View Full Version : Growling and barking when playing?

3rd October 2006, 03:57 PM
I know this is going to sound like a really daft question but as Keiko is our first dog Id rather be sure. Keiko is now 10 weeks old and just loves playing with his toys. He seems to growl when playing and shaking them around like rag dolls lol. When myself and the boys are playing with him especially outside he seems to bark and growl a lot, though it is in a very playful way as he crouches down wagging his tail and trying to get us to chase him or give him more attention.
We all think this is very cute although Im not sure if this is a puppy thing and very normal or should it be discouraged as it might not seem so cute when he is a lot older. Our cat just sort of ignores him but when she is sitting looking at him from her chair but Keiko jumps round in circles barking,growling and wagging his tail as if he is shouting at her to come down and play! But Im sure this isnt helping Kaiba to like him.
We have had to chase him to catch him on several occasions as he is constantly trying to eat slugs and leaves and berries that keep dropping into the garden from overhanging trees. He seems to know that we are going to take the things off him so most times as soon as we approach or call him he takes off in a mad sprint round the garden.Its as if he is teasing us and is just trying to get a chase which in itself is hilarious.But sometimes I have to physically catch him as he may be eating something harmful and calling him excitedly doesnt work.
I obviously dont want him growing up as a barker as I know cavaliers are a relatively quiet breed but dont want to discourage him if this is totally normal behaviour for a 10 week old puppy.

3rd October 2006, 05:12 PM
When you come after him, as far as he is concerned, you ARE playing wiith him, a nice game of chase. :lol: If eating things and recatching him is an issue, it would be better to take him out on a flexilead when at home or on a long lead so he has room to come around but you can control him more easily.

On the other hand you can play chase, too! :) Just don't call his name and call 'come' and *then* allow him to have you chase him. You never want to have him have the wrong association with a command, and doing this reinforces that his name and 'come' mean 'I'll chase you right now'!

So you want to work on commands like 'come' in a very structured way that teaches him the command. In other words you do need to be careful of the way in which you respond to his behaviour (as he is giving you cues for the response he wants and you are responding successfully to his cues, which may not be the adult behaviours you want) and the words you use with a puppy and a dog. This can be tough as it is easy to accidentally reward the unwanted behaviour or have him associate the wrong behaviour with a cue/command!

I don't worry about play growling or some minor play barking but if he comes and barks to get you to do things, don't do whatever it is that he wants. If you reward him now for barking, he will continue to bark to get what he wants and to get your attention as you are becoming so well trained to respond to this now. :) A lot of cute puppy behaviours aren't desireable in adults so start to shape him now into the adult you eventually want by positively encouraging wanted behaviours and ignoring unwanted behaviours.

4th October 2006, 11:38 PM
I have to echo this. We let Holly bark for her ring to be thrown and now she's a menace in the park sometimes. It wouldn't be so bad if it was just a bark, but it's that slightly hysterical yipping. If we'd nipped it in the bud earlier, it wouldn't be a problem. I'm training her out of it by refusing to give her the toy until she's quiet- trouble is, my parents undermine me by giving her stuff as soon as she barks. I can turn my hearing aids down- and the sound- whereas they can't and thus have lower tolerance.

10th October 2006, 07:23 PM
Gus is 9 months and he still play growls, but he only really barks for the doorbell! He does seem to want to eat everything off the ground, it has gotten better as he gets older but he especially loves any paper product. I have to watch him like a hawk!