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posted
Hi,
We adopted a lab mix puppy in spring of this year who is now around 8 months old. I'd never had a puppy before, and boy it sure is true what they tell you about a lot of hard work! But, we'd had some bad luck with adopting older dogs (one hated the cat, the other bit my youngest son) so we felt like this was the best way to go.

We have three young boys in school and both work (me part-time, my husband full-time). We do walk the dog twice a day and play as much as possible in between, but he's really high energy and needy, so he seems to want almost constant attention/play time. I work from home, so I know he barks loudly when our neighbor walks her dogs by wanting to go walk with them, and he also wants in ALL the time. I won't have a problem with that when he's a bit older, but I can't wipe him down when it's muddy out and monitor him in the house since I have a very limited amount of time to work while kids are in school (we leave him out in our fenced yard in nice weather).

I feel like we need to adopt another dog to be a companion to him (he loves to wrestle with the neighbor dogs and loves it when we go on walks with the neighbor's dogs), but my husband says we might end up with two needy barking dogs so will have double the issues we have now.

Does anyone have experience with this? I know it's individual to some extent, but with labs do they tend to behave better with another dog to play and hang out with?
 
Posts: 3 | Location: Southeast | Registered: Dec 06, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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From my experience with Labs and Goldens, you are heading into adolescence, often around 9 months. From foster dog and my own experience it can be trying time, and not uncommon for folks to give up their pets at this age. They do have a LOT of energy and it needs an outlet, so bad habits can be controlled. They also tend to test the human pack leaders at this age, if you are not in control and top dog in their eyes.

A local "play pal" might be a better option than bringing in a second dog (and hopefully one with good manners that you condone). Any chance you have a neighbor or friend with a dog who would like to share the fun in your yard? Before your dog is a little older and trained more to your liking, a second pup may just compound the current issues.

Also if you have not participated in a local dog obedience group this can be a great outlet. Yes the classes are often only once a week, but practicing Down Stays and Sits in the home can use a good amount of energy (brain energy) in the dog. You may need to fence off an area where you are working to make this work, so the dog does not wander off and get into trouble. Occasional short breaks (five minute walk, exercise) can also be helpful for you and the dog.Wink

I have found walking nicely on a leash and following simple commands when walking (sit at corners) actually uses more energy (tires the dog out) than the "tug and pull" some folks get to experience.
 
Posts: 9664 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We have always had goldens and our son has labs, and they are "people dogs"- they love people and want to be a part of our lives. Did you crate train your dog from the day he was brought home? My experience has been that the dogs love love their crate and seek comfort there. Even tho we have fenced in yards we never confined the dogs to the yard all day. Too many distractions!! Our dogs went into crate when we went to work or couldn't keep an eye on them. Don't know if its too late for you , but it sound like a crate could be the solution.
 
Posts: 3149 | Location: Michigan and sw Florida | Registered: May 16, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Good suggestion.
We always used a crate too, with both younger pups and most new additions to the home.
 
Posts: 9664 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We do crate him, but only at night or if it is going to be too cold and/or rainy. Are you suggesting that he would probably prefer to be left in the crate (in our basement) during the day instead of outside, even when we're here? He does really well in there at night - doesn't make a peep and has no accidents for up to 10 hours sometimes. I just hate the thought of him being inside the house in his crate when I'm upstairs working - feel like he would rather be out near me but it would be IMPOSSIBLE to get anything done. Please tell me that someday we'll be able to let him roam the house unsupervised and let him lay down next to my desk when I'm working!
 
Posts: 3 | Location: Southeast | Registered: Dec 06, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Would it be possible to have the crate near you when you are working and just take breaks to exercise him a bit during the day, when you can?

We always had the crates either in our bedroom at night or in the living room...not isolated away from people. As mamaspoon mentioned, these are people oriented dogs and love being part of the pack.

And yes, as time goes by, you can certainly begin to allow more free time out of the crate in a safe environment where he cannot hurt himself or any of your special things. They only require some training along with the love and exercise.
 
Posts: 9664 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I do not mean to be rude but I think you have to seriously think about why you got a dog if you want to keep him in the yard or the basement when you are home?

Surely he misses human company. I have often tethered a puppy to my waist as I work around the house. That way he has company and I get my work done. A real pain to do? Yes it is. But it is the healthy thing to do. Keeps him out of trouble and gives him company. A nearby crate within eyesight also works.

As working adults you have to leave the puppy alone much of the time ( during which time he should be confined to an area in the house). It is not wise to leave him alone when you ARE home.

I am sorry to be so blunt but I felt it was the way to make you understand.
 
Posts: 7226 | Location: North MN & Northern AR | Registered: Oct 01, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I agree with met two. No need to say anymore.
 
Posts: 69 | Registered: Mar 23, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Don't know if I'm an "expert" but will add that we had a lot of fun with obedience class. We also took advantage of an agility class offered by our local humane society. There were participants who were families with kids and it was great. Yes there's a time commitment, but it was fun family exercise for all. By taking the class we were then allowed to use the public drop in hours for the facility.

