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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey everyone I'm the new proud owner of a tiny 8 week old chi male. I have just learned that my guy is too young but unfortunately I wasn't smart and didn't research as much as I should have before. I have him now though so now I'll quit rambling and get with the questions :)

1. I want to sleep with my chi eventually, however I am a med student so I want him trained so that he is comfortable in his kennel during the day. I want him to be quiet when I'm gone at class as I live in an apartment so he can't be barking. Question is would sleeping with him now make leaving him in his kennel during the day harder? I come home every 2 hours to potty him, play, and feed him I'm just worried about him making noise. I have left him in his crate for the past two nights, giving him potty break every three hours however he whined both nights from 11 to about 4 am.... Sometimes his whines would get VERY loud. However his first night home he slept with me and didn't make a peep.... So would sleeping with him name make him scream during the day when I leave since he will become " spoiled"

2. Do you recommend flipping puppy on his back when he is naughty to show yourself as " alpha" dog

3. I am fearful of a loud barking dog, what is debarking procedure, and is it cruel/ expensive.

I love this little guy already and will do whatever is best just looking for some info, thanks to all.
 

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Hi! Congrats on your new addition :) I recently adopted a 3 month old chihuahua puppy and I had some of the same concerns as you. Firstly, everyone I spoke to told me to NOT let my puppy sleep in the bed with me! It gives them the sense that they are equal to you and therefore, you will struggle when disciplining or training. It's a better idea to wait until the puppy is a bit older and recognizes that you are in control. The first couple of nights that I put my pup in her crate were rough. She cried and cried, but then it stopped! It's been a couple weeks now with no crying! Eventually I hope to let her sleep with me, but for now this is the best thing for both of us. As for the barking, the more adjusted she gets to her crate, the more comfortable she will feel and probably bark less. If you haven't already, try putting a few toys in the crate to keep him busy. Obviously safe ones that he can't rip up and choke on! I read that barking happens either out of fear/uncertainty or boredom. Maybe the toys will help. I have never tried flipping on the back to establish dominance, but every puppy is different and maybe it will work for you. I have found that a firm NO has been working when disciplining. She is already sitting, staying, fetching, coming when called and potty trained in about a month and a half! She still has the occasional accident here and there, but she has definitely grasped the concept. Good luck! I hope this helps!


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I got my chi at 8 weeks old. A lot of places say 8 weeks is a good time but chi breeders tend to prefer to keep them longer.

1. A lot of people here sleep with their Chis and have no problems with behaviour or discipline. I keep Mylo in a crate next to my bed and he's been wonderful but from what I've read I don't think sleeping with him means he'll be spoiled. He might take longer to get used to the crate because of spending less time in it, I'm not sure. I'd recommend leaving fun toys in there any time you go out. I hide treats around his crate or put a stuffed kong in there or a favourite chew. Make sure he's well exercised and worn out before you put him in there and once he gets used to it you shouldn't have too much trouble. I started off putting him in for short trips so that he knew I was coming back before too long and then built up the time I was away.

2. There are some people that recommend that technique but I don't. Victoria Stilwell says that when you do that a dog shuts down, rather than submits to you and what you do is increase their stress, fear and they see you as a bully to be feared. Either way, I prefer positive techniques.

3. In my opinion debarking is barbaric and cruel. It's illegal in a lot of countries. Dogs won't bark if they're trained properly. All you need to do is research it, bring him up right and you won't have to worry about having a barky dog.
 

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Zeus is almost a year old and I have had him sleeping in bed with me since he was a puppy. And I have had no issues with training him or with him being in his puppy pen. Luna on the other hand, is a much more difficult task. She howls and howls! I think it just depends on the personality of the dog (much like people). Zeus will lie down in the pen with his favorite toy and play and sleep without a fuss (even when he was a small puppy). Luna is the opposite and we are trying to train her that the crate isn't a bad place. When she cries, we ignore her if it isn't something major. Then she gets over it, and lays down eventually.
 

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Welcome. Congratulations! I am a big fan of crate training. In fact, right now Angel is in his crate. We leave the door open and he goes in an out on his own. But, at night or when we go out, we close the door. He also travels in the car in his crate. He is so quiet in there! lol

Melissa is right, it depends on the dog. Each one has their own personality, be it a big dog or a small dog. Angel only cried for two nights, and only for 15 minutes. He didn't need to pee through the night either! He was 9 weeks old when we got him.

