My first Rottie: A few questions

by Kenia Trinidad
(Cranston, RI)

Hi all,
I just got my first rottie 2 weeks ago when he was 6 weeks old.
He is now 8 weeks old today :)
My husband named him Hercules!

Ok so here are my questions:

1. He is in biting stage right now.
How long will this last? and
What are some good techniques to use to prevent him from biting anything else besides his toys?

2. I already had a dog name Cindy she is a bichon frise and is 8 years old. She is not very fond of Hercules and gets annoyed when he wants to play with her or gets near her.

What can I do to make sure they get along? or I guess a better question would be:

What can I do so that Cindy likes Hercules?

I don't want to keep them separate of fear that they'll go after each other.

Thank you for all your help :)

Hi Kenia,
Congrats on your new puppy! A quick look at your questions and then I'll leave it to the fantastic Rottweiler-owners community here to give you advice :)

1. ALL puppies nip and bite, it's absolutely normal puppy behavior. Some breeds, and some individual puppies, are more stubborn about it than others. Rotties are not especially nippy, but it's always going to happen when they're young.

Puppies taken from their momma and littermates before they're 8 weeks old tend to be much worse at nipping and biting, because they didn't have enough time to learn bite-inhibition (how hard they can bite before getting into trouble!) within their 'doggie family' setting. The weeks from 4 to 8 are when the momma dog teaches her pups correct social behavior and the interaction of the puppies with each other re-inforces that.

Your pup missed out on at least 50% of these lessons, so you're going to need to have to step up and do the job! This page.... Stop Puppy Biting has all the tips and advice you need to make sure Hercules learns that this behavior is NOT okay. You won't put an end to it overnight though. It takes lots of time, patience and persistence to help him un-learn this habit, but you will be successful if you follow those guidelines and stick with it.

2. Again it's perfectly normal for the older resident dog to resent the new puppy. Most older dogs already have their routine and their life is peaceful and just how they like it :) Then along comes a rambunctious puppy to annoy, irritate and generally upset the status-quo. It's expected that they would feel put out, sometimes jealous too.

This web-page... Introducing A New Puppy gives you tons of help and explains what to expect during those early weeks, and how to handle it.

There is absolutely no reason why you should have to keep these two separated. Cindy will set the ground rules and Hercules will learn where she draws the line. He might be clumsy and bouncy, but he won't try to hurt her intentionally. Most puppies understand and respect an older dog, no matter if he/she is much smaller than them!

Plus older dogs are more tolerant and accepting of puppies than they are other adult dogs. Cindy will let Hercules know when he's crossed the line and a little bit of growling, a snap and so on from her is also perfectly normal.

Just be patient, give them a chance to get to know each other and work this out. Obviously supervise them at all times until all the kinks are worked out of their relationship, but you only need to step in if one of them is getting 'bullied' to the point of distress or physical harm, and this is very, very rare. Usually if it does happen it's down to over-excitement and too much enthusiasm, mostly on the puppy's part.

If that happens, correct the 'instigator', separate them for a short while with a time-out, and then go back to normal.

Hope this helps. Best of luck with your extended canine family :)

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Jul 25, 2013
Sibling Bonding NEW
by: Anonymous

Congrats on your new baby! Ours is 16 weeks and we have a 10 year old Australian Sheppard. She is our first female, which intentionally did as we didn't want there to be any alpha issues.

One thing we do for the sibling bonding is we intentionally walk them together. We take them on Zach's (our Aussie)walking path. It has helped because Ade (our pup) is dependent on him to lead her. If she gets a little spooked, she is right at his side. She walks right next to him and for now, won't walk without him (we will work on this in time). This has lead to some really great bonding between the two and helped reassure Zach that he is still a very valued and needed member of this family.

The other thing we have done is since Ade is training, we have found a new spot take both of them for her to do her training, a place they can not be territorial over and explore together when they have "free" time. Ade will take Zach's leash and walk him through the field when we are there....and Zack let's her. The are becoming fast friends and yes, Ade does "attack" her big brother and as said before, he plays right along with her and when he is done he lets her know and she gets it and walks away to come and nip at mommy's ankles. I say owe and act sad and she stops puts her head down and when she does that, I love on her!! It is a beautiful ebb and flow and don't worry, your kids will find their rhythm. Thanks for letting me share!!

Mar 08, 2013
nipping NEW
by: Anonymous

All you have to do is YELP as LOUD AS IT TAKES every time he nips you. Yelp not holler.... big difference.... Owwie or ugh ugh works really well. just enough to stop the nipping when in the act but not enough to frightened him. You dont want him afraid of you bcuz he will become defensive.

Feb 14, 2013
Congratulations!! NEW
by: Judy

Welcome to the world of Rottie love..a world like no other :) I am on my 3rd and couldn't imagine owning any other breed..A good thing to do is everytime he is biting something he shouldn't be is take it away and replace it with what he is allowed to chew..Make sure his toy box if full at all times..They say you know when you have enough toys when you get up in the middle of the night and almost break your neck tripping on thing we found good for 'teething' was ice..To this day she loves them..Think about soothing is it to have the pain freezed while teething? no different then when we freeze rings for children to chew on and after all they are our 4 legged there cheap!! I also give knuckle bones from the butcher and they last forever..try to get the kind with the marrow in them and boil for 2 minutes and dig out 80% of it then put in cold water to speed cool..Of course he will love them so you will have to be on top of 'food aggression' when that starts..Just make sure to take it away and give it back often as to build his trust with you that he will indeed get it back..Good luck with your new baby and PLEASE share some pictures..This site also has a spot where you can share his growth with's the section..My girl Angel is in there and every month I would send a new photo to add..She is now 2 and 'almost' mature..Don't think they ever really luck with your new 'kid'..

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