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Helpful Advice

This is a forum for bonding with your fellow Dogsters about the traits, quirks and idiosyncrasies of your favorite breed. Please remember that there are absolutely no animal sales or requests for studding or breeding allowed on our sites. All posts and interactions should be in the spirit of Dogster's Community Guidelines and should be fun, friendly and informational. Enjoy!

  
Tanka

1284970
 
 
Barked: Thu Feb 7, '13 5:10pm PST 
Our Tanka is a sweet 3 month old pup. We did some research prior to getting our Akita. We also talked to different breeders and asked if our lifestyle would be suitable for an Akita. My husband travels and is often gone for 6 weeks at a time. I work also and my office is 30 minutes away from my home, so I cannot come home for lunch. Of course, both breeders told us that an Akita would do fine in our home. They wanted to sell a puppy. We are now finding that our lifestyle is not suitable for our Tanka. When we first brought Tanka home, my husband was home with him every day for 3 weeks. We would spend time with Tanka in the evenings and the 3 of us were together on weekends. We also started Tanka in puppy school at 10 weeks of age. Then my husband had to go out of town. He built a large pen inside so that Tanka would have room and he is trained to use a box of cedar shavings for potty. We also tried crating him during the day when I am gone. When I get home, I walk him and play with him for at least an hour. I try to run him and exercise him and get his energy out. The problem I am having is, once we are done playing, he continually bites at me and comes after me. I have been firm with him, pushed him away, redirected him, and removed myself from him. He will do this relentlessly until he tires, for about 2 hours. I am very concerned that he is learning the pattern of this behavior when it is just me and Tanka. My husband came home for the weekend, Tanka did not have to be in the pen. The 3 of us were together and he was a totally different dog, so calm and appropriately playful. I have read other posts on here and some people are quick to say "you should have known better." Ok, but here we are and we're trying to figure out how to make this work. We live in a small community and doggie day care is not an available option. The nature of my husband's job is that he will be home for weeks, then gone for weeks and I am very concerned that this pattern will be a roller coaster for Tanka. Any helpful advice on how to make this situation less stressful for Tanka? Thanks
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MIKA&KAI

Akita Pals- Always.
 
 
Barked: Thu Feb 7, '13 10:52pm PST 
It can work out. Don't give up just yet. I understand that you work,is there any way that you can spend more than an hour playing with him? Akita puppies like all puppies have alot of energy and need some way to get rid of it. Being penned up all day he is over excited when you get home. To stop the nipping which I know is painful you are doing the right thing in trying to redirect but you have to keep redirecting even if it is 50 times in a row,you can also try ignoring him,he nips,you give him something appropriate to chew and turn away from him,do not look at him,talk to him or give him any type of attention until he calms down,when he is calm you can play again,if he nips again,repeat the same steps,if that fails after repeated attempts,put him back in his pen for a bit until he calms down,when he is calm let him out to play,if he nips,try redirecting,if it doesn't work,back to the pen,when he realizes that nipping ends playtime it will stop. Also,he is teething so he needs something other than you to soothe those gums,you can try some knotted strips of cloth soaked in sodium free broth and frozen,use only when supervised and replace with a fresh one when thawed,I always kept a supply of them handy,a kong with something like frozen canned food to keep him busy while you are away,there are also several toys available that are made to be frozen for teething puppies,that should help. Do you work with him on his commands at home such as sit,down,stay,etc... that he started learning in puppy classes? If so make him sit before you let him out of his pen,if you think he is going to lunge at you make him sit and give him a reward for listening,he really does need more than just an hour or so with you when you are there. Akita's bond very closely with their people and the more time you spend with him the better he will be,you also need to be firm and fair with him,if he is doing something that you like,such as laying quietly beside you,tell him he is a good boy. Most Akita's are very food motivated,so if you can find something he likes and work on his basic commands for short periods several times in an evening that will reinforce his learning and understanding of them,taking him for an hours walk or run,a good game of fetch,or something that burns off lots of energy is absolutely necessary or he will become bored and act up. I will happily help you and I'm sure others will chime in as well,you can do this,you just have to be willing to put in the effort to get him the exercise he needs,he also needs to be around other people and other dogs alot for the first year of his life,he should meet at least 100 new people during his first year alone and socialization should idealally be lifelong. Feel free to p-mail me if you have any other questions,concerns or need any other help,I will be happy to try my best to help you. I have known ,loved,studied,and raised Akita's for the past 17 years.
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MIKA&KAI

Akita Pals- Always.
 
 
Barked: Thu Feb 7, '13 11:12pm PST 
By the way 3 hours of exercise/play is typical for an Akita puppy daily,Tanka unfortunately because of your schedule has only a limited ammount of time each day when he can get that. Is there any way you could spend a little time playing before work? More on weekends? You unfortunately because you are the only one there during those weeks when your husband is gone will have to be sure to make the extra time for him to get enough exercise,when your husband is home you probably don't notice the ammount of time he is able to spend with Tanka while you are at work,which is why he seems so calm to you when your husband is around. He is not stressed,he is just a bit bored and lonely when you are not able to be with him,and over excited when he finally gets to see you,he will calm down as he gets a bit older,the first year with all of the teething going on tends to be tough on everyone,the nipping stops but they will chew anything they can get their teeth on. Relax you can do this and he will be fine. Just so you know,no good Akita breeder would tell you that your home is right for an Akita if it isn't. When we got our 3rd. Akita it was like adopting a child,we had to fill out an application,give personal references,vet references,and have a home visit just to get on the waiting list for a puppy,and this was not a show breeder,just a reputable Akita breeder who cares that their puppies get into the right hands. So not all Akita breeders are like the two you spoke with,there are good ones out there.
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