AussieDoodle Q & A

/AussieDoodle Q & A

AwesomeDoodle helps you prepare for your puppy, helps you shape your puppy’s behavior, and socialize your puppy, once you get it.  Click on the topics below for her advice on how to get through some of these typical puppy problems.

Introducing your puppy to other pets in your home

Q: How should we introduce our new puppy to our older dog? A: I was nervous about how everything would work with introducing my two pups. Once you have a routine down, it's hard to imagine how adding another pup will shake everything up. I get it!  Remember, all dogs are difference, so you'll need to use your own judgement when you first introduce your adult dog to new puppy. The goal is to make it a good experience for puppy. If you spoke to five different trainers, they would probably tell you five different ways to introduce them. Here's our method: Ask someone to babysit your older dog for the day, or at least a few hours while puppy gets comfortable in your home. New puppy doesn't get to roam the entire house. New puppy should be confined to a smaller area, such as the kitchen, and should get comfortable there before bringing your adult dog in. Once puppy is playing and comfortable you can bring in your adult dog NOT on a leash. Let them meet naturally and just let them do their dog thing - sniff each other and figure each other out. Don't make a big [...]


AussieDoodle’s Favorite Things

Q:  I'm so excited and getting ready for my pup to come home.  What kind of toys, treats and supplies are your favorite for AussieDoodles? A:  Here are a few favorites.     Toys Most AussieDoodles love toys. The more, the better. It gives them something to do and you can teach your AussieDoodle the difference between dog toys and your shoes. Chew toys - rope toy, giraffe toy, kong classic toy, kong tire, Snuggly and fun toys - snuggle puppy, go dragon toy, donut toy, squirrel toy, go dog chicken toy Balls - chuck it balls, kong squeaker balls, hol-ee roller ball Frisbees - chuck it frisbee, hyper pet frisbee Toys that "crinkle" are usually a hit.       Treats Bully sticks are a good choice but only for special occasions like brushing, baths, blow dries, phone conversations when you need them to be quiet, and car rides.  All bully sticks really STINK, but some are really bad, so you'll need to find one you and your dog like. Regardless of when you give your pup a bully stick, we highly recommend getting these as a bully stick holder.  They LOVE them.  They love being able to grab onto [...]


Microchipping your AwesomeDoodle

Q: Should I get my puppy microchipped?  If so, when? A: AwesomeDoodle does recommend microchipping. However, we also highly recommend you get a name tag with your phone number for your puppy to wear every day on his/her collar.  If your pup is running around the neighborhood one evening and your neighbor finds your pup, it's way quicker and easier for them to call you to return your pet than for them to spend a night in the shelter and then get their microchip scanned. The microchip needle is big.  It can hurt a small pup badly.  We recommend, and most vets will too, that you get your pup microchipped when they go in for their spay/neuter surgery. Both of my pups are microchipped.  I was very hesitant about doing it at first.  I thought it was a tracking device, and it freaked me out.  My vet was patient with me and explained that it is not a tracking device.  In fact, I think a lot of people believe that if your dog is lost the microchip company can just look up their microchip and find them.  NOT TRUE. Instead , if your pup is found and taken to a [...]


Spaying or Neutering your pup

Q: When should I spay or neuter my pup? A: This is a personal decision.  We recommend you consult with your vet.  It can also be different based on your lifestyle, if your pup is a girl or boy, etc.   For spaying and neutering, any time six months or older is considered safe by most vets.  Spaying and neutering kind of stops puberty from progressing so it's a fine line of not doing it too early so they can finish growing, but also not waiting too long.    For boys, if you wait too long, sometimes "boy" behavior (i.e. humping, marking, etc) gets more prominent and more aggressive.  Keeping this in mind, we recommend considering sometime between 6-8 months old, in consultation with your vet. For girls, some vets will recommend waiting until after the first heat.  This can be a good option for some families; however, this is not the best decision for everyone as it can be risky if your girl pup is often around boy dogs who are not neutered (apartment buildings, other family dogs, etc.).  If waiting until after the first heat is neither an option or a preference, then we also recommend spaying sometime [...]


Two AussieDoodles at the same time?

Q: What is your opinion/advice on raising two puppies at once? I've heard horror stories about behavioral issues that it may cause but I've also heard cases in which it didn't seem to make any difference at all. A: If you are getting two puppies from the same litter, or two puppies at the same time, your chances for having two calm puppies, who pay attention to you, is slim. They will play and wrestle all the time and be less likely to be engaged with you. It will be more difficult to train them. We are firm believers that you can "shape" a puppy's behavior, and this includes shaping a more calm dog, or a more hyper dog. When two puppies are together, they pretty much play hard, fall asleep, play hard, fall asleep. This constant rambunctious play is "reinforcing" to the puppies. In other words, they like it, and they begin to behave this way all the time, even when the other dog isn't around. So you become the "other dog" that they try to wrestle with. We've personally seen several situations where a person got two pups at the same time and they did NOT take the [...]


