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Need help with my dog PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

beefy696969
October 4th, 2010, 10:27 AM
Ok so I have 2 dogs actually, one of them is a rescue, she is a 3 1/2 year old boxer, she is great, I cant complain about her at all, but the other dog, she is a 22 month old boxer as well.

The problem I am having with her is her chewing everything, my xbox contoller, tv remote, basebords on the walls, anything and everything that she can get her mouth on she will chew. She does have toys that are hers and I try and praise her when she is playing with them.

The problem with her is that she will do it right infront of you, grab whatever she wants and starts chewing on it. I dont know how to make her stop, she gets even worse when she is left alone, I can walk down to the basement and hear her chewing something new.

If she is not chewing something, she is in the garbage , or pulling apart the new leather couche, another problem with her is that she keeps jumping up on the counters and looking for food.

Just ten minutes ago she jumped on the counter and grabbed a apple pie and got half of it down before I caught her, I was so mad, I yelled and put her in her crate.

I dont know what else to do here, I know you are never supposed to hit your dog, but believe me it is starting to get really tempting....

any advice would be really appreciated , I am lost on how to fix this...


Thank you in advance.

luckypenny
October 4th, 2010, 12:05 PM
It sounds as if your 22 month old is the "normal" one of the two and your 3 1/2 year old is the exception to the rule when it comes to Boxers :D. In my experience, Boxers are right up there in intelligence, energy, and stamina as Border Collies, Labradors, and Jack Russel Terriers. Keep in mind that Boxers' ancestors were originally bred for hunting...that means hours and hours of off-leash running and chasing.

Having said that, how much active exercise are your girls getting daily, both on and off-leash? Do you have a consistent routine set up for them? Have you attempted any structured training with them yet?

The problem I am having with her is her chewing everything, my xbox contoller, tv remote, basebords on the walls, anything and everything that she can get her mouth on she will chew.

Aside from the baseboards, the simple solution would be to "puppy-proof" your home. Go through each and every room and make sure everything you don't want her to have is out of her reach until she's learned what is appropriate to chew. You can also close doors, or use baby gates, to limit her access to rooms.

She does have toys that are hers and I try and praise her when she is playing with them.

Keep that up! In addition, keep her toys in a toy box and rotate them so she doesn't bore easily with the same ones all the time.

If she is not chewing something, she is in the garbage , or pulling apart the new leather couche, another problem with her is that she keeps jumping up on the counters and looking for food.

Just ten minutes ago she jumped on the counter and grabbed a apple pie and got half of it down before I caught her, I was so mad, I yelled and put her in her crate.

Get a new garbage can with a tight fitting lid or, put the can in an area she doesn't have access to eg, pantry, garage, other room.

Leather couches, yummy! As it is now, her take on it is, that's one HUGE rawhide chew toy! Seriously :D. Again, you're going to have to limit her access until you've figured out a way to tire her right out and until she learns what is and isn't appropriate to chew. As for the counter surfing, why shouldn't she jump up when there are all sorts of yummies waiting for her? You have to keep the counters clear (eg. put your pie in the oven, microwave, cupboard, on top of fridge, etc) and/or limit her access to the kitchen until she's learned that she's not allowed to counter surf or unless you're in the kitchen to supervise. For each time that she does hit the jackpot for finding something on the counter, you've just strongly reinforced her desire to keep trying. It's how we inadvertently teach dogs to do the exact opposite of what we want.

I dont know what else to do here, I know you are never supposed to hit your dog, but believe me it is starting to get really tempting....

You're right, please don't hit your dog for something that comes naturally to her. You're going to create a whole other set of more serious problems that won't be so easy to correct. Please don't use the crate for punishment either, it should be your best training tool and a place that she should equate with relaxation and safety.

Here's a short explanation of Boxers' temperaments:

Boxers are a bright, energetic and playful breed and tend to be very good with children. They are active and incredibly strong dogs and require adequate exercise to prevent boredom-associated behaviors such as chewing, digging, or licking. Boxers have earned a slight reputation of being "headstrong," which can be related to inappropriate obedience training. Owing to their intelligence and working breed characteristics, training based on corrections often has limited usefulness. Boxers, like other animals, typically respond better to positive reinforcement techniques such as clicker training, an approach based on operant conditioning and behaviorism, which affords the dog an opportunity to think independently and to problem-solve.[10][11] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boxer_%28dog%29

And some more great info on the breed: http://www.boxerrescuequebec.com/aboutboxers.cfm

So now that you know why your dog is doing what she does and how to manage the behavior, it's time to learn how to teach her your expectations. She also needs an outlet to spend all that energy of hers. Can you provide her with more exercise? You can also feed all her meals out of Kongs (mixing with soft foods and freezing makes them last longer) in her crate so she gets to exercise her jaw and her mind. Have you considered training classes where you can learn to teach her? Boxers are such a bright, lively breed, it shouldn't take long with consistency and patience before she catches on quickly :thumbs up.

beefy696969
October 4th, 2010, 12:37 PM
thank you for the long reply..

Both dogs get walked twice daily, once in the morning, and then again in the everning after we have had dinner and a few minutes to digest the food.