I think the most important thing is that he knows who the pack leader is! For some dogs, such as mine, it was a difficult task. It took a long time.

Also, I keep him crated at night and when we are out, because of safety reasons. We have a cat and a golden. They can, unintentionally, hurt him and I wouldn't be there to help. Or, he jump off the couch or the bed and break a leg! A little paranoid - maybe - but I don't want him to get hurt.

Whichever way you chose, will be the right one for you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Awesome thanks to everyone for the suggestions..... As far as the crate training tonight was MUCH better, maybe only 20 min of whining. I will definitely focus own training instead of looking into something such as debarking. Only other thought here now is if flipping on the back isn't best, what would be some positive ways to show my dominance. Also The little rascal follows me literally everywhere, however he seems very "needy", for instance I can't sit down and eat or even read without him jumping at my legs whining to be picked up. He can't stand not being on me for any amount of time, seems almost anxious. I actually enjoy this but don't want him to become spoiled and deal with issue later on down the road so what would be your suggestions about this behavior? Sorry for all the questions I have always been a big dog guy, but with med school I just won't have the time to exercise a big dog properly, so I took a leap and got this guy as my roommate in college had one and he was a great dog. Thanks again!
 

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Awesome thanks to everyone for the suggestions..... As far as the crate training tonight was MUCH better, maybe only 20 min of whining. I will definitely focus own training instead of looking into something such as debarking. Only other thought here now is if flipping on the back isn't best, what would be some positive ways to show my dominance. Also The little rascal follows me literally everywhere, however he seems very "needy", for instance I can't sit down and eat or even read without him jumping at my legs whining to be picked up. He can't stand not being on me for any amount of time, seems almost anxious. I actually enjoy this but don't want him to become spoiled and deal with issue later on down the road so what would be your suggestions about this behavior? Sorry for all the questions I have always been a big dog guy, but with med school I just won't have the time to exercise a big dog properly, so I took a leap and got this guy as my roommate in college had one and he was a great dog. Thanks again!
Congrats on your new little guy! :) Chica, the 2 year old chi we adopted back in April, sleeps in her crate, but the crate is actually on our bed. We cover it with a lightweight blanket, so the draft from our fan doesn't bother her, but we leave one side uncovered for air circulation. At fist we tried letting her sleep in our bed (i.e. not in the crate), but I'm such a light sleeper that every time she moved I woke up. We've found this compromise works well though. She sleeps great (no whining) because she is still sleeping with her "pack" (which is natural for dogs), but we can all get some sleep. So that's something you may want to try.

I too have heard that turning a dog over on their back just makes them stressed, versus teaching them you're dominant. Instead a firm "No!" seems to be all it takes for Chica to know we mean business. Our vet also said that one important way to teach your little guy that you're the alpha/leader is to always be the one that eats first (since, in dog packs, the alpha dog eats before the others). If our schedule is such that we aren't eating shortly before it's time to feed our dogs, I pretend to eat a piece of their food before I set the bowl down. I feel kinda silly, but supposedly in "dog language" who eats first sends a strong message about who's in charge.

As far as your little guy always wanting to be with and on you, that's perfectly normal for chihuahuas. They are one of the most loyal, affectionate dog breeds and all they want is to be with their favorite person or people. It won't spoil him to let him be with you, and it will only strengthen your bond...and, in my experience, a dog who is strongly bonded to you is one that will want to make good choices behavior-wise because he wants to please you.

Sorry for the long reply, just thought I'd share some of my thoughts and experience. We've only had Chica for a few months, but we've been a small dog family for almost a decade now. Again, congrats on your new furry family member! :)
 

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Woops! I forgot one thing (because apparently my rambling reply above wasn't long enough, LOL!). :) If you're worried about your pup barking during the day when you're not there/while crated, one thing that worked wonders for our toy poodle was the Comfort Zone plug-in (available at most pet stores or online at places like Amazon or the cheapset I've found it is at Pet Supplies | Dog & Cat Supplies, Pet Meds | DrsFosterSmith.com Pet Products). It gives off pheremones similar to those a mother dog gives off to calm her puppies and, in clinical trials, it reduced anxious behavior like barking by some 80%! So that's something you could try, if you wanted. It sure worked for us!
 

