North American Shepherd help

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sourced from: https://www.reddit.com/r/puppy101/comments/8nevb3/north_american_shepherd_help/

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Hi y’all, I just wanted to post to make sure I’m not going completely crazy here! My fiancé (M23) and I(F22) just recently brought home a male 9 week old mini Aussie. I’ve not had any dogs before but my fiancé has had dogs his whole life, poodles specifically . We decided on this breed because of our active lifestyle in addition to people we know personally that own standard Australian shepherds. We brought him home the Sunday before last and basically any “plan” i had for my puppy went out of the window.

For one, he hates his playpen which was supposed to be his long term confinement area when we both go back to work. I would not care if he were just whining but he tries to climb the sides and then will drop off like he wants to end it all. I don’t want him to hurt himself but i have no other ideas for long term confinement?

Next, he growls and bites ALL the time which I understand is just puppy behavior but he will go after our ankles and clothes and growl and bite and then pull our clothes like he’s playing tug of war? Is this normal? Anything we do at this point seems like playing to him so I’m not sure what to do in these situations. I’ve had some friends come over to socialize him and a few seemed to think he was being aggressive and suggested we should “dominate” him which i did not do. I really think he is just being a puppy, his body language is usually bowing and sneezing he’s just being an asshole right now as a baby and biting IMO but i just need another opinion.

Lastly does anyone have any shy dog socialization tips?/exercise while being in an apt and not fully vaccinated? We have a great pavement road to walk on for him but he’s terrified of pretty much everything and everyone. I don’t want it to turn into fear aggression so we are trying to work through it with treats but so far no progress! Sorry for the wall of text my fiancé has a much more lax take on the puppy situation and I’m the ball of anxiety

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