As for off leash, I have a huge back yard, its over 100 feet long, she runs around and plays all day long at her free will, or chases the ball around when I go outside and throw it around for her.

She is currently in class and learning, she is actually the best dog in that class, she knows all the command, sit , laydown, stay, wait.. etc and she does them all perfectly, she looks like a modle dog when she is out walking on her leash, or in class, but as soon as she is in the house, thats when it starts.

The crate was only purchased a few weeks ago because of these issues. Prior to that as soon as she was left alone inside the house she would eat everything that she could find, thats why we bought the crate, just to keep her from eating everything.

I did try the baby gate thing, that did no good, it just cost me more money to fix the holes in the walls and replace a few doors.. I really did not want to keep her in that crate while we were out, or at work, but I really had no other choice as its starting to get cold here ( live in canada close to toronto )

I know that all dogs go through this faze in their lives, but this is something that needs to stop soon as I cant keep replacing everyhing that she destroys.

luckypenny
October 4th, 2010, 01:05 PM
How long are your walks? One hour of brisk walking for high energy dogs can seem like only a warm up for them :shrug:. Do you jog? Or perhaps you can purchase one of those kits you attach to your bike and you can take her for a run instead of a walk? I think if she gets enough of her energy spent in the morning, then left with her breakfast in a frozen Kong or two, she should be good to rest in her crate for a couple of hours. Perhaps some active playtime midday in the yard, about an hour or so (if you or someone is available for her), some training, and then in her crate with a chew toy for another couple of hours til it's time for her evening walk and more playtime in the yard. Don't forget a frozen Kongs for dinner as well. There's no reason why you can't feed her out of these instead of her bowl. If she's loose in the house, I strongly recommend it's only when you can supervise her closely and when all is cleaned up and out of temptation's way.

On another note, foods and snacks high in grains and corn (corn having no place in a dog's diet), can lead to hyperactivity in dogs, just like with us humans. You may also want to take a close look at her diet in addition to increasing the duration and intensity of her exercise.

bendyfoot
October 4th, 2010, 06:01 PM
You've been given excellent advice. Don't be afraid to use that crate until she is reliable. Also, be sure the chew toys she has are good-quality...Nylabones for 'strong chewers" are a godsend in our house. If you catch her chewing something inappropriate, trade her for one of her toys and praise her if she chews it.

cassiek
October 5th, 2010, 01:26 AM
Hi beefy,

I have 2 boxers myself :) and will attest they can be little bundles of energy! :laughing: (Although mine have been known to be lazy couch potatos too... :rolleyes:).

Do you crate your 22 month old boxer when you are out of the house? I crate both of mine when I am at work, etc. - this way I know no one's getting into trouble while I am gone and I can go about my day without worrying. :laughing:

This breed needs a lot of mental and physical stimulation. I regularly give mine Kong toys with frozen goodies inside or even better a frozen raw bone that will keep them busy for hours - it also helps relieve that urge to chew. As for physical exercise, mine have a solid hour of running combined with some swimming each day as well as playtime in the house. I have recently tried introducing them to a treadmill which will hopefully work out and be a great workout for them in the winter when they can't get outside much. :thumbs up

I also practice NILF regularly with mine. I find that my two can be very stubborn and need consistent rules. In my house they have to sit before they eat, before the leash is put on to go outside, they need to wait to be invited up onto the couch etc. these rules are enforced everyday. We also do basic obedience commands on a regular basis - sit, down, stay, stand, etc. and any tricks they know.

I'm lucky - if I happen to miss a day or two of solid exercise, they don't destroy anything - still, they start pacing and becoming anxious and I know they need a run to burn some energy. I have also tried bike-riding with my oldest, Brynn, and it worked really great, although you do have to be careful not to over-exercise them this way especially in the heat.

Good luck! Oh, and would LOVE to see some pictures!! :lovestruck:

Marty11
October 5th, 2010, 09:02 AM
I had a boxer briefly, it lifted tiles off the floor and door handles off the door. Definately crate your boxer when your not at home. It will make a happier relationship. My boston terrier is a chewer and still at 3, but she has finally left the shoes etc....alone. Goes into her box of toys and chooses one of her toys to chew.

Jumajum
October 5th, 2010, 10:14 AM
I'd like to second the above advice. Set your dog up for success. Leave your counter clean, if there's nothing there then it's not so interesting. Take comfort that this behaviour is probably a sign that your dog is well bonded to you and he just wants to do what you're doing.

I would have him leashed to you or stationed in the same room with you for now so you can catch him thinking about going after something and tell him 'Off' or 'Ack!' and then reward him for not destroying another piece of furniture:p

lilwhitefurball
October 6th, 2010, 11:14 AM
hello beefy.
seems you really have some problematic biting issue.
you can put a stop on this by first letting letting her know that playing with you or with her mouth is undesirable. try walking away from her after giving her a glare ans a strong "No bite." then give her someone to chew on.

if she just goes doing the same thing over then maybe, it calls for a time-out. but if she poses positively on this then reward her each time- though not always by giving her something- a pat on the head will do and a sincere and happy sounding "good girl" would be enough.