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Those of you with difficult puppies:

2180 Views 23 Replies 21 Participants Last post by  amazongold
Some of you may recall my first postings here when I got Remy 2 years ago. How heartbroken I was after the temperament testing that said he was going to be an independent dog who would want to be on his own a lot. That he was going to be difficult to train. All the work we did with him to get him to bond with us. The crazy biting phase that drew blood and drove me to tears. The whining and insanity that resulted in several training sessions with the breeder and the eventual neutering. The loooooong wait for the maturing process to begin. The hydrogen peroxide always ready at hand for the next theived item. And then...

We started to leave him out of the crate. An hour at first...then while I was at work in the morning. And now...we've been crate free for over a month. :D He's still always wanted to be on his own though...moving to the couch in the mudroom while we watch tv with Brooklyn snuggled on us in the tv room. Coming upstairs to wish us good night and then returning to the mudroom couch until morning. And now...

I have a shadow. Everywhere I go. Upstairs. Downstairs. At my feet. On my lap on the couch. Or sitting at my feet staring intently at me. Nudging and whining. And kissing. And pushing me over on my side of the bed at night and taking my pillow!!

So for those of you with puppies who are difficult and you just don't think its ever going to change...I am here to prove to you that they do grow up. It just takes time. So keep training and working and loving your pup. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. Remy the "Reminator" is proof.

Mama? I sleep here with you?

Mama? I just put my head on your lap while you watch tv?

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That is all very true!
That is an awesome post, Missy!! :)
ditto. Jeb was a people-chewer but gradually grew out of it. My arms looked as though I'b been through razorblades until he was bout 1.5-2 years old. Now he is my shadow. It was worth the grief.
I'm so glad to hear you stuck it out with him, and now all your hard work is paying off!
Also, gives me hope, Daisy is a bit more independent, kind of snuggles but does not seek it out, so hopefully she turns into snuggle-buddy someday, too! :)
Wonderful inspirational story! You must be a great dog owner to have brought him around. He is lucky to have someone who did not give up on him! Go you!!!!
Thanks everyone. Remy's been a team effort. The breeder says the whole litter was slow to mature, but Remy was the beast of the brood. We've taken several different classes with him and everyone at the training school rallied around us. And then the one on one lessons with the breeder were priceless. The neutering made a huge difference, but I'm glad we waited as long as we did for his body to grow.

He's not perfect, but he's a lab. He still steals things and eats things he shouldn't and we have to be vigilant. He still needs a lot of exercise and gets mischievous if we haven't exercised him enough. The hardest part was getting him to bond with us and learn to like being touched. Kibble and treats go a long way folks and now Remy is the master beggar for belly-rubs! To go from so aloof to..well, downright needy has just been so astounding to me I had to post. :D
Why does it work this way?

Similar story with HK. She always wanted to be in the same room, but not next to me. (If I would nap on the couch was the exception. She would wrap herself around my head.) But in the last few months, I have had a head on my lap, a sit next to me if in a chair with a head wedging itself under my hand for petting. A change! A nice change. I have no idea why.
I think this is one of my favorite posts:)
I think this is one of my favorite posts:)
I agree. It demonstrates that love, patience, and persistence have great rewards.
Wonderful post. This is all so true.

There were so many moments when I was convinced that I had made a terrible mistake. (Especially the night the trainer said, "THIS PUPPY IS COMPLETELY OUT OF CONTROL!" in front of the entire obedience class.) So now I have to chuckle when people compliment Theo for being so gentle and mellow and well behaved. :)
What a great story! This gives me hope that Bailey will get better with time and being consistent on training with her.
Aww. I do remember all of the posts of Remy being a crazy boy.. I think it just takes some dogs longer to chill out.. Abbey will be 3 in April and she's still crazy!
I agree. It demonstrates that love, patience, and persistence have great rewards.
Me too! It should be stickied so people with puppies can always see it and know there is a light at the end of the sometimes very (very very?) long tunnel. :D
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