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Differance between play and dominance?

Discussion in 'Pit Bull Puppy Discussions' started by AJS, Mar 1, 2019.

  1. AJS

    AJS Puppy

    I rescued my puppy at 8 weeks old. She is 10 weeks now. Her name is Arya. She seems to be a wonderful puppy, she clickered trained basic commands in a breeze, and I work with her several times a day in short sessions. She cuddles and gives kisses, very calm and affectionate. If she greets new people she is happy while doing so. Great at the vet. Doesnt seem to be afraid of load noises or new places and is great in the car. She is basically potty trained at this point. She loves her training sessions and is very good during them. However I am confused about conflicting information on the internet regarding growling and biting. So, out of no where she starts growling and biting (maybe its not out of nowhere and I simply dont understand) so, times when it happens: if she is being moved, or sometimes (rarely; picked up), and if she is being calmly petted, during play she seems to switch gears as well. The two men in the house are now afraid to pet her because she might start growling and biting them, I said only pet her gently and a little at a time to avoid behavior from starting and that seemed to work with them. But, now they dont want to play with her at all. Oh, I want to mention: no rough play is being used at all. She can be licking your hands all calm and then start growling and biting you. I have played with puppies and trained before but her growl seems more serious. So, I started searching the web and WOW: its either let her bite you and say ouch and she’ll stop and bite softer over time, (0nly she doesnt stop and doesnt let go - if I let it go that far), or it suggested to hold her down and force pack leader over her, and I dont know which is correct or what to do or if I’m simply over reacting. Several sites say growling and biting in puppies is 100% normal and several say stop it right away, by doing things like shoving your hand down their throat (im not going to try that one, that seems cruel), then if they ask what kind of dog and you mention pitbull suddendly my puppy is a demon. I am hoping I can get some practicle advice from people who love and raise pitbull puppies so I can develope a good puppy. She is scduled to start puppy classes in a few days. Thank you to anyone that can help me on the right path :)
  2. oldman

    oldman Little Dog

    All normal healthy puppies will growl and play with you. Sounds like she was taken from her mother a little too soon. She just don't know how to play yet. I would never hold a puppy down or shove my hand down her throat. You have had for for only two weeks. She is just getting to know and trust you. Give her plenty of toys to play with.
    I don't know what to say about two men who are afraid of a 10 week old puppy.
    It probably would be better to let someone else take the puppy. If a 10 week old pup scares the owners just imagine what a year old would do to them.
  3. RichJack

    RichJack Puppy

    These are high energy dogs...always want to play. Even when you think they're calm they'll look for an opportunity to play, kinda goes for most puppies anyways. So when you think that its calm and just lounging and waiting for you just want to pet it or whatever, its actually just waiting for you to reach out so it can "attack" and play with you. Your pup wont know what the limits of rough play are unless you teach them and that will take some time. Dog is growling and nibbling (biting)...you probably wont get rid of the growls but you should train your dog what the limits are when it comes to biting.

    Do not shove your hand down its throat.
    Here is what I did. When we played and the dog would bite my hand, Id yell out "ouch", turn my back on her, freeze and completely not pay any attention to her for a min or two. The pup quickly learned that biting turns off the fun. Didnt even take long for that.
  4. Michele

    Michele Chi Super Dog Administrator

    Please Do NOT shove your hand down the dog's throat. If the pup's playing gets out of hand (biting, nipping, etc.) give a NO and walk away for a bit. Be consistent and the pup will learn.
  5. AJS

    AJS Puppy

    I wrote:(I'm not going to try that one, that seems cruel), ----and I have never done that to a puppy, nor would I. I clicker train, everything I do is positive. I was just saying when I googled info that is what comes up, along with pen the dog to the ground, and a few other messed up things. I guess I worded something wrong, I just wanted advice different from the internet. I thought I typed that the dog is happy, calm, and very sweet, I wanted to make clear I thought she was a great dog, but I guess I messed that up somehow. I wrote one line that perhaps needs clarification: The men in the house are not afraid of her, afraid was a very poor choice in words, I fixed the problem so they can pet her and I did mention that in my first post, but they are worried about playing with her and that bothers me as I want them to be able to enjoy her. They just don't understand the growling and biting so are nervous about playing and I don't know how to direct them. They see me play with her, and I have zero problems playing with her but they are saying her growls and bites are intense, and I admit they are more intense then the other puppies I have had, but I am playing with her with no problem, and so I went in search on the web and the answers seemed crazy. So, I joined a forum to get some help to make sure I am doing the right thing. I admit I don't have the best english (sorry about that), but I wrote a lot of good things about this puppy, she really is amazing. When she meets children, or strangers she is sweet as can be. She plays fine with me, but when playing with the two men she seems intense, so they are not playing with her. I just want to make sure I am doing the right things. Most of the advice was all top notch though, and very helpful. Aside from give the puppy away lol but otherwise the advice is really good. I wish I wrote my question a tad better I guess. At least I know everything is fine and to just keep switching up her toys. She is my dog, not theirs, but I admit I don't want them to be leery about playing with her. Even though I apperently confused people, I did get great answers, thank you :)
    Milo13 and Michele like this.
  6. Art Mercado

    Art Mercado Puppy

    Agree with Richjack mine bites soft but her teeth are sharp so when it hurts I yell ahh and walk away or if we're on the bed I put her down

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