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I can't anymore. Please help me.

46940 Views 80 Replies 23 Participants Last post by  Mikey T
I have a 10 month old Basset Hound named Oscar.
I love him but he is completely out of control, super needy and clingy and completely dependent on others for his happiness.
I refer to my son here a lot. He is a toddler, about 20 months old.

I have tried ignoring bad behavior and rewarding good behavior. This does not work. It really doesn't.

This is my day with Oscar:

Oscar is playing with chew toys / blankets / destroying pillow or other, loudly, outside our bedroom window.

Oscar is whimpering, crying and barking outside our bedroom window. He is also jumping up on to the burglar guards and windows. He obviously wants to be let in. I have ignored this behavior for 6 months and it still continues. He is not cold. He has a warm sheltered kennel. He has food. He has toys. His crying continues and we try to sleep through it until my son wakes up.

There is now activity in the house. My son is awake. Oscar is now at the living room doors, barking, whimpering and jumping up on the glass doors to be let in. This makes a huge noise and I am sure that our neighbors absolutely hate us. The people that live upstairs have also been awake since 5am.
I let Oscar in to come say good morning to the family. He runs and jumps up on all of us, including my son, and often knocks him over and hurts him. This is not on purpose or to inflict harm. He is just over excited.
Oscar then spends the next half hour running around the house sniffing out every corner looking for food it seems. We don't give him food now. His food is in his bowl outside. While I am trying to get ready / make breakfast / pack lunch, Oscar is constantly at your feet or jumping up on you. We are always falling over him.

8am - 6pm
Oscar has a large garden at home to play in. He has chew toys (cow hooves that he loves), tennis balls and whatever else of his or my son's that he is destroying. He has chewed up several of my son's toys, so we have to jump up and pack away whatever my son drops as it lands, otherwise it will be eaten.
The nanny is at home all day with my son. They are in the garden a lot of the day. Oscar is not alone in that sense. There is activity at the home the whole day, and the house looks out to the garden.

My husband and I get home. As soon as we walk through the front door, Oscar starts barking and whimpering and crying and jumping up on the burglar guards. This is very loud. I have tried ignoring this but it does not stop. I have to run and let Oscar in before even greeting my son, just to get the noise to stop.
My husband takes Oscar for a walk about 3 nights out of 5, depending on how late he works and how much light there is.
We have to put his leash on outside, as he wets himself from excitement.

Oscar is back from his walk. He is calmer after his walk, but still at our feet the whole time while making dinner etc. I try to get him out of the kitchen but he does not respond to "outside" "sit" or other.
Oscar cannot lie lazily on the carpet etc. He is up and about the whole time looking for food and attention. I know that he is young and energetic, but the constant jumping and licking and barking and whimpering for attention is exhausting.

I take Oscar outside while we are having dinner, otherwise he jumps up on the table and cries for food etc. He is not hungry. There is food outside for him.
All the time we are eating, Oscar is outside barking and whimpering and howling and jumping up on the doors. Not exactly relaxing. We eat fast and hurry to make the noise stop. Ignoring does not help.

Oscar is let back in the house to spend time with us while we watch television or do some work. He tries to jump up on the furniture or steal my son's toys to chew or goes to my bedroom to lay on the bed. He won't lay on the carpet and relax and be quiet. You can't pet him either. As soon as you want to stroke him then he gets over excited and jumps up on you and licks you, knocking you over. I so badly want him to lie quietly on the carpet and pet and stroke him but he is too desperate.
When we go to bed, we put Oscar outside and he doesn't scream or try get back inside. He waits until 5am.

His behavior causes constant stress and anxiety in our home.
We are constantly reprimanding him as he grabs food out of my son's hand or knocks people over or wets himself in the house or jumps up on our guests. None of our friends or family want to hang out with him, because he gets so over excited and won't leave you alone, ever. He is absolutely incapable of being by himself or entertaining himself or self-soothing himself. He is 100% dependent on us for his happiness.

I suspect that he sleeps all day and has this overload of energy for us when we get home and in the middle of the night when he plays and at sunrise.
I think he was taken away from his mother too young. We got him at 6 weeks.
I don't know if he is lonely. I am terrified to get another basset and have double this behavior. I know that they're hard to train (we have tried, promise), but Oscar seems well, it seems like he is very needy and not very smart or capable of taking instruction or "getting the hint" ie being ignored for 6 months but still doing the same thing every morning.

Like, in my house, I can't have guests over. We can't go sit outside on the patio furniture in the sun. Oscar will be jumping and barking and whimpering and licking and will not leave you alone. I can't perhaps lock him in our bedroom so we can have people over, cause that's also not right.

