What do I do about my dog being overprotective of me and her surroundings?

Sasha is 4yrs old and very sweet to me and greets everyone she meets, humans and animals. However, if they get near her food, toys or me where she thinks we are in "danger" she growls and snips. Last summer she unfortunately bit my niece who was too close to Sasha's toy. It was during a thunder storm and there were a lot of people around. Also it was only a few months after I adopted her. (We live alone and its quiet it the house) And today she snipped at my nephew who was making loud noises on a chair next to me,as if he were drumming, (just moments before he was petting her and all was fine!) She was getting excitable the entire visit, as a number of us were being silly in the house. Again, something she isn't used to. I don't understand this behavior. She is very well trained and friendly. It just seems to be kids under 10 and fast movements that bother her. Whats going on? Is she just not a "kid dog?" She's a basenji/terrier mix and plays great with other dogs like my moms newfs .

Asked by Member 820930 on Mar 29th 2009 in Aggression
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Best Answer


She is sound sensitive for one thing. That's when you see that behavior in noises.
she reacts aggressively to noise.
And I would not leave dog toys laying around all of those should be put away before company arrives.
If dog is biting then there has to be a timeout and that means crate time, with no noise, stimuli.
Children should learn how to treat dogs. So if she can not tolerate noise anymore than I would have to put her up and /or outside. I mean children are loud at times. So, if her behavior is not normal then you don't want accidents. I would have a behaviorist come to your house and give direction in how to deal with problems.
No food should be around either. She is showing food aggression also. Make sure that bowl is up when she is done. Like on top of frig. I don't like to classify any breed, it can be a number of things, her being sensitive, or fearful. All dogs are different.

Dieta answered on Mar 29th.

Other Answers



The key to most behavior problems is approaching things using the dog's natural instincts. Dogs see all the people and dogs in the household as a pack with each having their own rank in the pack and a top dog. Life is much easier if the 2 legged pack members outrank the 4 legged ones. You can learn to play the role of top dog by reading some books or going to a good obedience class. A good obedience class or book is about you being top dog, not about rewarding standard commands with a treat. Start at For more on being top dog, see

Aster answered on 3/29/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


yea, keeping her food and toys away when not in use is a good idea,and exposing her to a little bit more stimuli would be good for her as well, a dog park, a class with other pups,
i would suggest leash walking with the kids as an activity for all of them, protecting should be okay,but possessing shouldnt.
your learning what her limits are and thats good, if you could give a safe zone to go to when she becomes overstimulated it might help her to feel more secure..
im not an expert, these are just things i have done with other dogs.all dogs have personalities and quirks that we learn to work with.kinda like family!

Packer answered on 3/29/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


To be safe, please muzzle Sasha when children are around. Soft muzzles are not cruel, and can help you avoid a serious accident. Never leave a dog unattended, or allow her to exercise too strenuously, with a muzzle on.

A snappy dog is an insecure one, and as other respondents have said, Sasha is probably over-sensitive to noise, because she's unaccustomed to it.

Children are unpredictable, and Sasha obviously finds them scary sometimes. If she is muzzled, she will learn to deal with her fears without recourse to snapping.

Socialisation is the key to this problem, but be safe first. Invite plenty of children round to play with Sasha, but keep her muzzled until she has relaxed enough to be trustworthy around children again. This may take time. My Mummy muzzled a 6 year old bitch, in public, for about a year before the behaviour was completely corrected.

Roger answered on 3/30/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer