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Discussion Starter #21
"I'm not quite sure I understand the going back to the beginning of training thing. He knows the command sit and down and little things like that, even though he doesn't always listen to them. Would you be able to explain this a little more of what we should do? We would really appreciate it.

The part that I bolded in red says he does not "know" the command. He understands what you're asking, but he doesn't quite grasp that it means every time and right now. He is making his own decisions, and he should not be. This is what is meant by "a hole". You believe that he knows something, that he actually does not, and he is "filling in the hole" by himself. Not a good place for either of you.That's what I meant by starting again at the beginning and taking nothing for granted.
Please, please, do not beat yourself up over this. It happens to everyone, and I mean everyone.

Finn, my 9-1/2 month old was just an awful puppy. He was a non stop trial. Everyday, every time, every lesson! I'm surprised I never strangled him. He was just willful, stubborn, obstinate, and he bit like a little demon. My hands and forearms used to look like I got hung up in barbed wire some days. Finn also has "holes", and I know it. His critical "hole" is recall. I can command Finn from 50 yards away and bring him in to me every single time, but that last two feet between he and I is open ground.He is not "coming to me". He's close, he's right there, but he is not at heel at my feet. This is a "hole". Finn is making his own decision about what recall, or "come" is. We're fixing that. ;)
Make no mistake about it, this Covid 19 crisis has had an impact greater than folks might realize. At a critical time when you should have been out and about with your puppy, and other people's puppies, we were restricted. In my case it has caused Finn's social development to be retarded. If you were to watch him in the field, you would never see it. He does everything right, and is a hard working honest little Vizsla. Get him in a Petco, Tractor Supply, or around other people and he's a disaster. He is very "reactive".
The Covid 19 crisis also found me working 75 hours a week, 6 days in a row. I was up at 0300 and got home at 6PM. Critical time was lost in his development, so now the obedience work he should be pretty much rock solid at, were redoing again from the beginning. Do not discount the effects of Covid 19 on him and yourself.
The point to all of this is for you to realize that you are not doing anything wrong, or bad, or were negligent. Vizlsa puppies can be a literal trial, as you can read through countless posts and threads on this forum.
These are physically and mentally, tough little dogs. They are not the little "softies" everyone thinks they are. This breed was meant to be an independent, forward, assertive hunter. That's what they are. They are great pets and companions, but make no mistake, at their core, if bred correctly, this is a very adept little hunter killer. I'm sorry, but there is no other way to express it. Some will be driven more than others. Understanding the breed, goes a long way to helping to train them. They're special.
Ad nauseam, I have always advocated to train them to be bird dogs. That's what they are, and if bred correctly they will take to the training program like a duck to water. A well trained hunting Vizsla will do everything a person would ever expect of a pet and companion, and they'll do it 40 yards away, with shotguns going off. ;)
If you can rule out any medical issues, go back to the beginning.
I live in Connecticut, but there has to be a trainer near Austin that can help you. Austin is a pretty big place.
Again. Do not beat yourself up.
Well thanks again for all your advice and encouragement. It's nice to know we aren't the only ones. And yes this covid thing has really sucked and been hard with a new puppy. But it makes us feel better to know we should be able to get through this and end up with a good dog at the end. Like I said we see him in there throughout the day when hes being sweet and snuggly, it's just hard when hes acting up. We will try to find a good trainer and see where that takes us. Thanks again for all your advice and kind words!
 

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Hi MooseMan, i am very sorry to hear that you have troubles with Moose. I know his parents well as i have Tamaron vizslas myself, different breeding though.
I went thru the usual shark phases with my boys, but none of them have ever done skin breaking damage. Bende had a CGC title at 10 months old, Miksa won at 16 weeks the sporting breed group (conformation) in Austin without any prior show ring experience or training, just stacking for the judge and wigging his tail like a sweetheart...
The wrinkling of the nose and growling at the same time worries me a lot in all honesty. I understand Covid and i understand fear phases and uncertainty caused by hormone spikes during puberty, but the way you describe Moose is closer what i would see from a rescue dog, not one who has had structure and a loving home since the beginning of his life. I would do several things:
1. Do a thorough physical evaluation including blood work, if needed X-rays etc, so turning all stones to see whether there is anything wrong with the pup causing this behavior.
2. Hire a trainer with deep knowledge about vizslas and first time vizsla owners once i have learned that there is definitely no physical issues with him. Unfortunately the trainer i could recommend for this purpose is in Missouri, hopefully Deb has more contacts in the Austin area.
3. Go back to Leon and arrange a meeting so that he can see the pup. Unfortunately Tami passed away in the middle of the whole Covid chaos, when Moose was around 4 months old. Both him and Tami have been great mentors to me, and i am not surprised that they were highly recommended. I am sure that Leon will do the right thing.

