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Growls and Bites at Small Children

Discussion in 'Boxers & Children' started by BoxingBud, Dec 20, 2013.

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  1. BoxingBud

    BoxingBud Boxer Pal

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    Hi Everyone, this is my first post in the forums! My wife and I have three little girls who are 4, 6, and 8 in age. Two weeks ago we became proud new owners of a 10-week-old, male brindle boxer puppy. After a few days, I noticed that he will lunge, growl, and bite at the kids at random points during the day but he doesn't do it to my wife and I. The girls do not play rough with him at all, and they are never left alone with the puppy; therefore I know they have not mistreated him in any way. Despite this somewhat-occasional behavior, he will lay down in the kids' laps and fall asleep too. The behavior I described seems not to be provoked by any certain action either. It happens when the kids aren't even paying attention to him, and it happens when the kids decide to try and pet him. Like I said, it's not constant... but it's enough to concern me and ask the question "why?". His name is Vince and he's a wonderful, friendly puppy! I just want to make sure that he respects the kids. Thanks in advance for your help!

    - Bill
     
  2. Jan

    Jan Reasonable Moderator Staff Member

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    Sounds like he is just being a boxer puppy! He just needs to learn appropriate behavior and bite inhibition. It is a slow process, it takes time. :)

    If you do a search on bite inhibition, you will find lots of useful information!

    Good luck!
     
  3. Cami

    Cami Boxer Insane

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    Seems totally normal for his age. Boxers are very vocal. It is more than likely a play growl, play lunging to invite them to play and biting is how they learn about their surroundings and they need to be taught to have a soft bite/bite inhibition.
    Not a mean or disrespectful, aggressive bone in his body at 10 weeks of age. I am not saying he can't get frustrated, tired, ornery, etc....just like human children can and do but he isn't being mean at all towards your children.
    This is a common question/concern "new to the Boxer breed" parents have! You will eventually learn what all his noises mean. Get ready for those play growls to sound horrendous as he ages but by then you will know that he means no harm...just wants a playmate!
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2013
  4. Kisaq

    Kisaq Super Boxer

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    Oh my gosh yes! My 2year old boxer sounds just ferocious when he gets to "talking" while playing. He rarely barks ... he's just vocal sometimes. He also loves to leap and spin and prance and bow...

    Your pup sounds like he thinks your kids are more puppies. And in a way they are to him so far. But boxers tend to be very appropriate with children once they learn they are a little more delicate than the adults.

    I second the notion that you should do some research on Bite Inhibition (as apposed to bite prohibition). It teaches them to measure the strength of their mouthing play and it's a great example of early stages of impulse control training and NILIF too - which will be another couple of things you'll want to look up just 'cause. :)

    Jean Donaldson's "The Culture Clash" is a good start and it has a whole bunch of other useful tips in there too.
    :)

    Have fun! And congratulations!
     
  5. Roge

    Roge Boxer Insane

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    Yes I agree with the above..Its all in play or wanting to get the children to play with him.. When training make sure to include the children so that they too will learn how to act around him and how to stop unwanted behaviour..
    You have very young children and I am glad to read that you do not leave your pup alone with them .
    Good luck with the training ....with 3 little ones and a Boxer pup im sure that there will be fun times ahead :)
     
  6. BoxingBud

    BoxingBud Boxer Pal

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    Thank you to everyone for your reply and positive responses!
     
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