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how do I get my baby Thor to listen and obey

Thor has been super stubborn for the past week and its only getting worse... idk if its his age or what but he is starting to refuse listening to me and wont stop disobeying please can someone help with some pointers... plz and thank you


  • philsergeantphilsergeant Palm City, Florida, USA
    edited October 2013
    The only consolation that you have is to know that he wants to please you. At the same time he wants to dominate you... So he is just trying to work out how far he and stretch your love and see if he can become your boss. You need to find the appropriate admonitions for the respective behaviour.... If he is doing something bad, depending on how bad it is, you need find the appropriate response.... If he is chewing your slipper you need to take it away, tap him on the nose, shout NO and wag your finger at him.... If he is biting hard at your ankle you need to grab him by the neck, pin him to the ground, scream NO in his ear and ( if you have to do this too often) whack him on the butt. ( these are just examples only you know you and the dog).
    If he is not doing something that you want him to do, like pulling away and not coming where you want him to come, ( again, for example) you need to encourage him and reward him when he does it... Just as powerfully as you discourage him from bad things... He must quickly learn that Charles is in Charge and that he is not the boss and he must please you and not pain you... Do it with love, never get mad ( oh shit, that's easier to type than it is to do) and do it every time.... Unfortunately it takes time... Try not to have other distractions around while you are dealing with him... Sometimes I make the mistake of taking Marco in my office when I have a conference call scheduled... If he gets out of hand when the call's going down... I can't treat him properly... I treat him according the way the call allows....that's wrong.... If you can't focus on him, leave him in his box.... You get my drift.... Good luck... I'm sure others have other/ better techniques.
    In the beginning God created English Bull Terriers, in the image of EBT's, God created all other breeds.
  • BulliesofNCBulliesofNC Richlands, NC
    Everything Phil said above is right on the mark. EBT's have a long puppy stage and will try your patience every chance that get. They all go through a rebellious stage and the degree of their negative behavior will depend on your training and the time you spend with him. Unfortunately you're going to have more difficulty than most because you work all day and Thor is left home alone. By the time you come home his energy level is probably overwhelming. He's still very young and I'd be lying if I told you it's going to get easier because the hardest ages are between 4 - 10 months. It's all about training and time spent with them. Once they're about 12 months they start calming down a bit and listening better. Somewhere between 14-24 months it will be light a light came on and your Bullie will become a lot more attentive, obedient, and manageable in every way because their desire to be destructive and deliberately mischievous will fade. They will always possess boundless energy and spunk but their unwanted behavior disappears with maturity and time spent training them.

    - Steve Gogulski
    "It's not just a Dog, it's a Bull Terrier!"
  • philsergeantphilsergeant Palm City, Florida, USA
    edited October 2013
    Oh hell yes.. I forgot to go over what Steve highlighted.... If you work all day you're best off getting a miner's helmet and go out before sunlight and give him a good run/ workout ( 40 minutes if you can manage) to drain his energy before you leave him for the day... And another brisk ( 20 minute if you can manage) walk when you get home... That will make him so much more attentive and trainable... Otherwise, as Steve says, he'll just be a coiled spring when you are trying to teach him some manners.
    In the beginning God created English Bull Terriers, in the image of EBT's, God created all other breeds.
  • Thanks guys for the responses I will most definitely be trying these techniques out to see what fits us better... but I will be able to spend more time with Thir do to the fact I get out alot earlier now... but I will be getting us into puppy classes to better educate me and Thor better and to build our bond stronger but its like one day he is great and the next he is bad but iv been trying stuff and some works and some dosent but these response arena never step ahead to help me and Thor.... but thank you and if anymore advise would be much appreciated thank you guys 
  • I've noticed that in our case, the days Stoeger doesn't get a lot of exercise is when he is a fireball and hard to tame. Then after some bully runs and a little rake chasin he is all better!
  • If you haven't already-start doing NILF training, its a sanity saver in the long run!!!!

    NILF stands for

    "Nothing In Life is FREE" training meaning-he gets NOTHING without doing SOMTHING.

    he wants on the couch? make him wait until he is invited.

    he wants his breakfast? make him wait until he is done jumping up or begging for it while sitting or lieing politely.

    he wants his toys-make him do some tricks for one.

    he wants to be petted or wants your attention? ignore him until YOU decide to give him attention.

    he wants to go for a walk? make him sit and be polite while you put on his lead and then wait for you to allow him to walk thru the open door.