He owns our house. He owns us. He have tried training and understanding and take him to this awesome doggy park every weekend so that he can run and play with other animals. He has chew toys and tennis balls and food and a warm place to sleep.

I just want:
1. To sleep until 7am and for Oscar to be quiet until I come through to the door to let him in to say hi.
2. For him to be calm
3. For him to listen when I tell him to go outside or to sit
4. For him to not wet himself and "show pink" at the sign of any attention
5. For him to not chew every pillow/blanket that I buy for his kennel, that I dutifully replace.
6. For him to not jump up on everyone all the time and be so over eager and desperate
7. For him to not snatch food out of my son's hand. My son can't even walk around with like, an ice cream. Oscar takes it, and his toys, whatever he can.

I am tired of my own voice. I am tired of hearing myself shout at the dog.
I am tired of the anxiety and stress and irritation that all of us endure for him.
I am 7 months pregnant, and I won't be able to deal with a newborn, a toddler and this dog.
I know that the baby will wake us up 3 times a night, then Oscar too, then Oscar again at 5am, and then my son at 7am. I don't see how anyone in the family will get any sleep.

Please help me, and help Oscar. I feel the only option is to give him to another family that can handle him, but I can't give up on him. Am I doing something horribly wrong?
I've had dogs before and never had anything like this.

Natasha & Oscar

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Hi it sounds to me as if he is bored and not getting enough human interaction, if he only gets a walk 3 times a week, it is not enough no matter how big your garden is, he needs to get out and explore and have a good sniff around his neighbourhood.

I have a 5 month old bassett called Hectar and we give him3-4, 15-20 mins walk a day, from 9.00am till his last one just before we go to bed.

I am lucky enough to be at home most of the day so iam able to play and train him inbetween walks.

Hope it helps :)
I am afraid that he sounds a very bored lonely pup.
Bassets love attention and are not happy being shut outside on their own all day,they love to be part of the family.
They need exercise and stimulation and do not do well if left to their own devices.
I have three Bassets and after an hours walk they will then sleep the morning away quite happily.
I cannot see Oscar's behaviour improving unless he is allowed to spend more time with you so that you can teach him the correct way to behave in the house.
If you are not able to do this it would probably be better to rehome him as he will get bigger and stronger and even more boisterous.
Personally, given your circumstances, I think the best thing for your family and Oscar is that he goes to someone who is familiar with bassets. They are pack dogs and like to be with their pack (your family) most of the time.

To put him outside alone is rejection in his eyes. As for getting him another basset for company, I think given your circumstances this may give you double the trouble you now have, as I can't see how you are going to train two of them never mind one and especially with a new baby on the way.

I don't know if there is a basset rescue in S.A. but if there is that would be a place to start. Please check thoroughly the credentials of anyone you may think of giving him to as many unscrupulous characters will take a dog just for breeding (puppy mills) and you may unknowingly sentence your pup to a life of cruelty and misery. For this reason I would ask that you get him neutered before parting with him.

Another point which is important is that you do not give him away i.e. 'Free to good home'. If people get something for nothing then often the commodity in their eyes is seen as 'easy come easy go'. If they really want something then they are usually prepared to pay for it and look after it so much better.

I am sorry you are in these circumstances but I think given the breed of dog and keeping him apart from his family a lot of the time is something that will be fraught with problems. A different breed is perhaps your answer if you feel at this time that you must have a dog.
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Sounds like he needs more attention. And not just, "Shut up Oscar.", "Stop that Oscar.", "SHHHH, Oscar!" or "NO, Oscra" attention. He needs positive interactions with you and your family....playtime and affection.
Obviously you don't want to reward bad behavior or encourage it, but if ALL you are doing is ignoring him or reprimanding him then I'm not surprised he's crying for more attention or chewing out of boredom.

If the only attention he's getting is because he's doing something you don't like, then he's going to continue to do it. At that point, in his mind at least he's getting attention. Not just ignored and sent outside.

I know it's hard to devote that much time and energy when you have a child that needs your attention; but it sounds like Oscar needs more time with the family. Not kept outside by himself all day or night.

I sympathize. It's not easy having to work all day then come home to make dinner, take care of things around the house, watch a young kid and take care of a puppy. We don't have kids and our 6 month old puppy is enough for me some days!!
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Sorry to say, but you should have done more research before
you bought him, for example on this forum.
Bassets are not outdoor dogs, and they need companion by
humans or other dogs.

