I grew up with dogs, but they were my mom's dogs. I've never had a dog of my own, and frankly, never wanted one. But, my older son (who is almost 10) adores animals, and has been begging for a dog since he could talk. We moved to the 'burbs a few years ago, and have a big yard. Everyone has a dog. Ds would even go do dog project meetings at 4H and be the only kid without a dog. Dh has been an IT manager a non profit Guide Dogs organization for 10 years. Anyhow, we finally relented and adopted a puppy from a shelter about 2 months ago. She is now about 5 months old, and I've been hoping that she would grow on me.
She is sooooo strong willed, I don't know if I can take it anymore. She only listens when we have a treat - she knows, she just always knows She's very smart - she knows the commands but chooses when to listen. She won't stop grabbing things and running tear ass through the house trying to get us to chase her. She was very puppy bitey in the beginning, but that got a lot better, but now she is gets bitey as a means of control. She does it with my 6yo, and me when I'm trying to towel the mud off of her and she wants to be let go, for instance.
We did a puppy training class. I've read the books, watched the shows, read the websites. I've tried turning her on her back when she mouths my hand, but I can't even get her on her back any more, only her side, she's so squiggly.
She jumps up constantly, even though we never give her attention for it, and either knee her off or turn our back. She gets so overly excited when a visitor comes that she will pee a little bit. I've never taken her off the leash anywhere except our backyard because she runs so fast and I can't guarantee she will come when called. She loved playing with other dogs, but again, gets so overexcited that it's hard to control her.
She is crate trained, but I don't feel right leaving her in there for more than 2.5-3 hours at a time, although she does sleep in there. House training is pretty good, with very few accidents. At this point I'm constantly putting her on the tie down.
I am at home with her during the day, and am not enjoying her. I find myself angry all the time. I don't know what to do. The kids love her, and at this point rehoming her would be very traumatic.
I don't know what is just puppy behavior and what is problematic behavior. I don't have the money to be hiring a bunch of personal trainers (which run $50-$80/hr in our area).
Is this all just a puppy phase that will get better? Or are these serious personality/behavior problems? (She is a german shepherd mix - she has the facial markings of a germal shepherd, but her whole body is golden and she is short haired, so we don't know what else she is mixed with.)