    He needs to learn to  be calm and respect you, he will learn that by you running a strict but fair household.

    When Cesar began going thru puberty-he was actually snapping at my mom and my nephew trying to guard food and bones.

    he would run away while off lead and not listen to me.

    I ran an incredibly strict routine with him, before he was allowed out of his crate in the morning he had to be calm and wait for me to invite him out (with the crate door open while I walked across the room) he could not leave his crate unless I asked him to.

    then before he could go outside to go potty he  had to sit and wait with the front door open until I said it was okay to leave the house.

    everytoy I touched he had to let go of and leave alone till I gave it to him, if I said "no more" and set the toy on the floor in front of him-he was not allowed to touch it unless I said he could.

    he was not allowed on furniture unless I invited him.

    if I layed on the floor he was not allowed to even sniff me unless I invited him to.

    he was not allowed to drink water unless I said he could.


    this seems harsh-but I was never cruel, I never yelled or hit him or grabbed him, I was gentle and fair.

    he was offered water when ever he was good or atleast every half hour.

    he was allowed to play with his toys freely so long as he was being good.

    he was called onto the furniture whenever he was beng respectful and good-I always made sure to reward his good behavior.


    another thing you should look into is picking up a copy of the book

    "When pigs fly" by Jane Killion

    a very good read on  using the clicker and using your bullies desires  (other then food) to help them want to work with you.


    Remember- To have a happy obedient dog you need 2 things

    Respect-and- trust.

    a dog will not respect you for being loving towards them-but they will not trust you for being hard either.

    you need to be fair, but firm.

    meaning-don't without hold  water from your thirsty dog because your angry or frustrated.

    don't without affection because you don't feel like it

    and don't reward because your dog is asking for it.


  • Thanks for all the input and im gonna try and stay firm with these steps to get to where we wonna be... but I do play and try to exercise with him in a good and healthy way to can him fit and satisfied with his daily routine... but today he actually was not doing so bad but a few mishaps... but I got lucky with my baby because he wants to up and about but he is always ready to go sleep lol but I know thats not gonna last... but on another note im gonna have to start these practices to get him to where he needs to be in a good and healthy but firm situation. .. thank yall for this responses and I will try everything yall have told me to try and we will get to where we need to be :)
  • They are 3 yr. Olds in a dog suit treat them with love but a firm hand and clear rules and consistant punishment and in time they just miraculously get it. It is a LONG puppy stage some are easier than others but they all get their. Patients is a virtue.
    Your actions speak so loudly I cannot hear your words.
  • Oh yea I did my studying before I got him and I knew the situation I was getting into but its still hard to make sure I get him to where he needs to be and I hope that long road ahead of me goes by quick lol but ill cherish every moment :) but I hope the classes help out alot to im kinda low on money right now so cant get him in just yet but I will and still work on his training in thebmeen time... thanks again I cant stress enough with as much as yall help :)
  • Thor, I'm sorry but I laughed so hard when I read the title of your thread. I laughed only because we are smack dab in the middle of the stubborn stage. Hucklebutting, nipping the kids, and most recently kitchen counter surfing. Last night he pulled down a refried bean filled container. I stand there any think "OMG, how many times do you have to get your ass spanked before you listen?". There were times I cried and even had the shakes. They sure do push you to your limit. Sergio's mom and I were talking last week and I asked how something to cute can be so terrorizing???? Thor will get it eventually. I slowly (very slowly) can see changes in Apollo. Just like Steve said to me, "the light bulb will go off. One day it will just click". Good luck!
  • I never thought an animal could be so stubborn. The boy out of my pair just refuses to walk properly 75% of the time. He is always pulling in one direction or the other, crossing back and forth. I think I could teach a rock to obey faster. I dont know how many times I can correct him and half a second later he just does it again. They drive you to the edge sometimes.
    One Bully is just not enough
  • Just want everyone with puppies to remember:

    They go thru puberty around 6-9 months-and it normally doesn't end until around 18 months.

    so be prepared for lots of snotty, bratty, embarrassing, stubborn puppy behavior and be prepared to be supervising them nearly 24/7 for the first 2 years.


    BUT-know that its normal for your 16 month old to not act like a 16 month old and to be stubborn and do everything they can to push your buttons (including thigns they already know they are not supposed to do!)