Steinar, Emma and Doris
Our basset is also 10 months old, so I know exactly where you are coming from! We are away from home all day during the week and our dogs are in the yard during good weather, when we get home we have a good 15 minutes of doggie greeting time as they are all excited to see us. We let them in and spend some time jumping around and wrestling until they've gotten the excitement out of their system.

When Cannoli, our basset, gets rambunctious I tell my daughter "time for a run!". She gets on her bike, takes Cannoli's leash in hand and runs her up and down the street a few times. Cannoli LOVES this. You even look at the leashes and she is so excited. After a good run 'Noli usually comes in, flops down and is chill.

She is noisy, and rambunctious, and a big ole dog who thinks she is the same size as our 10lb Chihuahua. It is challenging sometimes but I have gotten some really great ideas from this board to help us. I hope your family finds the right solution.
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reply to "I can't anymore please help"

Wow guys, thank you SO much for the replies.
I love Oscar, we all do. When he is chilled down about 7 knots then he is an absolute pleasure. We take him to this big doggy park every weekend and he gets to play and run with other dogs and adores it. Then he is super chilled the rest of the day.
But then 5am the next day it starts again. We can't take him running 3 hours a day. I've had other breeds of dogs and never had these problems.

We don't shout at him all day. There is lots of love for him.
He just doesn't listen. I don't think it's appropriate for dogs to sit begging at the table while we're having dinner, so I do want him to go outside then. There are times when he needs to be outside, like night and meal times and sometimes for guests. He is part of our family or "pack" but I can't control him. I will be coming home with a newborn and Oscar might jump up and hurt the baby, or jump on the bed while i'm changing the baby or potentially cause harm, even though it is without intent. I can't say "off the bed" or "gentle" or use a tone of voice to try teach him right or wrong. He doesn't know.

He is a very sweet dog. I just want to be able to control him and for him to "sit", "stay", "go outside" which will help.

I did do loads of research on Bassets. They are the best breed for kids.
Somewhere it said that it was hard to housetrain them, which I was prepared for and it took 4 months but we did it.
But it didn't say that they were incapable of being outdoors on their own or that they were this difficult to train.

I am trying to solve this. Hence this post. Any assistance to make us a happy family would be much appreciated x
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You have a 10 month old puppy who is not getting any attention except bad attention and he is willing to settle for that. A dog that is not incorperated into a family is doomed for failure. He is exceited to see everyone,anyone,who will acknowledge him ,good or bad. You should have started him a crate when he first came home.(hindsight) Now,you are dealing with two toddlers. I don't think too many of us is feeling as much sympathy for you as we feel for the puppy because with a little knowledge you could have avoided the whole situation you are in now, by deceiding not to get a puppy at this time or taking the time to spend with him and train him. Whatever he is doing is not his fault. Have you asked the breeder to take him back, somehow I suspect he didn't come from a breeder because a breeder with any sense at all would have been able to tell you were not ready for a dog. Don't trade this one in on another breed because the same thing will happen and you will wonder why all the dogs you pick are boneheads. Turn him into a rescue and count this as a lesson learned.
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another reply

I thought of maybe finding a student in our area, and offering him/her some pocket money to do some dog walking? Maybe take Oscar for some walks every second day or so?
I am a huge animal lover, I absolutely love dogs. And he is in the house every time that we are except meal times and bed times. Are you suggesting I let him sleep in the house at night and sit at the table while we eat?
Do you think that is the solution?
I cannot see how I can spend more time with him than we already do?

I think I didn't explain things properly.
Oscar is with us all the time, except when we have dinner. I don't want him begging at the table, so I take him outside for half an hour at night.
Other than that, if we are home, then he is home.

You say: "I know it's hard to devote that much time and energy when you have a child that needs your attention; but it sounds like Oscar needs more time with the family. Not kept outside by himself all day or night."

But we are at work at day and asleep at night. He has an hour with us in the morning, same as our son. Then he is with us as soon as we get home at night until we go to bed, same as our son.
On weekends he is with us all the time, as we spend almost all our time in the garden. And my husband takes him to this great doggy park to play.
Then on Sunday afternoons the whole family goes for a walk again. He really is with us all the time.

Are you suggesting that he also sleep in our bed and sit at the table while we eat? And that we quit our jobs and stay at home with him all day instead? Because that is the only time not allocated to him.

Of course we love him and give him lots of play and love and affection. We love animals and we love him. That is why I am trying to find a solution and find out what he wants so that we can all be happy.
I don't know what more he wants from us.
And it's not all dogs, I have had dozens in my life and have had fantastic relationships with them, under the same circumstances with my parents.

