|Barked: Thu Jul 4, '13 11:18am PST |
|Firstly, I have to agree with Sabi. After much experience with them, you ABSOLUTELY MUST start as you mean to continue. Do NOT allow one behavior one day and not the next - it's unfair, and often leads to a power struggle. These dogs are BIG babies and LOVE their people, they bond very strongly with them, but they do not handle mistreatment well. They need a firm, but kind leader, who will show them respect, while teaching them what you expect of them. They are very strong physically, and mentally, and are better off with experienced owners. I have worked with Rotts who ended up with issues due to owner neglect or mistreatment, and it's absolutely possible, however, keep in mind each dog is INDIVIDUAL and how one will turn out may not be how another would turn out were it in the same scenario.
They can be stubborn, absolutely, but they're ALSO eager to please those they bond with. They adore their owners and show an undying loyalty to them when they bond with them. At such a young age, it would be MUCH easier to work with her NOW to overcome any issues these people may have created, than it would be at a much older age, were she more set in her ways. Fear based aggression can be worked with, but it depends on the dog. Some dogs only learn to tolerate, begrudgingly, strange people in their space, while others learn to accept it and that it means good things. Maya learned to tolerate, but was still fearful of certain situations or people. Regan learned to accept people into her space and was very pushy about wanting affection.
Giving her CLEAR expectations from the beginning, remaining consistent and positive in your training, and working with her and exercising her properly on a daily basis should help her to easily come around. I feel ANY dog who is being ridden around by a child has the right to bite if warning signals did not work and the adults would not step in to right the situation. NO DOG SHOULD HAVE TO TOLERATE THAT KIND OF BEHAVIOR, EVER. My own boy Charlie is incredibly tolerant of children - loves them even, but I would EXPECT him to bite a child if they were incessantly harassing him and riding him around like a horse.
A job will really help her to bond with you, give her confidence, give her positive outlets for her brain, and help you to learn what works for her and what doesn't in terms of training. I would start with a basic obedience class first, and then look into something else afterwards, whether that be nose work or something else that she might do well in. You'll discover where her strengths and weaknesses are when you get her.
I absolutely would rescue a Rottweiler again, and again. They're harder to earn forgiveness from, yes, but they are so incredibly worth it in the end when it's earned.
Rocko - I do not find they are more prone to aggression as they get older, so much as they become SORE and LESS TOLERANT. This DOES NOT equal aggression. Any dog with arthritis, or hip dysplasia will show signs of intolerance and crankiness. I have never known one WITHOUT health issues to show ANY aggression whatsoever simply because they got older. Aggression due to neglect, mistreatment, or health problems, absolutely, but I've never known one to become aggressive simply due to old age and that blanket statement offends me a little.
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