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Behavior & Training > Increasing aggression
Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Sun Aug 11, '13 5:44am PST 
I agree with the other suggestions - vet, behaviorist, exercise. I am going to go out on a limb and say that from what you describe, she should probably not be in a home with children. It is worth getting the behaviorist's advice on this but unless her aggression is quite easily remedied the combination is risky. In my own experience with having a son, it became more difficult to manage my kid's behavior towards my pets around 3-4 years old (I've seen this with other little boys too). Of course I supervise my kids and pets and set rules and reinforce them but he had a phase where he seemed to want to climb on the dog more, etc. 100% control is very difficult for a busy mama to achieve.

So while you are working on the first three steps (vet, behaviorist, exercise) maybe it would be wise to start looking into whether you know anyone with good dog experience/skills and no young children who might consider adopting her. And I do believe that in some cases euthanasia is the appropriate action if you are not able to rehabilitate and manage her aggression safely or to find someone who can. I have found this page on the ASPCA website to be helpful, particularly if you scroll down to the Risk Factors section: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/virtual-pet-behaviorist/dog-behavior/a ggression-dogs

Best of luck to you and your dog. Managing aggression can be really stressful. Keep us posted.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Aug 11 7:30 am

Behavior & Training > Advice needed...training aids for walking?
Bella

1297237
 
 
Barked: Wed Jul 31, '13 9:43am PST 
Thank you Dogster!!! The gentle leader has changed our walks! Even on the less frequent occasions when she goes bonkers, she does it much less force. A good portion of the time, she actually walks with a loose leash! Perhaps I can get some training in now before she acclimates to the gentle leader, if in fact she even does. Just wanted to say thanks!cheer
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Jul 31 10:00 am


Behavior & Training > Advice needed...training aids for walking?

Bella

1297237
 
 
Barked: Sat Jul 27, '13 5:06am PST 
Thank you for the suggestions! And the support - dog training and parenting can be trying!

I have tried the gentle leader, without success, though it was a while ago now so it is worth another try. Thank you. I will try it again with caution - she goes so bonkers I am not sure how it will go.

Bella's leave it isn't strong enough - mostly we are successful with near objects, like tossing a treat near her and telling her "leave it." But distance "leave its" are another thing. It makes sense to work on the leave its with things that are in motion as mentioned.

I will check into prong collars. Another dog owner I know had success with them as well. At this point I may need something like that to be able to get her attention - I am completely failing to get it any other way and she is doing whatever she wants to. And practicing that bad behavior, over and over, on our walks. I agree with avoiding aversive methods as much as possible but also think that a careful, balanced approach can get you there when necessary.

We are registered for a 3 week leash walking class coming up soon. I have done the class in the past with my other dog so I wasn't that enthused to repeat it (being that I am familiar with the techniques they use already), but perhaps they will have some individual advice that will be helpful.

Thanks again!
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by , Jul 31 10:00 am


Behavior & Training > Bringing a dog back in

Bella

1297237
 
 
Barked: Fri Jul 26, '13 8:34am PST 
Well, it's hard to say. I would guess that the doxie would need a refresher in house training - though that is common in a newly adopted dog, even a previously indoor one. You will have to teach him the limits and rules in your house. My more recently adopted dog loves to run around our house and get into EVERYTHING - we don't know what her previous living situation was but I'm guessing having a whole house was a new thing. We have had to work with her stealing things and redirect her to appropriate play things. She's getting better. She's young though, sounds like your doxie might be a bit older.

As far as the shots go, I really don't know, I would just ask a vet for advice.

Good luck!
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by , Jul 26 8:34 am


Behavior & Training > Advice needed...training aids for walking?

Bella

1297237
 
 
Barked: Fri Jul 26, '13 6:57am PST 
I am at my wit's end with trying to get Bella to walk nicely on a leash. When we did training classes, she was a rock star at walking attention - highly food motivated in that particular classroom setting. The real world application of the skill? None. She is bad with pulling on the leash in general, but the real problem is contending with her prey drive. She is constantly on the hunt for rabbits/squirrels/birds, with complete disregard to any feedback from me. She goes completely bonkers, tries to chase after them full force, will continue walking on just her back legs, etc. Nothing I do will get her focus off them. She is 50 lbs but young and athletic so it is really not fun. Right now I am sitting here with a sore shoulder and back and have fallen before. It's embarrassing too! I have been near tears on several occasions from the frustration of it. I walk both of my dogs twice a day. Fortunately I have been able to train my 90 lb dog much more effectively to walk nicely, though sometimes Bella's enthusiasm to chase spreads to him as well. Walks can be miserable and I would very much like to change that.