If i can be any help, please let me know, we live in Katy (West of Houston). Also if you feel more comfortable to pm me, please feel free.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Hi MooseMan, i am very sorry to hear that you have troubles with Moose. I know his parents well as i have Tamaron vizslas myself, different breeding though.
I went thru the usual shark phases with my boys, but none of them have ever done skin breaking damage. Bende had a CGC title at 10 months old, Miksa won at 16 weeks the sporting breed group (conformation) in Austin without any prior show ring experience or training, just stacking for the judge and wigging his tail like a sweetheart...
The wrinkling of the nose and growling at the same time worries me a lot in all honesty. I understand Covid and i understand fear phases and uncertainty caused by hormone spikes during puberty, but the way you describe Moose is closer what i would see from a rescue dog, not one who has had structure and a loving home since the beginning of his life. I would do several things:
1. Do a thorough physical evaluation including blood work, if needed X-rays etc, so turning all stones to see whether there is anything wrong with the pup causing this behavior.
2. Hire a trainer with deep knowledge about vizslas and first time vizsla owners once i have learned that there is definitely no physical issues with him. Unfortunately the trainer i could recommend for this purpose is in Missouri, hopefully Deb has more contacts in the Austin area.
3. Go back to Leon and arrange a meeting so that he can see the pup. Unfortunately Tami passed away in the middle of the whole Covid chaos, when Moose was around 4 months old. Both him and Tami have been great mentors to me, and i am not surprised that they were highly recommended. I am sure that Leon will do the right thing.

If i can be any help, please let me know, we live in Katy (West of Houston). Also if you feel more comfortable to pm me, please feel free.
Hey Gabica! Thanks for reaching out to us! It's cool to hear from someone else who has Tamaron Vizslas! When you say to reach out to our vet and get everything checked out, we will definitely do that this week, is there something we should be looking for? Is there something specifically we should have her check with him or just let her know our issues and she should just do a thorough exam. He has been several times since we got him for his shots and a few times for little things here and there. Most recently after his abdominal surgery. (Not sure if you saw that post we did about about him eating everything and having to wear a face covering outside) but shes always said hes super healthy. And we will also contact Leon as well and see what he recommends. We will wait and see what Deb has come up with as far as trainers and we have also emailed VCA and Texas Gulf Coast to see if any of them know of a good trainer, just waiting to hear back.
So do you think it is aggressiveness? I hate to use that word in a puppy and like I've also said, hes so sweet and loving at times, but like you said it worries you a little. He also humps us a lot. Unfortunately we have been having these issues from the VERY beginning. Hes always been skin breaking when he bites and hes always bit us, ALL the time if hes out. We reached out to Tami in the beginning but I think everyone kinda thought he was gonna grow out of it, not get worse. We are always upset cause he spends a lot of time in his kennel or in the beginning a pen. We would have to do an hour out and an hour in for him to calm down. Even now hes in his kennel alot cause if hes not chewing on a chew toy or toy hes biting us or chewing up furniture or carpets. Just recently hes been kinda sleeping on the couches with us during the day but as soon as he wakes up hes doing something bad. We LOVE him to death but we are so frustrated and exhausted. Hopefully we can figure something out with all the people looking into this for us. Thanks again for your advice!
 

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Westerbecks breed nice dogs.
I've personally met 2 dogs bred by them.
 
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I have a email address I'm going to send you in a private message. If she is not training, she should someone that is.
 

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I would ask the vet for a full blood work. That is always my starting point. If it is physical it could be many things, from missing something from his diet to having an inflammation, so unfortunately, just like with us humans there is no magical pill, it may well be several different tests. I hope you can find what is going on or in best case that there is nothing wrong and then hopefully you can find a way for training. A trainer can tell you what you may have to change (i have gotten plenty of that kind of valuable feedback during the years, regarding my body language, the tone i am using, timing, you name it) and also to evaluate where the pup is. This breed loves to learn, but they are not machines, and they are quite capable of manipulation and figuring things u like in order to achieve what they actually want. And as u mention they love to be loved. The more you can teach them what pleases you, the more you will find your partnership enjoyable with them. I hope it will all turn out well for you and Moose.
 

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I just want to add it’s actually most important to consider when he’s not biting you, what you are doing together. I’d encourage you to have him sleep in a crate until he’s a little more mature ~1 year. I know V’s are absolutely stuck on their people but they are still a dog that benefits from a little less spoiling and a little more leadership and structure. For the leash walking you can try pivoting to the left with your right leg out (if he’s on your left side) and doing a complete 180). If he’s not at your side hold him there. He’ll quickly learn that he has to pay attention to you and where you’re going. You’re not trying to kick him obviously, just kind of sweeping your leg 180 degrees. Just look forward and pivot. I’ve seen this stop the nastiest pullers! You can mark and reward a loose lead at your side and some eye contact. Shoot for a J shape and he’s at a “loose heel position.” This is NOT the heel command. You actually probably don’t want to say much of anything as far as commands when your just walking. Just walk and be cool. If he’s even thinking of leaving your side, pivot.

oh also you should work the thresholds or entrances to your house. If he pulls you out the door you’ve already lost. Stand at the door side by side, give him all the room he needs to go through. Correct him if he does try, block him with your leg or pop the leash. Eye contact, walk through.

oh first teach leash pressure, mark and reward for going towards the leash pressure. Practice this inside, in the yard, driveway, and THEN out on the walk. Going towards leash pressure=good!

a nice structured walk is a very valuable training tool, maybe the best.

all you need: leash and collar, and some treatos

sorry my post is all over the place hehe
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Thanks for all the advice everyone! We really appreciate the feedback! We have him seeing a bavhorist right now and shes confident she can get us through this! Thanks again!
 

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Something that might help reduce his biting and mouthing energy are “Bully Sticks”. You can find them in lots of shapes and sizes at Amazon. Just enter Bully Sticks in the search function. They’re rather expensive but so are these dogs, bad biting habits etc. My dogs enjoy ~ one a day now with no ill effects and they seem to be wonderful jaw exercise that Seems to relax them.
 
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