Adolescent frustration

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!


I love sitting- in laps
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 9:34am PST 
Ok. I need stories. I need to hear stories of when your pup was a teenager and you thought you had a somewhat well trained dog and then it all went to heck the second they hit adolescence and you didn't know what to do. But then, turned back around when they finally became an adult and all was right in the world.

I'm so, so, so frustrated right now. Moose is sooooo stubborn and I've never dealt with stubbornness in a dog before so not only do I get the glory of his crappy behavior, I get to deal with his, "I'll do it when I feel like doing it" attitude.
I'm feeling very defeated right now. So, I'd like to hear horror stories that turned into fairy tales.

I've emailed the trainer I work with.

14- Years- Young!
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 10:26am PST 
Abbey was the easiest puppy, the most outrageous adolescent, and slowest to mature dog I’ve ever met.

Her brain literally fell out of her head at 12 months old, and didn’t grow back until she was around 3. I went from having the demo dog in puppy classes, to having the dog other people were probably glad they didn’t have to deal with. I remember coming home from class one day in tears, thinking this isn’t fun anymore, and where did I go wrong?

She is 5 now, brilliant, stable, and for a long time I never thought I’d say this, but I trust her behavior in pretty much any situation. I’d like to say it was all the training and work I put into her, but mostly she just matured into herself (if that makes sense.) I didn’t feel like she was testing me so much as herself and the world around her.

So don’t give up, try not to take it personally (hard, I know,) and there is a light at the end of the tunnel! wink

Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 10:43am PST 
We got Lenny at almost 6 months old. I immediately started him with clicker training because he was absolutely insane as a puppy. A wrecking ball more like it than a puppy. He loved clicker training and even though his nose distracted him, he managed to do what I asked. Eventually knew all the basic commands, and we finished our obedience class as quite a good team.

Then he hit a little over a year old...

He forgot everything. He became more destructive in the house, as far as counter surfing and getting into the trash and finding things like pencils to chew up. He started stealing from plates and totally blowing me off whenever I asked for anything. Literally making eye contact and then making the conscious decision to NOT do as he was asked. It's like a slap to the face and as if he was giving the middle finger at the same time. It's hard not to take that kind of stuff personally, and especially hard not to lose your patience. Especially with such a sensitive dog...

He's turning 2 in June, and I think I am slowly getting my dog back. He's a small breed, so I'm hoping this maturity thing will come quickly. It doesn't help my parents don't reinforce anything... so considering that and how he could be a lot worse I count my blessings.

I think Nosework helped some too, at least in my mind I wanted to believe it did laugh out loud

Moose will get through this phase, and you'll survive it. You've put a lot of work into your boy, it'll pay off soon enough. hug


When the night- closes in I will- be there
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 11:21am PST 
Sabi has always been well behaved as far as manners go but her attitude as a teenager SUCKED!!! She ignored me with a happy wave of her tail, she would passively resist ANY tension on the leash, she flatly refused to comply with commands although she would consider reasonable requests laugh out loud I learned over time to embrace the attitude and eventually we came to an understanding. With the aid of food she perfected a recall, I got a solid heel long enough to pass her cert and as long as I didn't expect her to make nice with strange dogs, she would disdainfully ignore their presencelaugh out loud
Bud was a holy terror until he was 5!!!! Obedience was no problem, but he marked everything in sight, inside and out, in spite of my best efforts. He climbed ONTO counters, tables, desks. He jumped through a very large, very expensive window to chase a cat. He chewed anything he found, and ate totally inedible things. AND through all of this he could jump and climb like a monkey, 8 foot fence, no problem. We found him on the ROOF of the garage the second night I had him laugh out loud And he was a fear biter just to make things really interesting.
Now he begs for belly rubs and butt scratches and loves nothing more then cuddling on the couch.
And Shadow.....to be continuedlaugh out loud
Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 11:42am PST 
I got Charlie at eight months old, no prior training, previous owner neglect, only knowing his name, and being a holy terror of whirlwind energy and springs in his feet.

Get on top of and stand on the dining room table(food or no food) and look around with a wagging tail, WAITING to get in trouble? Absolutely.

Wrestling the garbage all over the apartment to rip out its contents and strew them throughout my entire house? HECK YES!

