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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I am new to this forum and wanted to get some advice on my new puppy Bruno, he is a 13 weeks old english cream Golden Retriever and our First pet ever. We got Bruno at 10 weeks from a breeder and he has completely changed our lives (in a positive way). It's been a little over 3 weeks now that we brought him home but he seems to be a very independent puppy. He never wants to cuddle up with us or even sit very close to us. We tried to bring him up on the couch, but he is just eager to jump off and get away. Some times, he just sits in the corner of a room and stares at us but never wants to come close. My husband and I love him a lot and we always try to keep him entertained, play tug of war and other games with him, and he loves to play. But as soon as the play is over, he will just pick a toy and sit somewhere alone chewing up the toy. I have also tried to hand feed a couple meals to him every day to create a bond but that doesn't really seem to make a difference once the food is finished. I also teach him all the tricks and commands and he is REALLY good at it given his age. Everyone gets super impressed by how much he listens to me when we're out on a walk or in a public place.

I know I am probably being overly worried as he is just 13 weeks but I really wanted my puppy to love me back, be happy to see me or just want to come close to me; but he seems to not like us back at all. All he cares about is getting his food and will follow us around when we're in the kitchen. May be i am influenced by all the cute dogs and their love for their owners on instagram but I am worried that my puppy is not like that at all. :(. Will this behavior ever change or will be just be aloof from us always?
 

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That is how 13 week old golden puppies are. As he gets older you might see him becoming more affectionate. My girl is three. Although she is a Velcro dog and wants to be where you are she isnt a cuddly dog. She would rather lay at your feet. But at 13 weeks they are so active and exploring everything I would not expect him to be cuddly yet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your message! I agree with you that he is only 13 weeks and all he wants to do is explore. May be I am expecting a lot out of a 13 week puppy. I just see so many other people and videos online where their puppies are so affectionate that my heart breaks when I see my boy not wanting to be with me at all :(. Like you said, I hope this changes when he is grown up; some times i really wish he grows up soon so that he knows that I am his mom :D (I know I'm going to miss him being a puppy when he does).
 

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When Chloe was awake she was just a bitey energetic pup. The only time she would lay with you is when she was sleeping. My last golden was not only a Velcro dog but he had to be in your face all the time. Just do things to increase your bond like training and playing together. It will eventually get there.
 

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My golden was the in your face for love dog every opportunity she could be. And I miss it so much. My lab could honestly not care where you are unless it’s time to go outside or eat. So I’ve had both ends of the spectrum. I remember 13-15 weeks puppies just being everywhere. I have 5 weeks until my new puppy comes home. Not sure how that one will be!
 

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Sounds pretty normal. I wouldn't worry about it - mine is 11-12 weeks and he's very bitey and not that affectionate. He does follow me everywhere and often falls asleep at my feet if he's not in his crate. He also gets pretty upset if I leave the room or the house, but he's not that cuddly otherwise. Everything is very stimulating for them at this age and they're still learning so much so fast - that bond takes time to form. You'll see. :)
 

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Boys tend to be pretty cuddly - but after they've grown up a bit. I think Noah started to snuggle with us after 1 year old. Moses is 4 months old tomorrow, and he likes to be around us, but he's also very independent. His temperament is one though, that I see him being a snuggle bug when he matures as well.

Just enjoy your puppy, maybe look at some engagement training (but remember, he's still an infant with a very short attention span - there's still a lot of stuff out there that he's learning about!!).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you for all the messages and responses. That really gives me a hope that my puppy will eventually come around and bond with us. Like many of you have already mentioned in your posts, he is extremely energetic when he is awake (especially in the morning & evening) and wants to chew on every thing or person coming his way. We are still giving him some training to NOT bite, but it's work in progress. He certainly wants to play with us when we take him out to the park and runs with us. He is very much fun and loves to play and eat all the time when not sleeping.

He used to follow us everywhere in the first week or so after we got him home but doesn't do that anymore. May be he got acquainted with the house and knows we're there, not sure but every day is a new day with him. He is extremely unpredictable as we would expect. I train him every day in the house and also on our walks and like you all have suggested, will try and spend more time with him and training him.

Did any of you have problems with your puppy trying to eat every single thing from the streets and grass?? We really want to take him out to the parks and other grassy areas but OMG!! he does not have his mouth shut for a second. He picks up every single leaf, rock, mulch, dirt, sticks, other dogs poop (if he gets to it even after 1000% supervision). Will this ever stop??
 

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My girl was the same way. Not sure she had much interaction with people before I got her, actually all 3 of the pups I chose from showed no interest in people. She is now two and never more than a few inches away. Never on the sofa unless I'm there and then she is laying across my lap or next to my legs.
But I had to work at it... I spent the first 4 months sitting on the floor. I put her in bed with me and became her puppy pile :) to cuddle with. I also set in the kitchen floor and fed her kibble one bit at a time and taught her stuff. Then one day she came and laid down between my feet! Then laid beside me while sitting on the floor. I also picked her up and put her in my lap, this was very uncomfortable for her and only lasted a few seconds but we did this at least once every day. When ever she would look at me or be next to me she got lots of attention and a kibble. I carried them in my pocket just hoping she would eventually get close.
Right now I have the best companion and can take her anywhere and usually do. So anytime they look at you go to them and give some love. Only to the point where they enjoy it, I noticed at 1st she was uncomfortable with too much so baby steps! Guys like this need to build trust, it was so worth the work!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks a lot for your response and advise. This totally makes sense and I am going to do that starting right away. He definitely makes a lot of eye contact with me and whenever he does, I will give him a kibble and pet him a couple times. I will try to curb my feelings of holding him close to me or making him sit on the lap. We also tried to bring him in the bed to sleep but he is not very comfortable and tries to jump off the bed (this is when he is awake and playing). We haven't tried putting him in bed when he is falling asleep but we will give that a shot tonight. Tried putting him on the couch when he was sleepy, but he just wanted to jump off and run away.

