Here`s another great article:
This is a longish post and I greatly appreciate anyone’s time in reading and providing advice.
Last Saturday our 1year old Lab/terrier mix arrived on transport from Georgia (to my home in NY). I’m at my wits end, and it has only been a week. I feel like I’ve messed up somewhere in the first few days, or maybe made a mistake in thinking I was prepared for a dog—I’m having a lot of complicated emotions.
She came to us from rescue, where she had been since November of last year. It’s my understanding that she was never at animal control/shelter and wherever she was prior to rescue is unknown. After vetting a few potential dogs, when I was told that this girl was crate trained, house trained, non-reactive to cats (which turned out to not be true and is breaking my heart for my poor cats), and knew basic commands I thought she would be a good fit.
She has SO MUCH energy and refuses to listen unless I have a treat in my hand or go get a treat, then goes straight back to doing the unwanted behavior.
The behaviors I’m having the hardest time with are: incessant leash chewing/tug of war, won’t even stop for a high reward treat jumping all over me and biting/barking/growling (on the couch, while I’m standing, while I’m sitting working from home) Barking and growling when trying to get her to stop an unwanted behavior. Distracting her or rewarding for a different, wanted behavior has not worked. She takes the treat and goes straight back to jumping all over me when I’m sitting while barking and growling.
She’s too nervous on our country road to go for long walks so we have been walking her around our acre of property, meals we use puzzle feeders, a kong, or sniffing games. We got a recall leash so she could run around the yard and play fetch with us while still secured but she’s constantly chewing on the lead or trying to play tug of war with it.
I don’t know what to do. I thought I was doing a good thing for my family and for this dog and instead I’m growing increasingly frustrated every day. I don’t know how to get her energy or stop the bad behaviors. I spoke for an hour with a trainer doing a virtual consultation (my state is still in lockdown) and she kept saying a tired dog is a good dog, but how the hell do I tire her out if she doesn’t want to do anything but do tug of war with the leash???
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