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Thread: Bob's A Bit Aggressive

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Bob's A Bit Aggressive

    Bob was adopted at 7 weeks (I know a little young, but that was when rescuers put him up). He's 9-1/2 weeks old now. He' s really a sweetie, but he can sometimes react aggressively to touch or authority.

    Part of the problem I know stems from his rough-house play with Ginger (our 6 year old Beagle). They just play and wrestle for hours and would do it all day if we let them. Of course, in their play fighting, there is a lot of growling, mouthing and pinning - if you will, but they always seem to know their boundaries and what is "too rough". When Bob crosses the line, Ginger lets him know real quick.

    Lately, Bob has taken to growling when he is picked up. Especilly by Lizzie, our youngest girl (11 Years old). It is obvious that Bob sees her as another pup and wants to assert authority over her and has even nipped her. Bob is fine when he is separated from Ginger all day (as is sometimes the case - I take either Bob or Ginger to work with me often - but never both). These days he is perfectly sweet and will accept any and all attention with no effort to wrestle, bite or growl. When he is the "home" dog, Lizzie comes home from school, opens Bob's training crate, picks him up, plays with him and takes him out to do his business. Bob is "so happy" to see her and is not even the least bit aggressive.

    Recently Bob has even been aggressive when being touched (either to pat or pickup) when he is napping on rug. A hand on his back and he will awaken abruptly and do his best mean growl and sometimes snap. Then he calms down again usually.

    What's up? I usually only ever had a lone or singletary pup and am not familar with the socilaization and training of a pup introduced into a house with an already mature, but playful dog.

    P.S. Ginger never, ever nipped or bit and still doesn't/won't. She mouthed a lot and chewed on your fingers and sometimes mistakenly bit too hard but was trained out of it easily as she matured. To this day she is gentle and actually takes a lot of well intended over-loving ("Smothering" Hugs, Lying down with and overly close snuggling) from Liz. She does sometimes low growl to express her annoyance, but almost rolls her eyes as it is going on) and simply lays there.

    Last edited by BOBS DAD; 02-02-2006 at 02:28 PM. Reason: ADD PHOTO

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Montana USA
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    5,952
    You had the answer in your first paragraph. When the line is crossed the other aminal lets them know. You have to establish you and humans are alphas. Many people have different ways to do this . I always say no and slight tap on the nose.
    I've been boo'dMerlin my angel

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
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    3,875
    I would rule out any medical problems since you mentioned it happens when he is picked up sometimes too. Has he been checked for worms or any other medical problems?

    Ruling out medical issues, take a lesson from Ginger.... when Bob gets too rough she lets him know it. This is only a 10 week pup we are talking about so it shouldn't be that hard to nip this in the bud now (no pun intended).

    BTW... Bob is really a cutie!

  4. #4
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    Jan 2006
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    Pittsburgh, PA
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    Thumbs up Thanks Folks

    Yes, Dixieland... Bob has been to the vet twice now and got his final shots last week. Everything checks out well and Bob is fit as fiddle. You guys have already been helpful as we have started with your advice - just a little tap (enough to convey displeasure) on the snoot and if he snaps back - just a little harder. It has been working like a charm and we are seeing improvement in just days. I didn't know if this was acceptable as sometimes folks say "never" be physical. But it sure seems to be the cure. Thanks again.

    Dan

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
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    Pennsylvania, USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by BOBS DAD
    Yes, Dixieland... Bob has been to the vet twice now and got his final shots last week. Everything checks out well and Bob is fit as fiddle. You guys have already been helpful as we have started with your advice - just a little tap (enough to convey displeasure) on the snoot and if he snaps back - just a little harder. It has been working like a charm and we are seeing improvement in just days. I didn't know if this was acceptable as sometimes folks say "never" be physical. But it sure seems to be the cure. Thanks again.

    Dan
    I'm glad it's nothing medical. I just want you to realize, I never said I agreed with the tap on the nose. I don't think Ginger taps Bob on the nose when he is bad. If she is typical, she shows disapproval through a yelp and then ignoring him so play stops. This is in human terms a way of saying NO in a stern voice with perhaps at most a finger waved in his face and then stopping play. Bob being a little pup still, he wants to play. When he realizes this kind of behavior stops the play then he will realize he can't nip.

    Unfortunately, with another dog in the house who can provide play anytime he wants it, your daughter is probably not going to be looked at as a playmate to Bob. You do need to work with her though in showing her how to communicate with Bob so he will recognize her as a higher ranking pack member. Perhaps getting her involved when you take Bob to puppy kindergarten classes (highly recommended) and having her feed Bob will help. Also letting her control the leash when you take Bob for walks.

    NOTE: I don't recommend puppy kindergarten classes for getting the dog to learn how to sit and down and all that stuff but more for learning proper socialization skills. Advancing to a basic obedience class is then recommended so Bob can learn proper manners at home and in public.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Also Good Advice

    I usually feed Bob, or my wife occasionally. Good idea to let Lizzie do it!


    Bob Getting Shower


    ... and Shakin' it Later

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    indianapolis,indiana usa
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    22,855
    If you can rule out a hearing or other health problem, you can
    start right away to show Bob that being cute will only take him so
    far.LOL He must have an assertive & dominant nature.
    I've Been Boo'd

    I've been Frosted






    Today is the oldest you've ever been, and the youngest you'll ever be again.

    Eleanor Roosevelt

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