12 week springer spaniel puppy!!!

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by Gem1307, Jan 13, 2018.


  1. Gem1307

    Gem1307 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi all, I’m new to this site but hoping someone may be able to help me!!

    I recently brought home a springer spaniel puppy who is now 12 weeks old. Me and my family love him dearly but I must admit I’m struggling a little bit. He’s such a good boy, he’s practically toilet trained, sleeps through the night, I’ve learnt him basic commands, sit, paw, lie down. BUT the biting is out of control, I can’t seem to get him to atop at all, my little girls are now petrified of him, I’m covered in scrates, I’ve googled loads of things and tried all of them, turning my back on him and ignoring him doesn’t work because he just jumps at me and bites my legs, I’ve tried time out on his cage but as soon as I let him out when I think he’s calm he just goes again.

    I’ve been taking him out 3 times a day for about 10-15 mins, can I take him out more than this? I spend time training him but he knows the commands I’ve mentioned above now, does anyone know anything else I can train him?

    Also does anyone have any ideas on the best chews for him? I read a lot of conflicting info online. He has Nylabone toys but isn’t interested, nothing holds his attention and he’s right back at biting us.

    Sorry for the many questions, any info would be very much appreciated.

    Thank you :)
     
  2. Siskin

    Siskin Look into my eyes....

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    When you say you take him out three times a day for 10-15 minutes, is this walking on a lead along the road or is this playing in your garden. The general rule of thumb is five minutes of on lead walking per month of age, so a three month old puppy could have 15 minutes of lead walking. However if you go to a field or a park and let the puppy off to go at his own pace, to stop and start and wander about, then you can stay out longer, but don't overdo it.

    As to the biting. Unfortunately all puppies do it to one degree or another. Puppies learn about everything by exploring it with their mouths and it can get out of control with an enthusiastic puppy, would yours be a working bred springer by any chance? I've found that ignoring is the most effective way even if it means leaving the room and the puppy for a minute. But you need to do it every single time (and all the family must too). If when you go back in, the pup starts biting again, then go back out and keep on doing it until it finally dawns on him that biting means he's left on his own which is something puppies dont like. So consistency and persistence will win the day, but it will take time.

    Overtired puppies will be over annoying and more bitey and it's possible you are overexercising him in an effort to calm him down. It will have the opposite effect as the puppy will be over stimulated and tired. Puppies have difficulty recognising that they are overtired and will just become more and more manic, so your best bet on those occasions is to pop him in his crate with a Kong with something tasty in it to lick out which will relax him and encourage sleep.
    I found the best chews for my teething bitey pup was calf hooves (not the filled kind). Check out the Zooplus website on the natural dog chew section where you can buy a bag of calf hooves. Watch out, when chewed they become very smelly. Chewing is also sophorific to dogs and should encourage your pup to sleep.

    Be aware that puppies can become very active in the evenings when they are expending that last bit of energy before the long nights sleep and it's during this time they can come particularly manic.
     
  3. Sairy

    Sairy PetForums VIP

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    Welcome to puppy ownership! Sounds like you are doing well so far with training so don't panic. The biting is completely normal. What a lot of people don't realise is that it won't get resolved in a day. With mine she was about 4 months old before it calmed down, and for some it takes longer. Pick one method and stick to it. It sounds like time out might work well. Mine was very bitey and if I left the room every time she did it I would have been up and down like a yoyo so I let her off with the gentle bites, but if she bit hard then I would say "Ah ah" and leave the room for about 10 seconds, then return as if nothing had happened. This teaches the puppy that it needs to be gentle with its teeth. Eventually, when the biting gets softer you can raise your standards and not allowing biting or mouthing at all. It takes patience and perseverance so don't be disheartened.

    There are so many things you can teach a puppy. Take a look at kikopup on youtube for some ideas. For me, I have found the most useful things to teach my dog (that ideally every dog should be able to do) are:

    Wait
    Come
    Heel (or walk on a loose lead)
    Leave (really, really useful)
    Stop (stop on the spot until told otherwise. Again very useful)
    Watch (keep eye contact with me)
    Go to bed/settle (pups need to learn how to settle down when playtime is over)

    In terms of chews, mine has always loved raw bones. At that age she would happily munch on a raw chicken wing or neck. Not everyone wants to give their bones I know, but if you are open to it then you could try this. Also, a stuffed Kong is brilliant. If you don't have a Kong then I suggest you get one - cooked chicken, cheese spread, various kinds of paste, cheese and the dogs own food are all possibilities to stuff into kongs. Best thing is to just get experimenting and see what your pup likes. Mine was never bothered about nylabones to be honest. A lot of commercial chews are full of crap that might upset the stomach of a young pup so try and stick to more natural things as much as possible.

