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Juvenile Behaviour


Guest cuchulainn
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Guest cuchulainn

My 13 month-old grey, Cu-chulainn, was never a racer. I got him from a rescue as an unwanted pup at 9 weeks (breeder only wanted the 3 females from the 8 strong litter --- the 5 males were to be put down). As a condition of the adoption he must be neutered and although I would under normal circumstances do this with any dog, Cu-chulainn still squats to pee.

 

My dilemma is whether to leave him a few months more to see if normal adult behaviour prevails. My vet has only seen him in his early months and can only advise that it may be that he is a very submissive dog and may never exhibit normal adult leg-lifting. My previous experience is with lurchers only and I'm wondering if greys are a little on the slow side developmentally or do I have a really lazy dog. I can't say that he seems particularly submissive, although I have only seen him interact with my current 3 year old lurcher, who is not only still a good bit bigger than him being a Scottish deerhound cross and extremely laid back who never retaliates to the pups provocation (severe provocation mostly).

 

The main problem with going ahead with neutering is that if his development is curtailed he will continue to squat (perhaps squat is too strong a word --- more like he lowers his back end by roughly 0.5 centimetres) and more importantly he will continue to splash not only his front paws and legs but also, if he has been holding it in for some time, his chest! Serious hygiene problems --- even my lurcher Paddy wrinkles up his nose. By the way, he has only started marking as opposed to simply emptying his bladder in the last 3-4 weeks. Is this the normal greyhound timeline developmentally? (Apologies for the UK English which may look like misspelling.)

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Hi there, and welcome! I'm UK too, so your spelling looks pretty good to me! :lol

 

Greyhounds often tend to squat rather than lift their legs. My first was adopted somewhere near two years old, and he mostly did the 'lean forward' - which is typical of many male greyhounds - rather than lift a leg properly. I was like you, waiting for him to learn to lift a leg, until I found out that it can be a greyhound trait. Jim did sometimes lift a leg, but he hardly ever sprinkled a front leg when he simply leaned.

 

Sid was three when he was neutered and still mostly just leans, and he does sprinkle his front legs quite often - of course, he's a tripod, so perhaps it's not fair to count him.

 

Jack was nearly ten when he was neutered because his trainer kept him and he only came into rescue when she was past looking after him (in her eighties), and he did the lean just as often as he rather half-heartedly lifted a leg. He very rarely got any pee on his front legs.

 

Some do, some don't - that applies to both the leaning forward instead of lifting a leg, and also to the sprinkling. To be honest, when Sid sprinkles, it's usually because he's distracted.

 

You can leave him a few more months if you like, but I'd suggest that if he's now marking, he has the adult hormones circulating. Not sure if waiting will make much difference.

 

It will be interesting to see what others say.

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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While I can't comment on development of greyhounds from puppyhood, my 2 boys, who will be 5 in October, will either lift their leg or squat, depending on their mood. I'd say it's a 50-50 split, too. And not a big squat, like you reference...a slight drop in the rear legs is all they need. It is a non-issue for us, though. A bit of splashing either dries by the time we are home or gets washed out if it rains. Some carry "wet ones" to wipe, but our dogs clean themselves if they're worried about it.

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Guest KennelMom

We have plenty of males that weren't neutered until WELL into adulthood (4-5+) and they still "squat" to pee. Some of the squatters will lift their leg to mark something, but if they're getting down to business and emptying the bladder, they'll do the squat/lean forward thing.

 

I've never really noticed a splashing problem. In fact, I have a bigger problem with the leg lifters hiking in the females when they're peeing! :angry:

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We have plenty of males that weren't neutered until WELL into adulthood (4-5+) and they still "squat" to pee. Some of the squatters will lift their leg to mark something, but if they're getting down to business and emptying the bladder, they'll do the squat/lean forward thing.

 

I've never really noticed a splashing problem. In fact, I have a bigger problem with the leg lifters hiking in the females when they're peeing! :angry:

 

 

Yup!

