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I have spent a couple days reading this board, and learning a lot! Thanks so much for all the great info!

My husband and I (plus we have 4 kids ages 8,7,5, and 2) purchased a 5 month old Labradoodle pup last week. I know the breeder did not have young children, but he and his littermates were raised in their home with their doggy parents. He was the runt of his litter, but he's no runt anymore! He is already potty trained which has been great! Only 2 minor accidents, and that's because I wasn't paying attention to his cues. He knows the command "Sit" perfectly. He stays nicely in his crate overnight, and will not get up or whine to get out until I wake up, which is about 8-9 hours. Another bonus! He's very friendly, and likes affection.

We plan on neutering him asap. Hopefully within a week.

I have never owned a dog before, so this is all new to me. Guinea pigs, geckos, a cat, but never a dog.

We are walking him once or twice a day, and always include some active play with him each day(fetch, playing in the snow out back, etc).

I am planning on obedience training for him, right after we get him neutered. I am researching both as we speak.

I have some concerns.

1. He is mouthy. Meaning he puts his mouth/teeth on you (arm, leg, hand, whatever). He does this to me, my husband, and my kids, which in particular is freaking me out. It seems like he mostly does this in play, or when he is excited and wanting to play, though sometimes when I am petting him (which he enjoys immensely), he'll reach around and try to mouth my hand...and it seems friendly, almost like he is saying "Yeah, that feels good, keep doing it!" but it is not ok, obviously. And I once saw him mouth my 5 year old daughter on the leg as she walked past him. I am saying NO BITE and closing my hand around his snout when he does this, but that doesn't seem to help much. We have been trying saying "Ouch" loudly in higher pitched voice, and it catches his attention, but he still mouths a lot.

He really likes the children, and they adore him. But I can't have this mouthing. Period. I am afraid of what it could turn into.

2. As I said he sleeps nicely in his kennel (which is on the main floor, in my husband and my bedroom) but if we put him in there when we leave, or when I need to do laundry downstairs or for a "break" or whatever, he barks and cries. I am thinking I will tape him when we leave some day, just to see how long he does bark. I hate to think of him in their for two-three hours barking away, but there's not much I can do about that. We had the kennel in the basement for the first 2 nights, but the barking was too much to bear, so we put the kennel in our room. Any suggestions? A friend of mine said to just ignore the barking while he is in his kennel, no telling him No Bark, or anything. Just ignore him, and eventually he will stop. Any ideas on that?
This leads me to #3...

3. He is a begger!!!! He will not leave us alone when we are trying to eat. He jumps up on counters in the kitchen at every chance. I have put all food away, of course. I started putting him his kennel (our room is about 10 feet away from the kitchen) during meal times, but the barking starts.

4. He LOVES to just go snatch something and bring it back to his bed we keep in the living room. Then he proceeds to chew it. He is starting to get the hang of "Drop It", though. Is this snatching a "thing" for doodles? I'm thinking because he's part Retriever, that it is.

5. He LOVES rawhide bones. They keep him busy for a nice long while. But I notice that they turn a weird reddish-brown color on the edges...is that blood from his gums? Or do they just turn that color for whatever reason? He does not seem to interested in the Kong toy I got him. Any tips for that?

6. Definitely needs to be leash trained! He twirls, walks in front of me, behing me...whatever! And our roads are snowy and icy, and I already wiped out once! Ouch! I am thinking of getting a Gentle Leader to help with that. Any tips on walking nicely on a leash until I get some training?

6. What kind of changes in him can I expect from neutering? I know it is not a fix-all, but will he mellow a bit? Could it possible help with the mouthing issue?

Wow, that was a lot!
But any help would be HUGELY appreciated!

Here he is; his name is Favor.
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Hi there
There is a lot of experience here in this forum with more answers than I have but I can tell you what worked for my doodle concerning mouthing and table manners. I taught my doodle, Denver the command "Go to your mat" When we are eating dinner we tell him go to your mat and he goes to an area in the family room which is adjacent to our kitchen table and lies down. We started off with putting a piece of his bedding there so he would understand what mat is, we no longer keep the bedding there but he now knows the spot. This did take a few months of lots of consistency but it is now paying off. We also use it when company comes to the door. He runs to his "mat" instead of the front door, once again this takes time and patience. Denver is now 7 months old and we have been doing it since he was a baby. As far as mouthing, we continue to offer him a toy when he does this and if he gets too crazy we send him to his mat to cool down. (no punishment, we just ask him to go to his mat and lie down) We did the loud ouch and gently holding of the muzzle and many things and all I can say is that he has definately grown out of this compared to when he was a baby, so maybe these things worked or he just grew out of it.lol
 

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Hi, welcome to the forum. Favor is a beautiful dog!
Some of the reasons you are having trouble is that he is 5 months old. Usually puppies go to the families at a much, much younger age...now, his age would not be a problem if he has been trained before coming to you...and it sounds like he may have had some training...but, as a breeder, I know that it is really hard to train each puppy in our homes. It is hard for me to keep up with training for our adult dogs, so I know that it is especially difficult for someone with an older puppy to work with it.
This is just going to take a lot of time and patience for you.
The mouthing, as scary and unacceptable as it is, is very natural for some dogs. STILL, I would not allow it either, not around children especially.
I really think that you are going to need some help in training...because your pup is almost grown and already has some bad habits.
It is not impossible, but will take time, attention, consistency and it will take everyone in yoru family to do the same thing.
Be sure to not let your children play chasing games with him, and no tug of war...
Dogs are also more playful when you are on the floor, on their level. So, try to not roll around on the floor with him until he gets some training.
Since you have so many questions and issues with him, which is good because it means that you really care...instead of answering every one, I am going to refer you to one of my favorite sites...it has good advice on just about every topic:
http://www.veterinarypartner.com/

I did a quick search for mouthing and came up with this:
http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx

And this is the result of a search for "crate":
http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx

As you can see, there are many, many good articles. I think that this site will help you as much as it has helped me.
Good luck!
 

