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Thread: Help with a dog problem!

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    FORT Fogey Lil Bit's Avatar
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    Help with a dog problem!

    I'm hoping someone has some suggestions for me. This spring we got a new puppy. She's a Yellow Lab and she's a beautiful, good natured, playful puppy. She's 4 months old and loves to chew on everything. We have a fenced in kennel area for her with a dog house, but I like to let her out during the day so she can run and get some exercise. We live in the country, so that's ok. The problem is, she keeps chewing on my flowers and bushes. She tore one of my newly planted rose bushes right out of the ground and ripped the top off another new bush. I don't want to keep her in her kennel all the time, because she loves running loose but I'm afraid she might eat some bush that's poisonous or something. So does anyone know of anything that can be sprayed or sprinkled around to keep dogs away? Something that won't hurt the plants or the dog?
    Thanks!!
    When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down "Happy." They told me I didn't understand the assignment. I told them they didn't understand life. - John Lennon

  2. #2
    COMBAT MISSIONS junkie! BravoFan's Avatar
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    I've heard about something like that that keeps cats away (I'm sorry I can't think of the name), but that makes me think that there would definitely be something for dogs too.

    If you don't get an answer here, what I'd do is call your vet and ask them for suggestions. I think they'd definitely know, plus you'd be sure they would give you something that is safe for the pooch.
    "They can only edit what you give them. They cannot manufacture a fictional character out of thin air." (Bill Rancic - 4/04)
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    FORTfruity applesauce's Avatar
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    Check out the garden center. They sell dog and cat repellant that can be sprinkled aroung lawns and gardens to prevent digging and urinating. I hate using non organic chemicals in my yard but when we moved into our house, we discovered all the neighborhood cats (about 15 of them) had been using our back yard as their litter box for many years. We tried everything but ultimately had no choice because we were picking up a disgusting amount of cat droppings every day. We couldn't even walk across our lawn. We had to sprinkle stuff out every few days but they eventually stopped coming around. I believe there is stuff just for dogs too. Just read the labels carefully to be clear on what you are using.

    I am sure your vet might have some suggestions on safe product to use. you might also want to have a landscaper come out for a consultation to pull out and plants that might be really harmful. We had to pull out several for our kids sake.

    Good Luck with puppy!

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    Hockey is life! EvaLaruefan's Avatar
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    Even a local pet shop should be able to help you with that. I have 2 dogs and worked in a pet shop for 4 years and we sold repellent for that. There should be something good for the garden and the dog that you can use.

    Goodluck!

  5. #5
    FORT Fogey Salome's Avatar
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    I concur. Sour Apple is what I used. It's a miracle worker, and you can find it at almost any pet store. Just don't cry as you watch your poor puppy's reaction to the nasty taste. I almost did.

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    FORT Fogey joeguy's Avatar
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    four bonzai trees, and a very nice flower plot/garden lost to puppies, after about a year they stop, plus it helps to have a play toy they love out there with them and also you be ther to play with them. bored puppies are the new gardeners of a house....

  7. #7
    FORT Fogey
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    Puppies are like babies, they learn about new things by using their best developed sense - which at this point of developement is their mouth/taste, combined with their sense of smell. So expect the puppy to put anything and everything in its mouth for a while yet.

    They do make a number of humane training sprays to keep pets off of furniture, out of the garden etc. But its best to just try and train your puppy to obey YOUR command of "no" when it strays in an area its not supposed to and all other reasons you say "no".

    The other thing is dont get too fancy when speaking to the dog. I see people all the time saying long and drawn out sentences when trying to train a puppy. Best to stick with "no", "down", "hush" and plenty of "good boy/girl". Definately praise accomplishment and use one word phrases to train.

    As someone else mentioned its a good idea to keep a toy nearby. I am a firm believer in not having too many toys for your puppy either. The more toys, the more dilluted its perception will be of what is a toy and what isnt.

    A good hard rubber or plastic chew toy (the even make flavored ones) will last a good long time. The puppy will continue to chew on things until its baby teeth fall out and until its gums harden.

    Another good cheap toy is a calves hoof. They are usually found at pet stores. Its an actual, hollowed-out calves hoof (left over from rendering plants) and they cost about .75 cents each or a $1. They last a long time and keep the puppy occupied for hours. The only draw-back is that they tend to smell a bit.

  8. #8
    The new me! Feifer's Avatar
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    When my dog Murphy(Yellow Lab/Terrier mix)was a puppy he had a bad chewing problem. We bought him three toys just for him and everything else was off limits. If he chewed anything else I thumped him on the nose and then handed him one of his toys. He always wanted to chew on my hands too and I would say "OW!" really loud. This stopped him quickly. Eventually he knew his toys by name. I could say where's your baby/ring/ball and he would run and get the exact toy almost every time.

    My dog loved to run outside and we would open the back door and tell him to "go be a good boy". He would take care of his business quickly because he knew we would play afterward. We would let him run in the front yard after a frisby.

    My best hint for chewing is never play with something with the dog unless it is his toy to ruin at will. My husband(then boyfriend) tried my glasses on Murphy as a joke. When I want to bed I took my glasses off and set them on the bedside table. Through the night the dog ate them. Good thing I had a second pair.
    It occurred to me that no matter how bleak things might seem at times, at least I have a head. ----Stargazer

  9. #9
    FORT Fogey Lil Bit's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the helpful advice. I've been trying to train her not to jump up on people and she seems to be learning. Slowly, but she is making progress, so I suppose I'll have to babysit her while she's loose and let her know what she can chew and what she can't. She has toys but she still loves to chew anything she can get.

    I guess I'll have to get to the pet store and see what they have. I don't think the Sour Apple would be any worse than chewing on a rose bush. Ouch!!

    Thanks again. You guys are great!
    When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down "Happy." They told me I didn't understand the assignment. I told them they didn't understand life. - John Lennon

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    Glad 4 Vlad! :) Tigrazhia's Avatar
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    Just remember to praise, praise, praise. Your dog aims to please you, so when you catch him chewing on your plant, fuzz at him a little then give him the toy, then when he starts chewing the toy praise him a LOT & give him pets to reinforce that what he's doing is right.

    Also, my dog was into eating dirt & flowers for awhile which gave me the idea that she was lacking something in her diet. So I started giving her vitamins & the eating of plants seems to have stopped. (She still does occasionally but not nearly as much as it used to be. :-))

    Good luck with the puppy, if you ever have any questions about dog training, feel free to PM me as I'm a dog trainer (on the side for now, pondering on starting own dog training school sometime in the future:-) Anything to help dog & owner get along :-))
    "He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how."

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