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Thread: Agressive behaviour??

  1. #1
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    Default Agressive behaviour??

    Ellie is almost 12 weeks old, and is very independent. She doesn't like sitting on my knee ( such a shame) and the only time she likes being fussed is when I go to her in the morning..... I really want to cuddle her. What worries me is that I have tried to kiss the top of her head ( its hard not too she is so cute) but if I do she growls and has tried to bite me.She also growls if I pick her up.......I am really worried that she is going to be an agressive dog.......I am taking her to training classes in a few weeks....But has anyone any idea why she doesnt like being fussed? It seems more than just puppy nipping, I can see she means it by her eyes.
    I thought Cavaliers were friendly dogs? I have had dogs all my life and never had an agressive puppy.......Its hard to bond with her, and getting me very upset

  2. #2
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    You might want to take her to the vet and describe what is happening. It could be that she is having some pain or discomfort that is causing her to growl and behave defensively.

    Also, are you picking her up correctly? Don't pick her up like a baby under the arms. Pick her up by putting one hand under her chest, and make sure your other hand supports her hind end. Hold her gently, yet securely against you, so she doesn't squirm and fall. It's very important to support their hind ends when lifting them.

    Most dogs prefer to have their chins and chests lightly tickled or stroked rather than be petted on top of the head. They just don't like your hand reaching over their head. It's so easy to switch to letting them sniff your hand first then lightly tickle their fur. Additionally, most dogs don't like to be patted, but like to be lightly stroked.

    When you take her to training, part of the training should focus on gently handling your pup's paws, ears, and gently checking her body for matts, lumps, or other abnormalties that may need attention. Talking in a soft voice with slow, gentle movements will help her to build her trust in you.
    Cathy Moon
    India(tri-F) Geordie(blen-M)Chocolate(b&t-F)Charlie(at the bridge)

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    Good advice.

    It is extremely rare for a 12 week old puppy to be aggressive. So rare that my trainer friends have never yet encountered a truly aggressive pup. I would definitely talk to your vet to start to make sure her reactions aren't linked to a physical problem. That cleared away, then reconsider the ways in which your actions may be threatening, even though you don't mean them to be. Many dogs really do not like being kissed or even patted on the head -- this involves what is in dog language very threatening and impolite activity -- arching over them, putting your face right into theirs, moving your mouth to the top of their head, reaching for a vulnerable area.

    If the breeder made sure the litter was well handled by people and so forth this is very unlikely to be aggression -- simply discomfort and a pup's need for some private space. A good breeder wouldn't have homed a puppy s/he knew was not socialised.

    See:

    http://diamondsintheruff.com/bodylangspaceinvaders.html
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Lily Tansy Libby Mindy
    In memory: Lucy Leo
    Cavalier SM Information site:www.smcavaliers.com

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    Thank you both so much for your replies, it is so nice to have people to share worries with.
    I am sure that Ellie hasn't got anything physically wrong with her and I do pick her up correctly.... But yes I suppose I am guilty of invadeing her spase. I just never thought of it. My Yorki who died last year aged 15, never growled or snapped at me and loved to be cuddled. My grandkids play him with for hours......He was very much a lap dog and loved people in general......
    So I am treating Ellie just as I did with my Yorki and I shouldnt .
    Ellie is Ellie a independent little girl.
    It's sounds stupid but I feel she doesnt need my affection.
    I bought her from a very good breeder so yes she was socialised before I got her........Hopefully as she grows up, her affection will come through.
    I will stop trying to kiss or hug her....She is a beautiful puppy, and I expected to feel instant bonding with her.....but I was so worried that the growling and biting would carry on into adulthood that I havnt let myself relax with her.....
    So thank you again for the advise......I will relax and stop the kissing....

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    hi, hopefully when you start puppy training things will improve could you try some basic training at home like sit and playing games like fetch with her so she starts to bond with you. And then try brushing her with a soft brush to she gets used to your touch. Keep prasing her giving her treats all the time. Also could you contact your breeder they might be able to give you some advice afterall the breeder would have spent time with your pup before you had her. When we got lady she was happy to sit in our arms for a while put wanted to play and sleep a lot now she's getting older you haven't got a chance to sit down without her wanting to be on your lap. Your pup may well change as it gets older. Also remember a puppy will naturally be more playfull than your golen oldie yorkie. Hope that helps.
    Natalie, mummy to lady (blen) 8 months old

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    Hi Natalie, Ellie is very good at Sit and Down, she learnt that very quickly ( plenty of treats)...But as for brushing her thats a nightmare. Even though I just try short sessions of brushing, and reward her after....she gets VERY angry and bites a lot, I just dont know if I should leave the brushing alone for a while or persevere?.....She seems very intelegent for her age and VERY determined to get her own way....The thing is.....do I give in to her or try to make her give in to me....
    Of all the pups I have ever owned she is the most strong willed and I am aware I must gets things right while she is young.....

