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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi all Golden lovers

I have a Golden retriever that is 7 months old his name is Dawson, I got him when he was 9 weeks old... I am having a mega issue with him dominating and having zero respect for my two children that are 4 and 6. Some examples of this behaviour are if the kids are outside playing in the snow he will jump all over them take their gloves, mittens, hats....and he is aggressive about it, I dont really find it friendly playful behaviour. We have tried all the suggested things, yelping, walking away, ignoring, if anything this makes him more eager to take them down...we are starting obedience in a couple of weeks but I am beginning to feel somewhat defeated, I wanted my children to enjoy having a family pet, so far this isnt the case. He does listen to my husband and I on most occasions., but continues with what they call normal puppy behaviour, he is also a bigtime counter surfer, steals their food all the time. I want to nip this all in the butt..immediatley and would love some input if anyone has had these struggles, also hoping obedience helps me out some. He is also still very very mouthy...and sometimes actually bites down....
 

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Momma to angel Cody
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You have a teenaged dog who thinks your children are his playmates. Puppies play hard with one another, and lacking opposable thumbs, they use their mouths. It's normal and he's probably not being aggressive, just simply too rambunctious for your little ones. Suggestions for dealing with it now are to give him some long and energy-utilizing exercise before he's let out to play with the kids. You or your husband take him for a long walk, or hit tennis balls for him to fetch in an enclosed area or both. Alternately, don't let him out to "play" with the kids because their activity gets him ramped up and he will join in. Or, once your kids have played with each other, an adult monitors while the kids take turns throwing a ball for Dawson to fetch, stopping the pup's fun if he becomes inappropriate with your kids. As for the counter surfing and stealing kids' food, you don't want him to practice either behavior, so for the moment, children eat at a table where Dawson cannot access their food, and the counters are kept clean of anything appealing to dog tastebuds, which means everything!

A seven-month-old dog needs to have most daily activity be learning experiences. If you are giving Dawson a treat, have him sit for it. Have your children ask him to sit before they hand over one of his toys. If your children are going out the door to the backyard and Dawson wants to go with them, he must sit or down while they go out first, then he joins them. Understand that normal young children's activities, running, yelling, arguing with each other in loud voices, are all triggers for a young dog to start acting like the energizer bunny. Your children need to learn when to be calm around the dog, too. If they don't want to be grabbed or have their clothing pulled, the pup either needs to be removed if the kids are wild, or the kids need to calm down. Having said all that, you will have a wonderful family member when your pup gets older and has had consistent, positive training for the two+ years it will take him to grow a brain. When your own kiddos are teenagers, that "grow a brain" phrase will take on new meaning:)
 

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Kristy
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Hi! Welcome to the forum! We would love to see some photos of your boy! The good news is it sounds like your puppy is completely normal. Not sure from the info you've given if he is your first golden retriever, so forgive me if I'm wrong, but I'm going to assume that he is your first. The obedience training is a big key, if you will practice with him a couple times a day, you will be amazed at how quickly he will learn.

1) How much vigorous exercise are you giving your pup on a DAILY basis? He needs consistent, daily work for his body and his brain. Do you give him any training sessions every day to work on the basics - sit, down, stay etc.?

Dawson may not look much like a puppy anymore, but he still is a pup. He was bred to go, go, go all day long. He is reaching the age where he needs more aerobic exercise or he is going to attempt to burn off his excess energy with your kids or some other destructive behavior. I would up his exercise and it sounds like he should not be outside playing with the kids unsupervised so that he accidentally hurts one of them. He needs one or two long walks a day and some fetch. Is doggy day care once or twice a week in your budget? Puppy playdates are a wonderful way to burn off his energy.

2) I would get a 3 foot piece of nylon cord and attach it to a clip. Put this on him as a 'drag' leash. I would have a separate one for inside and one for outside (that way it won't matter if the outdoor cord gets wet and muddy). Use the cord as a handle to pull him off the kids outside when he gets too rowdy and inside to nip the counter surfing when you catch him in the act.

This forum has an excellent ' search ' feature. If you enter the term counter surfing you will find lots of better info than I give here. But my best suggestion at this point is to clean off your counters 100% for the time being and make sure he is not getting any reward for this behavior. I have 3 kids, believe I know this is a tall order, but everytime he pulls something off, it is an immediate reward.

Do you use baby gates to limit his access to different areas of the house? If not, I highly recommend this.

Please don't get frustrated, Dawson sounds totally normal. He needs obedience training and exercise to be the dog of your dreams. Just give him what he needs and have some patience, it will come.
 