Shredding favorite stuffed animals collected from when I was a BABY? Those buggers were gonna die!

Howl when left alone? ARRROOOOO.

Blatantly ignore anything and everything that didn't involve food or discipline? Of course. Nothing else was any more fun!

He was a terror, omd. And now, at five years old, while he still has his off times because he's a high anxiety dog, he knows around a total of 40 commands, listens beautifully, only occasionally ignores me(typical scenthound), and no longer wrestles the garbage, destroys teddies, climbs on dining tables, etc. In fact, now he's quite content to curl up on his favorite recliner and snooze for the day. laugh out loud

Ria? She only acted out once so far... We've worked diligently on her being an off leash dog from the start. But she eventually learned that she would have to go in the house again after a while of playing fetch, so instead of going in the house, she'd flip you the bird, play catch-me-if-you-can for an HOUR minimum, and stay JUST out of reach. Eventually, we began tethering her in the front and not letting her off leash because of it. A month goes by, we let her off leash again, and she NEVER played catch-me-if-you-can again. In fact, happily hops right into the house now, because she knows if she doesn't, she'll get relegated to the leash. laugh out loud That said, I'm sure we'll have MORE adolescent behavior coming from her yet, as she's only about a year old. I don't look forward to it. As it is, she has started barking at sounds though, and once, even came charging out of my bedroom at me, fur standing up, barking her fool head off because I turned on the hall light and was going up to bed. My fiance was already sound asleep and got woken up by the dog. big laugh

I love sitting- in laps
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 12:25pm PST 
Thanks for the stories.

I took Moose to the trails this morning and we ran into a guy and his Ridgeback on one of the side trails. His RR was a 2 yr old female and I let Moose off his leash to play chase. Poor guy hasn't been able to do that in two months now.
In talking with the guy, he said that his RR is just now calming back down from her run through of adolescence. He said it was like a switch flipped and she's much calmer and listens better. It was nice to hear.

Oh boy. I hope Moose doesn't wait until he's 5 to snap out of teenageville. Ugh.

Whippy- The- Whipador
Barked: Sat Apr 27, '13 5:21pm PST 
The worst period for me was when Ty was about 8/9 months old and his previous reliable recall went out the window!

One evening after a good walk in our regular walking spot, Ty decided to completely avoid coming back to me at all costs. He was running around after other dogs and unfortunately no one else could lure him close enough to capture either. I walked back to my car, pretending i was going. Ty followed some distance behind but never came close enough for me to grab him. So i sat in the car, door open, just gently calling him, hoping he'd hop in the back on his own accord. Nope. He wasn't interested. Would walk around the car but as soon as i shifted in my seat he would race off out of reach again. It was gradually getting darker and i was the only one left in the car park, i was beginning to panic as i just could not get him back. I got out the car, i hid behind dumpsters, behind walls, crouched down on the floor, i ran away from him, i called him firmly. NOTHING would work and by this time i'd probably been trying to get him back for a good hour or so. I was frustrated, i was getting more and more worried about how to get him back and in pure exasperation i broke down in tears in my car, and i hate to admit it now, but i drove off without him! I just left him there in the field with no one else around as it was getting dark. I lived at home still at the time and we only lived down the road, but still, very risky when i look back now. If Ty had disappeared or run after the car it could have ended tragically. Anyway, i arrived home, burst through the door in tears and explained to my parents i couldn't get him back. My dad and a family friend when down to collect him and luckily he was still in the field, running around everywhere. My dad and family friend hid behind a dumpster again, without Ty realizing they'd even arrived at the field and as he approached the car park they somehow managed to jump him and capture him! relieved Boy was we all relieved or what!

Really horrible and scary experience though. Thankfully it was a passing phase and he never played up as bad since.
Isabelle the- Great

Nothing is- greater than an- Springer!
Barked: Wed May 1, '13 3:25pm PST 
Maybe I am cynical but when people tell me that their six month old puppy is perfect and already trained, I laugh. Not in the person's face but I laugh.

I didn't consider Isabelle trained until well after two. Sure she would sit on command but thats about it. Once she became a teen dog, I ran for the hills. I would do it again though... some of things she did then make me smile to this day. I don't consider Isabelle mature though... that won't happen until she can't move.