New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in) - Hungarian Vizsla Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-29-2016, 05:27 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 4
New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Hello everyone, I hope you're all well. As you can see we're new to this forum- we did quite a bit of reading on here before we decided on having a Vizsla puppy and it seems like a great place.

I'll try my best to keep this short, especially as I've already written it once but Heidi - our now 9 and a half week old Vizsla puppy, managed to jump up and refresh the page losing the long post I'd just written :

I will apologise in advance though as I do have a lot to ask about!!

We picked Heidi up 8 days ago today. She's now 9 and a half weeks old and has grown noticeably already! When we went to look at the puppies both parents were present and although they were both very different in character they both had lovely temperaments and were lovely looking and healthy dogs. Once we'd met the litter it was obvious that we were in love with Heidi - look at those puppy eyes.

We've not had a puppy before and we desperately need some advice and reassurance that we're not making any huge mistakes with Heidi's training and upbringing so far.

Firstly I'd like to ask about house training. At first we tried using puppy pads and wanted Heidi to do her business on them, but she just ripped them up and moved them around and ended up weeing on the floor. We started taking her outside regularly, especially shortly after a big drink, then heavily praising her once she had done a wee or poo and she seemed to be getting the hang of it. She has a few times now ran to the back door and waited to be let out to go toilet. She still does the odd wee in the house but has not yet done a poo indoors. Every now and then, especially in the evening (see below for manic episodes), she'll do several tiny wees in the house- not real wees just tiny tiny drips with the odd bigger patch. If we see her do this we instantly take her outside and tell her to "do a wee wee" which she sometimes does but most often it's like she doesn't need to go.

Will our method work to teach her to go outside eventually or is what we're doing totally wrong? As I say we start to think she has mastered it but then does the odd accident inside. We know she's only a baby and fully expected wet carpets and to be cleaning up until she is house trained

We do have a cage/crate for Heidi but we have not been putting her in it at night. We tried it on night 1 and she howled, clawed and cried so loud that we thought our neighbours would soon be banging on our door. We took her bed upstairs and placed it at the end of our bed on the floor and settled her in there after about an hour of trying. She woke up a couple of times during the night, and we let her out for a wee the first time and tried our best to settle her when she wakes.

The same has happened every night, she will sleep in her bed for a couple of hours and then wake up whining or clawing at our bed. It's a battle to settle her again afterwards but again we do understand that sleeping through the night could take a while. Any tips for helping with this would be really appreciated, as combined with the other points below my lack of sleep is really starting to take it's toll on us and our patience with our gorgeous puppy. (it might be worth mentioning that it is likely that Heidi will always sleep in our room, as have our other dogs, so having her in there is not an issue)

For the last few days, Heidi has started having episodes where she is absolutely possessed. She constantly bites at us, our clothes, our furniture, everything. She digs the carpet and sofa, bites at it and everything in site. We have tonnes of toys, chews, everything to play with her but she always goes back to biting our hands, ears, noses, pants and feet. On several occasions her biting has drawn blood, most recently today on my ear during one of our play sessions - to the point where I thought a trip to have stitches would be needed (luckily it's not that bad).

We've tried the methods that everybody suggests. Making yelping noises and stopping playing with her, ignoring her for short periods of time and rewarding her when she stops biting/nipping, stuffing a toy or chew in her mouth to redirect her & even time outs in her crate (she just howls and whines non-stop, usually taking around 15 mins if we have left her in there that long).

She gets plenty of mental stimulation, she's highly intelligent and already has learned to sit, lie down and is leaning to stay very well indeed! She also gets plenty of time to blow off steam and we play with her in the garden for ages.

Personally the lack of sleep, cleaning up small wees, everything else, it's not an issue. But the biting has to stop as soon as possible for everyone's sanity...and safety. The mother in law went home in a state because Heidi constantly bit her today.

I'm extremely ashamed to admit that my wife and I reached the end of our patience and both said we wanted to give her up on several occasions...she's had us both completely worn out and through lack of sleep and her biting we both broke down a few days ago.

This post might make it seem like we don't love or want Heidi, but that's 100% not the case. We are absolutely head over heels in love with her and although we said it we'd never let her heave our home! A lot of the time she is totally adorable, giving cuddles and kisses and playing happily. We just need some reassurance that this biting will stop and we haven't made a huge mistake somewhere in how we've been shaping her.

Sorry for the essay, I needed to get all of this out and I'm sure I've missed something still! Look at those eyes :-* :-* :-*



nayfeee is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-29-2016, 07:45 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 924
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

She's a cutie, they are so precious at that age.

House training takes time. A 9 week old needs to go out after eating, upon awakening from a nap, after any amount of play or exertion...and frankly when you have nothing else to do. Their bladders are about the size of a walnut, so it doesn't take much to fill them, and the more often you take her out, the quicker she gets it. The poop is easier, usually after meals...and at other times when you see her butt pucker. Forget about pads and such, go for the gold..which is for her to go outside.

