Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Biting, Barking, Exercise for 11 Week Pup

by Mimi
(Seattle, WA)

We've had our pup since she was about 8 weeks and we are coming up on 11 weeks. She is a sweetheart and terribly smart - we are enjoying training her. We are thrilled to have her!

I have the following questions and would appreciate any experienced help:

1) I live in the forested suburbs of the Pacific Northwest. She is not yet fully vaccinated and I don't have a large yard, but I do have a ton of open green space around me. Unfortunately for her, dogs are everywhere up here. Where and what kind of exercise can I give my pup while protecting her until her last vaccination? We go out 2-3 times a day to covered parking lots and short stretches of green. Can we go on walks on concrete?

2) She is biting/nipping and when she is feeling particularly confident, she really goes bites a lot. Will this phase go away? She doesn't seem to be all that affected if I yelp or calmly get up and leave, which I've done frequently.

3) Additionally she barks at me when I offer her a correction - mostly when she nips and bites me. Even just giving her a look makes her bark. She does offer to sit (which I assume is her attempt to cooperate) but she does not look at me and she barks before walking off. What does this mean? Should I correct it? Is this a challenge?

4) She also tries to herd me during our walks by cutting me off. I try to jog slowly alongside her but it's only a few steps before she cuts in front of me, very dangerous.

Are these things normal? Thanks for your help!

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Comments for Biting, Barking, Exercise for 11 Week Pup

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I know how you feel..
by: Julia Hayward

Our girl, Phoenix, was exactly the same when it came to training. She would begrudgingly sit if you asked her to, but would give me a challenging stare and bark if you looked back at her without breaking eye contact. I figured it was probably just her way of testing boundaries and discovering, little by little, who is top dog. With time, training, and positive reinforcement, she no longer challenges us when we say commands; of course, if she's feeling stubborn, she sure takes her time carrying them out!

Biting, Barking...
by: Charles


I'll venture a couple of answers.

Regarding the nipping and barking of your puppy; mine did the same thing for quite awhile. Neither my wife nor I are great "trainers" but we do understand social order among dogs. You will have to remain firm, yet patient in your efforts to curb your dogs habit of nipping and barking.

Our dog still tries to herd us when we walk or run with him on a leash. It was more clumsy when he was very young, but he still does it. Now, however, he is less likely to trip either of us up.

My sister brought her 4 yr old son over the other day. It was hilarious watching our Aussie herd him around the living room. He can be rough, but so can a four year Mainer...

Exercise/ nipping
by: Anne

Hi Everything you are talking about are aussie traits. I am an obedience dog trainer.
You can e-mail me privately and I can help you with suggestions.

Anne Calmes
Gold Ring Aussies
Louisiana, USA

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