|Barked: Sun Apr 11, '10 10:13pm PST |
|If a dog is going to be dog aggressive or less tolerant of other dogs, generally it happens after physical maturity, regardless of breed. Maturity can be anywhere from 1.5 years to 3 years depending on breed and size of the dog. It's also worth noting that dogs are like people in that they can't be expected to get along with every single dog they meet, or even to get along with resident dogs all of the time. Many behaviorists agree those expectations are very unreasonable. We as humans can avoid people we don't care for, whereas dogs have a fight or flight response and if they can't flee then they will likely fight; their owners decide whether or not they have to interact with dogs they don't particularly care for. It is perfectly normal for dogs to get along a lot better with dogs inside their household than with unfamiliar dogs. Especially for terrier breeds that have seem to have a higher tendency to want to scrap or to have high prey drive as they age.
Lacey, although dog aggression was a possible cause (not extremely likely that age unless both dogs were intact and in heat or something), it's also very likely that it was prey drive kicking in. Terriers are notorious for having high prey drives and smaller animals, even other dogs are often considered prey; especially since she refused to let go and the other dog needed to go to the ER. Normal DA isn't killing or trying to kill other dogs, but prey drive can easily lead to that if not in check. If she's never done this again or done that with larger dogs, then odds are it wasn't your everyday dog-to-dog aggression. You were right removing her from the dog park situations.
Edited by author Sun Apr 11, '10 10:22pm PST
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