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Now Caue's Dad Too!
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Welcome to the forum from just down the road in Calais. You have some great advice already. It sounds like you have a very normal golden. I would suggest that you work with your children in training your pup. Have them learn to have your pup sit, stay and down.
 

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Official Trout Bum
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As has been pointed out Dawson is just being a pup & pups LOVE TO PLAY!!! Your kids are at that perfect age for puppy play and unfortunately unknowingly they are probably enforcing his bad behavior. Dawson grabs a hat and takes off with it...do the children chase after his? If so watch out there's nothing more a pup would like to do than play chase "puppy heaven.". And once they get away with any of this it's very hard to get them to stop.

PREVENTION is the key here in my opinion. Don't allow him to get into trouble and antissapate problems before they happen. Teach your kids how to react and more importantly to prevent the problem from occurring in the first place.

Welcome aboard...Dawson sounds like a great pup!

Pete
 
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Discussion Starter #6
oaklys dad, not far at all, used to frequent calais quite often, lived in st andrews for a year..
thanks guys for your advice, I do have to agree on the excercise, he is def not getting enough I have got to up the anty on that one. We try to play fetch but we always loose his balls in the snow...lol, it will be interesting once we can see the grass again...
as for the surfing he takes it off the island, kids always eat there...bugger...it is evident we still have some work ahead of us. He is my first golden but not my first dog, my last dog was a siberian husky completley different experience.
I may give this nylon cord thing a try, anything is a worth a shot.
I will post a photo of him as soon as I figure it out, seems pretty simple...lol
 

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Nancy
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Hi all Golden lovers

I have a Golden retriever that is 7 months old his name is Dawson, I got him when he was 9 weeks old... I am having a mega issue with him dominating and having zero respect for my two children that are 4 and 6. Some examples of this behaviour are if the kids are outside playing in the snow he will jump all over them take their gloves, mittens, hats....and he is aggressive about it, I dont really find it friendly playful behaviour. We have tried all the suggested things, yelping, walking away, ignoring, if anything this makes him more eager to take them down...we are starting obedience in a couple of weeks but I am beginning to feel somewhat defeated, I wanted my children to enjoy having a family pet, so far this isnt the case. He does listen to my husband and I on most occasions., but continues with what they call normal puppy behaviour, he is also a bigtime counter surfer, steals their food all the time. I want to nip this all in the butt..immediatley and would love some input if anyone has had these struggles, also hoping obedience helps me out some. He is also still very very mouthy...and sometimes actually bites down....
All these behaviors sound like normal, Golden puppy antics, exasperating though they are. He's not dominating the kids but is looking at them as littermates and potential playmates. Stealing gloves or hats is an invitation to play not aggression.

My granddaughter lives here and when she has a friend/s over I still gate Hank in the laundry room, those screaming, running 6 y.o. girls can really get him wound up and I'm afraid he'll knock them down the stairs. When out in the yard we taught her to "become a tree" when he's running at her.

It does get better though.
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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When your kids reach about 10-12...youre gonna wake up one day and think...OMG they are worse then the dog ever was! Wrestling, constantly on the move, needing reminders to be mannerly, eating you out of house and home, accidentally dinging up the furniture or the walls - consider the pup your warm up act! ;) ;)
 

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Musician/Songwriter
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Get him on a training lead and pull him back when he jumps up. This problem may show up later as jumping on anyone upon greeting them. A tug back down to earth with a stern "off" command will do wonders. Make sure the pup is getting plenty of exercise.
 

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Kye & Coops Mom
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We have a thread going here in the puppy section regarding our "teenage" pups. Might be fun to go and read and tell us your stories. We like that we can all tell of our good and bad days, whine and get ideas on how to correct.

Hoping Mod's will make a sticky on this cause there are so many of us!
 

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[/IMG]We got our first golden Daisy, when my son and daughter were 2 and 6, so Daisy and the kids were raised together. Ryan didn't have a shirt for the next 2 years that didn't have a small tear in the back. daisy wasn't trying to be domanant she was trying to play. She also stole the kids gloves and chased them thru the snow. I think that dogs consider gloves toys and Daisy enjoyed playing keep away with the kids. The bond between the kids and daisy was amazing, and the reason we got our 2nd golden pump jackson, 13 years later.








They will all love growing up together!!!!

