Aggression AFTER neuter

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!

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Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 12:14pm PST 
SO, Ive had Baron since he was 10 weeks and he was ALWAYS being socialized. Went to dog parks on a daily basis, went everywhere with me, to doggie stores, to work with me (vet clinic). He has always gotten along with everyone! Human and canine... Well I got him neuter at just under a year old and about 2 months after that, he started developing a habit... First it started at the dog park, if a dog RAN past him, he would run after it and aggresively establish dominance over the dog. If a dog came up to him and DIDNT run past him, he was fine. WELL, my way of trying to correct that problem, was going up to the dog he was establishing dominance over, putting my dog on his back and letting the other dog sniff him... WELL, we are now at the point that ANY dog, (on or off leash) that he doesnt know, he aggressively lunges at and barks. Once hes around the dog for more than 10 minutes, hes FINE with the dog. I though maybe he was trying to protect me, BUT when a new dog comes in "our" home, he is NOT aggressive at all! HELP!!

too old to eat- any more KD
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 12:32pm PST 
We try and try and try to tell people that alpha rolling can lead to serious issues down the line. You have created a situation where Baron knows he will be forced into a submissive role when he meets dogs out and about. Dogs (& wolves) do not force submissive gestures..they are offered. So now he seems to be going on the offensive.
You may need some help with this, in order to create a better association in meeting dogs.
I used direction changes, Look at Me, Look at That, & BAT. It has been a long road, but Squ'mey can now pass other dogs & tolerate their presence when we are out. He will never be a dog park dog, but we can walk anywhere, anytime, on leash.
Jackson Tan

Lad about town
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 12:37pm PST 
Flipping your dog on his back has made his problem worse, there really isn't any other way of putting it. It wasn't the neuter, at least not in full.

I'm sure other posters will inform exactly why and why dominance theory is wrong.

Seek a behaviorist. Don't try to fix it yourself.

ETA: Squam' s suggestions are good, but if you aren't entirely sure how to.implement them properly, hire someone to help you.

Edited by author Wed Dec 19, '12 12:39pm PST



Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 12:43pm PST 
This is the first timrd NOT to create MY dominance after he does cuch thing, so thank you for informing me. Im not trying to do wrong by any means. The odd thing is, he is great off leash..so if he sees another dog that isnt within 15ft of him, he doesnt run after the dog, or cat, or whatever it may be! ONLY when another dog approaches him or runs past him....
Jackson Tan

Lad about town
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 12:50pm PST 
That is actually really common. Baron probably feels trapped on the lead and can't escape an approaching dog, so he lashes out ... the best defence is a good offence. And if you pull him away, he gets even more aggressive because he doesn't want the dog to get him in his moment of 'weakness'. But off leash he feels more in control of the interaction because he CAN escape, so is calmer.

A professional would be best to help, but in the interim, start training quick direction changes so you can get away before he freezes up and starts focusing on another dog.

Don't put him on his back again, it could be dangerous to you, he could redirect a bite out of fear, and it won't help with your problem.

Look up leash reactivity for info on your issue. It can be helped, it just takes some work.

I am the Sock- Bandit!!!
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 1:00pm PST 
"WELL, my way of trying to correct that problem, was going up to the dog he was establishing dominance over, putting my dog on his back and letting the other dog sniff him... WELL, we are now at the point that ANY dog, (on or off leash) that he doesnt know, he aggressively lunges at and barks"

The association that may have been created in your dog's mind is that whenever he tries to relate to another dog you put him on his back in a vulnerable position. That's very uncomfortable for most dogs to be forced into that submissive posture especially with strange dogs. That is something dogs offer on their own, on their own terms. So if he lunges and barks at the dog and they don't come close, maybe he won't get put on his back in that scary position again. He's now trying to keep those dogs away from him before he can get rolled.

I would approach meeting other dogs now as if your dog is a reactive dog. There's a lot of good info out there on leash reactivity, it's very common. Most dogs go through a phase of it while they're learning to loose leash walk around strange dogs and people. Basically, you'll need to work on making meeting new dogs = good things happen, building up slowly using high value treat rewards or something else your dog really likes for the right kind of greeting behavior.

Woo-woo- whineybutt
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 1:36pm PST 
just saying but this is not linked at all to his neutering, it is him developing as he grows older.
hes already proved he was going to have a problem with dogs before you alpha rolled him, the rolling just happened to reinforce these ill-feelings towards the other dogs and signal to him that you aren't going to protect him (by forcing him into a submissive position) so now he must be on the offense.

I'd first start rebuilding your bond with Baron.

Giant Shih Tzu
Barked: Wed Dec 19, '12 4:17pm PST 
I would start by keeping him at a distance from other dogs. Click (or say Yes!) and reward him for looking at the other dogs and then looking back at you without an aggressive reaction. Only click and reward him when he stays calm. Slowly, you can work on rebuilding that distance, and if you see him stiffen up, growl, or any other sign of nervousness, say "Let's Go!" in a cheerful voice, and lead him in the opposite direction. Click and reward him for calming down again. I know you said he only reacts this way when the dog runs past him, but this issue could escalate quickly. It's important you always remain confident, cheerful, and reassuring to him. With a lot of consistency, he should begin to associate seeing other dogs on outings with positivity.

Don't beat yourself up about alpha rolling him. I think many of us who now train with clickers and positive reinforcement once believed in Dominance Theory. It's just a false, flawed logic that most often leads to worse behavior issues. When I used to alpha roll my dogs years ago, I was once bitten by a dog I never believed would bite. But dogs are remarkable in that they adapt so, so quickly to us changing our approach. The moment I went in a positive direction, he followed immediately and has never bitten me since.

Start rebuilding that positive relationship you have with him. Try to get him to understand that the presence of other dogs means rewards and that being with you is always a fun, reinforcing experience. Confidence and a cheery attitude from you will also help him greatly.
ARCH Demon RL1, RL2, RL3, RLV

Intimidation- seldom- facilitates- learning
Barked: Thu Dec 20, '12 5:19am PST 
I would also note that Baron may be going through a fear imprint stage. It is within the time frame for it. And GSD's have really wonky fear imprint stages. Add to that the neuter and intimidating training techniques, and it could easily contribute to his behavior.

As noted, work very hard to make his associations with other dogs as positive as possible. If you see the behavior escalate or start to generalize more, do consult with a professional.

You may want to take a look at www.reactivedogs.com or check out Leslie McDevitt's Control Unleashed.

Spooky Mulder
Barked: Thu Dec 20, '12 7:22am PST 
Mind if I ask where you got this dog from, what his genetics are, and what his breeder would recommend in this situation, etc?

Ditch all the Cesar "dominance" mumbo jumbo and do as others here have suggested, read up on reactivity and educate yourself about fear periods. Asher is right, GSDs can go through some pretty screwball fear periods, and this needs to be addressed PROPERLY... not with alpha rolls and power plays confused
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