 

 

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We have plenty of males that weren't neutered until WELL into adulthood (4-5+) and they still "squat" to pee. Some of the squatters will lift their leg to mark something, but if they're getting down to business and emptying the bladder, they'll do the squat/lean forward thing.

 

I've never really noticed a splashing problem. In fact, I have a bigger problem with the leg lifters hiking in the females when they're peeing! :angry:

 

Ditto here. I always figured it was just another endearing quirp of greyhounds as I've personally never observed another breed do it. In my experience it has nothing to do with development or submissiveness/dominance etc. They just liked to "go" that way. It actually puts me in the mind of horses- that's the way male horses go. And I often had to wash urine off feet-usually one paw got hit more often than the other. I really doubt castrating him will affect it one way or another. Gotta love a greyhound.:)

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Guest cuchulainn

Well, that's reassuring. I was beginning to think I had a retarded dog or a pup that I had "babied" too much. Thanks for the feedback. Now , has anyone any ideas, short of anaesthesia, on how to stop him squealing like a stuck pig whenever I even lift his paw to trim his nails. He will even mouth my hand in protest -- it doesn't hurt but could be a precursor to a nip if I persevered so I don't want to push it to that extent. Tooth brushing is tolerated if I keep it really quick but I haven't yet been successful in nail trimming. Any thoughts?

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I agree with everyone about the squatting to pee. My Kiowa never lifted his leg to pee and my Billy only does it when he's marking something.

As far as the nail trimming I would first of all suggest a muzzle while you clip. For the time being try just handling his feet when you aren't clipping and see if you can get him to be less sensitive to that. Then when he seems OK with it clip just one or two nails at a time and give him a yummy treat and work up to the full pedicure. If he really hates the clipping you might consider using a Dremel to grind the nails down. This is what I use on my dogs. If you decide to try the Dremel there are a few topics on here about it you could research.

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My Wizard squatted to pee for his entire life. On rare occasions he would lift his leg, but he just wasn't that into it. I wouldn't worry a bit.

 

You may or may not have more luck with a dremel for toenails. But for safety, I'd muzzle. you can smear peanut butter in the muzzle to distract him. That said, I had one old girl who got her nails trimmed *only* when she was having a dental etc... the vets couldn't even do it during office visits.

 

Oh, and I second the idea of doing only a couple of nails at a time. More than that can get overwhelming for some of these guys.

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Well, that's reassuring. I was beginning to think I had a retarded dog or a pup that I had "babied" too much. Thanks for the feedback. Now , has anyone any ideas, short of anaesthesia, on how to stop him squealing like a stuck pig whenever I even lift his paw to trim his nails. He will even mouth my hand in protest -- it doesn't hurt but could be a precursor to a nip if I persevered so I don't want to push it to that extent. Tooth brushing is tolerated if I keep it really quick but I haven't yet been successful in nail trimming. Any thoughts?

 

Yep, as others have said, do just one or two nails at a time and catch good behaviour and give treats. When you're done, give a treat anyway. My Jack was extremely freaky about having his feet touched, and it took me probably six months to get to the point where I could do his nails, one foot at a time. He'd lay there and twitch violently, and give soft screams, but he'd let me. :wub: You have to take it slow, especially with a young dog. You don't want this to be a battle his whole life.

 

With Jack, I started off just touching a foot for a split second with my hand and gradually working up to holding a foot for a split second. Then we was okay with that, I got the nail clippers and would just tap a nail with them a couple of times and put them away - that was it for the session. He got plenty of treats during the process. Eventually, I was able to shave a tiny bit off all the nails on one foot, and later still I could just nip off the tips of them. I had to keep them under control, because there was no way he'd let me really grip a foot and take off several mm at a time. If at any point he freaked, we went back a stage, but I'd always try to end a session on a good note. Not easy, but do-able!

 

You could also play games where you touch his feet and put treats on them, but always keep it light and stress-free for him. Good luck. :)

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Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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My dog raced until he was 5. He "stallion pees" half the time, and lifts half the time.

 

Not sure why you'd care one way or another?

 

He pees on his front legs (as many of them do), but also on his chest if he has a bladder full.

