Stealing to initiate play/for attention

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Stealing to initiate play/for attention

Postby MiaMoo » 27 Feb 2014, 13:39

Hi - I have a 5 month old Labrador /Collie cross who was rehomed to us three weeks ago. She has a good temperament and is gentle and clever. Training has commenced (house training just about sorted now) and we have joined a dog training group which is great.

My main problem is that, despite lots of exercise she has short bursts of very energetic behaviour in the house which include the usual stealing items to try to initiate a game and barking and nipping at heels. I want her to learn that she cannot bark and nip at ankles to get attention. I have tried ignoring her which works until she gets really excited and then the barking and nipping start. I have tried swapping stolen articles with toys but she is not interested – the object of the exercise is to get someone to play with her. I even tried the water pistol approach but that worked for a couple of days then that became a game too.

I want my dog to play but when I say so. The stealing etc. is a fixable problem but the barking and nipping is not acceptable and she does not listen to commands when she is in this mood.

BTW she has a large enclosed space outside which she has access to and we also have a large enclosed garden in which we can play. We walk first thing in the morning and late in the afternoon plus extra play at various points in between.

I am open to ideas!
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