grumpy dog!

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!


Baby Dylan
Barked: Tue Apr 23, '13 1:28pm PST 
Does anyone know if dogs suffer from 'morning grumpiness'?! Our rottie, who is normally placid, but 'protects' us when my husband is'nt here is really grumpy with the kids in the morning. They do tend to be all over him in the morning (hugging, stroking and kissing), and he growls at them - it's not overly aggressive and his head goes down when he does it, so he's not in their face, but it's not like he is for the rest of the day! Any advice or suggestions would be welcome. Thank You x

Do you even- lift?
Barked: Tue Apr 23, '13 1:50pm PST 
He could be stiff in the morning if he has something like arthritis coming on, so it might be pain related. Might want to have the vet check him over.

If he's growling at the kids, I would tell them to leave him alone for a while as he's obviously not comfortable with what they're doing.
Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
Barked: Tue Apr 23, '13 2:34pm PST 
I have to agree with Onyx - it could be arthritis, or something else similar.

Honestly though, he simply sounds like he's not very comfortable with the kids being all over him, and it may be time to teach them to give him some space. He's giving a clear warning, and if they don't heed that warning - it could result in a situation that nobody wants to be in. Supervise, supervise, supervise. And be his advocate. Step in for him when you feel he needs the space and get the kids to leave him alone and go do something else.

If this behavior is sudden, a Vet check may be warranted. However, if it's just been gradual, it's more than likely that he's simply getting tired of having kids all over him. Many dogs ARE NOT comfortable with it, and DO NOT enjoy it, and only tolerate the behavior of children(not to say there aren't dogs that do enjoy it of course), so it sounds like it's time to step in, and teach the kids some boundaries with the dog.


Woo-woo- whineybutt
Barked: Tue Apr 23, '13 3:54pm PST 
When i first wake up i wouldn't want a bunch of loud noisy kids all over me.. I'd probably growl too, especially if i hadn't had my coffee yet.

We have a similar situation, my puppy Arkane sleeps in his crate while Nare sleeps in bed with me. In the morning when I let Arkane out to take him potty, he jumps on Nare's face (while hes stretching and trying to wake up).. Nare snarls at Ark and avoids him for about 10 minutes, then hes ready to playplayplay.
I've started letting Nare get up and go potty, then Ark gets to go out, so they each can do what they need to do to wake up with no conflict or having to be grumpy.

Give your guy some space in the morning.

Baby Dylan
Barked: Tue Apr 23, '13 4:53pm PST 
Thank you! We keep telling the kids to lay off him first thing, but its like talking to a brick wall sometimes, obviously he's regarded as one of the family so I think thats why they find it so hard, I think I'll tell them to just leave him be until he's been outside to the toilet and had a good stretch etc! He's always as affectionate with them as usual after 10 mins or so, so I think this will probably be the best approach. Thanks again everybody! xx

Farlekiin the- Dragonborn
Barked: Wed Apr 24, '13 11:16am PST 
You definitely need to teach your kids the important of respecting the dog's space. A growl is a warning, the dog's way of saying "I am not comfortable with this situation" and if the growls are ignored, the dog may stop growling and go straight to a snap or bite eventually. Especially if he is in some sort of pain.

I know some people think it's "cute" to have kids crawling all over a dog and poking, prodding, hugging and kissing them, but many dogs do not enjoy this at all, and many are likely just tolerating it.

Dylan is SUPER cute, by the way. smile

Edited by author Wed Apr 24, '13 11:17am PST