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I thought I had found the answer! I decided to take my 5 month old V to the off leash dog park and it was wonderful. He played with other dogs had the opportunity to run full speed and he was exhausted and well behaved after exercising but I have also noticed new unwanted behaviors like growling when you just walk past him and he has a toy on his mouth. I used to be able to tell him things once and he listened now he looks at me like "I don't really have to listen to you if I dont want to." I find myself having to physically walk up to him and forcing him to do the command I am asking. I think that when he is around other dogs he is used to establishing his place in the pack with other dogs and now he thinks he gets to try to reestablish himself at home. Should i avoid the dog park? Can he go when he is older? Before the park I had been walking/running him for miles at a time but still cannot offer him enough exercise he just looks at me like "is this all you can do?" Anybody have alternative ideas on how to let him go and run free without the dogpark. I am afraid tat he will not recall if I just let him go in the woods.
 

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What we try and do is do a training session with him after a run in the off leash park, just outside the off leash area and then when we get home.
I know what you mean though, our guy tries to do the same.
Be persistant with the training.

Good luck.
 

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Your not alone, mine has started being a little like that after 8 months! Its extremely frustrating after all the hard work put in so far to see it just go away so quickly.
 

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What we try and do is do a training session with him after a run in the off leash park, just outside the off leash area and then when we get home.

Thanks for the tip about the training session. Graeme seems even more energetic once he gets home from a walk or a run, like the endorphins have kicked in or something. It gets a bit disheartening since I've taken out for the purpose of exhausting him and we get home and he just wants to play and run some more. So doing some commands with him has worked well: he gets some more attention while I get to remind him that I'm in charge.
 

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Have you ever thought you were giving him too much exercise????
Our trainer continually tells us not to over do the exercise and training is the key to mentally exhaust them- then they are calmer etc
only a thought ;)
kind regards
BB
 

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My 2 cents

When something changes in my dogs and I don't understand it, I back them up to a known point. Sort of like the Windows Restore function on a computer.
If you're having trouble after the dog park, cut that activity out for awhile until you can get a clearer picture of what may have changed. I know that when I take the girls to the forest, if I just cut them loose it's a bit of trial to get them back under control. I usually will walk them on their leashes at the heel for 5 or 10 minutes to sort of set the rules for them, and finish by walking at the heel on the leash back to the truck.

The growling with a toy may or not be threat. When my dogs are together they'll do that to each other to engage the other one in play It's sort of like sticking your tongue out, running away, and teasing your siblings when you were little . Next time he does it start playing with him and see if that's what he's doing.
Dogs shouldn't "growl" at people, but young dogs are still learning to communicate properly and need time to work it out.

At 5 months he's going to start asserting himself more, it's normal. He's a little older now, has more confidence, and is going to be a little snot at times. He's also too young to be off the lead in a non controlled environment. Keep him on a longer check cord, maybe 30-50 feet, and work on his commands as you run.
He's still too young for an e-collar, so I wouldn't just cut him loose in the forest without that check cord attached. That check cord will get tangled up and caught on underbrush and slow him down, thus allowing you to catch back up to him and reestablish control. It also "extends the leash" in his mind.
 

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BB - I just read your reply to the over-walking post as well. Thanks for your thoughts. Physical exercise is always the first thing you think of with a dog, overlooking the mind. It makes sense. What sort of other training do you do with your V, if you don't mind sharing that?
 

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well where do I start - Purdey is now 8 1/2 months and over the months I've done a varied selection of training (that includes basic manners and routines in the house) Purdey doesn't have anything without earning it! ie :food, treats, hugs, toys and generally any interaction. When I say earning it I mean she's got to do something for me before having it ie: sit, down, stay, leave, paw etc you get the picture. It soon becomes part of everyday life but she 's still having to think and work for everything.
When it comes to play she has activity balls, kongs, and even carboard boxes with screwed up newspaper with treats inside - you can see her little mind trying to figure out how to get inside and get the goodies!!!!!
We are on the advanced puppy training classes once a week and we practice that 3/4 times a day depending on the commitments of that day.
As for walking Purdey has 30/40 mins in the morning of lead training walking and then in the afternoon she gets to be free off lead for 30/40 mins.
This wouldn't suit everyone's V but works for ours.Our trainer always insists that you can wear a puppy out more with mental stimulation than physical as like you stated they get very hyper after which is what we were experiencing at the beginning!
She is now very content and not tearing the house down for more and more in fact she's quite the opposite!!!!!! ;)
good luck
BB
 

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This is also the age when they're going into their teenage years and start asserting themselves more to see what they can get away with. But, I can't really add to the already good advice! Just persistance with the training!
 
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