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Hello all. I am posting for the first time so please go easy on me. We are the new owners of a basset hound, which we (or my kids) named George. This is our first basset hound and the reason we picked this breed was for their goofy nature, fun personality, and reputation for being a solid family dog. Our previous dog was a Dachshund. Attached are some pictures at 8 weeks and now (12 weeks). Things have been going pretty good but I do need some advice. Can anyone give me some advice regarding:

- Potty training: Any tips outside of the obvious? We have a potty spot in the back yard, use treats, take him out every hour or so, lots of positive feedback. He is crate trained and will hold it all night so that part is good. Now and then he just forgets and will literally pee at your feet after being outside for an hour. He also likes to pee on our rugs now and then.

- Nipping and Biting: This is a problem. When he gets worked up in the least bit he will start "play" biting us (feet, shoes, etc) and will not stop until you literally hold his nose and say no. We have tried the loud "ouch" and other tactics but we are not seeing the progress we would like to see. Also note we have kids (4 and 7) and George really likes to nip at them. They are good about not teasing him, no chasing games, no tug-a-war, trying their best to show George that they are in charge, etc, but George's teeth are really sharp and even a little play bite hurts. George does not chew on anything in the house as we have plenty of toys. It's just the playful biting that we want to stop or reduce.

- Temper: Don't take this the wrong way, but imagine your basset getting worked up like he is excited and wants to play. That is how George reacts when we discipline him. It's almost like he can't mentally handle the punishment and needs to stomp around. For example, after he nips me I will tell him no and sometimes he will just stomp around and bark like he wants to take me on. It's not an aggressive temper because all he does is put his front feet down, stick his butt in the air, and hop around like he wants to play. It's really funny, but I feel like he is not getting my message.

Basset Sprawl: Look at how George spreads his back legs when he is on the floor. Does that look normal? I've seen bassets put their feet behind them, but not spread them.

That's it for now. I've searched this site for tips, but please let me know if you see anything I can do different. :blink:

Thanks,

Todd
 

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haha congratulations i know you will love this breed.



When we first got Bogart at about 4 months

He doesn't really lay like this anymore. He lays with his legs tucked under now.

P.S. He is adorable
 

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Hello, and welcome to the forum. Your George is adorable!! This is an excellent place to learn the particulars of this quirky breed. I would refer you to the FAQ part of the Board. It addresses the potty training and nipping and biting questions. There are as many opinions on this board as members but there's a lot of humor and respect.
I have a 9 1/2 year old boy named Francis who, in spite of being blind from canine glaucoma, is the most fearless and independent little dog you'll ever meet.
Once again, welcome!
 

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See Housetraining Your Puppy
No your puppy does not forget because in order to forget he must know what to do in the first place. Bassets a natoriously hard to house train. You will hear story of dog house traine in a week or a month don't belive them. If you investigate further you will find those dogs were not any where near close to being able to hold it for eight hour, consitinetly adking to go out when need be and the like that is required to be house trained. what was the case is the owners had developed a schedual of feeding, and access to water, playtime and rest that made when the dog needed to go predictable so the anticipated the dogs need and could prevent accident. While this is half the battle don't fool yourself into thing just because the dog does not have accident it is house trained. What happen next is you relax and sundenly out of the blue the dog starts having accident and the first thing people thing of is spite etc. no the dog was never really house trained in the first place, only managed.

So back to specific schedule, both food and water, play and rest consistency in a schedual makes for a more consistent dog on when it needs to go. if you know when the dog needs to go, you can prevent the accidents in the first place.

The dog goes in the house after it comes in from outside Why? quite simple from the Link above
Do not rely on a puppy to tell you when it's time to go out. That is expecting too much responsibility and communication at too early an age. It is up to you, the adult human, to know when he needs to go out. Watch his activity level and the clock.

