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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 18946
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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My french bulldog is 6 months old has started barking and

Customer Question

My french bulldog is 6 months old has started barking and almost growling, snapping when I tell him no to getting on an end table etc. Seems to do this when I tell him more than once "No" or "get down"
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 10 months ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

Your husband probbably contributed to the problem but your dog is also at the age where he is going to be feeling like he could make up his own mind over what he can do and not do. So if you don't want him on the table but he thinks he should be on there, he may growl or nip at you to stop you from trying to make him get down. Even if it is him trying to illicit play by barking, and biting, he is still not listening and it will likely only get worse as he gets older.

To correct it you are gong to need to do some extensive obedience training. He needs to see you and your husband as the boss. Obedience training will accomplish that and will also teach him commands and help him become a well rounded obedience dog. Classes are nice to finish training and some dogs do well with them even without prior training but usually I recommend group classes once your dog already knows some commands though they are great for socializing a puppy. The following site is helpful in helping owners train their dog. Be sure and click on the link to the page on obedience at the bottom. and links on subsequent pages leading to detailed instructions.

http://www.schutzhund-training.com/training_theory.html

Training works best if you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below.

http://www.pets.ca/articles/article-dog_nilf.htm

http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/dogs/tips/training_nothing_in_life_is_free.html

In addition, keep him off the furniture all together initially. Dogs that are allowed on furniture (even if put on the furniture) tend to feel that since they are elevated to your level or higher if on your lap, they mentally feel elevated as well in the pack order and thus are the boss. Keeping them on the floor can help lower them mentally back to a submissive position in the pack. So the first thing is to not allow him higher that the humans or even on the same level. Attach a leash and use it to remove him from the furniture. Give a correction in the form of a short tug to get his attention and firm "NO" when he attempts to get on and a treat when he starts not trying to get on the furniture. Thus you are providing negative reinforcement for the getting on the furniture and positive reinforcement for the desired behavior (not attempting to get on the furniture).

After he is trained, you can allow him on the furinture only after he has performed a command and you invite him up, but he also must obey you when you tell him to get down as well and he should not be allowed to make the decision on when he can get up or get down.

It will be helpful if you can find hiim a playmate as well. It should be a female dog close to his age and they shold be introduced away from your home. that way he will be more inclined to play when they do come to your home/yard. A playmate will allow him to get excess energy out and lots of exercise and playing. A tired dog is a good dog so walks that are brisk will also help tire him out.

These things should help stop his behavior and make him a better adult dogs as well.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer so I am compensated for my time.

If you have questions in the future that you wish me to answer, you may click here and bookmark the page or make it a favorite. It is best to put my name "JANE" in the question as well.

Since there have been recalls on certain foods, please check the following site to be sure the food your animals eat is not affected. If it is affected, contact your vet as soon as possible. Have your dog seen if they have any symptoms.

http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/RecallsWithdrawals/

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