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View Full Version : Cavs before kids? Jealous?



Adelya21
17th January 2012, 02:49 AM
Me and my husband own one cavalier a boy 8 months old and we are obsessed with him! My husband who was the one who initially was reluctant to get any dogs now cant imagine life without him and says you will always be our 1st child lol. However, I am not sure how our dog will be when we do have children. we are nervous he will be too jealous! are there tell tale signs that a dog may be jealous in the future? We dont plan on having a child for another maybe 1.5yrs. But our pup sleeps in the bed with us and he needs to be around one of us most of the time. He doesnt have separation anxiety because when we do leave him alone at home which isnt very often at all he will cry for 2 mins then just lay in his crate and look sad. and then when we get home he is crazy excited jumps all over kisses whimpers like he is hyperventilating lol. I dont know if we baby him too much and that as a result we could potentially make him a jealous dog?

just to note he gets crazy excited when someone comes to our home. he will go nuts and hyperventilate if he cant get to that person and smell them and kiss them etc. so once when we had a newborn and her mom over he literally wanted to smell that baby and mom asap! he would jump on moms legs then he finally calmed down after he at least could smell the mom. he sat quietly on my lap. he doesnt get like this when he enters other people's homes or when we take him on walks just when someone comes to our home. so even when the mailman comes he gets excited and want to be there when he comes so I just put him in a different room and he barks like there is no tomorrow.

I guess my question now became two fold. are there tell tale signs of a potential jealous cav and is the behavior of him getting overly excited with people something I should try to change now? or should I not bother because its too late since he is 8 months?? Does anyone else's dog do this??

Alana
17th January 2012, 03:44 AM
Ryan and I are the same. We want to start trying to have children later this year.

BrooklynMom
18th January 2012, 04:36 AM
I am not sure about the kid thing (we will be having them in a few years too)...but as for excitement and jealousy...a lot of it is the human issue not the dog (don't mean that in a bad way!) but if you do baby him a lot, he will become very dependant and expect attention which will make it harder for him to self sooth when a baby comes along or when you are out or when you just need some space. The best advice my trainer ever gave us was when you come home...do NOT make a big deal, in fact ignore the dog for 2-5 minutes. This will be hard, but you are feeding into this excitement which is actually anxiety mixed with over excitement. He needs to know your comings and goings are no big deal. We trained Brooklyn to sit before she gets any attention when we get home, so yes, she gets excited, but now that she is older...she gets excited for a moment and then sits and waits. I like to wait for her to fully calm down, then after about 2-5 minutes, she gets all the love in the world from me. It teaches her to stay calm.

Same goes for guests. Just tell guests to ignore him for 2-5 minutes while he calms herself down (vs. a person calming him down which he will become reliant on) then they can go say hello. He will jump and try to get attention, tell them to ignore completely. If you push off, talk to or say things...that is attention. Just fully ignore. This is good for calming, but also trains the dog to have better manners with guests. HA. This took Brooklyn a full year to really get the hang of, and I still say "just please ignore her for a few minutes" and it is HARD, I know ;) and harder to get other people to, but the results are a wonderfully calm dog.

As for getting excited when others come to your home...use a leash. That is what I did (and still do from time to time with a new person). It gives him boundaries and you have control of the situation. Let him come with you to the door, on a leash. Have people over and if you are sitting down, he can be on a leash at a distance you would like...or go in for a sniff, then ask to come back on the leash and "sit". Leashes do really well for calming them in your own house so they cannot run and jump and get over excited. Once he is calm, you can let him off...or if he gets hyper again, you can put him back on :)

Also, try to have a spot that is just for him that he loves (give treats/bully sticks/chews there) so that when the baby comes, he has his spot that he might need to be trained to stay on if you need it (I taught Brooklyn "mat" and she knows when she is on it, she has to stay there).

Hope that helps!!!

ashleighelizabeth
18th January 2012, 06:02 AM
I completely agree with Brooklyn's mom about waiting to give him attention. We have a 7 month old puppy and he is also my first baby. :) However Sonny would get SOOOOOO EXCITED when anyone would come to our house, but especially when my husband or I would come home. He would be uncontrollable almost to the point that I was afraid he was going to hurt himself by jumping up and down so much. Anyways, a couple of weeks ago we were having some problems with resource guarding (he would growl whenever we would try to move him on the couch) so we decided to switch up a lot of the things we were doing with his training and routine and one of the things we started doing was ignoring Sonny when we first got home for a couple of minutes. I am home the majority of the time, but now when my husband gets home, he will come in say hello to me, go put down his keys and put his stuff down and won't acknowledge Sonny until he is calm. This seemed like such a small change in our routine, but it is amazing what a difference it has made!!!! I can already see Sonny act much calmer when not only my husband comes home, but when other people come over too.

As far as knowing whether a dog is jealous... I'm not sure, but I am interested in everyone's answers too. We are also planning on having kids in the next year or so and I have been wondering how Sonny will react. Thanks for starting this thread!

Karlin
19th January 2012, 07:59 PM
Answer: good, positive method training classes. A dog that reliably can be directed to sitstay, downstay and/or go to its bed and stay is not a dog that is running around, getting overexcited and jumping on people. :)

If you want a dog to do something else, they need to know something else to do and know to politely remain where they have been told to go. Giving an excited dog something interesting to distract it as a reward for lying calmly in its bed -- eg a stuffed Kong or favourite chew toy -- also keeps the dog busy and happy (and not jumping on people, barking etc).