Bob

Hi all Golden lovers

I have a Golden retriever that is 7 months old his name is Dawson, I got him when he was 9 weeks old... I am having a mega issue with him dominating and having zero respect for my two children that are 4 and 6. Some examples of this behaviour are if the kids are outside playing in the snow he will jump all over them take their gloves, mittens, hats....and he is aggressive about it, I dont really find it friendly playful behaviour. We have tried all the suggested things, yelping, walking away, ignoring, if anything this makes him more eager to take them down...we are starting obedience in a couple of weeks but I am beginning to feel somewhat defeated, I wanted my children to enjoy having a family pet, so far this isnt the case. He does listen to my husband and I on most occasions., but continues with what they call normal puppy behaviour, he is also a bigtime counter surfer, steals their food all the time. I want to nip this all in the butt..immediatley and would love some input if anyone has had these struggles, also hoping obedience helps me out some. He is also still very very mouthy...and sometimes actually bites down....
 

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Ah, I remember it well. The neighbor kids would come over to play with Penny. I have pictures of her running around with their mittens in her mouth. Keep-away is her favorite game STILL!! One kid would 'run' out of his boots, she would grab that and run around.

As far as stealing food goes, sounds like some restraint is in order. You can teach the kids to always eat at the table or island. You can teach Dawson to lay just outside the kitchen or put him in his crate with a kong.

I second the exercise. You have a healthy, vibrant BIG, goofy puppy. It's much easier to co-exist with them if they are happily tired!
 

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Our Duncan, who was really the ultimate family dog in my opinion, had a hard time resisting a game of steal the mittens and gloves in the snow. We have a giant hill in our back yard and I think that was his way of getting in the fun. In fact the year he died that winter the kids and their friends (all 17) came running in to tell us he was feeling frisky because he took a hat or two.

My kids were 8 when we got him and at time he did get carried away, and to rough for them even at that age. I think when he was about 6 months he got a bit too rough at times, particularly during play. If things got out of hand I separated him from the kids, usually banished to the kitchen behind gates. When he calmed down we would try again.
When he was really crazy I would tell him to sit, it seemed the easiest way to get him calm. Another suggestion I would have is have mini training sessions with you and each child, have them go through some of the commands and give treat. Also tell the kids to adjust the tone of their voice. Keep the voice as low as possible when trying to get him to calm down, and keep the high pitched stuff at a minimum.

He's just being a typical kid himself, and in a few months this too shall pass.
 
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My kids have never had the same control over the dogs that I've had. We didn't have huge problems because our golden was an adult before they were born and our collie was just more calm.

My kids came home from college last month. Even though they were raised with dogs, I had to teach them how to get the puppy to Sit, Down, etc. This is the first time that the dog's and kid's age sort of matched, training-wise. My youngest son, the one always asking for a puppy, did great training Casper to Sit, Down, Back up. My oldest (who they now tell me is a cat person) just focused on "I'm not petting you until you sit."

Last week we had a neighborhood girl that plopped down in the snow in our front yard and squealed, "Hey, Casper, I'm making a snow angel!" :hyper: What's a puppy to do in that case?
 

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Digby's Dad
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A thing that is helping us is to have your kids give him his meals (even if they are not actually putting the food in his bowl) and them making your boy sit before putting the bowl in front of him. We think its helping to learn his place that the small humans are above him in the pecking order and he should behave for them.
 

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Kristy
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Good suggestion RMarlow... with obedience training, all things are possible! I had problems with my last golden, Duncan, and one of the things we worked on was having the kids feed him. Before he was a year old, Duncan had a rock solid 'down/stay' if there was food involved. My 3 year old daughter could put him in down/stay, go in the pantry and fix his food bowl, come out and put it on the floor next to him and he wouldn't move until she released him. It's a great trick!
 

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Willow52 said it perfectly in one work, "exasperating." I think we all feel your pain. I remember so vividly being in tears and writing on the forum about Maggie and her bahavior. My DH was frustrated and thought something was wrong with Maggie and that she needed to be put down. Maggie is now 2 years old and they adore one another. Except when DH is in a "mood," he might say a negative about Maggie on occassion.
 

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We are in the exact same boat with our Tucker. We have a long chord on Tucker every time he is let outside, even though we have a great-working invisible fence. At 8 months, Tucker does the same things with our 2, 6 and 7 year old children outside. He is an ANGEL inside with them, but outside is a different story. We would never dream of allowing him outside with our older kids unsupervised, for safety issues. The chord works wonders. As soon as he shows any wild signs, we take control with the chord and use the moment for a quick training/reminder with a sit/stay. But he does still lose control at times, and then playtime is over. He's 8 months old, and we are gradually seeing improvement with this. Just yesterday, the boys were able to sled down our hillside with Tucker running alongside, not jumping on them at all. It was a great sight. But those sights are few and far between! It's definitely the age. Good luck, and keep us posted on progress. :wavey:
 
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