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Thread: rescue husky behavior concerns

  1. #1

    rescue husky behavior concerns

    Hello Everyone,

    I am new to this forum and I would like to thank you all I advance for any suggestions or advice you can give. I have a 7 year old male mix rotty/ Shepard and a 9 year old female poodle. Despite a size difference of about 80 lbs they get a long great and are the best of pals. They are both fixed. On Friday my son adopted a female Husky from the humane society. They estimate her age to be about 2 years old. She is small in stature as far as Huskies go but she also recently had a litter and is very, very skinny from nursing. We are feeding her apart from the other dogs with a special food with added nutrients. Apparently after the pups were weaned she was dumped! While at the humane society they spayed her. I imagine with the birth of puppies and being spayed all so recently that she is probably very hormonal still. The problem we are having is her behavior with our poodle. She attacked her yesterday over a piece of food that one of the kids dropped and now my poodle is terrified of her and hides out in our room all day. She also got into it with my rotty mix although he could easily take her if he wanted to. Today thankfully there were no fights but as soon as she sees my poodle she goes into this bully mode and chases her down the hallway until the poodle retreats back into the room. She does this as well if either of the dogs go near the water bowl, she immediately jumps up and tries to run then off. She also shows her teeth and snarls at my rotty occasionally but that seems to be getting better since we have been walking them together. I am so afraid that she will attack my poodle for real and really hurt her plus, I feel bad that she has to hide out in the bedroom when before she was such a active part of the family.

    Does anyone have any suggestions or advice they can offer?

    Thank you!

    Jonica F.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Waltham, MA, USA
    Posts
    36,750
    It is definite classic food aggression and resource guarding. This is nothing that is an "easy" fix, I would recommend meeting with a trainer to get her out of this as soon as possible. For now, I would definitely keep her on a leash, and feed her separately, away from the other dogs, and after the other dogs. I would also give the poodle some one-on-one time, walks and pal time by herself, etc., just to build her confidence back up. Do not "baby" her, though!

    I am sure the husky is terrified and confused, she has had so many changes in her life in short period of time. I would contact the place he adopted her from, see if they have any recommendations for good trainers they have worked with. Bless him for adopting her, and whole the next few months may be challenging and difficult, I know you can all get through this.
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Rhode Island; USA
    Posts
    16,860
    I agree with Karen, huge issue, not easy to fix. And, the more the husky is allowed to fight, the more she WILL fight. So, you must keep her separate from the other 2, apart, so she can not get in the 'habit' of fighting.

    A trainer can help with this. At the same time, start the husky in group classes. She will need a LOT of training to manage this, and everyone in the family age 8 and older needs to attend all the classes and do all the homework with her between classes. So she gets the same commands from everyone, and she gets lots and lots of repetition. The homework and practice routines are things you will need to keep up with, even after classes end, for life, to remind her and re-enforce the proper behavior. Huskies have a high prey drive, so this needs to be a constant in her life to help her keep this reined in.
    I've been BOO'd!!
    Thank you Karen, for fixing my siggy!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Salisbury Plain, UK
    Posts
    1,520
    Really sorry, Karen, but I disagree. This is a young husky that has been through a LOT! She is now in a strange environment with older dogs and people she doesn't know, trust or understand. She is being the nightmare because nobody, in her eyes, canine or human, is in control. She needs direction. Someone needs to step up and be the sane and intelligent leader of this group, have rules that everyone sticks to (including any dog hiding!). The husky is going to be the dominant member of the canine group and that is fine. This does not mean that your older dogs feel less loved by you or less important to you, they just feel safer and less stressed. To achieve this you need to convince the husky that you are able to do the same for her.

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