Old age and aggression

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

Spyke-rest peacefully my love

Cookie!? I'll do- anything for a- cookie!
Barked: Sat Aug 4, '12 1:03am PST 
Spyke is 10 now. He's had some nerve problems and he's getting cataracts. He gets around just fine, even plays sometimes. The issue is, he seems to be getting more aggressive. He will bite our other dog over a chewie which he never used to do. He randomly walked up to our other dog and bit his leg. He even nipped at my niece when she accidentally hurt him. My concern is, could this be a sign of pain that he wouldn't be displaying outwardly. He's still friendly with other dogs and people but he's a barker do some dogs respond strange. The vet said he didn't seem to be in pain and he doesn't nip at you or yelp when I touch him to see where he hurts. I know his going blind effects him but I don't know why he's being such a grump.

Mommy's Girl
Barked: Sat Aug 4, '12 4:08am PST 
Going blind is scary, for one thing... your dog may very well be reacting out of fear. But I think that different dogs develop their "old" personalities...in different ways. I have had a couple of dogs that mellowed out and oters that became increasingly irritable. If the vet says he's not in pain, he's probably not. If you think he may still be, seek out a second opinion.

Veteran Watchdog
Barked: Sat Aug 4, '12 3:35pm PST 
Going blind makes him fear the unknown. He can't see exactly what's happening around him as clearly anymore, so he naturally reacts more harshly as an auto-protect, just in case.

For changing this behavior, I can only think of the natural fix which is removing the cataracts.

Edited by author Sat Aug 4, '12 3:35pm PST


Gracie - In Loving- Memory

Service with a- Smile! : )
Barked: Sun Aug 5, '12 1:34pm PST 
Gracie is 13 and has gone from a always very sweet dog to a sometimes grumpy and barky dog. My vet said she is healthy but with a few old dog issues.

Member Since
Barked: Tue Aug 7, '12 1:30pm PST 
Well aggression in some is found to develop with as their age grows. Thus this isn't some thing new....
Spyke-rest peacefully my love

Cookie!? I'll do- anything for a- cookie!
Barked: Tue Aug 7, '12 6:34pm PST 
I just worry about his reaction towards other dogs. He's always been easy going but lately hes been picking fights, especially with our other dog. Spyke laid into him at 230 last night.