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New problems in an almost two year old

694 Views 4 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  maya111
My golden named Grizzly will be two in February. I moved from my college home back to my parent's with him this summer. They have an invisible fence, so he's out in the yard a lot by himself when we're making dinner, etc. Here are some problems I've encountered recently:

1. Stick Obsession: He finds sticks, logs, you name it and chews and eats them. That can't be good for him, right? We tried putting vinegar on them but he still eats it. He also gets very rowdy when he has one. I don't know how to stop him! We reprimand him, but he'll grab one the minute we let him out to play and we can't watch him ALL the time.

2. Digging: I have so many toys and busy bones out in the yard for him to play with, but we'll go outside and find him digging giant holes. What do I do?

3. Fighting with our older dog: He and our 8 year old get along, but they will start biting each other's necks and then our old dog will mount and hump Grizzly a lot. It's really rough play, and I worry about both of their hips with this kind of play.

Overall, it just seems he has hit a point where he doesn't listen out in our yard anymore. He won't come in when called unless he sees a treat, he barks at every dog that goes by, and when we play ball he fetches, but gets very boisterous if it takes us a while to throw it to him. Any advice? He'll be moving to the caribbean with me for vet school in May and I want him to be a good boy by then!
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The sticks are not good for him if he is chewing them up. The best thing I can think of is to keep them picked up the best you can. As for the hole digging, I've read here on GRF that burying his own poop in the holes can deter the digging. Another idea from here is to give him a sandbox to dig in.

As for not listening I would suggest a good basic obedience class. They are a lot of fun. Often a good instructor will be able to see small mistakes you are making that you do not realize you are making. Good luck to you.
Obedeince work for sure. Sounds like he needs to work on his recall when he's off leash if he's acting up like that. I would limit his free time outside for a while, and work on some more training. And it might help to take him for some long walks to burn off the extra energy. As for the other dog, are you sure they are 'fighting' and not just playing hard? I hardly think two dogs who hated each other would be mounting one another (no matter who dislikes who...).

Sounds pretty normal to me. My dogs go for sticks too, and the best thing I have found is to make sure I keep the yard picked up and free of sticks. They are Goldens and they love to chew and they love to chew sticks. Mine will ignore sticks in favor of deer antlers however :)

As for digging, well, left alone long enough, almost all Goldens will dig. I haven't yet found a way to prevent digging but once I put poop into a hole, they won't go back to that hole and dig. Mine usually get into mischief like digging if they have been out by themselves for too long. Like mischievous, active kids, they will always find something to do and it won't always be what we want them to be doing!

The playing with the older dog sounds perfectly normal as well. Unless they have really bad hips, they are not going to hurt their hips by rough play and mounting each other.

At two, he is still an adolescent in many ways. I would second the increase in exercise-lots of fetch and long walks-and the suggestion of a good obedience class.
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If you put his poop in the hole he will dig a new one!:yuck: ... goldens dig.
Maybe he's still anxious after moving back home. Some goldens get nervous when they go to live somewhere else, even if they go with the same owner.
... I'd also say obedience classes. Never had one, but they sound like fun. We don't have those in Colombia:(.
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