Even as little as 15 minutes a day is a mental work out for a dog. You've hit the teen years so to speak, and he will grow into a wonderful companion with time.
 
Posts: 3424 | Registered: Aug 06, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't mind your bluntness, but I think if you re-read my post you'll see that I DON'T want to leave him alone outside or in his crate all the time. It's part of the reason I posted my message here. I'm frustrated with the way things are right now and recognize that something needs to change. I also think you need to admit that some people are just dog "experts" and as such have either the time or knowledge (or both) to make all of this seem much easier than it does for the average person. All we were trying to do was help out an animal that probably would have received half the attention we give it now had we not adopted it while at the same time get a companion that would grow up with our family. We're going to be putting him in training after Christmas, which I'm hoping will help make it a little easier to manage him when he's inside. Thank you all for your input.
 
Posts: 3 | Location: Southeast | Registered: Dec 06, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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First, I'm NOT an "expert" on dogs, but have a few comments to add to the discussion.

Got first dog that was all mine BEFORE crates became popular. First month we had Jenny (a red Dobie pup), we were still in an apartment... waiting to settle on house. I'm a teacher, so no school... also NO PETS allowed in apartment. I NEVER left pup alone... didn't want her barking/crying. Think I pretty much slept in clothes... ready to head her outside on leash at specific times... as soon as she woke up, as soon as she finished eating, as soon as she showed signs of looking for a "place"!?! She was pretty much house broken by the time we moved into house with good sized fenced back yard. BUT she did do some damage to furniture while left alone... wouldn't have happened if crated, but NOBODY did that way back then. Last dog I had figured out how to ESCAPE from crate... that had TWO latches on the door!?!

A dog inbetween 1st and last was a Rottie... candidate for a "buddy"! Took a 350+ mile road-trip from NJ to WV with her to spend some time with sister at her mountain place. She had a lab and the 2 girls got along famously... running, wrestling, wearing each other out. When she slept the ENTIRE 7+ hour drive home, decided she needed a companion to wrook off some of that energy.
 
Posts: 5658 | Location: mount holly, NJ, USA | Registered: Sep 19, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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My DD has a rescue Goldendoodle/Standard Poodle, so he is a BIG clown. He takes dirty dishes and flatware out of the kitchen sink.....just one of his tricks.

They also have a hyper female Jack Russell. The two play fight - it's really neat to watch. If he gets to rough/makes a wrong move she yips and they cool it for awhile.

I'm not saying you should get a playmate for him as you never know how that would work out.

IMO you should put the crate upstairs near you with the door open so he can go in there to chill out.

We were lucky to have a black/golden retriever mix. She was the sweetest thing this side of heaven - always wanted to please. She instinctively played frisbee. She was one in a million.
 
Posts: 5425 | Location: Maryland | Registered: Sep 19, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I agree that the crate should be upstairs and within eyesight of where you are most of the time so that even if you close it up, your puppy can see you. I was one of those people who thought crates were cruel until I saw how my mother's cockapoo took to hers. That doggy took full possession and woe unto anyone who even put their hand on her "house".
 
Posts: 3502 | Location: Louisiana | Registered: Jan 15, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't understand crating a dog while you are home. A brand new puppy may have accidents but a 8 month old dog should know how to go outside. As for leaving a dog outside that I really can't understand at all. Dogs are members of the family and need human companionship. The only way to train a dog to be a companion, is to take time to train it how to behave. The only time that we have used crates is when we are away for a few hours and the dogs were new to our home or when we had new puppies that needed to be confined to prevent frequent accidents at night.
 
Posts: 3233 | Location: Ohio | Registered: Feb 25, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We have a barking "all the time" dog across the channel. I work from home, so the bark is more like a hound style prolonged sound THAT DRIVES ME BONKERS so I called our vet who says...that dog is bored. I feel like writing the guy a nice registered letter. I know they both work, but they do leave the dog out all the time except night.

I don't want them to like say well let's take him to the pound. If I don't hear the barking then I am going to worry! So a bit perplexed about what to do or say.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
 
Posts: 9287 | Registered: Aug 14, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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What does that have to do with the original post? Or any of the follow ups?
 
Posts: 7226 | Location: North MN & Northern AR | Registered: Oct 01, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Well hey MeTwo..Merry Christmas!

OP is talking about barking dog problem...if you
re-read her original post.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: real estate lady,
 
Posts: 9287 | Registered: Aug 14, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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We've had 3 labs over the years. The happiest and most well-behaved was the one that got the special obedience training - not at the pet store, but with a real trainer. And spent a lot of time at the dog park so he could run off leash and interact with other furry friends. The other two we had at a time when we were unable to provide all those extra perks and they were both harder to handle at home.
 
Posts: 10 | Registered: Jan 10, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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