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Old July 5th, 2010, 02:08 PM
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New puppy husky/lab mix

Hi my name is Julie and am looking for some insight on these types of dog. Yesterday my Husband bought a dog for me, it is a husky/lab mix but more husky, due to the fact that I am alone alot and he thinks it will be good company for me and my children. I have had dogs before but mostly small breeds such as poodles and a small spaniel like lady in lady and the tramp. I have had no experience whatsoever in training a dog because my dogs that I have had have always come from my local SPCA so they were already all mature in age. I am looking for any good advice before I receive this new puppy in order to properly train him. He was born June 1, 2010 so the lady said he should be ready to go by July 27, 2010 at the earliest. This new addition to our family will mostly be a house dog (meaning he will be going outside for play and regular "duties" but will be sleeping inside because I find it cruel to leave an animal outside at night. I wonder what is best for his "nighttime habit of sleep" should I let him sleep with us or one of the kids or should I make him sleep on a cushion/pillow on the ground? And any and all information to completely train a puppy without having to use any force (physical) at all
Thank you
Julie
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Old July 5th, 2010, 02:31 PM
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What a precious little thing
I have Malamutes, which are similar to Husky as far as behavior. One thing with a northern breed is they're bred for work and extremely high energy. They chew on everything (as do labs). Huskies are wonderful dogs but require alot of attention and continuous training. They may seem stubborn, but they're just a very independent breed, very aloof. They are not good off leash as they have a mind of their own and are very strong willed. They have a high prey drive (not as bad as a Malamute, but it's there) so you will definitely want to socialize them at a very young age with other dogs and small children. We take ours to day care 3 days a week.

As for sleep, the best thing to do is get a crate, put him/her in the crate at bedtime. Make sure it is a small area. Don't put food or water in the crate (you can get a special treat or toy so they know when it's bedtime, they get something special and do not relate the crate as a bad thing). If you use a large wire kennel, make sure to get one with a divider so you can expand it as the puppy grows. As soon as you take the puppy out, take it directly outside to do it's business. The crate serves 2 purposes 1) provides a safe, comfortable area for your puppy 2) helps with potty training. Be prepared to get up several times a night to take him/her out. Puppies are usually good for about 2 hours at a time.

I would say the most important thing is to leave the puppy with the mother until it is at least 8 weeks old, preferably 10+ weeks. ALot of breeders want to have the puppies gone by 6 weeks. Insist they keep it until at least 8 weeks, otherwise, you can have severe behavioral disorders such as bite inhibition etc. The puppy learns alot from the mother and siblings during that crucial period.

There are other members who have alot of experience with Huskies and there's alot of knowledge here in general.

Good luck with your new baby!!
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Old July 5th, 2010, 02:51 PM
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Thank you very much for the info Rgeurts. As for the exercise, the new puppy will get a lot of it due to us being a very active family and he will also socialize withe children because I have 3 of my own (aged10/5/4) but the only down side is that I do not know anyone else that has a dog or dogs that my new baby will be able to play with due to the fact that I am somewhat new to the area but I will do my best to ensure that he gets friends that are 4 legged
Thank you
Julie
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Old July 5th, 2010, 03:05 PM
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Remember--anything you allow the cute little pup to do will be something the large adult dog will continue to do. So, if you want a 60 lb plus dog to sit on the furniture, and your lap...if you allow it too much freedom, you will have trouble taking it away. Clicker training works wonderfully to train pups from as early as 10 wks to do basic obedience.

Use NILF training with feeding and going through doorways. [Nothing in life is free]. Such as sit and wait until I say to get up and eat your dinner. This is a simple straightforward way to establish ground rules.

Always better to restrict the movements in the house until the dog is fully housetrained--and even then, some rooms should be off limits at least some of the time, always. Tethering the pup to you or the furniture you are sitting on keeps him under control--with a chew toy--in between trips outside or play times, and when you are distracted he will not be able to pee in the corner.