    I hope this helps
     
  4. Happy Paws

    Happy Paws PetForums VIP

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    Sounds like a normal puppy unfortunately, but he will calm down, you must keep telling him NO he will learn.

    As for walking you are walking him to much if you are street walking he should only be doing 15 minutes a day.

    You should be doing 5 minutes for every month of age
    3 months 15 mins
    4 months 20 mins
    5 months 25 mins
    6 months 30 mins
    and so on until about 10/11 months then you can slowly built up to longer walks.
     
  5. Gem1307

    Gem1307 PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your reply, yes he’s a working bred springer. the walks are lead walks, am I taking him for too many? The post further down says only one walk a day for 15 mins, I was under the impression it was no more than 15 mins at a time. I will definitely try letting him off the lead tho, I just need to find somewhere suitable to take him. I will also checkout the site for the dog chews, thank you.
     
  6. Gem1307

    Gem1307 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi, thanks for your reply, I agree that time out in his crate is probably my best option, it’s hard not to get disheartened sometimes isn’t it but then I feel so guilty for feeling like that. I will look at that site for training, we have practiced wait and come, he’s getting there with those!! I do have a Kong for him which does help keep him distracted for a while. It’s all just trial and error I suppose isn’t it, it’s definitley a lot harder than I imagined, I just have to learn to toughen up!!
     
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  7. Sairy

    Sairy PetForums VIP

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    Don't worry, you're doing great! It does get easier I promise. And it's ok to feel tired, stressed-out, emotional, irritable etc. It's all normal. Puppies ought to come with a health warning!
     
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  8. tabelmabel

    tabelmabel PetForums Member

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    Definitely gets easier. Our first dog was a very hard mouthed pup but he quickly understood he wasn't supposed to bite human skin and desperately searched for his antler! We found the antler great for him and used to have it at hand to pop into his mouth when playing with him.

    You might be heartened to read what ian dunbar says about puppy biting: he says it's good news as mouthy pups get lots of feedback that their bites hurt and end up with excellent bite inhibition. Bite inhibition is learned by 18 weeks. Or should be! Any biting after that is likely to be gentler as the pup has learned not to chomp right down! Any of his books about puppies are well worth a read. And a lot of his stuff is online too.


    The book Total Recall by pippa mattinson is fantastic to buy now when your pup is young and start on right away. There are set exercises to do starting in the house and you will have awesome recall on your dog if you follow what she says.

    These difficult days and weeks will soon pass so hang on in there!
     
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  9. sskmick

    sskmick PetForums VIP

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    I used to tire my previous dog by play fetch some people call it retrieve, I would throw a ball not too far for him to chase and bring back. Tammy prefers tuggie she is now 7 months old, and can still be a bit nippy but I can now calm her down with the word enough. We also have mad half hours where she will run round the house jump on the bed, I will hit the bed with my hands and off she goes again. Unfortunately she will do this even when I am changing the bed - there is always a downside.

    She has been playing for a good half hour with her new kong toy, its a pink fluffy pig (other colours and animals are available), it sounds like there is a plastic bottle inside and beads inside the bottle. It makes a right racket but hey ho, she is happy.

    We tend to buy kong toys but there are lot of robust dog toys to choose from now. We get toys/chews that can be filled with dog treats or smeared with dog paste. This keeps our little lass calm for quite a while.

    Just like to add when I walked Tammy at that age I also had my old boy who required more exercise. I used to clock watch and walk her for say 5 minutes then carried her then let her walk for another 5 minutes then carried her the last 5 minutes was the walk home. My arms were dead by that time. I didn't have an alarm so all in she may have walked for 20 minutes during the hour or so walk.
     
