Sheepadoodles are very playful and friendly dogs. However, you don't want them to be so friendly that they are constantly jumping up and nipping at people. It's easiest to nip these habits in the bud when your puppy is young. But Sheepadoodles are so smart that even older dogs can be taught to break these habits as well.
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Chewing on Objects
Chewing on your household items can cause a lot of distress. There are some simple ways to prevent this. First, remember that a Sheepadoodle is very intelligent, but you must have realistic expectations. Your puppy cannot have free reign of the house and be expected to not chew on forbidden objects. Puppies are teething and have a need to chew. They do not innately know that shoes and other objects are not to be chewed on. This is a lesson that you must teach by doing the following:
- Prevention is key! Chewing is usually the result of boredom and too much energy. Try to make sure that your dog is getting regular and adequate exercise. Then make sure that you keep an eye on your puppy when you are home and she is wandering the house. Make sure that shoes, toys and other intriguing objects are put away. When you leave your puppy at home alone, make sure she is in her crate or in a restricted area and give her a bone or toy of her own to chew on.
- When you leave your puppy home alone make sure that your departure and arrivals are calm and quiet. Sheepadoodles can experience separation anxiety and if you make a fuss over your puppy when you come and go this can increase her anxiety and her need to chew. Putting on some soothing music in the background could help keep your puppy calm and less lonely while you are away.
- If your puppy does chew a forbidden object, remember that you need to catch her in the act so that she will understand. You can even set up a tempting scenario for her while you are in the room. Place a shoe by her or whatever tempting object you have out and her bone. Watch her nonchalantly and if she puts her mouth on the shoe tell her "no" and take it away and give her her bone. Repeat this a few times with her. Remember to be consistent and repeat daily.
- Try to give her objects to chew that are different from the forbidden objects. Don't give her one of your old shoes to chew on if you don't want her chewing on your new shoes. This would be really difficult for her to distinguish between the acceptable and forbidden shoes. Buy her bones, KONG toys, rawhide, whatever it is she likes that is very different from objects in your home. Sheepadoodle puppies tend to prefer objects that are a bit softer to chew like lamb and cow ears, beef tendons and beef tripe twists.
- Spray objects, baseboards, walls, etc. with Bitter Apple Spray. This is successful for most dogs. Test the spray first to make sure it won't damage your target object first, but it should be totally harmless and just repel your dog from continuing to chew it. Reapply often and follow directions on the bottle. Remember to always have some of her favorite chew objects on hand to give her when she feels the need to chew.
Jumping up to greet people is a very natural puppy habit, but it is also very annoying and can even be scary for some people and children. It is best to break this habit before your puppy gets too old and start with good manners right away. Consistency is key to breaking this habit and that means that there are no exceptions, don't allow your puppy to jump up on you and not other people because this will confuse her and make it more difficult to train. Make sure that she will not be allowed to jump up on any person. Here are a few good options to teach your puppy to not jump on people.
- When your puppy is about to jump up stick your hand out so that her head hits your hand. She will not like this unpleasant experience and it will help her stay down or even to sit. This will help her eventually stop jumping and learn to greet you and others by sitting.
- When your puppy jumps you can grab her front paws and calmly hold them. Tell her "no" and hold her paws until she starts to get wiggly and uncomfortable then hold on for a few more seconds. Put her paws down and make her sit. After several times of this she will start to understand that she is to sit instead of jump when greeting you.
- If she is jumping up when visitors arrive, make sure to put her on her leash before your visitor comes. Greet the visitor with her on a leash and ask them to stoop down to calmly greet the puppy. Have your puppy sit while being greeted. This method will also reinforce that she needs to sit when greeting people.
Nipping at Your Hands
This is a bad habit and can be especially scary for children. It can even break skin and the older they get the worse it will get. As said before, remember that your puppy has a very short attention span, so it is important that she receives a consequence for her actions in the moment they are committed. There are a few methods you can use to break this habit. Pet your puppy and when she starts to bite at your hands. . .
- Place one hand around her muzzle and keep it tightly shut (not too tight, you don't want to hurt her) and put your other hand around her rear and scoop her up so that she is between your legs and can't get free. Tell her a firm "no". Repeat this 3 or 4 times in a row so that she starts to understand. Be consistent and repeat it whenever she nips again.
- You can also squeeze a bit of lemon juice into her mouth if you have some handy. This will give her a disagreeable consequence for her actions.
- Possibly the most effective consequence is to give your puppy a 30 second time out. Prepare a room that is "puppy proof" where tempting objects are put away and there aren't any toys or food for her. When she bites too hard or bites a child simply pick up the puppy and say "too hard" or "time out" whatever phrase you'd like to use consistently and place her in the room with the door shut for 30 seconds. Then let her out and try again. You'll need to repeat this many times. If she won't stop biting then you can crate her or send her outside until she settles down.