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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our beagle is one year old now and is a lovely companion except he is a terrible theif! If you turn your back for five minutes he is up on all the counters and surfaces stealing anything he can lay his paws on, yesterday he destroyed the newspaper, ate almost a whole walnut cake (walnuts can be dangerous for dogs, we are keeping a close eye on him), shook up 8 balls of wool and stole the oven gloves! This happens every day, and is getting worse and worse. We have taught him the 'Off' command, and always tell him to get off the table / surfaces whenever we see him jumping up, which he obeys, it is when our backs are turned that the sneaky blighter gets all the good stuff.



I am most worried that he is going to get something that might hurt him, like the walnut cake. I know someone will suggest clearing all the counters and tables of items, but I live in my parents house for the meantime, they do not want to have bare counters and argue, rightly, that it is my responsibility to train my dog not to steal. It also means he is excluded from some rooms because they are not 'dog proof'. It would be wonderful to be able to trust him around our home, but I'm not sure what to do to bring him to that point.


Any suggestions would be most welcome.

Here is a bonus picture of him looking innocent while holding a stolen item in his mouth!

 

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I can relate. Duke is also a thief and I've noticed that items are getting put higher and higher as he grows. He's ony 3 months old, so it should get interesting when he's full grown. /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/frown.gif
 

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Oh my god.... that bad? Chloe s a little thief as well, but mainly socks (she loves them). I really have no suggestion, but I am starting to understand that this is something very common among beagles... :conf12:
He is a handsome boy your little puppy /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif
 

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Beagles are motivated by one thing: FOOD.

Anything with a scent that a Beagle can associate with food or the promise there of, they will go after. Thats one of the reasons that families with small children and a young Beagle, usually end sending the poor Beagle to the pound. Kids have lots of scent on them. The Beagle is after the scent of food which happens to be on a young child. It is interpreted as the Beagle being agressive.

Young Beagles (15 months or less) are especially scent agressive in the home. They have not learned the difference between a common house scent and food. To them its all food. Beagles are indiscriminate eaters, meaning that will eat just about anything. This fact about Beagles, keeps dog food companies from using them to test dog food. They could set a bowl of dog food down and a bowl of dog poop next to each other, and both bowls would probably get equal attention from a Beagle.

If you can understand that part of the Beagle, then you can start to take steps to eliminate the temptation and the associated results.
 

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Hi,
we have alab and a beagle.My lab stole my purse.. I reported stolen! The only way I found it was my son threw a ball, hit me in the eye(ow!). So I went on a mission to get all balls outside. THAT'S WHEN I FOUND MY PURSE,SOCKS AND A WATCH...ALL UNDER THE COUCH! I just kept that a secret after all the police reports had to be filed!!!! But Hershey,Beagle Boy...is starting to grab things and just run...veey fast! He is about 8wks old! Dif...subject but I would love to post a pic but am confused on how to do so!!! Any "simple way" to explain to me!! Tosca
 

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Maggie is just over a year and still steals things. I have worked constantly with her and she is very good with "leave it" if I catch her before she takes something. However if she gets something its a little harder. I don't put things away unless it is food or something that would be dangerous. With all the kids that are at my house I have to be very picky about food and especially chocolate. I do close doors. We keep the bedrooms and bathrooms closed. The family room door is either closed or baby gated all the time because I keep cat food out here. Our living room, dining room area is open so I can see Maggie wherever she is. I can see part of the kitchen and if Maggie gets out of sight I go check. One thing I have noticed is that when she starts looking for things to steal she is often bored. I usually stop what I am doing and play with her for even a few minutes. Maggie has torn up her share of newspapers, and even a few books. I try to keep a sense of humor except the time she ate the last 25 pages of a really good book and I had to buy another copy to read the end. I understand that your parents would be a little frustrated, but I think you are doing what you can by closing off rooms and watching closely. Maggie has calmed down and come so far in a year, I have hope for even more improvement in the coming years and I am sure that your beagle will improve also. Just keep working at it. By the way he is very cute.
 

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Oh my, Lensa, your little thieving boy is just adorable! He looks so sweet and innocent, like he's saying, "What thing in my mouth? I don't have anything in my mouth!" My Shiloh can be a thief too, but only if it's something edible. Because her legs are pretty short and she's pretty fat (partially the result of all that thievery) she doesn't jump up on tables or counters. Unless someone leaves something too close to the edge of the kitchen table, or on a low table, she can't get at it. But she does have her moments! Saturday she managed to snag a McDonald's bag that had been placed to close to the edge of the table and ate a whole chicken sandwich! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/eek.gif Then just last night I was having dinner with my friend Mr. Television, and I went to answer the phone, absentmindedly putting my plate down on the coffee table. Yep, you guessed it--when I came back into the den, there she was with her front feet on the coffee table polishing off the last of the tuna casserole!! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif Of course, it didn't take Mr. Poe too long to figure out that he was getting the raw end of that deal! :doh:
Seriously, I know how frustrating and worriesome this must be for you. I wish I could be more of a help.
 

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:hi: But in the dog park, he likes to steal other dog's ball, runs away quick with it and possess it.
 

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That is SO true Charlie Mom, we had the same problem in our house with Pluto (rip) but he grew out of it. We put him in his "house" when we were gone, then while home keep a VERY close eye on him :freak:
 

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try putting double sided tape on the counters where his paws hit. He won't like the feeling and it may deter him from doing it after a while. Or a booby trap that will make a ruckus if he jumps up there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks everyone, its nice to know I'm not alone on this one! Hopefully he will grow out of it with time, and I will try playing with him when he is in steal mode, perhaps he is just looking for more entertainment! The sticky tape on the counters is a good idea also, I'll give that a try.