The crate is a must in my house--all pups learn from day one that is where they sleep and that is where they go with a great chew toy when you leave them home alone indoors.

He is very cute!
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Old July 5th, 2010, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by lilsis261279 View Post
Hi my name is Julie and am looking for some insight on these types of dog. Yesterday my Husband bought a dog for me, it is a husky/lab mix but more husky, due to the fact that I am alone alot and he thinks it will be good company for me and my children. I have had dogs before but mostly small breeds such as poodles and a small spaniel like lady in lady and the tramp. I have had no experience whatsoever in training a dog because my dogs that I have had have always come from my local SPCA so they were already all mature in age. I am looking for any good advice before I receive this new puppy in order to properly train him. He was born June 1, 2010 so the lady said he should be ready to go by July 27, 2010 at the earliest. This new addition to our family will mostly be a house dog (meaning he will be going outside for play and regular "duties" but will be sleeping inside because I find it cruel to leave an animal outside at night. I wonder what is best for his "nighttime habit of sleep" should I let him sleep with us or one of the kids or should I make him sleep on a cushion/pillow on the ground? And any and all information to completely train a puppy without having to use any force (physical) at all
Thank you
Julie
Hi Julie -

1st congrats on your new pup, you must be so excited!

I would strongly recommend in enrolling in a puppy obedience classes. They may require the pup to be a certain age, but I would strongly suggest you look into this. Not only will the trainer help work with you on basic commands (sit, stay etc.) but the pup also will have a chance to get socialized in the obedience class.

As for training around home (i.e. house training), you would be best to train him using positive reinforcement (whether that is treats, a toy, praise etc). Instead of punishing bad behaviour, continue to reward good behaviour. This may involve going over the top (your neighbours may think you are nuts ). I am currently house training an older pup, and I jump up and down and praise him over the top everytime he does his business outside.

As for where to let him sleep at night, I would start crate training as soon as you get him home, and I would crate him at night at least until he is house trained. You may have to move his crate into your bedroom with you. While I am not against dogs sleeping on the bed with their owners, I think given his breed while he is small and may not take up much room now, when he is full grown there may be no room for you on the bed! And it's much easier to start him off right now, rather than trying to break him of the habit later.

I have 2 large dogs and they sleep on their beds on the floor of my room (although they are known to sneak up sometimes ).

Good luck and keep us posted! (Oh, and more pictures are certainly welcomed when you have them!)
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Old July 5th, 2010, 06:16 PM
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Thank you cassiek for your reply. Getting professionnal help from a dog obedience class is not in my budget to be honest so I will end up doing it by myself (as well with my hubby and kids help, lol) but crate training is definately a good idea due to the fact i dont feel like stepping in nice little surprises in the morning (hehehe) I dont have the puppy just yet due to the fact he was born on June 1, 2010 so he wont be ready for us until July 27th or later but I am very anxious to have him. Ooohhh ... and no worries I will be posting lots and lots of pictures of my new puppy ... Sorry still havent decided on a name yet
thank you
Julie
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Old July 5th, 2010, 06:59 PM
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Hi lilsis!

What a sweet little pup you have. I'm training my second puppers at the moment, so I know what you'll be going through! They can be quite the handful, though it's totally worth it.

I have to second what cassiek says about going to an obedience class. Especially because you mentioned that you don't have too many friends with pups for him to socialize with, this would be great way to get him out there & meeting other dogs. I know the classes can be a little pricey, but I just enrolled in an 8 week class at PetSmart in Ottawa for only around $100. It's a good investment. I did the training myself with my first puppy and I have to admit that going to the class has been so helpful with the second - even though I did have a bit of experience and read a lot about training. If you can manage to save up to go, it's worth it. That's what I did, since I'm a student and not really rolling in cash! Hahaha. (Also - the PetSmart classes do positive reinforcement. So although they may not be the best trainers out there, they can definitely teach the basics of this method).

I won't go into the benefits of crate training and the like because it seems everyone has it covered. This forum has just so much information and, if you want to learn, you definitely will!

