Cocker Specific Discussion > Puppies

Help with puppy problems

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Hi I have came here to see if anyone can offer me some advice. In January we picked up our 9 week old cocker spaniel puppy, who is half show half working. Since we picked him up we have struggled quite a bit with a few things.
The worst one is that Our pup is very, very bitey, he is now 23 weeks old and has episodes where he will jump up onto the sofa and just try to bite into my arm, when I get him off the sofa he will lunge at me trying to jump onto me and he will be trying to get a hold of my legs and sometimes he will even be barking at me. I am embarrassed to say that there has been a few times where I have felt afraid of him as he almost seems out of control. When I get up to leave he will follow biting me as I go. He does this with my partner but Is much worse with me when Iím on my own with him - he never barks or anything at him.
The second problem is barking - he has been very barky since we brought him home, he used to bark at us for food and attention although this has subsided a lot as we ignored it. But he barks at other dogs on walks, it started out as him barking back at dogs who barked at him first, but in recent weeks he is initiating the barking and will continue to do it - he also wonít walk on if another dog is behind him. We took him to puppy classes where he basically barked non stop the entire time despite no other dogs barking. He also has occasionally barked at families with young children and no dog, he barked at a scooter and twice when we took him to the local market he barked at a man playing live music- all of this makes me worried that he is going to be a reactive or unfriendly dog- I felt we socialised him well but now I am unsure :( Everyone I speak to about it canít believe that a 5 month old pup is barking at other dogs and call him Ďballsyí which just makes me more worried! :( has anyone else experienced this? Or could it be a sign he wasnít socialised well enough?
He also has problems being left alone and will cry and sometimes bark when I go upstairs without him.
We waited a long time and did a lot of research before getting our puppy and he can be so sweet and loving - I just feel as though he is way more chaotic and badly behaved than any other puppy I know and itís making me very worried about how he is going to grow up :(

Hi and welcome to COL

Biting sounds normal and he will grow out of it, they tend to get worse at this stage when they are tired
not sure if my link will work but look in the puppy section on here at the pinned posts

As for the barking I have no advice but someone will be along soon I hope - also search the forum for other posts regarding barking and biting and read some of the fantastic helpful advice replies

Wishing you all the best with your pup

Lobo do Mar:
Seems almost a bitey and feral appearing (but he was not really) as Salty was :)
What I had wished I could have worked out earlier was using a 1.5m house line (i.e piece of rope as a lead) that trailed around after him and allowed me to get him and quickly get in control

Iíll try to be brief!  Bob was difficult to say the least. First puppy class he didnít like the hall or dogs and  barked his head off till the trainer told me he was shy and anxious. Tipping over a trestle table told us to stay behind it. Bob  would be nosey enough to peep out and watch. He did, and three weeks later was star pupil.   He still had other issues like guarding.
Cockers are very clever but many are over sensitive.  All they can react with is barking and fear aggression.  I think you need to be careful not to escalate your situation.  House line is a great idea for moving him away. More important is distracting him with treats or a game to call him down without upsetting him.  Time out behind a baby gate for a couple minutes is useful.
Workers are very excitable and need to let off steam outside regularly.  Thatís why they were bred for working. Bored dogs make up their own games. He thinks the bitey games are fun.  Barking is a confused dog.
He may benefit from  more training game sessions inside and in the garden.
Youíre right to talk about it with us,  many of us have experienced difficulties which is what the forum is for.   Donít hesitate to have a reputable behaviourist visit you.   If you have a private trainer once a month , it works out the same as going to a class weekly., when you wonít get individual help.
What helped with my current terrier  rescue,  was to hang around on  park  benches,  not interacting with anything, ie., no stress.   With Bob at his worst,  it was no eye contact with other strange dogs or people.
Yours is still a baby,  and super quick to learn.  Get his brain doing what you want ,and what he enjoys. Itís hard work but ultimately very rewarding , and a closer respect and love with both of you.

Watching Dogs behaving very badly on the tv last night and the lovely trainer there had  a bitey dog to deal with, and what he did was have the dog on a lead , but when dog started biting put dog in next room behind a closed door, when the dog settled he let him back in.. pup very soon learnt.. we still have to do something similar with 12 year old bramble.. when she is noisy/ demanding for food etc.. we put her behind a baby gate .. only for 10- 15 secs and when she is quiet/calm let het back in.. it works..


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