I've heard that they are hard to train because of their noses, and that they do calm a bit with age.
I thought of finding a student in the area and giving him/her some pocket money to do some dog walking for us.
What about a training school?

I'm going to give up on him, you don't just give something away because they're hard to handle or inconvenient. I am trying every possible solution first.
If I am doing something wrong, then please tell me so I can change it.
That's what I'm asking.
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You don't need to worry if you teach him manners. Dogs need to be taught he doesn't learn this stuff on his own. If you get him a crate you can put him in there at meal time and at night. Problem solved. He may cause a ruckus at first but with patience on your part he will learn to like his crate. Teach him what you want him to do just like you need to teach your toddler. He will most likely sleep a little longer being in the house. I'm sorry I was so tough on you but you can not expect him to know what you want him to do unless you teach him. Bassets love kids with food,doesn't that make sense to you? Because they are food oriented and just the right size to snatch anything away from a child. Put him in the crate when your toddler has food down from the table. The crate can be a very useful tool just don't keep him in it for extremely long periods of time or the bad behavior will start again. Use it to teach him .
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Budbad, you say "You have a 10 month old puppy who is not getting any attention except bad attention and he is willing to settle for that. A dog that is not incorperated into a family is doomed for failure."

Why do you think he only gets bad attention? I ignore him when he does wrong things (howling outside our bedroom at 5am) and reprimand him if he knocks my child over or hurts people. Other than that, he gets loads of love especially from my son and husband. We don't abuse him and aren't cruel to him.
I just want advice to train him so that we can be a happy family. I don't know what "crating" means. I did get him from a breeder. I did do research. I've had plenty of dogs, but we always had like 3 or 4 at a time. This is the first time that we only have one. I think he's lonely, but I need to establish the cause of the behavior to fix it.
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Why don't you get Oscar another Basset for company as he may well be bored and wants attention...
and being a pack animal, he would be better with a fellow Basset for company!!!
He has a beautiful igloo kennel outside that he sleeps in most of the night. Is that what you mean by crate?
I tried training him. I spent hours and boxes of treats. Every time he jumped up on me, i turned my back on him, and when he didn't, i gave him a treat. I did this for ages. How long do you need to keep doing this for?
I think I'll take him to doggy training and get a student to walk him and see if that helps.
He will only sit if I have food in my hand, not if guests come or if I ask any other time.
I don't think I'm very good at training : ) I bought a bunch of manuals and books and left them on the table. When I came back the books were torn in to pieces on the floor and I couldn't help but laugh at the irony. He is adorable, but man he drives me crazy sometimes.

Thanks again
Hi Sophie,
I think I need to figure this Basset out before getting another one.
I always had staffordshire bull terriers (staffies) who are so completely different. But I will tame this Basset eventually..
Ignoring the behavior,hows that working for you? The cause is you are not teaching him what you want only trying to let him know what you don't want. He doesn't understand what you want from him,he is just being a puppy doing what puppies do but he needs to understand that you don't want him to do something. Having him outside even at night is lonely for him if you put him in a crate and he fusses you can tell him,"No". At first he will not know what that means so the next time he fusses tell him,"No",(gruffly not loudly he isn't deaf)then have something ready to enforce your command like a squirt bottle with water. When you give the command and he doesn't listen give him a squirt of water and repeat your command.He will start to connect that if he stops fussing he doesn't get squirted. This is only an example,you can use a can of rocks or pennies ,something that gets his attention when he doesn't listen. Having him with you all the time is great but are you teaching him anything while he is with you. Teach him to sit ,teach him you don't want him to jump. There many training sites on the internet to help you teach him what you want, he isn't going to guess.
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You're right. Funny enough, I did try the squirt bottle. Every time I squirted him he barked and charged me because he thought it was a game and I couldn't help but laugh.
Ignoring bad behavior is NOT working. But the websites say "ignore bad behavior and reward good". Clearly not working with Ozzy... I'll do more research, thanks so much
I have to agree with bubbad it is not oscars fault Bassets are a special breed that only real need is to be loved and treated as part of the family it's never to late to crate train or train in general Please give it a try i'd hate to see another dog end up at a rescue try the crate and just remember that training takes time you can't fix these issues over night treat a basset like you do your son and WOW you would be amazed all dogs need a purpose they want a purpose and some just want to be there for you my father told me this when i was 12 years old learning to train dog " No matter what you do in life your only going to get out of it what you put into it " don't give up on oscar and he won't give up on you trust Please
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