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Hello everyone,

We brought our new puppy home on the 9th of Oct after planning and researching for over two years. I had previously owned a Weimaraner with my family (I was 10 when we had him and almost 21 when he passed away). He was a challenge in that he completely destroyed the house and had bad separation anxiety. I knew that V's are a similar breed and my mum was going between Weimaraners and vizslas when she got our weim. He turned out to be an amazing dog after the first two years so I knew by getting a vizsla it would be a massive challenge.

When we first brought him home he wasn't too bad - the usual crying a bit through the night and a few toilet accidents. About 4 or 5 days after we brought him home my partner was taken ill and has been in hospital since the 14th. That has meant that I've taken on all of the responsibility for the puppy. Luckily I had booked a week off work to get him settled in but now I fear I've been spending too much time with him and made a rod for my own back as I should be going back to work next week. The issues I'm finding are:
*Taking him outside to toilet and he will go and then go again after returning inside - I keep him outside at least 5 mins after peeing to see if he needs to go again or poop.
*Twice in a row he has pooped in his crate during the night. This was never an issue before (he'd gone a whole week with no accidents even sleeping through for 7-8 hours) he pooped before going to bed as well so before the second night he did it I tried giving him his last meal half an hour earlier and he had a small poop just before I crated him. I'm thinking I may have to set an alarm and wake him half way through the night but it was never an issued prior to the last two nights so I'm not sure where I'm going wrong with this.
*Biting. Obviously Vs have the sharkies and initially it was quite bad and then I tried a few methods and things started to improve. He had a very hard mouth - latching on and not letting go and growling too which concerned me but for a few days his mouth seemed to get softer and he would lick more than bite. Today however I took him outside after breakfast and he started snarling and growling and pouncing at me. I tried to calm him down but it seemed to make him worse. I tried to ignore him but he would latch onto my ankles and growl and try to shake which obviously was very painful! I decided to pick him up to take him back inside and he got hold of my hand and drew blood. I'm just so frustrated that I feel like I've taken a massive step back. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong at this point because I've tried everything that has been suggested. I wonder if I'm too soft with him or if he sees me as a litter mate. I'm worried I'm showing weakness and he's overpowering me. I know he's only 9 weeks old but as he gets bigger and stronger with more energy levels I need to sort out the biting and growling. I understand he's just playing but it escalates very quickly and he doesn't know how to self-calm yet.

Any help or advice would be welcome. I think because I've been on my own for the last 4-5 days with him it's starting to wear me down. I know he'll be such an amazing dog once we've got past this stage. He has now worn himself out and is sleeping like an angel!
 

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Hello everyone,

We brought our new puppy home on the 9th of Oct after planning and researching for over two years. I had previously owned a Weimaraner with my family (I was 10 when we had him and almost 21 when he passed away). He was a challenge in that he completely destroyed the house and had bad separation anxiety. I knew that V's are a similar breed and my mum was going between Weimaraners and vizslas when she got our weim. He turned out to be an amazing dog after the first two years so I knew by getting a vizsla it would be a massive challenge.

When we first brought him home he wasn't too bad - the usual crying a bit through the night and a few toilet accidents. About 4 or 5 days after we brought him home my partner was taken ill and has been in hospital since the 14th. That has meant that I've taken on all of the responsibility for the puppy. Luckily I had booked a week off work to get him settled in but now I fear I've been spending too much time with him and made a rod for my own back as I should be going back to work next week. The issues I'm finding are:
*Taking him outside to toilet and he will go and then go again after returning inside - I keep him outside at least 5 mins after peeing to see if he needs to go again or poop.
*Twice in a row he has pooped in his crate during the night. This was never an issue before (he'd gone a whole week with no accidents even sleeping through for 7-8 hours) he pooped before going to bed as well so before the second night he did it I tried giving him his last meal half an hour earlier and he had a small poop just before I crated him. I'm thinking I may have to set an alarm and wake him half way through the night but it was never an issued prior to the last two nights so I'm not sure where I'm going wrong with this.
*Biting. Obviously Vs have the sharkies and initially it was quite bad and then I tried a few methods and things started to improve. He had a very hard mouth - latching on and not letting go and growling too which concerned me but for a few days his mouth seemed to get softer and he would lick more than bite. Today however I took him outside after breakfast and he started snarling and growling and pouncing at me. I tried to calm him down but it seemed to make him worse. I tried to ignore him but he would latch onto my ankles and growl and try to shake which obviously was very painful! I decided to pick him up to take him back inside and he got hold of my hand and drew blood. I'm just so frustrated that I feel like I've taken a massive step back. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong at this point because I've tried everything that has been suggested. I wonder if I'm too soft with him or if he sees me as a litter mate. I'm worried I'm showing weakness and he's overpowering me. I know he's only 9 weeks old but as he gets bigger and stronger with more energy levels I need to sort out the biting and growling. I understand he's just playing but it escalates very quickly and he doesn't know how to self-calm yet.