We have been working on this for 7 months now (which is how long I've had her). She wears an "Easy Walk" (ha) harness. I have tried using treats and the positive reinforcement techniques from class. I try to get her attention before she sees animals. "Leave it" is ineffective. No luck with changing directions. At this point I am wondering if I need to try an e-collar or other training device. I am not looking to stir up a debate about aversive methods. But after months of these torturous walks that are causing me injury, I am open to suggestions. Thanks!!
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» There has since been 7 posts. Last posting by , Jul 31 10:00 am

Behavior & Training > Aggressive behavior at boarding kennel
Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Tue Jul 9, '13 4:55am PST 
Thank you for the info! Downtown Dogs does sound promising - and I see they offer "individual boarding" as well as the group dynamic so if they felt Pete needed it, that could be useful.
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» There has since been 2 posts. Last posting by , Jul 9 7:56 am


Behavior & Training > Aggressive behavior at boarding kennel

Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Fri Jul 5, '13 6:07am PST 
Thank you so much for the helpful responses. Pete has been to the vet recently and got the all clear, aside from a history of lyme's which has been treated. We have done a couple of training classes but could certainly stand to do more. He is pretty well behaved most of the time but learning more self control would be great! Pete is a dog who, as a trainer described it, is an insecure dog and that seems to fuel his conflicts as he very much wants to be top dog but doesn't have the natural confidence of a true "top dog." Of course that is just human interpretation of dog behavior but it seems to fit. I think the other thing that leads to difficult behavior is that he seems to hold a grudge - a small conflict that he finds "offensive" and he takes action at a later time. So if staff is not being cautious that later fight may seem to come out of the blue but in fact is just a carry over from the early conflict. Anyway...

I really appreciate the comments about choosing the boarding facility carefully. I don't think we will return to the one we used most recently, especially given that the staff acknowledge that they saw it coming but didn't manage it. I have never tried boarding through our vet's office as they seem to nickel-and-dime you and the play areas are small, but given our current situation it may be worth a try. They offer a package that includes 20-25 minutes play one on one with a staff member each day and you can pay extra for walks. At least they offer alternatives for human attention and exercise aside from the group dynamic. Not cheap though! But worth it if it provides more peace of mind, I think. Czarka's parent - we are in the Twin Cities too! Any kennel recommendations you wouldn't mind sharing? Thanks!
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» There has since been 4 posts. Last posting by , Jul 9 7:56 am


Behavior & Training > Aggressive behavior at boarding kennel

Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Tue Jul 2, '13 1:04pm PST 
Occasionally we board our dog at a kennel when we travel. The trouble is, that while he is generally friendly with most dogs, he can have aggressive behavior with a select few. Because of this I find boarding him worrisome. Some background:

We adopted Pete a year ago. We found him to be sociable and friendly with people and dogs, though his play behavior was imperfect (rowdy, noisy, ignores cut off signals from other dogs). We were able to occasionally bring him in for doggie day care and visited the dog park regularly. A few months ago I decided to stop taking him to the dog park as he had become too much of a bully. He would "attack" young dogs (under the age of 1) who irritated him or actually even for no apparent reason. He never tried to bite anybody, but would jump on them and make a lot of noise and scare the puppy and people. I determined, sadly, that he wasn't cut out for dog park off leash play. There have been several other instances with another dog where the trigger for Pete's dislike of them and subsequent aggressive behavior is not apparent to me.

The kennel that he's gone to for occasional day care is okay with him. After we got our second dog last winter, we had boarded them together there for 8 days and toward the end of the stay, Pete got in a fight with another 3 year old male dog and the other dog got a small laceration that received 2 stitches. Their was no obvious provocation for the attack and the kennel owner speculated that Pete was feeling protective of his "sister." So now I board/day care the dogs separately. This is a good idea anyway as their play style together with other dogs is a bit nutty, as they tag team. He is still allowed to go to that kennel but now I worry about another incident occurring.

We boarded him at a different kennel the past two days and he did well until early today when he got in a fight with another male dog. The staff said she noticed him "eyeing" the other dog this morning and then later on started a fight. No injuries.

There are certainly worse aggression problems with this, but still I am wondering if anyone has any advice or suggestions for me? It is hard not trusting Pete and bringing him to a kennel so we can go on a vacation causes anxiety for me as I worry about his behavior. Obviously it would be fabulous to have peace of mind while on vacation! I wish I knew someone personally who can take care of him while we are away but I don't.

Anyone with a similar problem? How do you handle it? I know that it is normal for an adult dog not to like every dog - but I would love to have the problem better managed. It's stressing me out! wink Thank you.
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» There has since been 8 posts. Last posting by , Jul 9 7:56 am


Behavior & Training > Alaskan malamute getting nasty

Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Thu Jun 20, '13 1:42pm PST 
Honestly, the best thing you can do is to contact/hire a good trainer or behaviorist. Aggression is oftentimes manageable but not a great DIY project if your dog's behavior is getting out of hand. Every dog and situation is different so if you are able to get an expert to help you, it's your best chance for success. Good luck to you, aggression is no fun!
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Jun 20 5:44 pm

Behavior & Training > Dog aggression--how to manage the situation?
Pete

1297055
 
 
Barked: Sat Jun 15, '13 2:24pm PST 
In my area, I am aware of various training centers that offer "reactive rover" type class for dogs with dog aggression. Some of them first require an individual consultation with a trainer, to determine if the dog aggression needs to be worked on individually with a trainer or if the dog is appropriate for a group class in which they work on dog to dog socialization and tolerance. I would get him signed up for that if you are able to do so.

While shock collars can work well for some dogs and trainers (opinions differ of course), the way you use them is important and there is a risk that Link could associate the shock with the other dogs which would make the problem worse rather than better. So I wouldn't advise going that route without professional guidance, if at all.

Good luck! Aggression is no fun! My sister's dog was quite leash reactive with other dogs and was able to do the reactive rover class and now he is greatly improved and she feels confident in how to manage him to keep him that way.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by , Jun 15 2:24 pm

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