 

Thinking about it, I've never seen a dog do that... would it be worth getting a vet to check out his boy parts to see if he has something weird like a cyst in his sheath?

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Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Have seen some deep-chested sighthounds pee on their chests. Neutering might actually help with that :lol but might not.

 

Agree with the others, waiting to neuter likely won't do anything re leg lifting or not.

 

And to make you feel better (or worse?), my Joseph is a leg lifter and fairly often splashes one of his front feet. Even in the worst weather, tho, he'll stop before coming in the house to clean himself off.

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Guest BorzoiMom

Dutch was 3 when he was neutered, he pees like a horse. I think in the year I've had him he's lifted less than ten times, it seems uncomfortable for him to move that way. The hips don't seem to open well. I think he's being normal, lol.

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Guest krystolla

Hack lifts his leg to pee, and lifts his leg to poo. If possible he will prop his back end up on a rock or hill or pile of snow to get his back end up just that much higher for whatever he's doing. He still manages to pee all over his front feet.

 

Maybe what you need is some sort of reverse raincoat?

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felix who i adopted at 7 weeks has just about ALWAYS squatted. and it's not a matter of not having a male dog to lead the way, my late welsh terrier was around to show him the ropes- willie started lifting his leg at 14 weeks! felix is the worst when it comes to nails, a muzzle and dremmel do the trick w/ someone handeling him and feeding him dehyrdrated liver to distract him. i did condition him to let us brush and work on his teeth, it seems as if non-track boys are BIG babies. i have 2 friends who have non-track boys and they both call them their "baby boys". they just didn't have an opportunity to learn the ropes. one of the males who is 8 still squats, the other lifts his leg- he must have better balance.

 

i read and read about bone development and neutering and wanted to wait. well, hormonally i could wait until 9 months and that was it. with other male dogs i have been able to hold it off, but his focus was on what his raging hormones wanted and 65lbs of muscle not brains at that stage of his life, it was time. so, that's a personal preferrence. we have a good sized male at 3.5yrs- 80lbs of lean muscle and deasent bone, (would have liked a tad more). but the important thing is we have a wonderful fun loving healthy pet!

 

adolescence in a greyhound is lot of fun, just direct the energy into something positive and remember that puppy- and he will be a puppy forever :colgate needs to run, play and learn. enjoy~ ;)

 

i trained him organized obedience classes, got him certified as a therapy dog and have enjoyed agility with him as well as twice daily soccer and tennis runs in our yard, camping, hiking, modeling and then some. the sky is the limit, the hormones will settle, the pup will focus and play and give you a good ride for your money. enjoy!!!

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Guest gecko_foot

My grey is a retired racer and was neutered as a 3 year-old. He still squats to pee and has never exhibited any "adult" male behavior. I doubt he's coordinated enough to lift his leg and stay upright. :lol

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Guest HHHounds

We have had Zorro since he was 12 weeks old, and he still squats at age 4... We also have Candyman, a 10 year old male, who goes however the mood strikes him. Baby wipes work well for clean up!

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Guest SpicyMom

I can't comment on the squatting issue as mine are both girls but I can tell you that greys DO develop more slowly than other dogs. I've had my grey and my lurcher since 3 months old. The very experience brêeder I got my grey from advised waiting to have her spayed until she matured so that her bones could finish growing properly, somewhere around two years old. She did in fact keep growing until she was more than 2 yrs old and didn't have her first heat until even later(and then spayed). My lurcher is mixed with mostly collie and i did the same thing - let her grow to maturity, which for her was earlier (about 18 months) but still late compared to most dogs. At my vet practice, there is one vet who is very experienced with greys and she agrêed about waiting (although the other vet kept nagging me, telling me that the standard practice was at 6 months...I reminded him that greys are not standard practice about anything!

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Dusty was almost 5 when we adopted him. We just lost him this summer at 13 1/2. I NEVER saw him lift his leg in all that time. I was actually happy about his peeing style - I never worried about him getting furniture or the drapes if he had an indoor accident :colgate He did manage to pee on my bichon once but she walked under him at just the wrong time.

 

Can you carry baby wipes with you to just quickly wipe him down?

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