Adopted chow loves play biting

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dr.butcher
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Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby dr.butcher » Wed Sep 07, 2016 12:43 am

Hi everyone! New member, I decided to join because I found a lot of the questions I googled directed me to this forum and I would like to take a more active part.

I recently adopted a 10-month old purebred Chow Chow from the SPCA in Hong Kong. He had been abandoned on the streets.

His name is Charlie! Here's a couple photos.

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He's untrained and I'm currently going through that process very slowly. On the whole, Charlie is very well-behaved and incredibly affectionate.

However, there are one or two issues me and the missus are currently struggling with. The most significant is play biting. He gets (very) excited, starts jumping up and down, circling the room, and play biting (lots and hard). Leaving the room and ignoring this calms him down, but he tends to start up again shortly after we return. We are having trouble teaching him that this is not an acceptable way to play.

Additionally, he has a lot of energy. First day walking to the dog park, we took a wrong turn around the race course and ended up stuck on a one way route and walking for an hour. He came home and was still bouncing. He loves stairs. Even if I get him to walk alongside me on the leash, once he sees stairs and starts tugging to bolt up them (I read Chow Chow's should avoid stairs at too young an age? But where I live that's not 100% possible).

I sometimes give him a brisk walk in the evenings and early morning with me doing a slow slow jog, basically trying to match the speed he wants to trot at. It seems to be the only thing the wears him out (but not for long). I'm worried this might do some damage to his bones in the long run? Keeping in mind his heavy coat and Hong Kong's subtropical climate, I'm also worried about over-heating him. So far, he doesn't want to drink water when we're out, preferring to wait till he returns to his bowl at home.

Thoughts? Advice? Thanks in advance.

Cindy J
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby Cindy J » Wed Sep 07, 2016 9:48 am

First let me start off by saying that Charlie is an absolute doll! Thank you for bringing him into your home.

This is an adolescent time for your puppy. Lots of fun, but he is not sure who is running the show. The biting is something that is usually addressed when they are quite young. Because you got him a bit older, you will need to begin at square one.

I think this article covers most of it.... but again it is for younger puppies. http://puppyintraining.com/the-ultimate-guide-how-to-stop-a-puppy-from-biting-and-nipping/

I am thinking at 10 plus months, you will have good luck with starting some obedience training. Re-engaging his brain with something other than biting you. He will enjoy the interaction of training with you. I also keep a small "stuffie" in my back pocket at all times. This is offered as something other than me to chew on.

I try my best to tire out the dogs; both physically and mentally. They stay out of trouble when they are exhausted.
CH Dreamland's Intrepid Spirit ~ Chance
Dreamland's Dancing in the Storm ~ Raine
Dreamland's Calling All Angels ~ Skye

dr.butcher
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby dr.butcher » Thu Sep 08, 2016 9:53 am

Hi Cindy,

Thanks for you comments and the links. Everyone seems pretty fond of Charlie.

I read a lot of articles online and on this forum with similar advice, but didnt get too far with any of them. The comments section on that article was pretty good as it had a nice cross-section of people who had similar problems and came up with their own solutions. So far ignoring him has produced the best results but I have to do it a dozen or more times before he moves on to another type of play.

Saul

Cindy J
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby Cindy J » Fri Sep 09, 2016 5:21 pm

Do you have access to "Bully Sticks"? We have discovered that giving one to our puppy gives her something to chew on and keeps her busy for long periods.

Is Charlie interested in balls at all? I keep a basket of various size, shape, and texture. I toss one a short distance and Raine will run to grab it. I call her name and toss another in a different direction. This continues all over the yard. This would never work for my male chow because he thinks chasing balls is silly. Many here do not like the idea of playing "Tug-a-war" but I play it with all of my dogs. I keep a pocket of treats when learning the game and I teach them "out" when I want them to drop the tug and end the game. This is a really fun one on one game for me and each dog and it burns energy and gives them something appropriate to bite on.

A fun home-made toy we love using with the dogs is a tennis ball inside of a long tube sock, tied off in a knot. I can swing it around, dangle it in front of them and play quick games of tug or fetch with it. Your puppy obviously wants play time with you, but will take some time to learn what type of play is appropriate. One rule I learned is to always end each training/play time on a positive note so that they are always eager to train with me again.

Most games I play are actually short learning periods. (they just don't know it is training because I am animated and they are having fun)

I do try to avoid stairs/repetitive climbing with all of my dogs. I think it is the impact of coming down the stairs that can cause issues with the soft growth plates on young dogs. Practice caution rather than risk health issues later in life.

