Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone! It's been a while since I posted, but I need some help with my dobie Lexie and my kids. She is a wonderful dog, and although she does have her quirks, she's been incredibly loyal and a wonderful puppy for the most part. Before we purchased a doberman, I read up on how they are not for first time dog owners(which we're not) and they are very strong minded and need a firm handler. We have established with her that my husband and I are the alpha dogs, but we've found it hard for her to view our children as the boss, especially when they are the same height as her. We have a 4 year old and a 1 year old. She is for the most part very good with them....but one habit we have had a VERY hard time breaking her of is play biting. She has gotten to where if she does it to us and we say No Bite, she stops completely. But with our kids, especially if they're out in the backyard playing, she will run up and bite my son on the arm or leg. While I know she's playing and she knows she's playing, my son doesn't and I don't want him to be afraid of her. I also don't want her to bite down too hard one time and hurt him. How do I establish with her that he is over her and is the dominant one? Also, she has growled once at my daughter, the 1 year old, when my daughter was walking past her. She's never exhibited any aggresive behavior, but I don't know why she growled at her. She is spayed, and is very sweet....but I haven't figured out how to break her of these couple habits. Does anyone else have any issues with their dobies and kids? Should I be worried if she's exhibited these kind of behaviors? Are these dominant behaviors? With my husband and I, she is very submissive....but she has shown dominant behaviors towards my kids. Thank you in advance for any advice!
 

·
_______
Joined
·
5,102 Posts
I will post our situation and let you judge for yourself.
When we got our dobe rescue [email protected] months old our daughter was much older, 9 at the time.
She would randomly give a low rumble and resource guard toys. I was freaking out because we were so attached to her already.
A good obedience class straightened her out.
So often I think young dogs don't know what's expected of them and what the rules are, especially around young children.
We did all kinds of things to establish rules. She lost all toys in the house until she was straightened out. She lost all lap sitting and furniture privileges.
When she did have toys we would trade for high value treats to repossess toys.
Our daughter was taught NEVER to get in the dog's face ever.
After the class and these rules she got a clue and has became bomb proof around kids/people after a yr. 1/2. It wasn't until after 2 tho that she won back some furniture privileges and did go on "probation periods" a couple times where she had to lose the furniture privilege.

I've been careful to never ever leave Nina alone w/other people's children, because you never know how other people's kids really treat animals, especially behind your back.

Good luck w/your girl. I'd get her into a class asap and keep her in one until she figures out that your children are to be respected, but it is also of utmost importance to teach children dog rules.

A great read is Turid Rugass' book "Calming Signals", to read body language of when a dog is stressed.
I can't say enough about this book. Everyone around dogs, children included, should read it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
939 Posts
This is why everyone tells you to work work work on bite inhibition with new puppies. I'd suggest really working on a solid 'leave it' so that when you notice her about to play too rough with your kids, you can tell her to leave it and redirect her to a positive activity. Please, NEVER leave a dog unsupervised with small children.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Beaumont67

·
Registered
Joined
·
609 Posts
The dog growling at the kid would worry me.


I have a 4 and 3 year old, my dog is almost 2. I have involved my kids in dog training since my dog was a 10wk old puppy and my youngest could barely walk. The only way you can expect a dog to obey commands from anyone regardless of age is for whoever to give them commands on a regular basis. My wife and my kids will participate in short simple training sessions. With the biting, once adult teeth are in putting your mouth on any human in the house is un-acceptable. I would definitely have a come to Jesus meeting with a dog over that. As for the dog being ruff with the kids outside, you can only expect so much. I will let me dog play with the kids in the yard, but I don't let the kids crazy-run-scream around the yard. NOt saying it is acceptable for a dog to ruff house kids regardless of where they are. I feel my dog getting along so well with my kids can be based on a few things:

1. Me and him have a superb working relationship.
2. He knows his place at home, and knows his boundaries.
3.I have spent a lot of time training the wife/kids on how to interact with the dog.

I feel like all these things together make the whole picture work.

Your dog is not Dominant, all the behaviors mentioned are play behaviors. She just has not been taught how to play. Kids doing obedience is a must in my opinion. My 3 year old can go through just about every basic command with my dog. He loves working for both kids.

Good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,372 Posts
You need to get into some obedience classes. With the play biting, are you there to correct her at that very moment she is biting the children ? The children are not correcting the dog at that very moment. Corrections should be given to a dog at that moment and not 3 seconds or more after. Dogs live in the now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,618 Posts
We are in the same boat :) I also have a 4 year old, a 23 month old, and a 9 month old pup. Gunner has NEVER growled at any of us, and if he did, honestly that would worry me. As for the play biting though, I think involving your kids in the training would help. Both of my boys (even the almost 2 year old) are involved with training. I've found that by conditioning Gunner to listen to them, he will easily calm down when my son tells him to.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,030 Posts
Dear OP you are not a ALFA Dog and never can be please erase the word dominant from your minds it is quite simple your puppy thinks your kids are puppies and plays accordingly. You should never every leave your puppy alone with the kids and or the kids alone with the puppy.Go to an obedience class where you can train the dog your selfs that way the puppy will gain confidence learn how to behave and the three most important things you can teach a pup/dog to come.Leave it & Drop it. NILF training is a big help in training your pup you are in charge with no alfa rolls which are very out dated.Even the kids can participate with you right there by them.Good Luck training.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
270 Posts
I agree with all of the above. I will add that if my puppy was play biting my kids when loose in the yard then I would have the puppy on leash until this behavior stops. It is unxceptable at that age to be grabbing anyone.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top