A 12 wk puppy who is busy playing may need to urinate every 15-20 minutes, whereas a resting puppy might go for an hour, and a sleeping puppy can go 8 hours at night. Activity makes urine! Activity makes urine! Repeat this 10 times, slowly. This is a very important lesson for new puppy owners.[/b]
One of the most over looked aspects of house training is a clear signal for the dog to you to indicate it needs to go out. sounds simple the dog barks at the door scratches at the door etc. Well how does the dog know to do that, they are not mind readers. Many a house training failure can be traced to not teaching a need to go out cue for the dog to use. Here is one simple way to do that see: House Training: Ring My Bell!

another tip to help create a specific spot for the dog to go outside Potty Training Tip



Nipping and Biting
Keep in mind at the age of the puppy you do not want to stop the dog from biting and nipping rather you want to train the dog to have a soft mouth. Any and all dogs regarless of breed, quality, temperament, training etc. are capable of biteing a human under the right circumstances you want to train the dog for such circumstances when it does bite it does so lightly.
This is know as Bite inhibition, as is perhaps the single biggest and most important thing to teach a dog.
see Bite Inhibition - How to Teach It
and also check out the biting and nipping thread which contains additional links in the FAQ forum


- Temper:
Now for a reality check. What is it called when the dogs front end end legs are flat on the ground and the butt in the air in attempt to lure dogs specifically but other critter as well in reveille. UM its known as a play bow. In the world of behaviorism punishment has a specific meaning that is something the reduces the likelyhood of another event. Hassaying no and hold the puppy snout reduced it level of nipping? No if not then in the puppies eyes it is not a punishment . What is happening the dog as play and acts accordingly. If it is not your intention to reward the dog for hard bites by engaging it in play then another approach is called for see the links in Biting and nipping above for some different ideas on how to handle the problem. Keep in mind there is no one right way to train a dog. Each dog is unique, while a bulk or vast majority of dogs might respond one way not every single dog will, that is what makes training "interesting"
from
Insights Into Puppy Mouthing
Since your dog's clear intention is to get your attention then yelling "no" does little beyond reinforcing his behavior. He wants your attention, he nips you, you give attention. Worked perfectly. Keep doing it. If it stops working do it harder or bigger.

And about the yelping out in pain technique. I hate when people suggest this as if it is the Holy Grail of stopping mouthing. It totally depends on why the dog is nipping, how you yelp and how they respond to the yelping. With some dogs this idea alone can stop nipping and play biting in its tracks. But as you have discovered there are other dogs who are simply more triggered by the response. And you actually escalate the intensity of the behavior.

We can't ever just say if a dog is doing X behavior that a handler should always do Y handling technique. It just never is that black and white.

Its all about probabilities. If a dog does X behavior and the response is Y technique than we can often say there is a high probability of a particular response happening with most dogs. There are some fundamental things that are very high probability that apply to many dogs that do nothing or get a completely opposite response from other dogs.

Run away there is a good chance the average dog will follow or chase. Squat down or make little cooing noises then the probability is high they will come closer. But you must always take into account the dog's personality, relationship, situation, current emotional and mental state, temperament and history.

Run away from another dog and them may take you down with a bite in the butt. Squat down for and make cooing sounds with an abused fear biter and you may loose your nose.

It looks complicated when plotting it out but in general people have a much better feel for what the dog's probabilities for certain things are then they do in applying that knowledge to specific situations.

90% of the time if I clearly define something for owners and ask what their dog will likely do, they have a wonderfully detailed knowledge of what their dog will probably do. But most people don't look at the perimeters objectively or with clarity and worse they fall into a pattern of waiting until the dog has done the thing they don't want that they knew was probably going to happen. They then respond to what the dog did even though they could have predicted the Undesired response a week ahead of time.

I digress. :) But don't reinforce the Undesired behavior of nipping either intentionally of subconsciously.[/b]
The article has a lovely treates on ""You Won the Prize!" method of punishment which is rewarding the dog with something he does not want.

While it may be a bit much for you to handle right know the following is a good articles on punishment vs negative reinforcement
Jack Palance vs. Fred Astaire
The process of teaching a behavior by getting a critter to avoid something is called aversive control. There are two types of aversive control, punishment and negative reinforcement. Punishment causes behavior to decrease, while negative reinforcement causes behavior to increase. The more technical scientific definitions of these terms are pretty confusing, but these simple descriptions are good enough for most situations.[/b]
Punishment: How not to do it.