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    I have a 13wk old who does a lot of the same things.. you have to make her give in to you!

    Faith was much like Ellie when I first brought her home. She seemed to prefer to be on the floor or the end of the couch rather than touching me. If you know me, I am a cuddle bug myself, so I must have puppy cuddle bugs too.. It's very important to me for Faith to LOVE to be handled so when she would fall asleep I would gently move her to where she was touching me and just pet her. I would stroke her back and her ears and paws.. just touching her.

    A few nights I stayed up late and waited until she fell asleep and then put her on my tummy and pet her some more. Of course I gave her puppy kisses and tummy rubs and the like as much as I could. I think it's important to spend as much physical time as possible with them right now. They are learning to socialize. I also do my part as best as possible by taking Faith to all my neighbor's houses and passing her around to everybody who will have her. She was scared at first but she's becoming more and more affectionate every single day.

    Good luck!
    Sara, mommy to Kosmo ~ 4 year blenheim boy and Faith 3 year b/t girl *rescue*

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    Ann: Perhaps the most important thing is to relax. Also, even if you think she is healthy check with your Vet, explaining the behaviour, as we can think everything is fine and it may not be. In addition, I would call your breeder. Good breeders will be there for you and help you with their puppy's transition into a new home, and hopefully be there for you for Ellie's life. Finally, although Ellie is independent, do not assume she does not want some loving. There are plenty of ways to bond with her, you just have to figure out what works best for both of you. Taking puppy classes is a good start. Hopefully, you will have a good trainer who can give you some individual advise.

    Our Buddy is not the face licker, cuddle bug that some Cavaliers are. He will sit in our laps, but would prefer to sit beside us or sometimes just where he can see us. (Now, if I am lying down on the sofa reading or watching television, his favorite spot is draped over my hip!!) At two years of age, Buddy still does not like hands that reach out to him from above his head. We are careful but if we forget to mention this to others he will always back up. He also does not initiate play often but loves it when we play with him: ball retrieving, climbing through homemade tunnels, walking on two feet, making circles, etc. - his tail is in helicopter mode! The point is they are all individuals and you have to explore and experiment to find the best way to bring out your Cavalier's best side.

    Best of luck to you.
    Phyllis in West Virginia USA with two Clumbers and a Cavalier Named Buddy

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    I think the exact age of 12 wks has a lot to do with it. Yes independant puppies may not want as much interaction but I also thinks its the stage they are at (but they will react to different degrees). Kodee is 11 wks and she insisted on lap time, well, ALL DAY from 8-11 wks! But this weekend and today she is a ball of fire. You put your hand up while she is playing etc.. and she grabs hold of your sweater, you walk thro the kitchen she attacks (and I do mean attacks) your shoes! I kept thinking WHAT DID I DO TO MAKE SUCH A TURN and then calm downed and realized its really just a stage. She has found new independance, lots of things she didnt notice before that just MUST BE INVESTIGATED with paws, teeth and tongue! She is letting me know "not now I am busy!" and if i were to push it more, she would react more. But when she wakes up she is very sleepy and cuddly so I am making sure (like Sara suggested) to touch her paws, tummy etc.. as much then to keep her used to it etc..

    I had an older dog too - and kept thinking oh Kodee is different. But when I look back right to the start and force myself to remember actually a puppy is a puppy! She will develop into the lap, pat loving dog eventually. Really a 12 wk puppy is the equivilant of the Terrible 2's (those with kids will wince)!

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    Already some excellent advice given here especially the stuff about body language & personal space. Sometimes we forget that our fur babies are not human babies but are in fact dogs, and dog body language & manners are very different to ours.

    Oh and if you want to be reminded of how rough puppies can play, take a look at a litter of siblings chewing on each other's ears & legs, all ferocious growls & monstering It is during those early weeks that mum & the other siblings teach the puppy some of his socialising skills. If the puppy is sent to his home too early, sometimes they don't learn this and can seem a little aggro. It is then up to us to show them that biting & growling is not the way to get on
    ~ Sam, Sonny & Beau ~

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