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scargosun 03-21-2008 12:09 PM

Lab Mix Acting Out
Hi! Very new to formus. We have a lab mix named Grace. She is a rescue we adopted last June. She is a sweet dog and it took some time for her to settle but she seems a bit TOO comfy now. My husband and I both work and he used to be able to take her to work 2 days a week. He had to switch jobs and now he cannot. We used to crate her and I would come home at lunchtime to let her out and play a little. Now, one of us comes home at lunch to do the same. She was fine for the first few weeks but this last week she has started acting out. She pulled some food off a shelf in the kitchen so we started closing the kitchen door and moving her water dish to the bathroom. Yesterday she ate the remote that was on the bed. Today, I forgot to close the kitchen door and she pulled out some packaged food from the pantry. She didn't really even eat it. Exercise, she gets a 45min walk/run in the am and also the same in the pm. She knows commands and will obey them (99% of the time).
What I need to know is, should we just keep 'dog-proofing' or is there something you can tell me to help change her attitude towards us? We've never yelled at her or hit her, just firm tones for negative and rewards with treats and petting.

Any suggestions would be great. We just want her to be happier.

HappyDancer 03-21-2008 01:47 PM

Labs are notorious for getting into things when they are left alone or bored...defiantly doggy proof everything lol cause it will happen again and again...With my old Lab we had to crate her when no one was home because she would destroy everything, not to be mean, but she was just bored...but we walked her for over an hour in the morning and we did 2 hours at night, plus at lunch she was let out by my mom in the back yard with supervision and she played fetch with her to make her tired....

Labs are great dogs, I love them...they do require alot of exercise and they need toys like Kongs, cause they love to work things out...we fill the kong with peanut butter and put it in the freezer adn it keeps my girls busy for like 3 hours lol

Cazsamps 03-21-2008 02:23 PM

I have a black Lab named maggie and she is a total pain for getting into things and stealing food etc! She is only just coming up to 10 months so a lot of it is also puppy stuff lol. To keep her off the worktops i tied some tin cans together and put a tasty treat at one end. When she jumped up to steal the treat the cans came crashing down and frightened the life outta her! (problem solved!!)
As for chewing that really is a lab trait and all i can suggest is doggy proofing! Maggie will chew anything she can get her paws on if she gets bored so a lot of exercise and interaction does help! I personlly shut maggie in the passage with toys and water etc when i leave the house so she cant do anymore damage!!! I do hope you get Grace on the straight and narrow! xx

spacefunk 03-22-2008 12:02 AM

Boredom Basket
I had the same problem with my Catahoula when she was about 8-12 months. Get a box or basket ,fairly large and fill it with toys. Show your dog where it is and also let her know that "stuff" in the basket is hers. When you leave the house toss in a few treats or snacks in to the toy box (hiding a bone or piece of bacon on the bottom works well) this is the "go to" basket when she is bored. Worked like a charm for my pup...who tore up a whole coach when i was at the store. Now every once in awhile I come home to one of the toys "de-stuffed" on the floor. Its important that when you are home and as you see her getting bored to show and go over to the "Boredom Basket" and play. Hope this did for me. :talk:

scargosun 03-23-2008 10:02 AM

Thanks for all your suggestions! I am sure they will help us get back on track.

spacefunk 04-03-2008 12:17 AM

How is it going?
Just wondering if your Lab is still being naughty?

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