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Caitlin888

Help!

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We have a 1 and a half year old cavalier x poodle who is generally quite calm and well behaved however he has a few behavioural problems. Any suggestions would be helpful:

 

1) After being outside when he decides he wants to come back in he scratches continuously on the back door. Are there any other ways we can train him to give us a different signal that he wants to come back in?? As this scratching on the door is causing damage.

 

2) He occasionally does naughty things. For example the other day we had furniture delivered in flat packages and they were left outside as they were not being installed for 2 days. And we went outside to find he had chewed through the cardboard packaging and actually chewed the corner of a wardrobe piece off. I am aware that he probably didnt know he was doing anything wrong. But how can we train him to learn not to touch other things. 

 

3) Any advice on preventing him from nagging for food while we are eating. 

 

He is usually very good however every now and then he does something naughty. Any suggestions would be much appreciated! We have already had 2 trainers come in and havent seem to made much progress :(  

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RuralPug   

(1) you can hang a small bell near the door and teach him to ring it when he is ready to come back in. It will take some time and effort on your part but will save your door.  Training instructions for that are in this link:)

(2) you need to understand he is not a mind reader. When a new situation happens, like you described above with the packaging, he was not to know that it was not a new toy - most likely you have given him plenty of things to chew when he's outside. You need to not put him in situations like that! (Apologies if that sounds harsh, but more than likely he knows not to chew things inside so how was he to know that a new thing outside was not for him to chew?)

(3) train him to go to a certain spot on command (usually a dog bed or similar) and stay there. Whenever you are eating, send him to that spot. Heaps of how to  train that online if you google for that. :)
He will still probably watch every mouthful from fork to plate :laugh: but that is easier to ignore when he is across the room! Remember to reward him for staying put!

Lots of luck and let us know how you go!

 

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I can only speak from experience with my dog but there might be something useful for you in here:

 

1) We've only had our girl do this once but we just said our usual "uh uh uh" which is her "no don't do that" cue and then let her in 30ish seconds after she stopped. She has been known to cry at the door, in this case we ignore until she stops and then let her in again a few seconds/a minute after she stops. We have used the "ignore bad behaviour until it stops then reward" since we got her so I'm not sure how easily a dog would pick up on this if they're not used to that treatment. 

 

2) Definitely need to control his surroundings. I see two choices. Don't put things you don't want chewed in his reach OR if  you need it to be in that place/don't want to have to hide it and you think it's something he might chew on (ie possibly most things for dogs haha), watch him from a distance and stop him if he goes to chew it. When stopping him, always give him a good alternative. Tell him no, and give him a bone or a toy to chew on instead.  This is the general attitude we have - we have trained our dog to fit in with our house as we keep it ie we still keep shoes at the door and the odd coat on the back of the couch, are able to feel quite comfortable to leave our food on the table to go grab a drink etc, just taught her what's right from wrong. Also making sure there's always something fun available that is the right thing to do (carrot or bone to chew on, toys, kong etc). A bored dog is a likely to become a naughty dog! 

 

3) Again with the ignore tactic. We have NEVER since we got our dog, fed her from our own plate. Made sure visitors were very clear of this rule too. Not even while we've been at other peoples house has this been a thing. Both of our family dogs as teenagers (me and my partner are early 20's) had dogs who got fed at the dinner table and were terrible whiners because they knew they'll eventually get thrown a bit of food - if we were sure on one thing, we were sure we weren't going to raise a whining dog! She used to try and beg when we first got her but we just ignored. Never even acknowledged that her getting food from the dinner table or our plates could be a possibility (not sure whether you do feed yours from plate/table or not). There have been times she's propped herself up on our lap to get her nose closer, we just push her off gently, without even looking at her and continue ignoring. She's never tried a second time. Begging us while eating has just been made out to be the most boring thing she could choose to do. Doing this has meant a happy, peaceful dinner every night where the dog is just either chilling in the other side of the room,playing with her toys or laying at our feet.

 

PS If we decide we want to give her some of our food/left overs - we will mix it in with her next meal. She can enjoy little treats without thinking that begging will ever get her fed :)

 

Again, I'm no professional dog trainer, this is just what we've done which has resulted in our dog not having any of these problems at all (even after showing signs of wanting to show these behaviours as a younger puppy). Hope you find what works for you and your little man, good luck! 

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