  • All I'm going to say is be in for a ride and lots of sacrifice. I haven't really gone out and havent done much since I got Spud.
  • Dang everything yall are saying is the same exact things Thor does to the T lol and I hate giving him spankings and he gets the no biteing concept with me at least... I dont feal as bad now that im the only one I just dont want him to think be afraid of me thats why I dont like having to be super harsh on him... but he walks but alot of times I have to pull him alittle and he gets back on track with me... but hope he knows im doing it for his best interest... but I hope everyone on this thread has good progress with there pups just as I do :) post on here if yall have any progress with there pups id love to know
  • I used to say Willie did NOT want to please us. From 5 mos to about 16 mos she was a brat!  Eventually the 'light' went off in her head.  I saw you said you do not want Thor affraid of you, but 'tough love' is needed at that age.  We do not hit our dogs, but we do put Willie down if she becomes nasty.  You have to establish alfa at this age.  You're right, classes to better educate you and Thor as to how to handle situations and build a bond is definately the right choice.

  • Oh yea I try not to spank him but it gets so hard at time lol but iv been switching to pining him down.... and was he has been the biggest brat but wants to love sometimes... but oh yes classes will be the best option for us 2 but gotta wait a couple weeks... but like I said im glad im not the only one I dont feal as bad now
  • For Trayler to stop "biting/nibbling" I use one rolled up sheet of newspaper.  I very seldom swat him because when he sees it,  he stops real quick.
  • edited October 2013
    I opted for a wooden spoon. I was scared Apollo would start to fear my hand if I always spanked his arse. I didn't want to see him cower when I went to pet him. So, the spoon started off good. One good wack and he knew what it was if I pulled it out. Now I pull it out and he thinks it's a game. Jumps around on the couch and tried to bite it. The water bottle used to work too. Yesterday, me and my 2 kids all got nipped. Actually it was more than nips but not hard clamp down bites. My daughter got the worst of it when she went to throw out the trash from her lunch box. He went after the wrapper and latched on to her hand. I finally got so fed up with it, I pinned him down and bit him back!
  • If you want a harmless way of getting them to obey you can always use the water bottle. Spray when they are doing something that they shouldn't.
  • I can get him to listen alot better now after I started pinning him down the other day its really working. .. and apollo im terribly sorry about that I hope yall can get his actions under control.... but I think im gonna keep trying to pin method from the changes made from the past few days are working as I can see its a great method :)
  • He's not jumped and nipped since yesterday! ;) Hopefully we "nipped" it in the bud! Keep pinning, it does work!
  • Yep yep I sure have been pinning him and its working wonders.... it crazy how one thing works in just a day or 2 :)
  • I knew nothing about pinning them down when I had a bull terrier around 30 years ago, but wish I did.  I got her when I was in college, so I was a push over and knew NOTHING about what was the best way to train a bull terrier.  I thought she'd just miraculously behave.  I hired a private trainer, but even he grew frustrated with her.  Now, much older and wiser, we are capable and ready to commit the substantial time and effort.  We have waited because we know that this is a full-time job but the rewards will be bountiful.

    She would gnaw on my ankles constantly, bringing me to tears.  One day, I grew so frustrated that I bit her back.  She stopped in her tracks like I've never seen before and I'll never forget the look on her face of, "Hey, what did you do that for?  That wasn't nice."  She stopped biting me thereafter, immediately. 

    Having raised two kids away at college, I've learned a lot since my college days about consistency and never getting lax about expectations.  All of the advice above is great.  Best of luck with Thor, but I know he's going to be a wonderful companion for you.  You are working hard and seeking advice from people that have been there before.  I do wish this forum had been around 30 years ago. 
  • So did you get her rabies shots after you bit her? LOL

    Trayler has been with me almost 24/7 since I got him.  Yesterday I went fishing so the wife had Trayler duty and when I go home, Trayler was out of control even with me.  I had to get very stern with him and put him to bed early...mistake, he normally sleeps all night but woke me up at 3 am for a potty call.

    So far today, he's back to being himself ..nipping at my ankle then stops and gives me that sly look when he sees me grab the rolled up newspaper.  Gotta love it.
  • edited October 2013
    I've been sitting back taking in all the good info here in this thread.

    We have been pinning Stoeger ever since reading about that technique. Finding it here only reinforces the effectiveness of the "make the puppy submit" puppy training tool.

    Our experience is that it works for a little while after being administered. Lately Stoeger has become VERY mouthy.