One thing you're going to have to look into is what kind of food you're going to choose. I'm sure lots of people on here can advise you - but I've heard that the Kirkland food is a really good low cost brand that you can get at CostCo. Much better than the grocery store foods.

Anyways, good luck with your pup! Welcome to the forum & we'd love to see more pictures!
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Old July 5th, 2010, 07:30 PM
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Hi serenamlambe
I thought the classes were much more then $100 (lol) at that price I think it is well worth it my new challenge will only be to find an english one in my area or I too will have to go to Ottawa. As for puppy food we are looking into either Orijen or Kirkland. Will be asking a vets advice as too which will be better for my new puppy. And pics will follow as soon as I get them .. It is a promise
regards
Julie
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Old July 5th, 2010, 07:45 PM
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Good luck finding a class. The PetSmart one is really reasonably priced. I was surprised myself. While the trainers may not be the best in the area, I have found the program pretty good for the basics, thus far. As I'm sure you know, just take everything with a grain of salt! You'll know what's best for your dog once you get to know him and his personality.

As for foods, I'm of the impression that vets don't know the most about canine nutrition. In fact, I have received some pretty bad advice on food from my vet. Eek. By all means, ask your vet, but if you have futher questions, I can almost guarentee you that there is someone on this forum who can help!
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Old July 5th, 2010, 08:16 PM
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As for puppy food we are looking into either Orijen or Kirkland. Will be asking a vets advice as too which will be better for my new puppy.
Julie
Orijen I would be careful of. I know alot of people recommend it, but it's extremely high in protein, expecially for a large breed puppy. We tried both of ours on it and had to remove them for diarrhea and extremely bad gas. Also, the high protein can form crystals in the kidneys. I don't really know anything about Kirkland, but I know Wellness is a very good food and they have several different varieties, all human grade and about the same cost as Orijen. Wellness is made by a company that has been making dog treats/food since 1927. If you're really stuck on the Orijen, try Acana. It's made by the same company but instead of the 40% crude protein (which again, extremely high) it has 33%, which is still high, but better than 40%. This is just my personal opinion.

As for the vet, I completely agree with serenamlambe. Our vets (3 different ones) all pushed Medi-cal. We did have our older dog on the gastro version until we smartened up and did some research. Not only is it full of grains and fillers, but was also a part of the big pet food recall. It states right on their website that the vitamins and some select ingredients are imported from China

We checked Wellness and could find nothing but positive reviews and all ingredients are from the U.S.
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Old July 5th, 2010, 09:41 PM
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If you check around a bit you might be surprised to find that the cost of lessons isn't really too bad even with private trainers and with a private trainer you might have a smaller group. The place I did some agility lessons offers various 6-week courses (obedience, agility, rally-o etc.) for $125 which just went up from $115 and there is a maximum of only 4 dogs per class. They also have shorter 4-week puppy courses for $75. The description of what is covered in their puppy class is as follows:

Puppy Train and Play

4 Week Program $75.00

For puppies 9 to15 Weeks. A blend of basic training with organized play. Puppies learn socialization skills necessary for interaction with dogs and humans. It is a 4 week session where you will be given help with teaching basic puppy manners to your puppy such as house training, no biting follow me as well as your puppy will learn good dog language by playing with other puppies and having fun with you.

New classes every month


Good luck with your new pup, he's a cutie
You mentioned that your kids will be helping with the pup, how old are they?
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Last edited by Gail P; July 5th, 2010 at 09:46 PM.
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Old July 6th, 2010, 05:41 AM
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Thank you for the info GailP I will definately looked into that ... the kids are aged g10, g5 and b4 so basically it will only be my oldest who will be "handling" him but my younger two will also be around him to also ensure that he grows up accustomed to kids playing with him or basically being around him


Thank you Rgeurts I will look into that as well. I will try Wellness first and as far as vet recommendations for food, I have decided not to even ask them because even some of my closest friends have said that a vet will usually only reccommend the food they are "sponsored by" so I will definately try Wellness and if that doesnt work I will try something else

