My Dog’s Home Life – Max the Yellow Lab – A 10 Year Old “Puppy”

Max Has Two Major Flaws But We Still Love Him (Over 10 Years Now)

My Dog’s Home Life: His Name is Maximus

A dog’s home life is vital for their initial growth as a puppy over the first few years.

Which is why you should use positive reinforcement to help train them and grow into a mature adult.

The home life of your puppy or dog is the most essential part of your dog’s life.

Why?

Because that’s where he spends most of his time each day.

He sleeps, plays, eats, and lies down many days on one floor of your home, for the majority of the time he is alive.

Yes, he may play out in the backyard or you may take him for a walk or a run, but for the most part he is there waiting.

He’s in your house waiting for you to give him attention in some way – waiting for you to come home from a long day at work.

I remember when the home life of my dog began about 10 years ago.

We brought him home as a surprise to the family and my kids.

He was four months old.

He was the cutest yellow lab you’d ever seen.

My Dog Home Life - Yellow Labimage source

Except he had one major flaw (we’ll get to that in a minute).

Okay, so stay with me here.

He is the cutest thing you’ve ever seen.

Like almost 100% of yellow labs are, right?

Do you have a yellow lab?

If you don’t, then you should get one next time.

Anyway, when we picked him out from the litter, there was a “red flag” that we didn’t realize it from the breeder until it was too late.

What was the “red flag?”

Well, the dog was offered to us at a cheaper cost than the other puppies in his litter.

That is a “red flag” describing the puppy has a deficiency in some aspect of his or her life.

Not that the dog is bad or a “lemon,” if you will, but the moment you see that a puppy is less than the other ones in his litter, recognize it.

Ask the breeder why he is less money than the others.

If they don’t tell you anything specifically, then keep asking until they reveal what it is.

You can most often tell why a dog is for sale at a cheaper price than his brothers and sisters.

Usually it is a behavioral thing, where the dog may be a loner, or even worse, the dog might be hyper as a result of his lack of intelligence.

You see dog’s that are hyper and overactive are that way for a reason.

And the reason is usually because they lack the normal intelligence of the other dog’s in their breed to not have stress and be relaxed most of the time like other dogs.

It may be a good deficiency or lack of personality.

However you want to put it, make sure you observe the dog for at least 3 hours so you can tell what he is doing or not doing that the other dogs in his litter are not.

It may be a “feature” or “personality trait” that you enjoy and like about him.

That was the one major flaw about Max. He was hyper and just kept barking.

my dog's home life of Maximage source

This is not a picture of Max above, but this is the best resemblance of what he looks like, with similar features.

(You’ll see a picture of Max when you click on the header section link of the word “Maximus” at the top of this post)

Even when we took him home for years later, his barking still is the norm for him.

He has gotten more calm overall but he still acts like a puppy as he wags his tail at you and barks at things outside all the time.

It’s kind of like the movie with Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson, Marley & Me (2008), where Marley barks a lot.

Maximus as we like to call him, is not as over bearing as Marley was in the movie but you get the point.

Pretty soon too, we discovered the second major flaw of Max.

What was the second major flaw of Max?

Let’s just say, how do you prevent a dog from eating poop? (coprophagia)

Dr. Andrew Jones, DVM will tell you in this two minute and twenty-eight second video by clicking the link above.

I always thought it was a lack of vitamins and minerals or nutrition of some kind.

Or the other thing that I found was that it could also be a lack of potassium.

We fed Max bananas so that he would actually not taste the self-deprecating, vomiting, and disgusting taste of his own feces – presumably because of the increase in potassium from the banana.

Yeah, I know it’s pretty gross, but bear with me here (it can be a little nauseating) :).

Anyway, that’s what the life of a dog is all about – as animals they tend to do stupid things that you just don’t understand completely – or at all.

A little tangent below…

Sometimes you wake up in the morning and they crap all over the living room rug and floor for no reason…

Except that you left them out of their cage all night for some reason you can’t even remember.

And because you forgot to send him outside at night to go poop before he went to bed.

Yeah, that was my fault too.

You can’t blame that on him, necessarily.

Just like you can’t blame your dog for begging you for food every time you take out food in your kitchen because you feed him human food.

Don’t do that!

Make it a conscious effort on your part when you get a puppy or new dog, not to feed it human food.

Because they will always be begging for food no matter what you do in the kitchen.

Meaning, they will basically get up off the floor or wherever they are at the moment you take out food or anything in the kitchen.

Why do dogs have this begging behavior?

It’s really a normal behavior that you instill within them because you fed them human food, which they shouldn’t have because it’s not their food.

You know that once you give a dog some human food from the counter or kitchen table when you are preparing or eating food, they will always be “hooked on it,” or be begging you in some way for it.

They might just stand up near you while you’re at the counter or near the microwave or oven preparing food.

Why?

Because it’s your fault.

If you have ever done this or are doing it now, then stop doing it, you are the one perpetuating the “begging” behavior.

And it’s not right.

You torture your dog all while teaching him indirectly that you will feed him human food when he gets up near you in the kitchen or living room, or den, or wherever you eat food.

I think this is the end of the tangent I went on, sorry about that.

Keep reading though…

So back to the “eating poop” topic – not that you want to be hear but let’s tackle it.

The video from the Doc or Vet on Youtube describes what the cause and effect of a dog eating his own poop is all about.

He basically says in the video a few important things.

Dogs will eat anything, obviously, no duh!

The Vet also talks about trying to change your dog’s diet to a premium dog food – notice I said dog food here.

He mentions that they need a balanced diet of fat, carbs, protein among other things.

And you can also change the flavor of the dog food by adding cayenne pepper or Tabasco sauce.

We can also ad “meat tenderizers” to the dog’s food to help digestion and to make his stool taste horrible.

You should add 1/4 teaspoon of meat tenderizer powder for every 10 pounds of body weight.

Dr. Andrew Jones talks about trying the product For Bid from your veterinarian and says that he has had great luck with this product in preventing his own dog from eating poop.

Buy the “For Bid” product, which comes in a white box, to give you the solution on how to stop a dog from eating feces.

He also talks about in the video that a citronella spray collar can work as well in preventing or stopping your dog from eating it’s own feces.

Who would have thought that after reading this long article you now have some great ideas on how to stop a dog from eating poop.

Hope this article helps and I will surely try to use one or more of these solutions to prevent Max from eating his own poop – even after 10 years.

We bought him in December of 2006 and is about 10 and a half years old at the time of this writing.

Too bad feeding him bananas did work.

It always reminds me of the Beverly Hills Cop movie when Eddie Murphy tried the old trick of “the banana in the tail pipe,” as he tried to escape the other cops from following him around.

Pretty funny movie – I’ll have to find that on Amazon Prime or Netflix again.

Make it a practice to always go outside with your dog when you let him out to play and go poop to see if he does eat it.

Stop him from doing so by following him with a shovel or pooper-scooper around the yard.

And then you can try some of these super dog tricks from this Youtube video to help him stop eating his own poop.

-Rachel

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