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Dinner time terror

July 16th, 2005, 09:05 AM
My 1 yr old cockapoo is driving us nuts at dinnertime and we have tried many different methods but he always reverts back to his bad behavior after a few weeks.
When we sit down to eat he decideds that he wants our attention. He will do things he normally will nver do such as take newspapers off the coffee table and shred them up, stand on the family room sofa, pull papers off my husbands desk or the worst of all he shakes the daylights out of my beautiful silk pillows on the livingroom sofa. He usually gets what he wants by us chasing him or giving him a treat to get him to drop what he has taken. This is a game for him. If I give him a kong he only ever licks what he can reach then quickly drops it. He hates all doggy treats so is not interested in them. I dont want to crate him at meal time because it is up in my sons bedroom. We even tried shaking a can with pennies in it and also an expensive ultrasonic beeper when he misbehaves but the results are only for the first few days. Ours is an open plan house so it is difficult to keep him from certain rooms. When we are out we put him in the laundry room with a baby gate up. If we shut a door on him he will scratch it all up.
Any and all advice would be appreciated

July 16th, 2005, 09:10 AM
Best thing would be to bring the crate down to your dinner area so he can see you, and crate him. A cockapoo can't be that big a dog, so his crate can't be that big or hard to move.

July 16th, 2005, 09:14 AM
I know crating would be best for us but how does this train him to behave in the future. Most dogs can quietly lie under the table while the family eats dinner this is what i would love to see but is he still too yound to do this?

July 16th, 2005, 09:36 AM
Are you giving him attention? What I would do is completely dog proof before eating and give him a ton of toys-- or fill a kong up with tasty things so he can be occupied while you eat (there is a kong stuffing recipe in the recipe forum). The main thing is not to reward his behavior. Yelling at him or getting up to take things away both reward him. He's looking for attention and negative attention will do.

July 16th, 2005, 10:03 AM
Yes we do give him attention which I know is what he wants. We chase him yell at him and give him treats to get him to drop what he has stolen. He doesn't really do well with a kong he only licks at the top them leaves it.He also doesn't like dog chew toys. (only my silk pillows and paper) I am so tired of putting everything up and removing my pillows at dinner time. Shouldn't he be able to learn to stay near us and behave?

July 16th, 2005, 10:21 AM
How about putting a leash on him while you eat, making him lie down beside you, and keep your foot on the end of it. After a few nights of not being able to get up while you eat, he might do it without much of a fight.

July 16th, 2005, 10:33 AM
Why do 'you' think he's wanting you think he's been begging and been fed from the table? Or do you think he just has separation anxiety so to speak.

Are there any other times when the behaviour happens or just dinner time?

July 16th, 2005, 04:14 PM
When we adopted Lucy she was a bit of a beggar at the dinner table. We started by putting her in a down stay about 10 feet from the table. Each time she would start to get up, we would take her back over and repeat. Dinners for about 2 weeks were constant up and down with her until she started to understand that when we sat down to eat, she wasn't to beg. Now we let her get closer to us and often she will curl up under the table.

We crate Jack at dinner time (bring his crate into the kitchen with us) as he has a tendancy to want to play / annoy Lucy while we eat. His crate is small so it tends to get moved around the house with us. He will, most times, head for his crate when we start to sit down.

Monty has been a perfect dinner companion since his first day in the house -- no begging, lays off to the side out of the way.

In all of their cases, we don't give them any attention while we are eating, unless they are really acting up, then it is a quick reprimand, and back to ignore. They know that my wife and I talk to each other at supper and not to them (thankfully they give us that 30 mins in the day, as they tend to get the other 23.5 hours!)

Find the method that best meets your needs. Best of luck with him. Hope you have a peacefull supper in your near future.

July 17th, 2005, 09:37 AM
Thanks for the great ideas everyone!! I think I will try a combo with leash/lie down and kong (may keep him busy for awhile) He does jump up at the table also. We have put house leads on him but he chews through them in no time.(it tends to get expensive)