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From: ellie (
Subject:         amen to all that Callie said and...
Date: November 7, 2008 at 6:57 am PST

In Reply to: Stopping Howling! posted by Stacey on November 6, 2008 at 8:20 am:

Callie and I both rescue - and we've both had plenty of fearful and anxious little newbies in our houses. Yes, your pup needs to be in the room with you; he will smell "quiet sleeping human" smells (yes, humans do give off a sort of calm pheromone when they are relaxed and/or sleeping that dogs pick up, and know that all's well and the pack's in the den together and he can relax too)and hear you breathe and he will become generally calmer and bond to you easier.

You have a toddler, which is a wondrous time of development but it also means you have two little exploring beings who don't know what "careful" means. I STRONGLY recommend keeping your pup on a leash clipped to your belt loop for the first couple weeks, then let him drag the leash in the house for a couple more. You will have lots more control to know what he's up to, and to grab hold for a quick redirection if needed. Never ever ever should dog and child be left together unattended.Never. Not for a second.
Give puppy lots of positive attention and even a treat when the baby comes into view. You want pup to learn that baby is a very very very very good thing.
Google on "nothing in life is free" dog training. You will get lots of stuff on how to help your dog understand how to please you, what his place is in his new pack, and how to adjust as a happy and well mannered dog. It's totally non-punitive. It's simply using dog norms for communicating expectations of behavior. He will understand it and you will not have to make yourself nuts solving problems later.
You might want to check out a book that I give as part of every dog adoption I do: it's called Second Hand Dog, by Carol Lea Benjamin. It's short, inexpensive (you can find used copies on amazon), and a gold mine of information about how to help your new dog "unpack the baggage" of his earlier experiences and become a truly excellent family pet. Dogs, like all of us, behave in certain ways for reasons. Sometimes we are only guessing at the reasons, but the more we understand, the more we "translate" what the dog is trying to tell us, the easier it is to solve the problems and enjoy our pets. SInce 6 months is also usually the start of puppy's teenage period, you might also look at Carol Lea Benjamins' book "Surviving Your Dog's Adolescence". excellent. also very clear and easy to use.

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