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Question is would sleeping with him now make leaving him in his kennel during the day harder?
It depends on the individual dog. My observation has been that any whining and crying will generally be short and won't continue after the dog realizes that you aren't coming right back. They'll usually go on to play with toys (or find stuff to get in trouble with you don't supply toys). With the schedule you're working, the pup should quickly get used to you leaving and coming back.

2. Do you recommend flipping puppy on his back when he is naughty to show yourself as " alpha" dog
Are you a dog? Of course not and the pup knows that. Using this kind of training technique is a good way to create a psychologically damaged dog that is shutdown and that may become a fear biter. For training tips, I highly recommend the Kikopup channel on YouTube and see Dr. Sophia Yin's site for more scientific background on dog training.

3. I am fearful of a loud barking dog, what is debarking procedure, and is it cruel/ expensive.
It's cruel and not something that you should ever need to have done to your dog, especially a Chi.
 

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Awesome thanks to everyone for the suggestions..... As far as the crate training tonight was MUCH better, maybe only 20 min of whining. I will definitely focus own training instead of looking into something such as debarking. Only other thought here now is if flipping on the back isn't best, what would be some positive ways to show my dominance. Also The little rascal follows me literally everywhere, however he seems very "needy", for instance I can't sit down and eat or even read without him jumping at my legs whining to be picked up. He can't stand not being on me for any amount of time, seems almost anxious. I actually enjoy this but don't want him to become spoiled and deal with issue later on down the road so what would be your suggestions about this behavior? Sorry for all the questions I have always been a big dog guy, but with med school I just won't have the time to exercise a big dog properly, so I took a leap and got this guy as my roommate in college had one and he was a great dog. Thanks again!
The more he's in the crate the more he'll learn that whining isn't going to get him out of it. Mylo learned to like his crate and doesn't always come out when we open the door. I put Mylo's crate next to my bed and out my hand through the bars. He went to sleep with his head on my hand without a peep. I did that the second night and after that he didn't need me to any more. He also went through the night from 8 weeks. I usually wake up around 5 so I'll take him the toilet then and then go back to sleep. If I don't he'll usually whine to go the toilet around 7 or half 7.

Other ways I've read to show dominance are going through the door first, leading them when you walk (not having them walking ahead), having the highest and comfiest place to sit/sleep. I just find that he knows we're in charge because I tell him 'no' if he's doing something he shouldn't, he only comes on the couch by invitation. I think they're smart and he knows that I provide the food and have the control. I think as much as anything it's the vibes you give off. If you give off calm, confident vibes that you're in control then they'll look to you. If Mylo hears a loud noise that bothers him, he sits up, pricks his ears up and listens, then he looks to me to see if I'm bothered and if I'm not he just carries on with what he's doing.

Chis and puppies do tend to be quite needy just make sure that you don't pick him up or let him on the couch when he is whining or that will reinforce the behaviour. Let him know he can spend time with you, but on your terms. Once you've taught him sit, you can tell him to sit and hopefully he will quieten down and then you can pick him up. After a while they learn to be more independent and get used to you doing things without them.
 

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The more he's in the crate the more he'll learn that whining isn't going to get him out of it. Mylo learned to like his crate and doesn't always come out when we open the door. I put Mylo's crate next to my bed and out my hand through the bars. He went to sleep with his head on my hand without a peep. I did that the second night and after that he didn't need me to any more. He also went through the night from 8 weeks. I usually wake up around 5 so I'll take him the toilet then and then go back to sleep. If I don't he'll usually whine to go the toilet around 7 or half 7.

Other ways I've read to show dominance are going through the door first, leading them when you walk (not having them walking ahead), having the highest and comfiest place to sit/sleep. I just find that he knows we're in charge because I tell him 'no' if he's doing something he shouldn't, he only comes on the couch by invitation. I think they're smart and he knows that I provide the food and have the control. I think as much as anything it's the vibes you give off. If you give off calm, confident vibes that you're in control then they'll look to you. If Mylo hears a loud noise that bothers him, he sits up, pricks his ears up and listens, then he looks to me to see if I'm bothered and if I'm not he just carries on with what he's doing.