Boy vs. Girl Puppies

Q:  Should I get a girl or a boy? I've had my heart set on a girl pup, but I'm not sure I want to pass up a boy pup if I'm offered one.  Can you tell me the differences? A. I have two girl AwesomeDoodles, but growing up I always had boy dogs.  Here are some of the differences I've noticed: First, all AwesomeDoodles are amazing, smart, trainable pups, no matter girl or boy.  They all need a strong pack leader and lots of guidance as a pup, like all pups do. Since AwesomeDoodles are so smart, they require extra discipline as a puppy, to shape their behavior. Both boys and girls can learn "protective" behaviors, if you allow them. I always loved having boy dogs growing up.  And, I wanted another male as an adult.  However, my husband has always had girl dogs growing up, and after our having our boy shih tzu for 14 years, he was insistent on a two girl AwesomeDoodles it was for us ;)  Personality and how you train, socialize and shape them, definitely affects their behavior, more than gender. One thing we hear from our male dog owners, is how cuddly, affectionate, and [...]


Potty Training

Q: My pup was doing so well with potty training, but it seems she has regressed and is now having accidents again.  She has lots of accidents in the kitchen even though I take her out a lot. We go on walks 3 or 4 times a day.  The problem with the bells is that she plays with them and plays tug of war with them, so then I have to remove them and that doesn’t help either.  What else can I do? A: Phases with potty training are totally normal. She'll get the potty training down soon enough.  I would recommend remaining consistent and getting out the door every 30-45 minutes or so for now. It is tiresome, but that is the best way to limit accidents and build her confidence where to go.  If she’s asleep, let her sleep, but out she goes the second she wakes up. It also helps to take her out on a leash to her favorite potty spot and tell her "go potty."  When she goes, then praise her and reward her with some off leash play time.  Teach her going outside means we take care of business first, then we play. Potty training can also really [...]


Puppy Biting

Q:  We are having a huge issue with biting and jumping.  I have worked so hard with her trying to distract her with toys (that rarely works), time outs (I leave the space), reward her when she sits down.  And it is not just puppy crazy time. It is all of the time, except when she’s sleeping.  What else can I do? A:  Puppies are so cute, but I get it, they can be super frustrating too while they’re in this phase.  She, and you, will get through it!  Keep up the great work, you are doing awesome.  All puppies come with their own set of challenges.  Some hate the crate and won’t sleep, some have a really difficult time potty training, and some have a little extra crazy time and biting phase.  Usually, when owners report similar experiences as you are, that it’s more than just puppy crazy time, it’s one or maybe some of these reasons below:  the pup is either not getting enough exercise or too much exercise (it’s a fine line) — what is her daily routine? she thinks you are a playmate and not her pack leader — are you eating before her, entering/exiting doors [...]



Q:  She’s definitely a bundle of energy which has brought some challenges! She REALLY likes to dig and eat up all my plants.  We are trying to distract her with other toys or move to other rooms to play when she starts to fixate on something (ie plants outside or piece of furniture.  Let me know if I should try anything else.   A:  She has found a SUPER FUN activity with digging up plants.  Not so fun for you, I imagine.  Distracting her is the best answer.  If you give her attention when she’s doing it or chase her out of the plants, she’ll think it’s a fun game.  I would recommend a few things: take a high value treat outside like boiled unseasoned chicken practice coming when called and likely she’ll be more attracted to the chicken than the plants practice “leave it” and “drop it” if she goes for the plants


Nighttime Crating

Q: Crate training has been a little more difficult (especially at night), but we are hoping that as he becomes a little more comfortable in the house and gains even more trust, it will get easier.  Any tips? A: How many times is she waking up right now?  1-2 times is to be expected the first couple of weeks. Be sure your nighttime crate is right next to your bed so he can see you, smell you, and know you are right there with him.   Cover all sides of the crate but the front to create more of a den-like feeling for him.  Put a plush, cuddly toy in there.  Some pups like a bed in their crate, some prefer the cold plastic bottom of the crate, and some like a thin towel.  I would recommend experimenting with what you have in there to see if that helps. With the crate right next to your side of the bed, if he’s having a hard time settling or wakes up a lot, stick your fingers in their and shush him.  If it’s the middle of the night and he keeps going, then he might need to potty.  If you’re taking water and food [...]


Separation Anxiety

Q: We could use some advice...we are having what I think is a big separation anxiety issue. At first I thought it was a crate training issue because other than sleeping at night, he doesn’t spend time in his crate. He prefers to lay on his bed or lay on the floor near whoever is in the room. Granted, he doesn’t have to go in his crate often because someone is usually home - especially over the summer. Now that everyone is back to school, there are times I need to put him in his crate - just long enough to go to the gym or run a few errands. The funny thing is, he goes in his crate willingly, but than barks like crazy until someone returns. I return to find his chin and front paws soaked in saliva - every single time. He then drinks a bowl of water and takes a nice long nap, right near wherever I am. We’ve concluded he just doesn’t like the idea of being alone. I worry that he’s going to hurt himself trying to get out of the crate. Is this a problem we can fix?   A: He needs to go [...]