But I believe that this little bundle of fluff is going to fucking kill me.
Here are the 3 things he’s doing that are driving me batshit-crazy. I’ll also add below each item what I’ve tried to do to curb the behavior. If anyone has any other ideas, please let me know before I jump off the Empire State building…..
1) He bites.
Not to hurt, but he’s always putting his mouth on my hand, or worse, pulling at my son’s pants. Yeah, I know he’s only 3 months old, and he’s teething and his teeth hurt, but sometimes, it’s relentless and drives me crazy.
What I’ve done:
I always give him a firm and loud “NO BITE!” when he starts with his chewing. We’ve tried to be consistent with this. I’ve also tried to put peanut butter on the back of my hand, and when he licks it I tell him “Good Boy!”. The idea here is that they get accustomed to licking your hand and getting positive reinforcement from it. The only thing THAT has done for us so far is getting him to drink a lot of water, and me having a really sticky hand. We had a trainer come to the house for one visit (he’s too young to begin training yet) and he suggested getting a can of compressed air and blowing it in his face when he bites. We’ve been doing that and it seems to work, but NOW I can’t go anywhere without this fucking can of air in my pocket. We also try to divert him with the millions of chew toys we have bought him.
2) He poops and pees.
Yeah, I know, that’s a pretty good sign that he’s ALIVE, which is a positive thing. I’d just prefer him not to poop and pee on my carpet. He was actually getting pretty good about going on the wee-wee pads, but this weekend it seemed like he wanted to give us a big SCREW YOU and almost spitefully started giving me presents in the Den again.
What I’ve done:
TONS of positive reinforcement when he goes on the pads, and a big “NO” when he doesn’t, followed by my picking him up in mid-pee or poop and carrying him to the pads. Honestly, except for this weekend’s relapse, he’s been pretty good with this. My BIG concern is when I have to make him unlearn this behavior and start going outside. I’d LOVE to get him started outside NOW but both the vet and pet store said we really shouldn’t do it until he’s had all his shots, and I’d rather not take any chances on an animal that cost more than most South American countries. Am I shooting myself in the foot by teaching him to go in the house?
3) Chasing the cat.
This is the one that literally is keeping me up at night with anxiety. The little bastard wants nothing more than to chase and terrorize the cat. Yeah, I know he just wants to play with the cat, but the cat sure doesn’t know that! The problem is that the cat is the most docile and timid thing in the world, and he will NEVER just swat the pup. He doesn’t have it in him. He just runs for his life.
What I’ve done:
To start we put up some small fences in the house, basically giving the dog one small area, and the cat the rest of the house. I have a fence that cuts across my kitchen and den like the Great Wall of China. I swear, it’s like a fucking maze in my house! Right now my house looks like the Hedge Maze at the Overlook Hotel. Sometimes, late at night when I come down to the kitchen for a drink, I fully expect to find a dead-as-fuck frozen Jack Nicholson sitting in the corner.
Also, I’ve tried to get a small amount of time each night to get the two of them in the same room. I put the pup on a leash, and let them interact. At first, it was chaos, but it HAS been getting better. Sometimes, they will sit in the same room, noticing each other but completely disinterested, for a full 10 minutes or so, before the pup decided to get it into his head to trot over and say hi, and then the chase is on.
This is the one that I HAVE to nip in the bud, because I can’t fucking live like this much longer. EVERY damn website I go to says that this behavior WILL cease if I keep doing this, but I have yet to find a website which tells me how much longer I have before I stuff my head in the microwave and set the timer to “Popcorn”.
Anyway, that’s where I’m at these days. The past 3 weeks have honestly been more work and stress for me than when my son was born, and THAT’s really saying something.
It all came to a head last Saturday when, between an unending barrage of chasing, pooping, and biting, I needed a Calgon moment to Take Me Away and decided we were getting rid of the puppy.
At which point, my son cried for 4 hours and I then floated back to Earth and realized that no matter what, I CAN’T do that to my son.
No, this HAS to work.
I don’t care if I have to buy a second house and put the fucking cat in it, this HAS to work.