|Barked: Sun Oct 28, '12 7:00pm PST |
|Something happened at the beach today and I'm wondering if anyone has any insight to it.
First though, let me lay out who Moose is when we're at the beach.
He is super, super, super friendly with dogs. He's polite in his greetings and if a dog isn't in to playing with him, he gets the message and moves on. Chase is his favorite game and that's all he does when we're at the beach. He has a few favorite dog friends he does this with or if he sees an unfamiliar dog who's playing chase, he'll get in on it. He's a sight to see running through the water down the beach playing chase.
He's also super submissive when it comes to dogs over the age of 1 yr. All a dog has to do is raise his lip at Moose and Moose either drops to the ground or he walks away. And size of the dog means nothing.
A Chihuahua, on a leash, had it in for Moose today and every time Moose crossed it's path, the Chi would go all Cujo on Moose and Moose was afraid of the dog. Luckily it was leashed, but Moose gave it a wide berth every time he passed it when he was playing chase.
So, here's the issue. Since taking Moose to the beach, at around 5 months, whenever he meets a dog younger than he, he bullies them. He'll get right over them, chest butt them down to the ground and just get right in their face.
The very first time I saw it, I stopped it. Then it happened again and again, so I got pretty good at spotting puppies coming into our general area.
Moose also started listening to me really well when it came to that. If I saw him go over towards the puppy I would tell him to "leave it" or "away" and sure enough, he'd walk away.
This is how it's gone for awhile. Even more recently he hasn't shown an interest in puppies. For a while now. He'll sniff them and that's it.
He met a bulldog puppy yesterday who was 4 months old and Moose sniffed her, hung out with her (and other dogs) and we ended up walking around the beach with the bulldog and her parents. Nothing.
But, this morning Moose took his puppy bullying to a whole new level and I'm curious as to what it is.
A stunningly beautiful 6 -7 month old yellow Lab came to the beach and ran right into the group of dogs playing. Wiggling like crazy saying hi to all the dogs and people.
This little guy was super submissive and could not be any sweeter. (I say "guy" but I actually don't know the sex of the dog. I'm just assuming it was a male).
Moose was just about the last dog to sniff this Lab and I jokingly said, "Don't be a bully Moose", which I've said before, and within seconds Moose had that dog pinned to the ground and Moose was growling. Like, attack kind of growl. He wasn't biting the puppy and the puppy wasn't screaming, but Moose had his face right on the dogs neck. The only sound was Moose growling.
The second he pinned the dog I ran over (5 ft)and pulled Moose off. Cussing like a sailor as I did. But, Moose's collar slipped off and he went for it again once I wasn't holding him.
I grabbed the scruff of his neck from behind him and pretty much used my body to push Moose off of the dog. Again, swearing like mad.
I was so shaken by it, but the puppy just got up and moved on.
I immediately leashed Moose and stood there, shocked.
A few people and their dogs and I went to another part of the beach and the dogs played there. Which is where the "killer" Chihuahua was.
What in the h*** was that? Someone said it was him just sowing his wild oats. Which kind of makes sense because of his age and adolescence is right there, but why do this to a super submissive, friendly puppy?
I almost chaulk it up to Moose realizing that the Lab, and puppies in general, are "weaker" than he is and they're the ones he can let know who the boss is. But, still, it's unacceptable. Totally unacceptable.
Is this just an age thing?
Later today I was taking Moose outside to go potty and neighbor was walking her dog, who Moose has met a handful of times, and Moose immediately laid down on his side and let the dog sniff him.
Moose wanted to play but he kept himself lower than this dog. He only got up once to say hi and the dog growled and Moose laid back down.
I enrolled him in another obedience class today and it's with the trainer who I've used for private lessons. She's seen Moose's behavior around dogs and she was wide eyed at how gentle and polite he is and with how good he is at reading doggy signals.
Sorry it's so long. I just wanted to give an overview of Moose.
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