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Old 11-26-2012, 06:33 PM
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Pearl is two years old. She has been a challenge since she arrived at our home. Of course she was the typical puppy doing things that puppies do. But around the five month mark things began to change. I noticed one day while putting a sweater on her that she growled at me. I spoke to her in a firm voice and told her “no”! My guess is she was testing her boundaries. We had several issues after that including a biting incident. My Mom went to kiss Pearl on the head and Pearl bit Mom in the lip, drawing blood. That day I was ready to give up and return her to the breeder. But after much prayer and patience, we kept her. I started a vigorous routine of exercise and training. We attended a local k-9 school and Pearl graduated with honors. Pearl mastered all the basics like come, sit, etc., as well as some advanced commands.

Here is the problem. Pearl has very little affection towards humans. Now don’t get me wrong, she is not mean in any way. She simply does not snuggle or want to be constantly near humans. The only time that she wants to be held is when there is food involved. She will come to me when called and we are going somewhere. And she will interact well when playing. But she is in no way clingy. I often say to my Husband that Pearl runs on pure dog instinct.

Do you think there was a lack of human contact at the breeder? Do you think this is just her nature? Do any of you have a dog with this personality?
We love Pearl unconditionally. And she is treated like a queen in our household. She has never been disciplined with the hand or any other object for that matter. Hubby says he loves her just as she is. And I do too, but sometimes I feel cheated in the breed standard of affectionate dog.
Lastly, do you have suggestions that would help Pearl to become a more loving dog?
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Old 11-26-2012, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PearlyQ View Post
Pearl is two years old. She has been a challenge since she arrived at our home. Of course she was the typical puppy doing things that puppies do. But around the five month mark things began to change. I noticed one day while putting a sweater on her that she growled at me. I spoke to her in a firm voice and told her “no”! My guess is she was testing her boundaries. We had several issues after that including a biting incident. My Mom went to kiss Pearl on the head and Pearl bit Mom in the lip, drawing blood. That day I was ready to give up and return her to the breeder. But after much prayer and patience, we kept her. I started a vigorous routine of exercise and training. We attended a local k-9 school and Pearl graduated with honors. Pearl mastered all the basics like come, sit, etc., as well as some advanced commands.

Here is the problem. Pearl has very little affection towards humans. Now don’t get me wrong, she is not mean in any way. She simply does not snuggle or want to be constantly near humans. The only time that she wants to be held is when there is food involved. She will come to me when called and we are going somewhere. And she will interact well when playing. But she is in no way clingy. I often say to my Husband that Pearl runs on pure dog instinct.

Do you think there was a lack of human contact at the breeder? Do you think this is just her nature? Do any of you have a dog with this personality?
We love Pearl unconditionally. And she is treated like a queen in our household. She has never been disciplined with the hand or any other object for that matter. Hubby says he loves her just as she is. And I do too, but sometimes I feel cheated in the breed standard of affectionate dog.
Lastly, do you have suggestions that would help Pearl to become a more loving dog?
Wowee this sounds familiar! Honey sounds exactly like Pearl - even down to the biting incidents! She bit my friend when they were having a cuddle!

Honey has constantly tested the boundaries and still does! Like Pearl, she has mastered all the commands, we do daily training which she excels at. We are working on her hatred of strangers and dogs at the moment lol!

Honey would much rather lie on her own in her crate or on the floor than sit with me. She will come when called, but would much rather be playing on the floor, or chewing something on the chair!

When she slept in bed with me, she slept right up against me, which is kind of cuddling! Shes now in her crate though as she was too wriggly!

She will have a kind of cuddle now, but i feel like she is trying to get away lol. I turned it into a bit of training - gradually extending the periods of time i held her, treating at longer intervals etc.

I often think she wasnt handled much at the breeders, after being on this site, there were a hell of a lot of things i now know they could have done better!

Sometimes i wish that Honey would fall asleep on my chest, or keep me warm on the sofa, but if shes happy on the floor or on the chair by herself, thats fine. When i am busy, i am grateful for not having a clingy chi! x
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Old 11-26-2012, 08:05 PM
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You just described my Fox Terrier. She is just like that. I belived it is part of a dogs personalty, not the breed, or the way their humans are, just the way she is. My Pug is very clingy. Haven't decided about Ike yet he is still a baby and needs us, but I can see a little independence in him. Time will tell.
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Old 11-27-2012, 03:59 AM
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Chemistry between dogs and humans can be as frustratingly mysterious as that between humans and humans. My parents found the doggy love of their life in a Cairn terrier they soon lost to cancer. They tried to rescue another, but he resisted all their efforts to love him, and only thrived when returned to the foster family that was extremely reluctant to give him up in the first place. I was absolutely NOT looking for a little chihuahua girl, but Butterbean stole my heart, and returns my love, and I can't imagine relating to another dog in quite this way. If I lost her tomorrow, I wouldn't try to get another chi. I would, after mourning her, try to find another dog that could steal my heart in their own way, and whose love I could return in mine.
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:24 AM
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Some dogs are just not cuddly affection showing dogs, but they are still perfectly happy. One book that really opened my mind about dogs showing affection and their personality and such is called "for the Love of A Dog" by Patricia McConnell PhD. I think she is a pretty amazing behaviorist who unlike a lot of dog trainers bases her books on actual research and published papers about dogs and primates and how they relate to each other. It can be a little "sciencey" in parts but I bet it would give you a lot of insight into Pearl. She has another great book called "The Other End of the Leash" you might enjoy too, but I think the first one applies more to your question.
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Old 11-27-2012, 04:25 AM
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That must be pretty difficult for you. Both of mine are clingy and affectionate. They follow me around, sit on my knee, fall asleep on my chest. Mylo will go and sleep on his bed if he can't get comfortable or sometimes doesn't want to cuddle but they're both pretty affectionate really. I know that both were handled a lot at their breeders, particularly by children.

As Rachel said though, it can become annoying when you want to do something and they insist on sitting on your chest. Mylo will sit on my arm when drawing or he'll jump up in my chest with a cow's ear or hoof or something in his mouth and smack me in the face with it!
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Old 11-27-2012, 06:47 AM
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I can see how that would be disappointing to have your dog prefer to be elsewhere than cuddly. It is mostly, I think, her nature. Just like people..many are affectionate and many do not like to be handled and touched. I know a lot of mothers who are dissapointed that their children have grown and if you reach over for a hug, "used to be" affectionate children cringe and grimace. It is hurtful.

My chi is a mixture of both. She wants to be picked up etc, especially if it has to do with food. There are times when I am trying to work and she will come up to me and paw at me to pick her up. She is a larger chi so its hard for me to hold her and type at the same time. Sometimes it gets annoying, especially if I have a deadline, but I do appreciate her wanting to be with me.

Having something so cute not wanting to do the things that come naturally to us, like cuddle, sit with us etc, is difficult, but you cant force it if its not in her nature. I do not think it has anything to do with her breeding or the way she was raised.

I think that your interacting with her and playing is all that she needs from you, and that is her way of giving affection. Im not sure there would be ways to make her more affectionate physically other to maybe put food on you for her to give you kisses..
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:16 AM
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I think that some dogs just aren't cuddly. Angel will take any lap, anytime! But he isn't what I would call "sweet" - but we love him anyway!

I know what you mean, though. Everyone seems to have a sweet, loving chi! I have noticed that with Angel, he is getting better with age. Maybe just a little more time.
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