    #9 sskmick, Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
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  10. Nettles

    Nettles PetForums VIP

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    I know I harp on about this all the time, but our saving grace with our working line springer puppy was getting her to use her nose. It’s something they’re naturally good at too which is a bonus. Starting out with really simple things like sniffing out which hand you have a treat in or hiding a super stinky treat somewhere really obvious and letting him sniff it out. You’ll have to help by gently guiding him to start off with, but pretty soon he’ll get the idea and you can make the games more difficult and you can add a “find it” or “search” command. On walks, chuck a ball into some long grass and help him find it again, or throw a treat onto the side of the path for him to find. Nothing mentally exhausts my girl like scent games and it’s what she loves to do more than anything else.

    Teaching him to settle is also very important and something I wish we’d done much sooner. Popping Phoebe into her crate with a stuffed kong or an antler to calm down when she was being a pain in the arse with the biting worked well.

    It does get better :)

    Also, sharing photos of puppies is an unwritten law of the forum that must be adhered too ;)
     
    #10 Nettles, Jan 13, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2018
  11. Gem1307

    Gem1307 PetForums Newbie

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    We do play hiding games with his treats, he does love them.

    He’s starting puppy training next Thursday so I’m hoping they have some advise and tips for him too.

    So how often did you walk your springer pup? Is it just once a day or did you do more than that in a day?

    Oh and attached is a pic of him, he’s called Bruce :)
     

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  12. Gem1307

    Gem1307 PetForums Newbie

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    Did you just walk your pup once a day though? I’m sure I’ve read somewhere that they need a couple of walks a day.
     
  13. Siskin

    Siskin Look into my eyes....

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    I only walked my golden once a day at this age, some do two of the same time, but I'm ultra cautious about making sure I don't stress young growing joints especially in a breed such as mine. When she was a little older, round about 20 weeks, I started giving her a short walk in the mornings as well. However we live in the countryside and a minute or twos walk along road led to a footpath into fields where I could let her have a run round and would stay out longer during her afternoon walk.
     
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  14. Nettles

    Nettles PetForums VIP

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    Oh he’s frickin’ ADORABLE!

    I was very strict about sticking to the 5 minute rule to be honest as Phoebe has always had problems with her hips. She got one on lead walk a day, for 15 minutes at 3 months, 20 minutes at 4 months etc until she was a year old. I’m glad I stuck to it because she was diagnosed with hip dysplasia at 18months so too much “forced” exercise could have caused more damage to her young bones.

    Most puppies don’t tend to run off or let you out of their sight while they’re still quite young, so it’s the perfect time to be teaching recall. Apart from the 5 mins per month on lead walking, Phoebe was off lead the rest of the time, so she burnt off any extra energy by running around sniffing and playing, but at her own pace.
     
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  15. sskmick

    sskmick PetForums VIP

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    I walk Tammy twice a day, once at 5:00am and again around 7:00pm. However I don't think puppies do need two walks a day, I had an older dog that did require a minimum of two long walks a day. We found leaving Tammy at home caused her stress so we took her with us every time but carried her to ensure her walks didn't exceed the required time (give or take a few minutes).

    Mondays she only gets one walk because I take her to dog training club, I believe a dog needs just as much mental exercise as physical exercise, some members may agree some members may not but Tammy is tired when we come home and quickly settles down. Duke my previous dog was altogether different he was hyperactive so it was a question of meeting his needs.

    At one time vaccinations didn't start until the pup was 12 weeks then again at 14 weeks and the advice then was not to take the puppy further than your garden due to risk of disease. They hadn't to even sniff another dogs poo until fully vaccinated. We still had to ensure puppy was exercised physically and mentally.

    I know I am old school, which is why I am a member on here to keep up with the modern day dog ownership to give my pets the best life I can.
     
  16. steveshanks

    steveshanks PetForums VIP

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    I think the 5 minute rule is for twice a day, so at 3 months 2 - 15 minute walks
     
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  17. Siskin

    Siskin Look into my eyes....

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  18. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

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    There is no 'rule'. It is advice which people on here seem to follow. Just use common sense. I have never limited my puppies and never had problems. Be more careful with large breeds but a springer should be fine with 3 short walks a day though I think 15 minutes on the lead is a lot for a puppy that age and I would have thought it quite stressful as they want to be running, sniffing and flopping when tired. It would be far better if you could go to a park or a field and let your pup run around for 15 minutes or so.
     
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