He has stolen books too! The first time he just tore the cover off, but the second time I also had to go out and buy a new book - why couldn't he have torn out the front pages, I'd read that half! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

I had to smile when I read about the 'den' under the couch containing all the stolen items, I found instead a hole in the front garden with a gardening glove, a shoe, an old rawhide chew and two socks! All completely covered in soil!! He must have spent ages enlarging this hole to fit all the new items in, and then very carefully filling it back in again :hi:
 

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Quote:Originally posted by jassy:
One thing I have noticed is that when she starts looking for things to steal she is often bored.
I think jassy has hit on something here ... boredom! Can you get kongs in the UK? If not at pet stores there, there is the internet. If you stuff that with peanut butter and put it in the freezer, offer that to your beagle as he is moving towards something off limits. Maybe you can gradually get him to make some choices that are in his best interest. Do be really vigilant about harmful foods -- didn't know that walnuts are bad for our pups be beware of the chocolate, household cleaners, antifreeze (especially bad because I understand it has a sweet taste and is particularly appealing). Also, it is not just foods that can be dangerous -- beware of electrical wires, etc. that can be chewed through. Good luck! (What is your beagle's name? I must have missed that along the way.)
 

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Lensa,
I love the story about the hole. Maggie digs great holes. When she was smaller, she dug one so deep I was afraid she would get in and not be able to get out. In spite of the great digging skills she cannot figure out how to bury anything. She takes stuff outside, lays it on the ground and pushes the dirt or grass with her nose. She noses the ground for a long time and then goes away. Then she worries and goes back and checks her object every few minutes. It is always in plain sight on the ground. Finally she can't stand it anymore and she brings her thing in and stuffs it in the couch cushion. I think she is a pretty smart dog, but whenever I watch this routine I wonder?
 

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Sorry to say all sounds perfectly normal to me.

Caleb is the naughty one out the three. His speciality is underwear. MY underweaar

He still does theiving and running off with things even coming up four. You still have to watch him

I could not leave him in the house alone as he'd trash it.

The girls are much better behaved, they spend their time mooching about and playing.
 

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Had to laugh at what you say. This is so typical beagle!!!! Our last beagle, Spotty, was a terrible thief. I've written several times about her crimes, including stealing a camenbert cheese in a French restaurant and when visitors were here, the contents of a babies nappy!!!!
 

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I don't know if I should be laughing at all of these hilarious stories or crying because all of these stories give me the feeling that Duke will forever be a thief. LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Nappy contents stealing! I guess beagles really will eat ANYTHING /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

My beag's name is Bailey! We have decided to do a couple of things to try to cut down on the stealing.

1) I have got him a buster cube in addition to his normal toys, he does have a kong, but he is on an exclusion diet at the moment as the vet thinks he has food allergies, so we are not able to give him any food treats at all at the moment (poor chap) and kibble wont stay in the kong. I can put his normal kibble in the cube and he can work hard to get it out /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

2) We have given him more freedom, not less. Everyone MUST remember to close their bedroom doors (they have been warned - its their lookout if they forget!) and we have removed the stairgate. This means that he can wander from his kitchen / hall / front garden area through the house to the converted office (normally he is only in one area or the other). There are people all over the house at any one time of day, but now he can choose to potter about and see who he likes. Hopefully this will help beat the boredom, although he has already destroyed a good portion of a wicker bin today, I guess although it was empty it must have smelled of food!

I loved the story of the beagle who buries things in plain view! Bailey will often hide things in the foliage in the garden, but if he thinks that you have been watching him, then he will remove the item and put it under a different bush or dig a small hole, until he is sure his secret is safe!!
 

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We are having a real problem too! We've had workmen in our house and they must have left a broken jigsaw blade (about 3") under a cabinet - before you know it Snoopy found it and was chewing it! Thankfully we saw him in time. Pens are a real hazzard too. And Snoopy doesn't just chew it - HE EATS THE WHOLE THING. I have no idea what to do!!! I keep him on a leash tied to a table leg in the main area of the house when I can't keep an eye on him all the time. He seems to be satisfied being around the activity.
 

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/forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif
All this cracks me up simply because Zeus is a thief too!

When we first had the dog door put in anything that would fit went through it and the stuff that did not fit got torn to shreds to make it fit.

I have found everything from oven mitts, hairbrushes, cups, a wooden and plastic spoon, a chip bag (I am assuming he really enjoyed the cheetos!) an M&M bag (We had to give him hydrogen peroxide so he could vomit the M&M’s), shoes and slippers, Towels, pillows, paperclips, wireless laptop mouse, and much more. If it’s missing we start the search outside!

Lately Zeus seems to favor my husband’s pillow. He will pull it from the bed get the pillow case off and pull the pillow outside and roll with it in the dirt. I have washed that pillow twice and am afraid the next time he will have to just get a new one.

Zeus has several holes throughout the property that he likes to stash things in. When we play fetch he will sometimes run to one of his holes and uncover a different ball and bring us a different one.

By far the worst thing he has stolen to date was the remote control!!! It was dark when we got home and the clicker was no where to be found. After each of us blaming the other for quite some time we set out a search for the remote in the dark with flash lights. 4 acres of desert dirt and two small flashlights it took us about a half hour but we found it!
 
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