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March 12, 2012
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Conditioning Your Puppy to a New Environment

Conditioning Your Puppy to a New Environment

Cindy works engagement in the Leerburg offices with her Border Terrier puppy, Stella. Jeff discusses how to expose your puppy to distracting new places, people and situations through marker training with food rewards.

March 12, 2012 | 4 Minutes, 14 Seconds

Leerburg Q&A

Question: My 10 year old dog recently started showing signs of aggression towards our 11 month old son. We don't want to resort to get rid of her but his safety is more important. Is there anything else we can do?

I have read your article about introducing dogs and babies and I found it helpful but I still have a question. We have a dog who is about ten years old, Lady. Lady has never shown signs of aggression towards anyone until recently. My son is now 11 months and Lady has suddenly started growling at him almost every time she is around him. When she isn't growling it is like she completely ignores his presence, she even jumped on top of him when getting into the car one day. We don't want to resort to getting rid of her but his safety is more important to me. Is there anything else we can do?


I would keep the dog and child separated and only allow direct supervision (i.e. dog on leash) with no physical contact. The risk of an accident is too high.

If your dog doesn’t have a crate or kennel, then I would suggest getting one and using it. If this dog lived with me she’d learn about our groundwork program.

Pack Structure for the Family Pet DVD

With a 10 year old dog and a small child that will soon be walking, (if he isn’t already) keeping them separated is really the only way to ensure there isn’t an incident.

Here is a section on preventing dog bites in kids.

I hope this helps.

Cindy Rhodes

For more questions on this topic, see our Q&A on Dogs & Kids.


We get a number of Q&As every week, if you would like to read this week's Q&As, click here and check out the 'Recent Questions' section!

Have a question for Ed & Cindy? Try the Leerburg Search Engine. This search engine was written specifically for Leerburg by our in house IT manager. Our search engine is specific to Leerburg and only searches leerburg.com and the Leerburg web forum. If you can't find the answer to your question by using our search engine, you can email Cindy here at Leerburg at cindyr@leerburg.com. If you have your spam filter on, make sure you set it to receive our replies!!!

Customer Comments

Dear Cindy and Ed,

I wrote to you back in 2008 when I was attacked by my own dog and I also sent you an update last year. I just wanted to thank you both, again, for sharing your knowledge of dogs and dog training on your website, it is invaluable. If it wasn't for your website, I would not be where I am today with my dogs.

I've been able to attain a BH title with my Pit Bull, Dukie. My daughter has also become a young dog trainer (she's started at 10 and is now 13 years old). She has attained several titles with her Malinois, Hemus, in canine frisbee competitions. She also competed for the 1st time at a World Championship this past September with her Malinois, Hemus and her Pit Bull mix, Phenomenal Flyte, both of which she has trained herself. She's also training them both in agility and will be competing them soon.

I cannot express how grateful I am for all the information you give on your website & your dog training DVDs.

Thank you!


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