Chis and puppies do tend to be quite needy just make sure that you don't pick him up or let him on the couch when he is whining or that will reinforce the behaviour. Let him know he can spend time with you, but on your terms. Once you've taught him sit, you can tell him to sit and hopefully he will quieten down and then you can pick him up. After a while they learn to be more independent and get used to you doing things without them.
I never thought about how I walk into a room followed by my chis that could be them showing me they respect me as the dominant person. Zeus will always look up at me before we go into a room and if I go first, or say "Come on, its okay!" he won't budge! :)
 

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I got my chi Bambi at the age of 4 months and 2 months later I got my puginese Lucie who was only 8 weeks old. The lady who had bred them had developed health problems and actually gave them both to me as she said that she couldn't take money from someone who was going to care for them as much as me!

Bambi automatically slept on the bed with me but when little Lucie arrived she was tiny and not so agile and I was terrified that she'd roll off in the night. I had her little bed by the side of mine but she would only settle for about an hour at a time and then start crying again, especially as she knew that Bambi was with me.
This wasn't doing anyone any good so until I felt that she was ready I slept on a mattress on the floor so that if she did go over the edge it was only a few inches for her to fall.
Result - I could sleep soundly and had 2 very happy pups!
 

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My pups were in a crate until they were reliably potty trained not to pee on the bed. About 4 to 5 months. The crate is on my bed until they are 8 weeks, then by my bed on top of another crate so the dog can see me. After that, they sleep with me. I have three that sleep in open crates, Dellah and Reggie prefer to sleep in them and Twiggy is too small and disabled to sleep on the bed. And chis are bred to be companion dogs, they are loved because they follow their owner everywhere and want to be with them and on them. If you refused to let them, they can get stressed and act out.

And I disagree with rolling a dog let alone a puppy. I never had to teach them I am pack leader, they picked up on it themself. These are very smart dogs and learn things very quickly...except potty traning sometimes. lol

I don't like debarking, though many show dogs are debarked. I use a squirt bottle or make a sharp hissing sound and they have learned, for the most part, not to bark... unless I am out of the room. Then they start barking and end up in a goup howl while I'm in the bathroom. lol When I leave to go to the store, I'm told my dogs are very quiet even though they are in the dog room and there are other people walking around the house. It took a while and a lot of patience, but it can be done. You will never get total no barking, but it can be manageable.

Best of luck on your puppy.
 

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I lovse the plastic playpens for dogs. Mine is the Iris playpen. 36x36x24". I put a bed, her water and a few toys in there, with pee pads down. Then I also feed her in there. She loves it. She is safe in there. I use washable pee pads now.
 

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I agree with Susan Davis, I used the same pen. It's been a live saver for me. The puppy can move around, play, eat, drink and sleep and still be very safe. This is the set up I used. You can get the pen from Amazon.
 

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I never thought about how I walk into a room followed by my chis that could be them showing me they respect me as the dominant person. Zeus will always look up at me before we go into a room and if I go first, or say "Come on, its okay!" he won't budge! :)
Could well be. Also a dog will look to their leader to ensure there is no danger where they are going. Mylo likes to try and lick around my mouth and apparently it's a show of respect. I read that in packs they will lick the lips of a more dominant dog to show submission and respect.
 

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Our vet also said that one important way to teach your little guy that you're the alpha/leader is to always be the one that eats first (since, in dog packs, the alpha dog eats before the others).
Hopefully the vet didn't tell you to sniff the dog's butt first too in order to be recognized as the 'alpha'.

This thinking comes from outdated and rejected theories on wolf, not dog, group behavior. Dr. David Mech, one of the scientists who originally postulated the theory, has stated that it doesn't apply to dogs and not even to wolves in the wild.
 

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Hopefully the vet didn't tell you to sniff the dog's butt first too in order to be recognized as the 'alpha'.

This thinking comes from outdated and rejected theories on wolf, not dog, group behavior. Dr. David Mech, one of the scientists who originally postulated the theory, has stated that it doesn't apply to dogs and not even to wolves in the wild.
LOL, no he didn't--thankfully! :) I'm actually glad to know that this theory isn't applicable, because I always felt pretty silly pretending to eat their food before putting the bowl down! It kind of makes me wonder about switching vets though, if he's passing along outdated information! Thanks for clearing that up for me.
 
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