Any help or advice would be welcome. I think because I've been on my own for the last 4-5 days with him it's starting to wear me down. I know he'll be such an amazing dog once we've got past this stage. He has now worn himself out and is sleeping like an angel!
Hi,
I can’t help but reply to posts of this nature as I felt very despondent the 1st Few weeks so know how difficult it can b. I’m a 1st time Vizsla owner and so I only have my 6 month Reggie as a comparison. Toileting was 2 steps forward and 3 back although I set alarm and woke every two hours to take him out for weeks despite advice to the contrary. But it worked, now no accidents accept a one off where he was unwell. The sharkies were terrible and I felt a terrible owner as I could not get it under control. I was black & blue and scratched everywhere. But he did change and now is much more settled. I agree it’s much harder for u given the ur current situation but things do slowly improve. Reggie is now much more content, responds to a firm no and although I still have days when I could scream they r much less now. Maybe someone on here can give u more practical advice but from my perspective just hang in there. Good luck
 

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As puppies settle in to their new homes, they become more rambunctious. What your pup is doing, is totally normal.
Keep him outside until he's urinated two or three times, before coming back in the house. Puppies are notorious for getting sidetracked, and not fully emptying their bladder at one time.
Set an alarm at night to take him out to potty. At night there's no big fanfare, it is just straight out to potty. As soon as he does his business, its straight back to the crate.

All Vizsla are Sharky to some extent. Some of them a lot more than others. It's is just their way of playing, and they have those tiny needle teeth. Most of us have tried a multitude of things. In the end, we are not even sure which one worked best. The only thing we know for sure, is they lose those little needle teeth, and the phase passes.
I've replaced my hand being in their mouth chews, toys, and distracted with treats. I've made my hand ,where it's uncomfortable to be in their mouth. I've just put them in the crate, if they were nipping when tired.
I've even growled at them for getting to rough nipping.
I have no idea which one worked best. If it was a combination of things. Or they just needed the time to mature, but they stopped using me as a chew toy.
 

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Thanks both. I've had a much better morning with him and that usually determines the rest of the day ha! Yesterday one thing after another was going wrong and I just felt so overwhelmed. I got up at 2am to put him outside and he didn't have any accidents which was nice! After reading some posts on this forum I've started saying "Times Up" and "No" when he starts getting very bitey towards me and after a bit of a tantrum he starts to relent and slinks off to go to sleep at the other end of the sofa. Once he's calmed down he'll then edge his way back over to me and then put his head on my lap. He's got bags of personality already and I love him to bits but I do think doing it alone for almost a week now has been very challenging. Reading this forum has been good to know that I'm not alone or doing anything "wrong" per se. I guess it's just perseverance and consistency that will hopefully make for an amazing dog in the near future! Thank you for your replies.
 

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We have a puppy V - 14 weeks old now. I can fully sympathise with your up and down days, and how hard it is to have a slightly manic puppy in the house to deal with by yourself. We had similar biting issues. Soon after we got him any game rapidly turned into play biting (as he would with his siblings). It got pretty difficult to enjoy his company as he would nip at you even if you weren’t playing, and of course as you wrestle to get your jumper sleeve back it’s like a game for the dog. So we started a policy of firmly saying no, stopping the play and walking away each time. This worked up to a point but then whenever you played again it quickly turned nippy. I mentioned it to a friend who has weimaraners who suggested we yelp loudly as if in pain each time the puppy started to nip. We did this with immediate success in stopping the biting, and within a couple of days the nippyness had almost stopped. He does still get excited and become a bit nippy, but now a quick yelp and we can continue with the game. Plus he has generally stopped nipping at your legs a you walk past. Also we have an antler, so as soon as he shows any sign of wanting to nip or chew we show that to him and he takes it in his mouth and gives it a good chew.

Regarding the toilet training, sometimes when we take the dog out for a walk - which we do 4 times a day - he can wee a couple of times. Also a lot of poo - maybe 4-5 times a day. Maybe it’s just about the time needed outside?
 

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Unfortunately we've tried the yelping method but he'll either stop for a few seconds and then pounce and resume biting or he'll get even more excited and continue nipping at hands etc. I've found the best method so far is being stern and saying no. He'll start to whine and grumble and he'll nose me but he does stop biting.

I've also started taking him outside for much longer now. Last night it was raining and he didn't want to do his business in the garden so I waited about 15-20 mins the first time, brought him back in for a few minutes and then took him back out for a further 15 mins and he finally did it. We also left him on his own for the first time in over a week yesterday for one hour and then again later in the day for two hours and he was really good. When I got home he didn't bark or cry and just sat up in bed looking at me until I went to him. My partner is now home from the hospital so I've got more help and I'm finding the puppy is much more settled now.
 

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I was questioning my sanity and life and everything the first month after we got our puppy. Especially when we weren’t getting sleep, to keep him from getting used to going in the crate/indoors. It will pass. Hang in there.

my dog gained a semblance of sanity at around 4 1/2 months and so did we.
 
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