Good solid training and regular practice teaches dogs self control. But any dog is only going to be as well behaved and responsive to commands as the time and effort its owner dedicates to shaping that dog in a rewards-based way. :D

Learning these techniques in a rewards based class (eg one that encourages positive behaviour, no collar jerks, no choke chains, no punishment) is fun for both dog and owner, much easier than trying to do this alone, and has the huge benefit of helping your dog learn in a distracting environment. It is easy to train a dog to lie down in a quiet room. A lot harder in a room full of people and dogs IF the dog has never been trained to do so in such a setting!

Adelya21
23rd January 2012, 05:48 PM
ooo I love the leash advice thank you!!!

as for ignoring him, I tried but my husband is terrible he loves that he goes crazy when he comes home. I am going to make him read your response. lol.


I am not sure about the kid thing (we will be having them in a few years too)...but as for excitement and jealousy...a lot of it is the human issue not the dog (don't mean that in a bad way!) but if you do baby him a lot, he will become very dependant and expect attention which will make it harder for him to self sooth when a baby comes along or when you are out or when you just need some space. The best advice my trainer ever gave us was when you come home...do NOT make a big deal, in fact ignore the dog for 2-5 minutes. This will be hard, but you are feeding into this excitement which is actually anxiety mixed with over excitement. He needs to know your comings and goings are no big deal. We trained Brooklyn to sit before she gets any attention when we get home, so yes, she gets excited, but now that she is older...she gets excited for a moment and then sits and waits. I like to wait for her to fully calm down, then after about 2-5 minutes, she gets all the love in the world from me. It teaches her to stay calm.

Same goes for guests. Just tell guests to ignore him for 2-5 minutes while he calms herself down (vs. a person calming him down which he will become reliant on) then they can go say hello. He will jump and try to get attention, tell them to ignore completely. If you push off, talk to or say things...that is attention. Just fully ignore. This is good for calming, but also trains the dog to have better manners with guests. HA. This took Brooklyn a full year to really get the hang of, and I still say "just please ignore her for a few minutes" and it is HARD, I know ;) and harder to get other people to, but the results are a wonderfully calm dog.

As for getting excited when others come to your home...use a leash. That is what I did (and still do from time to time with a new person). It gives him boundaries and you have control of the situation. Let him come with you to the door, on a leash. Have people over and if you are sitting down, he can be on a leash at a distance you would like...or go in for a sniff, then ask to come back on the leash and "sit". Leashes do really well for calming them in your own house so they cannot run and jump and get over excited. Once he is calm, you can let him off...or if he gets hyper again, you can put him back on :)

Also, try to have a spot that is just for him that he loves (give treats/bully sticks/chews there) so that when the baby comes, he has his spot that he might need to be trained to stay on if you need it (I taught Brooklyn "mat" and she knows when she is on it, she has to stay there).

Hope that helps!!!

BrooklynMom
23rd January 2012, 09:20 PM
Ah yes, well...no matter what you do, if someone in the family (husband, kids, parents, etc) does the opposite, the dog will not train the way you intend so it is important that you are consistent as a team. Don't worry, I cannot tell you how may "be consistent" tiffs my husband and I got in when we first got Brooky, ha, she was our first dog and I was really focused on training knowing that what we form as a puppy creates the dog we want...and...well...he was more focused on the cuddles and fun he he. Both of which are good, but you just need a strong balance and we learned that after obedience and puppy classes.

Train/discipline/rules first...then play and cuddles second. All you have to do is wait 2-5 minutes, then go for it :) The training that will ensue alone will be worth its weight in gold. Also (and I dont think you have this issue right now), if you continue to make your comings and goings a big deal, separation anxiety will most likely start, and that is a tough one to break. My dog trainer said that one of the biggest reasons for separation anxiety is the "running and hugging and throwing a party" when people get home from being out and the talking tos and big deals when they leave. It makes the dog feel like they were right to not want to be alone, that you coming home really IS a big deal....when it should really be just ho hum in the comings and goings and all the cuddles and fun in the middle.

I know it is SO hard. I mean, I was just gone for a month and when I got back I wanted to fling the door open and run for her like the movies...ha ha!! But she is still a pup in training mode I feel to a certain point, so I did have to ignore her for a few minutes. They she calmed and I dove in ;) But it is HARD!!! Puppyhood is their most formidable years though, so the work you put in now is the dog you get later. Just think that little tweaks you make now, will be 12 years with the dog you want trained just the way you always wished it would be. You can try to lax up rules as he gets older. Give a little bit here and there to see how he reacts and little by little give him the freedom he deserves as an adult. But as a puppy, you have to set the ground work as it is the time where they need it the most.

I hope that helps! On a side not, Brooky was having major issues at one point in early puppyhood (she is 1 year and 3 months). My trained through a lot of questioning found that we were making too big a deal of the comings and goings. So we stopped...and literally like 3 weeks later it was a different dog! So it works, and just stick with it :)

Adelya21
24th January 2012, 09:22 PM
Thank you so much its all great advice!

BrooklynMom
24th January 2012, 11:01 PM
Of course!!! :)