November 9th, 2005, 11:27 PM
My 11-month-old Golden Retriever, Jake, has been diagnosed with hydranecephaly by MRI. He has hind leg weakness and has problems on floors with smooth surfaces, all four legs splay out and you have to pick him up. He just can't get up. He also has behavior problems. He is extremely rough when he plays. He just has not progressed out of the "biting" puppy stage. He is the worst with my 4-year-old daughter. He knocks her over, takes toys out of her hand, and nips at her and all of us. He isn't biting out of meaness, only in play, but it hurts. He doesn't seem to understand "no" and is frequently in time-out in his kennel, something my Vet told me to do. I'm concerned about someone getting hurt, but I also want what is best for Jake. There is not much information on dogs with hydranencephaly, but in humans, the disease is usually fatal by age 1. Any suggestions on behavior modification? I am worried about the biting, should we even keep him?
November 10th, 2005, 06:32 AM
A few things, first I really can't help out with any medical advice. As for should you keep him?????? How can you consider any different? Of course keep him. You can still train him correctly and he is your dog and your responsibility. He expects you to be there for him. Putting him in the kennel for a time out is not the best to do. The kennel is there as a safe place for the dog to go, not a place for punishment. So there is one mistake. As for the biting and nipping, you and your family have not shown that you are the alpha. Your dog is putting himself above you in the chain of command. Most dogs do not respond to the word no. If he is biting or chewing, you take away whatever it is and give him one of his toys to show "this is acceptable to chew, not this". If he is "initiating" the play ignore him. You initiate play and you end the playing. This show that you are in charge. There are a million other suggestions. You can search through threads and find a ton on here to help with training. There is also the option of finding a trainer, because if the "basics" don't work, you may need help from a professional because not all dogs are the same. But try the basics and do a research in some of the threads posted, but definitely DO NOT GIVE YOUR DOG UP BECAUSE OF THIS!
November 10th, 2005, 08:20 AM
Your dog has a fatal illness and a behavioural problem. I can't help but wonder who in the world you think would like to take him and give him a loving home?
Goldens, much like Labs, don't even begin to mature until they are two years old. The job they were bred to do is retrieve dead birds in their mouths. This means that they can be very mouthy and bite inhibition should be taught at a very young age.
Your best bet would be to keep this dog away from your child until you can get him into some kind of training class.