Be patient, consistent, and fair. He will get it.

Ps. I love your floors!
CH Dreamland's Intrepid Spirit ~ Chance
Dreamland's Dancing in the Storm ~ Raine
Dreamland's Calling All Angels ~ Skye

dr.butcher
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby dr.butcher » Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:02 pm

Hi Cindy,

Thanks for your detailed replies.

Charlie loves the floors too. He's discovered he can slide his down to the floor with his front and back legs going forward and backwards simultaneously.

We did give him a bully stick and that really occupied him. Took him a while to work out exactly what it was though. A lot of sniffing and licking. He doesn't have any balls yet (except one of the balls feeders you push around and treats drop out - it was the hit of the century!). I was hoping to get more toys after work today. He loves tug of war and he loves fetch. He brings his toys over to us to toss and when we do he brings them back for another round. When we need a break, he plays fetch with himself, tossing the toy or knotted rope in the air and chasing it.

He got particularly bitey on Sunday night and wouldn't calm down till we gave him one of those cold chew toys that you put in the freezer. Then that took all his attention. So he's teething, which would make his gums itchy and that cold chewer was obviously a big relief. From what I've read online, he can't be 10 months old if he's at that stage of growing teeth(?) in which case the SPCA got it wrong. Seems like he's probably 4-6 months old. This would explain other things, like his slight un-coordination in picking up things in his mouth or knocking into things when he bolts around. It would also mean a slightly different diet as well as three meals a day not two, which would explain why he's bouncing up and down when dinner finally comes around.

dr.butcher
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby dr.butcher » Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:34 pm

Cindy J wrote:I do try to avoid stairs/repetitive climbing with all of my dogs. I think it is the impact of coming down the stairs that can cause issues with the soft growth plates on young dogs. Practice caution rather than risk health issues later in life.


Will try to avoid stairs where I can, but there's even a bunch of stairs going to the dog park. (It's located in the middle of the racecourse across the street from me, so you take a tunnel to get under the track and out again.) Anything we can give him to help strengthen bones/joints?

Cindy J
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby Cindy J » Mon Sep 12, 2016 7:01 am

Aha.... His actions make a lot more sense. I thought when looking at the first two pictures that he looked closer to 6 months. But, I was not sure because different lines develop differently.

I have heard of joint supplements but think they are for older dogs with joint issues like arthritis. I am not much help in that area.

For teething I also give frozen raw beef bones to gnaw on. I pick them up at the butcher and have them cut then to about 2" in length.

Another toy that is a big hit at our house is the "Jolly Pets Teaser Ball Dog Toy with Inside Ball"
CH Dreamland's Intrepid Spirit ~ Chance
Dreamland's Dancing in the Storm ~ Raine
Dreamland's Calling All Angels ~ Skye

Rory's Dad
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Re: Adopted chow loves play biting

Postby Rory's Dad » Fri Sep 23, 2016 5:12 pm

Jumping into this one a bit late, sorry, been busy of late.

One suggestion for a nipping Chow pup...do away with tug of war. Not a behavior you want to encourage. It teaches the dog to hold a bite and not let go...bad result if he happens to nip at your arm.

For supplements, its never a bad idea to add a Cosequin treat to your regimen. It does help to develop the bone and cartilage. Not just for older dogs, it can help dogs of any age. I used to use a brand that added MSM. You can get them in both tablets and chews.

Stairs can be an issue. In my house, we have polished Oak treads that are extremely slippery. Only my Smooth seems to navigate them without trouble. The others slip and slide which is really a bad scenario. Stairs that are not as slick are not a real problem. Pups will learn how to gain the momentum to get up and they will also learn to pace their way down. As long as their paws can gain traction they seem ok.

If he's still teething, you can find chew toys that are designed to go into the freezer. They work pretty well. Alternative would also be a frozen waffle. Nothing in there that would be harmful to the pup, and its relatively easy. They just don't last that long. Believe it or not, an empty water bottle is pretty good too, just make sure to remove the cap and ring. Take it away if it gets too broken up as you don't want them ingesting the plastic. I haven't tried it, but I have heard of people leaving a small amount of frozen water in the bottle to keep it interesting.

Overall it sounds like the biting is an attention seeking behavior. That's why is returns after you ignore him and then come back. This should be cured with a firm 'NO', and then giving him an alternative. Get his attention with the 'No', and follow that with a basic command and reward...Nip, 'NO', 'Sit', treat, 'Good'.


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