Here`s another great article:
I'm having doubts about a 5.5 month mini dachshund male puppy that I just bought from a breeder that I thought was reputable, but now I'm not so sure. I had originally planned to get a young puppy that was 8-10 weeks old, but I ended up falling for a 5.5 month old puppy from another breeder. I was hesitant because the dog was older and out of the "socialization window" but the breeder assured me that he was already well socialized, and when he was at the breeder's, he seemed friendly and easygoing.
However, now that he's home (I've had him for a week), I've learned that that's not true. He's very nervous, shy, clingy with me to the point that he won't eat or drink when I'm not there, and perhaps most annoyingly to me, he is so scared of my parents (who live with me) that he will pee when they walk into the room and do everything he can to escape being near them. He can't concentrate on anything else but them when he hears or sees them, so he's been difficult to get to focus in order to train or even to eat. Interestingly, even when he meets a new stranger, he's scared but not as scared as he is of my parents, who he has known for over a week now. They have never scolded him; we have never hit him; we focus on positive reinforcement training, etc.
I feel a little bit like a sucker having paid purebred puppy prices for a dog with these types of socialization problems (if I had known, I'd rather have gotten a rescue or a younger puppy), and for supporting a breeder that breeds too many dogs (and therefore has puppies this old available). But he is a cute dog and otherwise mellow, which is what we were looking for, but the nervousness is a problem because it affects everything else (training, walks, meeting new people, etc.).
I'm wondering whether or not you can train a dog to stop fearing everything or whether it's going to be a lifelong problem. In the back of my mind, I'm considering returning him to the breeder because I feel like I was mislead by the level of socialization I was told he had and don't want to support the breeder, but on the other hand, if this is something that can be managed so he ends up as a pretty normal dog, I'd work through it. My impression is that fear/nervousness is more difficult to manage than other behavior problems (potty training, biting, jumping, etc.), and if this is something that's going to be a lifelong problem and he's going to pee and be scared every time he sees my parents (which is everyday right now), this may not be the best dog for me.
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