At night..well, sadly forget about sleeping thru the night for about another month. If the goal is to train her and keep things dry, figure on 2x/hr., for that month. It will seem like an eternity. If she gets up and howls or scratches, it's a cue she probably needs to go out. I always recommend picking her up and carrying her to the designated potty area and then instruct her to "go potty" or your "Wee Wee". Reward with lots of praise, and use the words "good potty/wee/poop!" Effective training is the pairing of our language with their behavior, whenever she does something you might eventually want to command (Sit, stay, come, poop, wait, etc), just say it out loud as she does it. Vizslas are preternaturally intelligent, they really understand vocabulary if we teach it to them. Once they know the association btwn our word and their behavior, they practically train themselves.

Her sleeping thru the night is related to the potty issue...you might not be taking her out often enough...and of course she's still transitioning into her new home with you, which is a stress for her. I think you have to decide where you want her to sleep, if it's her bed, then consider keeping her in her crate in your room, so she's close, but can't claw at your bed and otherwise be unsupervised...or have her sleep in the bed with you. If you choose the latter, it's still important to crate train her so she learns to be alone and be OK in the crate (when you're not there), and can emotionally self soothe.

The crazies you mention are normal, what I'd suggest is for you to try to see what her rhythm is...puppies do things in fairly consistent patterns: Eating, playing, napping. If you can figure out when the crazies occur, figure 5 minutes before is a good time for her to chill in her crate alone with some rawhide until she naps and is mellow. The other thing is for you to get into a rhythm with her, too: V's need 3 things to be happy and well adjusted: Lots of exercise, lots of intellectual stimulation, and lots of love. I've found that puppies that get all 3 tend to be less crazy. Take her into town and carry her (she doesn't have all her shots yet) and let her experience the world, that is very "Intellectual". Plan on attending a local puppy Kindergarten, too, when she gets the final round of shots. Until then, the stuff you're doing sounds fine. When she gets out of control, it's crate time.

Puppy hood is hard, and Vizsla puppy hood is especially hard, they really are high performance dogs not for beginners or the faint of heart, your sense of overwhelm is understandable, but you're also doing everything really great. Hang in there, this will all pass and the experience of a Vizsla sharing herself with you will change your life forever.
gingerling is offline  
post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 04-30-2016, 03:26 PM
Member
 
karendm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Germany
Posts: 55
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Oh my goodness Nayfeee, she is so cute!!! I agree with Gingerling, the jumping and biting at that age is definitely because she is overtired and needs some time in the crate. My V (she's 6 months now) would not settle down on her own at that age, there's just too much going on, we would put her in the crate as soon as the biting started and sure enough she would go to sleep. Don't make it a punishment, be very calm and matter of fact when you do it (or catch it ahead of time like Gingerling suggests). This was our first puppy and things started going a lot smoother once I followed the advice on the forum and tried to stick to a schedule: eat/potty/play/sleep/repeat.
My other suggestion from your post is to make sure you get her used to the crate as quickly as possible. V's don't like to be away from their people so crate training can be a challenge. The sooner you do it, the better. The first couple of weeks were tough, my V would howl and claw at the crate but she eventually learned to accept it and is fine with it now. We gave her tasty treats every time she went in there, so find something that is really special to entice her to go in there and then give her some crate time. She'll get used to it eventually.
Sounds like house training is going well. Accidents will happen but she seems to get it.
Good luck! These first few weeks can really be challenging but it goes by quickly I promise!
karendm is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-01-2016, 03:20 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 379
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Quote:
Originally Posted by nayfeee

****

We've tried the methods that everybody suggests. Making yelping noises and stopping playing with her, ignoring her for short periods of time and rewarding her when she stops biting/nipping, stuffing a toy or chew in her mouth to redirect her & even time outs in her crate (she just howls and whines non-stop, usually taking around 15 mins if we have left her in there that long).

****
Well, not everybody recommends the method you outline. I certainly do not. There is a far better method. If you use the search function and put Spy Car as the author and bite inhibition as the subject you'll find a number of threads where I outline an alternative method that develops a safe dog with a soft-mouth,

It is a process that involves getting ones hands inside the pups mouth frequently.

Active training for bite inhibition is an essential part of a puppy's education, and there is a better method that the "yelp and withdraw" one advanced by Ian Dunbar, et al.

Bill
Spy Car is offline  
post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:44 AM
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 6
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Hi, our 4 month old Penny has / had many of the traits. We had a few issues over two weeks with biting, including some of those punctures from those sharp teeth. The yelping / ignoring for a few seconds worked for me (she now knows better), for others it is 'no' and distracting her to bite a chew toy. Her zoomies (crazy spats) seem to be common and we work thru them to calm her with affection (sometimes scolding). It does get better, she is sleeping well and adjusting to crate. She knows the routine, which is key we are finding to crating and other activities. Hang in there!
Hilliard528 is offline  
post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 05:46 AM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 4
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Thank you for your responses. It helps to know that what we're experiencing is normal and that we're not making any huge mistakes.

We'll definitely try and take on everything that you guys have suggested and try to put your advice to good use.

Spy Car, yes I have actually read about the method you advocate just recently and have started to try it out - thank you for your advice.