Thank you very much
Julie
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Old July 6th, 2010, 06:21 AM
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Patience is really important, especially if you are used to older dogs. Large breed dogs LOOK physically mature (full height, weight) long before they are mentally mature (think teenagers).
I agree that if you want positive training you should look into clicker training. start with books by karen pryor.
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Old July 6th, 2010, 06:28 AM
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Thank you ownedbycats. Patience I have a lot of I have had dogs before just never a large breed such as this one and I have heard a lot of pros and cons about huskies and labs. I am currently researching the clicker training but I think I will actually go buy the book because what I find on the internet is just basic stuff that most people know and I want my new puppy to be happy and properly trained. And I don't smack/hit/slap my children so I would never do that to a dog or any kind of other animal either
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Julie
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Old July 6th, 2010, 10:29 AM
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Welcome to pets.ca Julie .

It's great you're planning ahead of time! Here are two books, where you'll find a wealth of important information, that we always recommend to families adopting a new pup. Bonus is the downloads are free .

Before You Get Your Puppy by Ian Dunbar http://www.dogstardaily.com/files/BE...ur%20Puppy.pdf

After You Get Your Puppy http://www.dogstardaily.com/files/AF...ur%20Puppy.pdf

Another important site for all dog guardians in keeping children and dogs safe...

http://doggonesafe.com/

With a great video and activities for your children...

http://wbx.me/l/?p=1&u=http%3A%2F%2F...ildren-in.html

And a wonderful game your children are sure to enjoy (and learn from at the same time)...

http://wbx.me/l/?p=1&u=http%3A%2F%2F...ildren-in.html
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Old July 6th, 2010, 10:56 AM
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... the kids are aged g10, g5 and b4 so basically it will only be my oldest who will be "handling" him but my younger two will also be around him to also ensure that he grows up accustomed to kids playing with him or basically being around him
One thing I'd suggest is to make sure all family members (kids and husband both) are on the same page with regards to understanding training methods and consistency. The younger ones may not be able to do much in the way of training right now but they can learn how to behave around a pup and a lot about how to handle and train a pup while you're teaching this one. My daughter has grown up with puppies her whole life (yes I have a houseful - 10 dogs at the moment ) and she has learned how to help train them. The youngest dog in our house is just turning a year old and he is hers, she has done a lot of the training with him herself. She's 11 now but as I said, has been around puppies her whole life. She started competing in kid & mutt classes at dogsled races when she was only 4 and the last couple of years has entered 2 -mile races with 2 dogs on the sled and has also done some recreational dogsled runs with 2-3 dogs, going up to 17 miles, following me with my team of dogs. I also have a goose control business using 2 of our border collies and she started helping me with that last year. She works one dog on one side of the river in town and I work the other side with another dog.

Kids and dogs can be great playmates, good company as well as exercising each other when they both are taught to interact appropriately. I say it's never too young to start learning (with proper supervision, of course - that pretty much goes without saying)
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Old July 6th, 2010, 11:50 AM
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Thank you very much for the info Rgeurts. As for the exercise, the new puppy will get a lot of it due to us being a very active family and he will also socialize withe children because I have 3 of my own (aged10/5/4) but the only down side is that I do not know anyone else that has a dog or dogs that my new baby will be able to play with due to the fact that I am somewhat new to the area but I will do my best to ensure that he gets friends that are 4 legged
Thank you
Julie
Oh, he's a cutie, all right

Be a bit cautious exercising the puppy for the first couple of months - large breeds' joints tend to mature later that those of smaller breeds and you want to avoid overexerting the puppy.
Ideally puppy will have a grassy area to run and play with your family and other, trusty, dogs and will be allowed to stop and rest when feeling tired. Take your clues from him at the beginning. I would avoid long walks on the street/sidewalk or at least limit them to about 10 minutes at a time. Also, don't let him jump too much - the Frisbee should wait until probably 6-7 months.

