Hello we recently rescued a 9 week old female rotty. She is great and is doing well with her adjustment except for one thing… When she is laying down getting ready to go to sleep or already asleep, and we or our other dog lay beside her or even touch her she growls and shows her teeth, sometimes she even snaps at our other dog.
I’m not sure how well she was taken care of in her previous home because if you even raise you voice at her she acts and sounds as if you beat her half to death.
Any advice and opinions would be greatly appreciated . I refuse to get rid of her she is our baby. We just want to help her.
At 9 weeks old your puppy is a tiny baby, and it’s only in extremely rare cases that you see true aggression at this age. Any growling or snapping is more likely to be a normal reaction to what the puppy sees as a threat, something that makes her scared or uncomfortable.
The way your little girl reacts to a raised voice indicates that she’s either a pretty nervous puppy, or has maybe been treated a little too roughly previously. I really hesitate to be guess at how a puppy has been treated in an earlier home, or by a breeder, because it’s too easy to assume that a puppy who acts scared, or hates men etc. etc. has been mistreated. Often it’s simply that the pup has a naturally anxious personality inherited from her parents genetically, or learned by watching an anxious momma dog for example. But occasionally of course there has been a problem with the way a puppy has been cared for.
Regardless, your pup needs to learn that she shouldn’t be afraid or scared of you but you should never raise your voice, or your hand, to a puppy. That will only teach her to fear you (and rightly so) and will make building a relationship of love and trust almost impossible. Worse still, as she matures she is likely to react to this sort of treatment with stubborn defiance – adult Rottweilers do not respond well to an ‘in your face’ attitude or treatment.
She does need to learn that she must not growl or snap at anyone, and this is taught through constant firm, but loving, corrections. I’d recommend checking out my stop puppy biting and taking care of a puppy pages for tips and advice on helping her learn the correct behavior.
She will need lots of love and attention, and also plenty of ongoing socialization to help build her self-confidence and the bond between you. She’s not a ‘bad’ puppy and definitely there’s absolutely no reason to think that she needs to be found another home or anything like that. Raising puppies is like raising children and there are always going to be challenges, phases and stages they go through, and so on… but the relationship is for keeps. Normal puppy behavior can often be misinterpreted by new owners, especially with large guardian breeds who tend to be viewed with more suspicion than many others.
I’d also suggest getting her enrolled in a formal obedience class for puppies as soon as she’s had all her puppy vaccinations – it will benefit all of you.
I hope this helps and wish you lots of luck with your new puppy.