    He's 16 1/2 weeks old. We've had him since 6 1/2 weeks old. 99.9% of those ten weeks he has been at one of our sides.

    When one of us has been gone for a while and then returns... That is when he gets extremely excited to welcome his "other" favorite human home. During this greeting he goes bonkers rubbing himself on our pant legs (like a cat) as we stand and eventually jumping. Obviously we pet him and give him all the love he deserves. This is when he doesn't have a problem closing his mouth on a hand or forearm. He's not trying to tear it off but I feel if I pulled back his sharp baby teeth will certainly tear skin.

    We get him to sit prior to getting pet (we even make strangers wait to pet him till he sits). But once we do physically touch him is when the mouthing begins.
  • philsergeantphilsergeant Palm City, Florida, USA
    The best way to stem the mouthing, in my experience, is extremely loud and "angry" NO's... Parentheses on angry because only sound angry.... Coupled with pinning and mouth closing restrain... They'll get the message after 10 or 12 ear screams... They gotta feel that you're pissed and won't stand for it. ( I know it's tough when you love hem so much).
    In the beginning God created English Bull Terriers, in the image of EBT's, God created all other breeds.
  • Yea see im sorry for everyone haveing probblems and I really do hope yall get them handle and good look and loveing everybody's inputs on this thread.... iv been doing pretty good with Thor aand he has been doing pretty good but still haveing little knuckle head moments and trys to push his luck but the pin method has done wonders since.... :) thanks guys keep up the good work to us all
  • Seon, Lol! 

    This thread is bringing back so many memories of how hard-headed my dog was.  She was so c-ra-zy for a few years, but she did eventually calm down just like others have experienced.  The thing that set her off into orbit was when I'd go to my parents' home.  They would babysit her when I went out of town and they always fed her in one particular corner, and my Mom would fatten her up.  She would charge for that corner and one time my nephew was between her and the corner and she went like a bullet train between his legs and picked him up off of the ground several inches and tossed him getting to that corner to see if there was food. 
  • Exiled, I also go fed up with biting and bit Apollo back!!! It was just over the weekend. He keeps jumping and biting at my daughter. Well he left a nice sized bite mark under her armpit. Down he went and out came my teeth, right in his neck. I should have had my daughter do it though because he still bites and jumps at her.
  • Apollosmama, I'm so sorry that she bit your daughter, especially where she bit her.  That must still be sore.  I know exactly how you felt.  It was like I couldn't stand being gnawed on any longer, and gnawing is the best way to describe what she did to my ankles.  It HURT!

    I was in college, so it was just me with her.  Does she do it more to your daughter since she's obviously smaller than an adult?  Now my kids are away at college and much taller than me, so I'll be the smallest person in our household and probably the target. 
  • My daughter is 13 and just about as big as me. 5'1''. The problem there is she is the weakest link. He totally walks all over her. I tell her constantly she has to be firm, but all she does is get ticked off. I've been making her take him out the potty since that's when it usually occurs. He jumps and jumps and nips at her. I noticed bruises on her arms today. The bite mark is fading now. Just one hickey type mark left. Today was a good day for them. Who knows what tomorrow will bring! :) I'm just happy that someone else did what I did. I remember my cousin as a child would bite, so one day my aunt bit him back. It worked, so I tried it!
  • philsergeantphilsergeant Palm City, Florida, USA
    Our Marco has never really "nipped" , but Isabella used to nip, only at my wife, quite a bit when she was 6-8 months... My wife used to get SOOO pissed because she always snagged her boobies, and you know how ladies love bruises on their treasures! But in honesty, she only did it out of desire for attention or to demonstrate love, ( in a dumb way!) ... But especially if Marco was around and she wanted to dominate the attention, out of jealousy essentially .... She never did it with me and hardly ever does it now at 10 months.... As long as you (and your daughter especially, shame, bless her) ... Show total displeasure with that behaviour he'll drop it by the time he is 9 months or so.
    In the beginning God created English Bull Terriers, in the image of EBT's, God created all other breeds.
  • Ok, so I need to know if you can give me pointers on pinning----maybe I am doing it wrong. Roxanne god love her is ripping all our clothes by jumping and bitting. I call her my devil child. No doesn't work, yelling ouch worked briefly, clapping my hands sharply will get her attention but she is right back at it. I have tried pinning her and she growls, wriggles, barks and bites. I block her with my knee but she just keeps coming. I have read flicking at the ear, wacking nose or butt . I don't want to do the wrong thing and make her ugly,,,but the pinning seems to let the psycho out in her, hellllp :)
  • Our devil child :)
    2592 x 1936 - 952K
  • I would try the airhorn and a LOUD NO!!!!!! REPEAT to pin them lay on side and hold neck to the floor.
    Your actions speak so loudly I cannot hear your words.
  • Also yelling NO you gotta mean buisness though
    Your actions speak so loudly I cannot hear your words.
  • I had a pup, who chooses to remain nameless for the moment, that turned into the devil's spawn at about 5-6 months old. She was great (for a bully) before then. I tried everything I could think of to stop the jumping and biting. Finally resorted to pinning her. Well, if that didn't turn her into an even sneakier b*tch :) I'd wrestle the murderous beast to the floor, pin her and wait out the tantrum until she'd completely calmed down. Stand up, wipe the sweat off my face and walk away.....and she jump up and bite me in the ass!!! It was all a big game to her. Back of me was covered in bruises for about 2 months.
    It is just a phase though, and if you can live through it, I'm sure you'll laugh about it later. My "nameless" girl is fabulous now :)
  • BulliesofNCBulliesofNC Richlands, NC
    I agree completely with Rumour in regard to it being a phase. It seems to be fairly common with this breed as well. They get very amped up as puppies and will test your nerves and patience to the fullest extent. There comes a time where some need to be disciplined with seriousness that is understood by them.