Stopping Negative Behavior Positively



They are good about not teasing him, no chasing games, no tug-a-war, trying their best to show George that they are in charge,[/b]
The only problem is the wolf dominance theory does not hold up to scientific scrutiny when applied to dogs. As a matter of fact is does not hold up when applied to wolves as well but that is for another discussion

The Macho Myth

The History and Misconceptions of Dominance Theory

Debunking the Dominance Myth
So-called dominance exercises were — and in some circles still are — widely recommended to prevent the dog from taking over the entire household. These exercises include not feeding him until after you’ve eaten, letting him through doorways only after you, forbidding access to furniture, and not playing tug-of-war.

In reality, there is no evidence that these procedures prevent dominance aggression or any other behavioral problem. One study found no correlation between playing tug-of-war or allowing a dog on the bed and the development of aggressive behavior.[/b]
tug of war, chase and other cames believe to increase domanent tendency in some circles in reality can be powerful training tools
from the sf SPCA Tug of War
Dog owners have been admonished for decades to never play tug of war with their dogs because of the risk of it increasing aggression and/or dominance in the dog. Even many dog resource people such as breeders, trainers and veterinarians caution against this game. This is partly a failure to discriminate between agonistic behavior (conflict resolution & defensive aggression) and predatory behavior. Also, many people have issues about witnessing intensity. Intensity is not aggression, however.
Played with rules, tug-of-war is a tremendous predatory energy burner and good exercise for both dog and owner. It serves as a barometer of the kind of control you have over the dog, most importantly over his jaws. The game doesn't make the dog a predator: he already is one. The game is an outlet. It’s intense, increases dog focus and confidence and plugs into something very deep inside them. The big payoff is in lowered incidence of behavior problems due to understimulation and a potent motivator for snappy obedience. There is a maxim in training: control the games, control the dog. It's also extremely efficient in terms of space and time requirements.[/b]

There certainly may be legitimite reason not to play tug with a young pup, possible injury, boys to young to play and teach the dog to play properly etc., but trainin to instill the dominance of the humans over the dog is not one of them

Leadership is earn not commanded from the mountain tops see LEADERSHIP BASICS"A simple guide to regaining your dog's respect in pleasant, non-confrontational ways."

much of what are so called dominace reduction exercises has there root in somthing entirely different. It is not so much dominance but a lack of self control ie rude behavior on the part of the dog. Snatching food. barging through door ways, refusing to move off furniture. A very submissives passive dog can display thes traits as well. It is not dominance but rather a dog that has not been taught self control
TEACHING SELF CONTROL

You have missed asking about The only aspect of raising a puppy at the 8-16 week age that is even more important than Bite inhibition. It might be because you all ready know all about it and well on your way to creating a well adjusted puppy but because it is so important I will not assume that an provide the addition info on Socialization and Hibituation

Countdown to a Crackerjack Canine Companion
The day you get your puppy, the clock is running. And time flies. Your puppy's critical period of socialization will begin to wane by three months and its most impressionable learning period starts to close by five months. Not surprisingly, most behavior and temperament problems are created during this time. There is so much to teach and nearly everything needs to be taught within just 12 weeks, when you puppy is between two and five months of age. It is vital that you know WHAT to teach and HOW to teach it. Going to puppy classes, reading behavior and training books and watching puppy videos is the quickest way to find out. But you need to do this BEFORE you get your puppy.

...The optimal time to socialize your puppy is BEFORE it is three months old. Unfortunately, your pup needs to be confined indoors until then. This relatively short period of social isolation at such a crucial developmental time could all but ruin your puppy's temperament. Whereas dog-dog socialization may be put on temporary hold until your pup is old enough to go to puppy school and the dog park, we simply can not delay socialization with people. On the contrary, during the first month, while your pup is grounded at home, socializing with people becomes the Prime Puppy Directive. Without a doubt, raising and training a pup to be people-friendly is by far the single most important aspect of pet dog husbandry.