Oh, and don't worry about being new to your area - after we got out puppy we found out with great surprise how many of our neighbors have friendly dogs :-)
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Old July 6th, 2010, 01:19 PM
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Oh, he's a cutie, all right

Be a bit cautious exercising the puppy for the first couple of months - large breeds' joints tend to mature later that those of smaller breeds and you want to avoid overexerting the puppy.
Ideally puppy will have a grassy area to run and play with your family and other, trusty, dogs and will be allowed to stop and rest when feeling tired. Take your clues from him at the beginning. I would avoid long walks on the street/sidewalk or at least limit them to about 10 minutes at a time. Also, don't let him jump too much - the Frisbee should wait until probably 6-7 months.
Our puppy goes to daycare 2-3 days a week then walks on a treadmill at home the days he's not in daycare. Other than that he plays in the yard when we're with him. It's not when they are very young puppies that you really need to be as concerned and I guess I should have made myself a little more clear . When they hit around 5-6 months, that's when you need to make sure they are getting plenty of exercise. They are extremely intelligent and will become bored easily. At that age they can be very destructive if they do not have the proper amount of exercise.


Alot of people who take on a Malamute or Husky do not realize the energy level, independence and constant training and care they require and the poor thing ends up in the pound, a rescue or just plain dumped. They are definitely not a breed for everyone. Please make sure you do alot of research before taking one on
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Old July 7th, 2010, 12:01 AM
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Awwwwwwwww what a cutie.

My niece has 2 Husky/Labs. They too are more Husky. They are going on 2.

At this age, I would not feed grain free. I would wait till s/he is a year old.

And I totally agree about the exercise. Don't over do it. If you do, you are asking for trouble in the long run. The joints start to get stronger at about 14 months. So no hard running, jumping and sharp turning till then. Mental stimulation is just as good as physical stimulation. Mental stimulation means the pup has to think. So this could be teaching commands.

Puppies will chew. Mostly cause they are teething. So have a chewy toy. A kong filled with a treat(may be frozen) will help. If chewing happens, then redirect the pup to something that can be chewed, like a toy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rgeurts
They are not good off leash
Sorry but I have to disagree. My sister has 2 Sibes(third passed away). She is on a farm and they have free run. They have 110% recall. They are 13. And I have personally been around the Sibes from the show Due South. These dogs were off leash while filming. Also look at the movies 8 below and Snow dogs(I know the breeder whos Sibe played Yodel). Everything boils down to training. And this starts from the day that pup comes home.

And with me, all my dogs have been trained with distractions. This means outside with kids,people,cats running around, birds, cars you name it.

Another thing. Have a vet appt book the week pup comes home. You want to make sure pup is healthy. I'm sure the owners will tell you they are healthy, but nothing wrong with having your vet check pup out,
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Old July 7th, 2010, 01:08 AM
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Sorry but I have to disagree. My sister has 2 Sibes(third passed away). She is on a farm and they have free run. They have 110% recall. They are 13. And I have personally been around the Sibes from the show Due South. These dogs were off leash while filming. Also look at the movies 8 below and Snow dogs(I know the breeder whos Sibe played Yodel). Everything boils down to training. And this starts from the day that pup comes home.

And with me, all my dogs have been trained with distractions. This means outside with kids,people,cats running around, birds, cars you name it.

You're allowed to disagree, just as I am . In my experience (and 90% of all Husky/Malamute rescues and training materials), Huskies are not good off leash. They are independent and have their own minds. Your sister is either very lucky or has had extremely good training. As for the "movie/show" dogs, of course their well trained, as is any circus animal. You're right, it does come down to training. But for the average person, especially someone who does not know the breed and cannot afford in-depth training, I would not recommend off leash. But we are entitled to our own opinions.

