|Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M|
I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
|Barked: Wed Jan 30, '13 11:28pm PST |
|Puppy litters have their share of brassy bullies, too. Adult corrections, flares of temper as they get a little older. Puppies who are raised in optimum settings where they get to see all shades tend to cope best with things that are all shades. Puppy time to me is the time for tons of exposure, as they are so more resilient. Once a dog is "cooked," you get a lot more of the "the world is not supposed to work that way!" type reactions and some degree of fracture from that.
In terms of you, Missy, I think the thing that no one really wants to hear, amidst all these (correct) chants of the importance of socialization, normalization and so on, is that the time spent with the litter is the most important time a puppy will have. They are a lot like toddlers then. You may learn a lot in school, sure, but the amount of learning through younger ages is far more impressive, dynamic, etc. The difference between a four and sixteen week old puppy is a vast mountain compared to four to eight months. In addition to this, the puppy is in this peak learning stage in the safest bosom he will ever know, with mom and littermates, so there is an underpinning of senses of security and belonging.
I don't muck around with it. I only take four month old puppies with the litter held together through that time. They get lots rougher and tougher with each other then and are so more well adapted. My case is a bit extreme, but twelve weeks to me should be the new normal. My rescue mirrors this....I refuse to adopt out anything less than twelve weeks, with fourteen my optimum. I'd go to the sixteen, but then I'd lose my mind They are just nuts by then
At any rate, best guess on Missy, particularly with the early behavior you described, is that she got to be a bossy pants in her litter and didn't get enough correction. With that, her fate may have been somewhat sealed. That's a lot like Chester, who was a learning pup for me, for sure. I was so cautious about bringing a small, soft breed into my fold, it was one of the few times I didn't surrender myself to a breeder's discretion because "only" I could understand the intricacies of bringing a little Cocker puppy into my pack of Giant Schnauzer and rather drive-y GSD.
So I walk in, and there is Chester, on top of some hapless puppy's head, chewing it. And that was it! I had found my ideal puppy! "Bold" enough for the German boys, I felt. Well, wrong.
He was such a little brazen potato and my marvelous large dogs had not an idea what to do with him he was so small. So they just shouldered his bossing tolerantly. At first I thought great, Ches would stay the confident little dog he was. I got more concerned as time went on with no corrections. Really wanted them to tar Chester, who was getting more and more plucky, but no. He grew up to have so much confidence that he had quite a great long run. He'd roughhouse with Pit Fosters, play with everyone, and because he always entered the scene with "king pooch" attitude, although he could be pushy, it was always tolerated. He was never corrected, he never corrected anyone either....he was just the bold one. Had a good five or six year run before a Boxer foster gave him a wallop, and that threw him for a terrible loop and shattered his trust in the world. He really hasn't a clue how to manage himself socially, now that there is this new, rude fact.
I could work with him and have. If I were another person, I would say "great success" as he is far better with other dogs, trustworthy nose to nose and so on. But he won't play anymore. He doesn't want to go there. He doesn't understand that world anymore. It died on the day he was savaged and could not understand why.
Contrasting Tiller, and Giants are a handful and prone to DA. Kept with his litter to four months, got corrected plenty. He got attacked as a teenager, and walked out of it without one emotional scar. He knew ranges of normal and could process that as an unusual circumstance, for all the times before he was properly corrected by another dog. And he was a nutso teenager then. Worst time for it to happen, but it didn't really matter. It was stupid, he thought so, and just left it behind.
That's the difference.
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