Capitalize on the time your pup is confined indoors by inviting people to your home. As a rule of thumb, your pup needs to socialize with at least 100 people before it is 3 months old. This is actually much easier than it sounds. Invite a different group of eight men each Sunday to watch sports on the television. (Generally, men are pretty easy to attract and train if you offer pizza and beer.) Each Monday invite a different group of eight women to watch Ally McBeal and Dateline. Catch up on all your outstanding social obligations by inviting family, friends and neighbors to weekly Puppy Parties. On another night of the week invite some neighborhood children. Above all, don't keep this puppy a secret. And of course, the great thing about socializing a young puppy is that it also does wonders for your own social life![/b]
Puppy Socialisation and Habituation (Part 1) Why is it Necessary?
One in five of the dogs that Dr Valerie O’Farrell (1986) studied while conducting research at Edinburgh (Royal Dick) University Veterinary School had a behavioural problem to a lesser or greater extent. A similar, but larger, American study fixed the figure at one in four. In one year my practice treated 773 dogs - 79 of them, that’s 10 percent, had problems of fearfulness towards people or the environment due to a lack of early socialisation or habituation and a further 4.5. percent were inept at relating to other dogs, again due to a lack of early socialisation. The problem is immeasurably greater than these figures suggest. Many dogs show a weakness of temperament or inability to cope when faced with a particular situation, without their behaviour becoming problematical enough for the owners to seek help from a behavioural counsellor.[/b]
Puppy Socialisation and Habituation - How to go about it.

Now if you are feel a bit overwelm well you should a puppy is a big responsibility and after all
IT TAKES A PACK TO RAISE A PUPPY
"Understanding what a puppy expects and needs from his family."

If you have any specific question we are here to help














- Potty training: Any tips outside of the obvious? We have a potty spot in the back yard, use treats, take him out every hour or so, lots of positive feedback. He is crate trained and will hold it all night so that part is good. Now and then he just forgets and will literally pee at your feet after being outside for an hour. He also likes to pee on our rugs now and then.

- Nipping and Biting: This is a problem. When he gets worked up in the least bit he will start "play" biting us (feet, shoes, etc) and will not stop until you literally hold his nose and say no. We have tried the loud "ouch" and other tactics but we are not seeing the progress we would like to see. Also note we have kids (4 and 7) and George really likes to nip at them. They are good about not teasing him, no chasing games, no tug-a-war, trying their best to show George that they are in charge, etc, but George's teeth are really sharp and even a little play bite hurts. George does not chew on anything in the house as we have plenty of toys. It's just the playful biting that we want to stop or reduce.

- Temper: Don't take this the wrong way, but imagine your basset getting worked up like he is excited and wants to play. That is how George reacts when we discipline him. It's almost like he can't mentally handle the punishment and needs to stomp around. For example, after he nips me I will tell him no and sometimes he will just stomp around and bark like he wants to take me on. It's not an aggressive temper because all he does is put his front feet down, stick his butt in the air, and hop around like he wants to play. It's really funny, but I feel like he is not getting my message.

Basset Sprawl: Look at how George spreads his back legs when he is on the floor. Does that look normal? I've seen bassets put their feet behind them, but not spread them.

That's it for now. I've searched this site for tips, but please let me know if you see anything I can do different. :blink:

Thanks,

Todd[/b]
 

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Oh, and I forgot to mention Mikey T as the author of a real basset bible. He's an invaluable resource. :p
 

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Welcome - George is adorable. I hope you have many happy years together. A warning, though - Bassets are Addictive!

Lying with his back legs ike that is a typical basset pose. It always looks so uncomfortable to me, but all of mine find it a great way to relax.

Not much I can add to Mikey's advice - he's an invaluable resource. Patience & consistency is the key.

Hope to hear a lot more about George and see more beuatiful pics of him.
 

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Wow, George is a beauty. Nothing really to add to Mikey T, but my advice would be to always try and remain calm (even if you have to go into another room to vent). Even a slight raise of my voice gets my dog wound up, whereas calm direction usually gets a response. Don't fret too badly about housebreaking, just be consistent and I would recommend the bell technique. Our pup Stanley picked this up quickly at about 5 months and has had only 1 accident in the 8 months since then. It seems to be the best communication method for the dog to let you know it has to go. Barking could mean a number of things, but bell means potty (or at least "outside"). Good luck, and read everything Mike sent, it takes a while but you and your dog will both be better for it.
 