Either way, good luck lilsis, I'm sure you will have many years of love and enjoyment with your new baby!
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Old July 7th, 2010, 07:35 AM
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Thank you very much for the great replies. Even if I can provide great training I don't think I will be letting my new puppy off leash. I do live in a city so I don't think I am willing to take the chance, both for puppy safety and our/others safety. As for the exercising, we are a pretty active family with 3 children but no worries too overdoing it for our new puppy, as we have had dogs before but only small breeds. We are just not familiar with this particular type of breed. Again, thank you all so very much for all the replies, I have been receiving very good advice and am now starting to believe that the only thing left to know is what I should call him lol
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Old July 7th, 2010, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by lilsis261279 View Post
I don't think I will be letting my new puppy off leash. I do live in a city so I don't think I am willing to take the chance, both for puppy safety and our/others safety.
Wonderful

As for food, if you're going to give Wellness a try, the line we feed ours is Super 5 mix-large breed puppy. They do have a grain free line as well and I believe it is called Wellness-Core. But as stated above, waiting until a yr old is better if you want to go grain-free and alot of people do advocate that. I don't think is necessary as long as the grain ingredients are not just used as a filler, are quality and have some nutritional value. But again, just my personal opinion
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  #23  
Old July 7th, 2010, 07:54 AM
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Thanks Rgeurts ... I'll give that one a try
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Old July 7th, 2010, 08:25 AM
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OMG puppy breath gorgeous congrat's ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by lilsis261279 View Post
Even if I can provide great training I don't think I will be letting my new puppy off leash.


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the only thing left to know is what I should call him lol
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Old July 7th, 2010, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by lilsis261279 View Post
[....] and am now starting to believe that the only thing left to know is what I should call him lol
Pick a few names but most likely you'll have to wait to meet him and then you'll just know what suits him.

(Our "pre-selected, well-thought, all family members approved" name was abandoned less than 2 days after bringing the puppy home. He kinda "told" us what his name should be)

Enjoy him and the fun times ahead
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Old July 7th, 2010, 12:11 PM
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the only thing left to know is what I should call him lol

LoL... yes, that's the hard part! My hubby went online and researched Inuit names and found "Nanook" which means cute and kind (although alot more common than I like). The cute he has down, but the kind... well, let's say we're still working on that

He's affectionately known around our house and the neighborhood as "Nookie Monster". The vet even calls him that now

I think he was just very mistreated by people prior to our getting him, so it's taking him awhile figure out that getting "loves" is a good thing
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  #27  
Old July 7th, 2010, 12:49 PM
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I was thinking of the name of Ambriel .. it is the name of the God that precides of the Zodiak but the again I am unsure .. will have to wait and see when we get our new furbaby
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Old July 7th, 2010, 01:56 PM
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How about "Mukwa" (spelled phonetically, apologies if I got it wrong) which is the Yukon First Nations word for "dog"?

As for training, if you enjoy reading and find that is a good way for you to learn, try Brian Kilcommons' book "Good Owners, Great Dogs" and Brenda Aloff's book "Canine Body Language". Both books are very well illustrated and the explanations are clear and concise.
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Old July 7th, 2010, 05:32 PM
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I dont know about Mukwa ... sounds too much like that name in the gremlins movie ... but it is a good one tho
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Old July 7th, 2010, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Rgeurts View Post
Your sister is either very lucky or has had extremely good training.
My sister and BIL did the training. None of their dogs went to Obedience training. They researched the breed, and I was the one who got them their first Sibe. A little over a year they rescued 2 Sibe pups. So 3 young Sibes who became VERY well trained. Time and patience is key along with early training. THAT is the key with any breed. If a dog doesn't have 100% recall, then no, they should not be off leash. Also, funny how my niece has no problems having her dogs off leash. She is a first time Sibe mix owner.

People keep saying that these breeds are not good for first time dog owners. Think about this. How did these breeds come about from breeders? They were first time Sibe owners where they not????????


lilsis261279, when I say off leash, I mean in an off leash park.. Your fuzzbutt is young, so with constant training you will do fine.

Also, socialization is a must. If you know family members or friends with friendly healthy dogs, then have your pup around them. As long as they are up to date on shots. Have him around different kids not just yours.
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