Some times I feel that he only wants to be in places where he knows he can run from or from where he can walk and sit in his favorite spot. He gets uncomfortable immediately if it's something new or can't escape from. For Example the couch is too high for him to jump off from, so he gets freaked out and doesn't want to sit there. Also, I try to do the exact same thing and feed him one kibble at a time, also sit on the floor for most times so he can come up to me, but unfortunately, he never does :(. He just sits away or in the kitchen where there is no carpet.

But I hope this changes some day and I get the lovey dovey puppy that I wish for.
 

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Pups have to learn to accept and enjoy affection from humans: it's not natural for them, and it can take a while - several months at best. The best way of bonding with your pup is by training, and you're already doing this.



Having said that, all dogs are different and while it's impossible to tell at such a young age whether or not your pup will be a cuddly dog, it's possible he won't. I've had one of each. My last Golden loved to climb up in the armchair with me and always slept with her head on my feet when I worked in my office. My current dog likes to be close but doesn't like to cuddle. When I work, he prefers to be on the bed in the adjoining room, but is always on the lookout for movement and comes with me unasked, wherever I go. In the evening, he likes to be in the room with me, but won't come into my armchair. If I sit on the couch, he will stay with me for a short while, his head in my lap, then moves to the floor by my feet, or to another chair. However, when we go for walks, he'll often walk right by my side with his head on my hand, and off-leash he runs back frequently to "check in" and be petted. As my agility partner he's the most "connected" dog I've ever had: looks to me constantly for the next command. So he may not be a "cuddlebug", but he's still a very loving dog.


My advice: keep doing what you're doing, and don't force it. Best of luck!
 

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Did any of you have problems with your puppy trying to eat every single thing from the streets and grass?? We really want to take him out to the parks and other grassy areas but OMG!! he does not have his mouth shut for a second. He picks up every single leaf, rock, mulch, dirt, sticks, other dogs poop (if he gets to it even after 1000% supervision). Will this ever stop??
Yup!

Mine goes crazy with sticks and leaves. It's almost impossible for me to stop him. I'm trying to teach him "drop it" - we'll get there.
 

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As CeeGee said, it IS possible he will never be cuddly. My first Golden was much more independent, not a big cuddler. She slept on my bed and on the couch, but she was just fine being at the other end of the couch. She did not like being hugged (many, many dogs do not like being hugged). She liked to be in the same room with me, but she was fine lying across the room.

All that being said, she was my heart and soul. My sister once said we were connected by invisible ribbons between our hearts. It is so true. So, you CAN be extremely bonded to a dog who isn't big on cuddles or sitting on your lap. There is a different kind of bond that develops as you grow together. Definitely do obedience training classes together. I also find doing a road trip together (around one year old or so) is a REALLY great bonding experience. Your pup has only been with you for three weeks - that is nothing. It will take several months - even years. But it will grow and strengthen every day that you are together.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thank you for your responses Ceegee, GoldenIke and Sweet Girl; it's good to know that not all the dogs are alike and they might not be cuddly. I understand that he has only with me for 3 weeks so I am definitely over thinking the situation as he might just need more time to settle in with us and trust us. I think the invisible Bond that you mentioned is probably something i am looking for too even if he doesn't want to jump on my lap, but I think that will happen with time. For now, he doesn't even like to go out for walk and would be soooo happy if I just let him pee/poop in the house haha..:D. But he loves to go to the park (not dog park, just a public park) and runs all over the grass and runs with us when we take him there.

We are currently doing a puppy socialization class with him and would love to take the basic obedience class as well. Is that different than the puppy class we're going to? He is a very very smart puppy and learns new commands and tricks immediately. He already knows Sit, Paw, Down, Come Here and his name :D.
 

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Thank you for your responses Ceegee, GoldenIke and Sweet Girl; it's good to know that not all the dogs are alike and they might not be cuddly. I understand that he has only with me for 3 weeks so I am definitely over thinking the situation as he might just need more time to settle in with us and trust us. I think the invisible Bond that you mentioned is probably something i am looking for too even if he doesn't want to jump on my lap, but I think that will happen with time. For now, he doesn't even like to go out for walk and would be soooo happy if I just let him pee/poop in the house haha..:D. But he loves to go to the park (not dog park, just a public park) and runs all over the grass and runs with us when we take him there.

We are currently doing a puppy socialization class with him and would love to take the basic obedience class as well. Is that different than the puppy class we're going to? He is a very very smart puppy and learns new commands and tricks immediately. He already knows Sit, Paw, Down, Come Here and his name :D.
 
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