    - Steve Gogulski
    "It's not just a Dog, it's a Bull Terrier!"
  • Oh thank god because Rumour, I thought I was doing something wrong...Roxanne turns into the devils spawn when I pin her and does the same thing. I will keep on. I was afraid I would be making her mean the way she acts :) I half expect her head to start spinning at any given moment. I have been running and walking her so ......oh I hear my husband saying no right now... She is up and ready to go :). But what do you feel about the other methods as well, should we try the bitting etc? And by the way we couldn't love her any more than we do right now
    2592 x 1936 - 878K
  • @jmallar earlier you mentioned when you ever pinning down you would get scratched etc. the exact same happened to me, and she would go berserk! So I changed my technique it seems to work better if I can explain it properly.... I pin her down on her back rolled to her side the hand that has her neck ( that sounds horrible I'm doing it gently ) that arm now rests on her tummy flat against her cause I found if my arms where up holding her I'd get scratched to bits I also hold her back end down with my other arm. It has seemed to work better for me as she is less feisty this way or she has got used to it. Hope this helps you I'm never one to give advise as I'm a learner with ebt as well but it may help ;)
  • Stoeger does this as well. It seems it happens when he has excess energy though. If I see he getting riled up I just take him and his new flirt pole outside and it usually does the trick. But at night or when the weather is bad is when it's gets a little complicated. We are still trying to find ways to release energy inside that doesn't caused the house to come tumbleling down! I have to pin him sometimes and he goes crazy and when he calms I release but he too thinks it's a game.
    Our trainer taught me a good way, that works for us, to help calm him down. I put his prong and leash on, have him sit, then down and make him stay down for at leash ten mins. With him down I put my foot on the leash and hold it with my foot fairly close to his neck so he can't get up. He tries sometimes but knows now that he can't get up unless I tell him he can.
    This has worked wonders in our house! The trainer also says that it helps the dog to understand that we are I control not him.
    If I didn't explain well just let me know and I can post a video.
  • Jai24 I found that too if my arm is across her it helps. Yes, I would love a video to see, I need to make sure I keep on top of all ways to let her know we are in control.

    She is funny, she keeps us on our toes, it is good for my husbands therapy he is enjoying every minute with her good or bad
  • I'll help Stoges_mom shoot the vid and we will post it.

    I will also take a vid of how I pin Stoge when he misbehaves, I believe it is a similar technique to what Jai24 is explaining.

    The prong, leash, foot technique is great. I do not like when dogs "Sit" and stare at me when I'm eating. So it is imperative that Stoeger lays down when I'm eating. He already does "Down" very well. But the temptation of seeing and smelling what I'm doing is too much for him. With the prong, leash & foot method he is quickly getting the idea. Last night, (off leash) he did "Down" and stayed down for quite some time while I ate dinner. We praised him and he quickly lost interest in my dinner and wandered off.
  • Oh yes please. Let me know when u post it,
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