Hi guys, I'm new here and signed up to get some advice on some things our little 4 month old amstaff x Arab boy Mad Max is doing. Warning - lengthy post with several questions.
1. Max is on Royal Canin Junior for +25klg dogs as a base with about 6 chicken necks, 1/2 lamb heart, a beef cheek each day and a weekly large meaty bone as his diet. Is this ok? Should I be giving him other types as well or instead of something I'm giving him. Stools are great, energy is high, coat is gleaming and eyes are bright and he is putting on weight at a good rate, not too fast, not too slow. What other types of food will be a top shelf protein/ vitamin/mineral boost for him that he should be getting at his age if I haven't provided with the above mentioned diet.
2. Toilet training is not going well. During the day he is getting better with remembering to do his business outside but still having anywhere from 2-5 accidents in the house of a day. The door is left open and sometimes he even goes just on the inside of the door rather then on the outside. Loves to pee on carpet so all carpeted areas are out of bounds for him.
Nights, well I can't blame him as he sleeps inside and we only have glass sliding doors so no option of a doggy door. I use puppy pads which he will poo on but always pees anywhere except the puppy pads. I clean every morning using white vinegar to remove the scent (advised this by a dog trainer in local area) and even use a puppy pad to partially mop up the urine prior to cleaning up properly, I then use that puppy pad with his smell as a base in the middle of the new puppy pads at night to entice him to go on the pads and not the floor but alas it has yet to sink in. How can I help him learn (without praising him for doing his business inside even if he goes on the pads I don't want to confuse and reinforce inside toileting) the real bugger of the situation is now my previously perfectly house trained cat has decided if Max can do it so can he!!! Grrrr not happy! Which brings me to number 3...
3. Adult cats and puppies.... Jojo our resident feline has a major issue with the new pup. Jojo will actively seek Max out to attack him I followed all the rules of introduction including scent marking on both animals and their bedding to "trade" scents, confining the pup, confining the cat, making sure Jojo still sees himself as the dominant one out of the two, giving treats for good behaviour, separating when Jojo gets that malicious look in his eye until the point that they were able to successfully ignore each other.....until max got a bit bigger and braver and has worked out that if he can just dodge the hisses and warnings he might be able to sneak up for a closer sniff.... He has the scratch marks on his little nose to prove that his sneakiness is not nearly sneaky enough. I'm worried that one of two things is going to happen 1: Jojo does land a well aimed swipe right at Max's eyes and does some serious damage or 2: Max grows up, gets bigger and decides he doesn't want to be 2IC to a cat anymore... Bye bye Jojo if that ever happens.... Max is already mocking the cat (until I find out and interven) and now Jojo is seen at dinner times only and self-banishes himself away for the rest of the day and night... Not a way to live a life but I don't know what to do...
4. Mouthing and nipping. So I'm doing it all, ask, tell, command, reward but Max finds our NO TEETH POLICY extremely hard to cope with. He has broken skin on both my kids during play times and doesn't seem to understand that he is allowed to play but just without the teeth. He goes to play, first thing he does is clamp onto a hand, finger, ankle, toe or piece of clothing, play stops, he is told "no bities" he is rewarded when he calms down enough to let go of whatever body part is in his mouth then as soon as play starts he right back at it.... It's been a month now of consistency but he isn't getting it. My kids love to play with him but each week he is getting bigger and his mouthing is getting stronger.... It's at the point now that the kids cannot play unless I'm right outside to stop max from playing also... Yep it sucks for everyone involved and the stop, wait, reward method just is not working it's only causing max to think he isn't allowed to play anymore as he doesn't know any other way to do it. I'm wondering about bad tasting but no harmful ideas for stuff we can rub or spray onto our clothing hands and feet as a deterrent ... Any ideas on this would be great.
5. DIGGING!!! So I'm home all day with him, he is walked twice a day and with me 90% of the day. He comes for a two daily drives to do the school runs, socialises with children twice a day on the same run, has a box full of toys including kongs that are always packed and ready to go when I need some down time. He has my 5yo daughter playing fetch for what seems like hours on her days off, has every second day to play with my sisters husky bitch, sleeps inside, has the run of inside or outside all day... BUT.... His digging is getting beyond the joke. He knows he gets in trouble if he gets caught so has taken to going down the side of the house and out of site to get his dig fix so that when I walk out the side to hang out the clothes, Whoops there goes mummy and the clean washing sprawled all over the lawn again as she fell down the hole!!!
Ok so I think that's about it for now, lol sorry for the long post but thought it better then clogging up the forum with a heap of individual posts.
Any and all advice or criticism is most welcome.
Thanks in advance!!