Heidi now sleeps in our bed (she ended up in there after a potty break a couple of nights ago and slept for 6 hours straight!!). If I'm honest she was always going to end up in the bed anyway, we were just apprehensive in case of any toilet mishaps. If we can get her to settle on the bed she sleeps straight through from 11-12 ish to 5,6,7 ish but the settling is the hard part....it's especially not fun when she's on a biting rampage and you're dressed for bed...

Last night was a bit of a nightmare, Heidi was on the bed doing her crazy and the wife took a good bite that hurt enough to make her cry and drew blood. I brought Heidi downstairs for about 90 mins until she had settled and then carried her back to bed when she couldn't keep her eyes open any longer.

Weeing accidents in the house appear to have calmed down and now only happen when she's rampaging and "forgets" to offer any warning or run to the door. Still no poo accident in the house at all and we are constantly letting her out whilst she's awake and praising when she does her business.

We are still having moments where I sit here having not had a wee, shower or brushed my teeth yet that I think bringing a Vizsla puppy home was the worst decision we ever made, but we're 2 weeks in now and with slightly more sleep I think we'll start coping better. On a positive note Heidi seems to be sleeping and relaxing a bit more during the day, especially after meal times so we know we can get an hours rest 30 mins after she's eaten.

Aside from the bitey side of her, Heidi is a pleasure to be around. It's just frustrating that no matter how stern we are or what tactic we employ she won't stop lunging and hands, toes, shoes etc. it's all a game to her which is a mindset we really want to get her out of.

Do you think that it will help when she can go out of the house on walks? There's a puppy class that a local vet holds where only puppies that have had their first jabs but not their second can go, we've made enquiries about this so that we can get her around other dogs asap.

Thanks again everyone.
nayfeee is offline  
post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 11:13 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 379
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

The behaviors you are describing a very typical of Vizsla puppies.

This stage will pass. You may one day miss the little nipper stage (or not), but it really is your opportunity to mold the pup into the very safe well-bonded dog that you deside.

Pups communicate through biting and play. You need to gently modify this trait. It is a process. Keep it a "no drama" affair. Yelling "ouch!" and such is "drama." Drama is a reward. The little needle-like teeth hurt, but using the outlined method the bite intensity will be inhibited through training. There is no better replacement for active bite inhibition training.

There a plenty of other ways to stop pups from biting. But that is a qualitatively different outcome than a dog that has bite inhibition training. The former are dogs that can snap under the sort of duress that the latter are trained to deal with, like a child accidentally hurting them.

If you can accept that for weeks and months you'll be deliberately be getting you hand inside your pups mouth with great frequency, you'll be rewarded in the end with a steady and well-bonded companion.

Best wishes!

Bill



Spy Car is offline  
post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 11:50 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 924
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)


Thanks for the update, it sounds like you're on the right track here. It's really that first month or so at home that is the most difficult.

Crazies at any time should result in crate time. Spending 90 minutes with her to settle her actually reinforces that very behavior. See it from her perspective! It helps to get into a predictable routine for her that emphasizes the 3 things V's need: Exercise, Love/attention, and Intellectual stimulation. You can (and should) get her out of the house for walks...You have a yard/lawn to play on? Not doing that would clearly exacerbate the crazies. It's always good to ask yourself what you could be doing (or not doing) that can possibly be causing the unwanted behavior, and then modify that accordingly.

There are many ways to successfully address biting, I use what they use, whenever possible, I speak their language: A loud "OWW!"...it's similar to the yelp that they use, and they have an instinctual understanding of it. So, you're working with 1) Basic instinct, 2) Innate understanding, 3) Eagerness to please. They aren't biting to hurt you, once they get that message they inhibit. If you find your hand in their mouth, don't pull out, that's actually when blood is drawn. At that point, the "OWWW! and putting your hand further in gets to the gag response and she'll release.

If you're consistent with this, she'll get it pretty quick.
gingerling is offline  
post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 12:59 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 379
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

If a pup is biting on ones hand it is very effective to gently do deeper into the mouth as it will reduce the power of the biting, and the hand can then be partially retracted (put not withdrawn) when the pup relaxes. This is a very easy and non-dramatic way to train a pup to have a soft mouth (aka bite inhibition) in a no-stress and no-drama fashion.

But overlaying a great technique with loud Owwws! or other yelling directed at a young puppy adds stress, fear, and drama at the time one needs these things least. IMO is is counter-productive to the aim of creating a calm and safe dog. Not only is it unnecessary, but it undermines the long term goals from my perspective.

Bill
Spy Car is offline  
post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 05-02-2016, 01:27 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 924
Re: New Vizsla Puppy Advice (and a cute pic to lure you in)

Speaking their language is the best way to communicate with them and hence, train them.

Dogs teach each other bite inhibition by yelping when bitten. It gets their attention and it teaches them not to do it. Putting your hand towards their throat is stressful on their part. So is shouting at them, but I'm not recommending that, it is an extreme that justifies not doing it. When done with proper voice modulation, it works and is not at all stressful.

Both methods teach the same thing, one does it in a way that works with their instincts and is "Natural" for them. Your choice.
gingerling is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Hungarian Vizsla Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome