Haven't been here in awhile, but....

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-1999
Haven't been here in awhile, but....
3
Sun, 12-27-2009 - 9:11am

I hope everyone's holidays are going well... the best to everyone in the new year!

The last month or so has brought some big changes at our house, which will eventually lead me to my question... ;) My 25 y/o son has moved back home with us for financial reasons, and brought his 2 y/o lab/rott cross with him. In almost every way, this move has been for the best for Ace because my son has not had the time nor the emotional energy for the last 5 months to give him the time and attention that he needed. (DS is going through a divorce, is on very tight finances, and his living situation from August to November left a LOT to be desired!) Through inexperience with training dogs, my DS really hasn't given the time to training Ace that he should have... he embarked on pet parenthood thinking that dogs should just KNOW how to behave I think. So a month ago I ended up with a poorly trained 2 y/o attention starved lab in my house.

Ace is getting better, if for no other reason than his fur-grandma has been working with him on some basic training things, but he is SUCH an attention hog, and SO intrusive, he's making me crazy!! About the only area that he's well trained in is potty training, and truthfully, that was something of an accident... when DS got Ace, my ex-DIL didn't really want him, and didn't want him wandering around the house and leaving a lot of dog hair on everything, so Ace spent a LOT of time in his crate until 4 months ago - too much time IMO. Every time DS took him out of the crate, the first thing they did was go outside to potty... so he got the message pretty strongly that outside is to potty. Any time I try to work or play with my own dog (25 lb Missy), big old Ace (at 80 lbs) is right there, trying to get between us. If I'm sitting on the couch watching tv, he's right in my face demanding attention. He's constantly underfoot... and he loves to lean on people besides, so I'm tripping over him a LOT. How can I teach him to be less "in your face" with some better manners? He's making me absolutely CRAZY!

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
Mon, 12-28-2009 - 1:01pm

Well....you certainly have had a lot of changes in your life lately.

 
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-1999
Mon, 12-28-2009 - 1:43pm

My hubby and I agree with you - from Ace's perspective, this divorce and subsequent move to our house is the best thing that could happen to him. It's not that my son is unfamiliar with dogs, but their training has always been primarily my responsibility, and as a teenager living at home, he didn't pay too much attention to what I did with our dogs. When DS announced that he and his wife were getting a dog, hubby and I predicted that it would end up badly, especially when DIL decided to get a small chihuahua type dog of her own... only because my DS had a dog. (I think she was jealous of the time he spent with his dog.) Well, Tiny lasted about 7 months in their home, and she took him to a shelter because he took too much time. When they split, DIL wanted to keep Ace herself, but I'm sure it was as a way to hurt my son, because she never really gave him much time or attention, and was the one that wanted him crated 21-22 hours a day. I told my DS to bring Ace to our house when he moved back to the area, coz I was sure Ace would end up in a shelter within a short period of time if DIL kept him - and we all know what happens to big black dogs in shelters. :(

Thanks for the advice - I'll start working with Ace on the sit/down/stay more intently and see if that helps. A friend of mine suggested not giving him any attetion when he demands it, but make all attention on my terms only... that one is going to be rough for me, but I think she might be on to something, because by giving him attention when he demands it, I'm only reinforcing that behavior. And I'm teaching Missy that waiting for attention (which she's gotten pretty good at)doesn't get her anything... which is not the lesson I want to give her.

Thanks for your answer!

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-10-2003
Tue, 12-29-2009 - 6:36pm

It's great to see you back here! I have to agree that I think Ace lucked into a much better situation for himself, although I know it's been more challenging for you. I hope your son comes through it all better in the end, too.


We have a couple of attention hogs, too, where the second one of the other dogs is getting some attention, one of these two will come and try to horn their way in on the attention. We don't reward it and will set them aside while continuing on with what we were doing with one of the other dogs. Sometimes it takes a couple of tries, but eventually they'll move their interest onto something else and then afterwards we'll give them attention when we're initiating it.



  Jenn 
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