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Hi Elly, As I read your post, I smiled.....It was only a few short months ago that I posted questions almost EXACTLY like yours...
Calvin is now 8 months old and all I can tell you is, hang in there. It gets SO much better!

Be consistant with the commands and it will happen. I have written in for advice on the mouthing in tears. He no longer does that, and it has been a while.

I bought a gentle leader and it made such a difference! He no longer needs it. Now we both enjoy our walks!

The pink 'stuff' on the rawhide IS blood, probably from teething. Normal.

Counter surfing is a problem that we still battle, but it is not as often as it was. I can actually leave the room and not worry about what he has gotten in to. NEVER thought that would happen!

My only suggestion about the crate might be to move it into the family area during the day and when you need him to have a "time out" he can still see you. He may whine, but never acknowledge it. Wait til he is quiet and then praise and let him out.

You have young kids and so you know that consistnecy is the key. Take it one day at a time and in a few months you will be offering advice to new owners like a pro!

Until then, Leslie
 

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Well Favor has those "I am so cute I should get anythng I want" eyes.
Sounds like she's behaving just like at 5 month old doodle!
Archie is still a thief and likes to sneak things off the counter and bring them to his pillow. He's gotten a lot of practice on the "drop-it" command.
 

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Welcome. Favor is such a cutie. You have gotten some very good advice already and Favor sounds like a normal puppy! One thing I'd like to add is how I trained my pup to not take things off the counter. I left something out on it and left the room, but, peeked around the corner. When he jumped up and went for the item, I ran back into the room and yelled NO and pushed his shoulder away from the counter. I did that a few times and it seemed to do the job. He's a year old now, and I don't trust him 100%, because temptation might get the better of him, so I make sure I don't really leave anything out when I'm done in the kitchen. But, occassionally when something has been left out, he hasn't tried to take it. (He does stand there and bark at it, so, then I am reminded that I left something out. :D )

There is also a method of tethering your pup to you in the house so you can address any issues he has immediately.

I'm glad you found this site. You will find lots of support on here! :D
 

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wow Favor is adorable and has that cute doodle precious look!! :D :) :p

I do know 5mos old is the crazy stage as Max is finally 6mos old hhahahaha and a bit calmer now.

I have taken Max's leash and attached it to my belt several times ...he got the hint.

Mouthing is normal but you may try the NO bite while holding his mout closed gently.

If you surf the forum under Questions about Doodles, Stories and also General Discussion you'll find so much great advice!!! I know I spent hours reading previous posts and finding out how much doodles are alike and also finding new advice to curing and/or preventing problems.

We have taught Max to LIE DOWN or SETTLE when we eat and his either lies under the table and usually falls asleep or is allowed to lie down about 6ft away. WE do NOT give him any table food and feed him after we're done eating.

The only other thing is sometimes like Kim26 I have put Max in a temptation so I can catch him and teach him NO.

Sounds like Favor is doing well so far and CONGRATS!!!!!!
 

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Oh, I forgot to say something about the kong. Have you tried stuffing it with goodies? You can line it with some peanut butter and give it like that or freeze it and then give it. I like to cut off a chunk of the Natural Balance meat stick that I buy at Petco. It looks like a beef stick and is wrapped in plastic. I stuff it in so it is hard to get out and that keeps him busy for a while. I give that to him when I leave the house for any length of time, too, and that makes leaving a positive thing. There are also balls you can buy at Petco or Petsmart that you can put small dry treats in and as the dog rolls it around, the treats fall out little by little. I like to buy the Charlie Bear treats for that.

Another suggestion for the mouthing, is to try playing with him in an acceptable way, like throwing a ball or stuffed animal. Or throw pieces of kibble around the house and have him chase them, or take him for a walk. Usually they are in a playful mood and need to burn off some energy. If you redirect the mouthing towards something that is acceptable then they usually get the hang of it in time. It takes patience and time, but, they do get better. Alot of us have been where you've been. :D
 

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I repeat that, enjoy!!!!! you may feel stressed at times, BUT the good times are when your pup looks at you with those lovely eyes, there is nothing more lovely, my opinion! I love my Dood or any animal, they give so much pleasure and love. if you leave for 5 minutes or 5 hours the welcome will be the same. To nite Otto is driving me crazy he wants to play ball, I want to watch TV and use the computer. What can you do? he is so adorable. :oops:
 

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Looks like everyone had great advice about your questions. I just wanted to add a comment about the dog nipping your daughter as she walked past, be careful that the puppy isnt trying to dominate your kids - that might lead to some problems later on. All the people in the house, especially the kids, need to outrank the dog.

Beautiful doodle!

LizziesMom

PS Consistent sharp pop on the snout & "NO" will put a real quick end to that mouthing. Make sure he has chew toys to calm the urge. Good luck!
 
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