecting our first child and am afraid of what he'll do if we introduce a new baby into the pack. We would hate to have to get rid of him as he's an adorable sweet yellow lab when he's not chewing the house apart. We're just at a loss as to what to do as we've never had this problem with Goliath. Any suggestions on how to help the situation would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks in Advance-
Kris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,144 Posts
Crate training. I cannot sing the praises of the crate enough. Mickey is now a good dog because of his crate, but I think you'd also do well to get a trainer (like we did) to help teach you and Jake. It was worth every dime, and Mickey has been becoming a pure pleasure to be with.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,085 Posts
God loveya for taking Jake.

He sounds like a handful. My initial response is to use a crate when you can't supervise. AND teach/train LEAVE IT. And ensure that he's getting PLENTY of exercise to work out the willy-nillys. It he's plum tuckered, he won't have the energy to counter-surf.

You're going to have to watch this boy like a hawk for a while.

Can you enroll in an obed class? It might help with the chewing and other undesirable behavior, too.
 
M

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Yup. crating is the way to go. My two are over a year old, now and I won't let them out of my sight if they are inside. They will chew ANYTHING! I tried tabasco sauce on the furniture legs, but merlot likes tabasco sauce :eek: Probably won't out grow the chewing stage for a couple more years, I am guessing. At least they never chew on people, they know that would hurt. You can try wearing him out with lots of running, fetch, etc for about 2 or 3 hours. That works for some, although it never worked for mine :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44,122 Posts
He definitely needs to be crated when you can't supervise him. They like their crates, it's like a 'den' for them. Toss a kong in there with him, as well as a nylabone (indestuctible!) and he'll be set. I'd also recommend basic obedience class for him.

Thanks for saving him. People are such aholes. :mad:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks so much for the quick replies! We have asked a friend we let use our crate if they were done with it so we could have it back for Jake. My question is should we also crate Goliath? We've never had a problem with him but I think it would just be cruel to put Jake in the crate and then let Goliath taunt him from the outside lol I would just hope it doesn't change Goliaths temperment or make him retaliate or think of it as a punishment as he hasn't been in a crate for several months because he never did anything wrong so we could just leave him out and about.

Thanks again-

Kris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44,122 Posts
No, you don't need to crate Goliath if he can be trusted. Frankie is 2 and he's still crated during the day, while Tucker lounges on the couch (Tuck is 6). :angel:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,676 Posts
No need to crate Goliath if he's trustworthy.

I would stress the need for training and PLENTY OF STRUCTURED exercise for both labs...just because you will have a yard at your new place doesn't mean the dogs will go out and entertain themselves and burn off energy. Having you and your SU swap who is training Jake on a daily basis is important. One day you train/work with Goliath and your SU works/trains Jake. Switch the next day. That way they get individual attention and you get the dogs to bond and listen to both of you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,472 Posts
For now, a crate will help a lot.

Labs DO differ a great deal in their needs for daily vigorous exercise. It's possible that Goliath is one of the rare "laid back" Labs whereas Jake is a typical or even a hyperactive Lab. The only cases of wall chewing that I've heard of the last 5 years on JL forums were from boredom, a lack of exercise OR, occasionally, from separation anxiety. While it sounds most likely to be boredom from a lack of exercise you might bear the SA in mind just in case.

Daily walking or being outside usually isn't enough for most Labs -- as adults they usually need about an hour a day of off-leash retrieving -- e.g., sling a training dummy or use a Chuck-it with tennis balls. If you can combine retrieving from water so the dog swims each time, you can get by with maybe 45 minutes. It does NOT have to be all at one time -- you can divide it into a couple (or maybe more?) periods a day but most do need vigorous exercise daily.

My first Lab, Bess, had to have that each day when I came home from work and, if I didn't take her out soon enough, she picked up everything she could grab in her mouth and dropped it at my feet until I took the hint. Since she never put anything back, she trained me very quickly.

When I got Puff, I was well aware of these Lab needs. When Puff was younger, I could burn off some energy by letting her play with a neighbor dog in a fenced in yard for an hour but that was never enough. We're fortunate in having a nearby nature preserve where she can run offleash and make many retrieves for an hour early each morning. That puts Puff into her dozing-ready-alert mode. As soon as she notices me changing shoes or hears a tinkle of car keys, she's by my side, asking "take me, too, pretty please take me!!

Do get the crate but try the vigorous daily exercise, too. It'll be good for Goliath, Jake, and anyone who goes along.

For good cheap Training Dummies, look them up at http://www.gundogsupply.com We use the 2"x12" "Lucky Dog" vinyl ones.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top