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Welcome!! You have come to the right place to get awesome advice. George is adorable and he certainly has the "flat" Basset pose down already. We have Bogie, two Bogie's on the forum so we use our last name with his, Bogie Carter is our three year guy.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for all of the help (and support). One last question, is having him neutered at 4.5 months too early? My vet said he is ready to have it done. Thanks.
 

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Thanks for all of the help (and support). One last question, is having him neutered at 4.5 months too early? My vet said he is ready to have it done. Thanks.[/b]
dog can be safely spayed/nuetered at 8 weeks or younger but the issue of when or if to do is not so clear cut. While in female IMHO the spaying is overall a health benefit in makes it is not so clear cut and actual the pedullium might swing the other weigh in favor of being intact but health is not the only consider

spaying before sexual maturity the dog will end up slighly taller, approx 1/4" and may retain more puppishy features than would otherwise have occured. However nueter has been effect in reducing dogs to dog aggression, marking behaviors and wandering. If done early it as reduces humping behaviors. There is a large divergence of opinion on whether to and what the best time is to neuter.

<a href="http://www.caninesports.com/EarlySpayConsiderations.pdf" target="_blank">Early Spay-Neuter Considerations for the Canine Athlete
One Veterinarian’s Opinion</a>

<a href="http://avmajournals.avma.org/doi/pdf/10.2460/javma.231.11.1665?cookieSet=1" target="_blank">Determining the optimal age
for gonadectomy of dogs and cats</a>

Rebuttal to “Early Spay-Neuter Considerations for the Canine Athlete”
 

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Welcome,
You do not need to spend money on any books--we are very fortunate to have Mikey T. I follow closely what he indicates and am having great success with my Basset.........and George is beautiful!
don
 

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Discussion Starter #17
dog can be safely spayed/nuetered at 8 weeks or younger but the issue of when or if to do is not so clear cut. While in female IMHO the spaying is overall a health benefit in makes it is not so clear cut and actual the pedullium might swing the other weigh in favor of being intact but health is not the only consider

spaying before sexual maturity the dog will end up slighly taller, approx 1/4" and may retain more puppishy features than would otherwise have occured. However nueter has been effect in reducing dogs to dog aggression, marking behaviors and wandering. If done early it as reduces humping behaviors. There is a large divergence of opinion on whether to and what the best time is to neuter.

<a href="http://www.caninesports.com/EarlySpayConsiderations.pdf" target="_blank">Early Spay-Neuter Considerations for the Canine Athlete
One Veterinarian’s Opinion</a>

<a href="http://avmajournals.avma.org/doi/pdf/10.2460/javma.231.11.1665?cookieSet=1" target="_blank">Determining the optimal age
for gonadectomy of dogs and cats</a>

Rebuttal to “Early Spay-Neuter Considerations for the Canine Athlete” [/b]

You were not kidding that it is not clear cut. Wow. I never had any idea. After reading those links I will probably blame myself if he comes down with anything in the future. So what would you do if your male basset was 4.5 months old?
 

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You were not kidding that it is not clear cut. Wow. I never had any idea. After reading those links I will probably blame myself if he comes down with anything in the future. So what would you do if your male basset was 4.5 months old?[/b]
I think you are agonizing over a decision in the long run make very little difference. If I had a male that I was working toward competeing with in atheletic event like field trial, hunting, frisbee, agility, flyball etc I would hold off nuetering until sexual maturity.

A simple companion animal I would be more likely to nueter early to avoid any unwanted sexual behaviors.


The heath issues break down pretty even not favoring or favoring earlier or later nuetering. There are a couple of health issues attributed to early nuetering that could be exascerbated by high physical activity so I then for favor waiting. but at any time there could other behavioral and health issue that might change my opinion entirely]


An then there could be individual health issues that change everything again, I the Basset was known to have a bleeding disorder, all too common in the breed, I would probably avoid the risk of an elective surgery all togther is just one example.

LIke I said there is no write or wrong answer but it is never a bad idea to talk to your vet and find out why he is recommending 4 1/2 for your particular dog. He cvertainly know much more about him than anyone on this forum and may have individualist reason why nuetering him now is in the puppies best interest
 
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