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Thread: Please Help!! Our dog is aggressive towards us.

  1. #1

    Unhappy Please Help!! Our dog is aggressive towards us.

    We adopted a Rat Terrier from a rescue group almost 2 months ago. They said she was very friendly with kids and others. They had her about 3 months she was found on the side of the road staved and dieing. She is about 3 yrs. She has a lame leg due to a brake early on in her life that was never fixed. She gets around very well on it. She also has a divot out of the center of her right eye. We knew about this before we got her itís what draw us to her. When we picked her up and brought her home she was the sweetest dog. She loves to be held and to just sit with us she never leaves the yard and stay right by us at all times. Then out of the blue a few weeks ago she started growling and trying to attack at my husband. He couldnít even walk into a room without her going crazy. We were hoping with lots of love and patience she would stop. But this is not the case. Just last Sat. I walked in from being out side with her when she began to do the same to me, now I canít go anywhere in my house that she is at without her being aggressive towards me. I have a 13yr old daughter, 11 yr old son and a 3 yr old daughter who she ďstillĒ adores. She sleeps with the 13 yr old every night and follows her around. She is such a sweet little dog. But when my daughter tries to get her to stop growling and attacking she bits at her and has bitten her, she has not broken skin, ďYetĒ.

    Anyway I donít know what to do. I am scared that she will turn on one of my children next and my husband and I donít want a dog that is aggressive to us. She is also very aggressive to other people that come over and all other dogs. I donít want to get rid of her but I donít know what to do. We canít afford a dog trainer or classes. Any advise would be much appreciated.

  2. #2

    Thumbs up Rat Terrier

    Hi. I have a Jack/Fox Terrier blend. I found a lot of help on a breed web site. Try going here.
    Maybe she thinks the kids are hers. My Mike dog (thats his name). Did not like Men at all. It took along time for Mike to come around. We have only had him for 1 year and he is 3 years old. Take control now or she will train you, if in fact your dog isn't sick. Good Luck Chris

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by C. CHRISTY
    Take control now or she will train you, if in fact your dog isn't sick. Good Luck Chris
    What do you mean "sick"?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Well, first off, is your dog spayed? If not, get her spayed. She will be happier and less aggersive. Try taking your dog to obiedence class or a dog specialist. Maybe you can train her. Another thing I'm thinking is: maybe she is being territorial. Good luck and keep us updated.
    Thank you so much for my siggy, kittycats_delight!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by KittyGurl
    Well, first off, is your dog spayed? If not, get her spayed.
    Yes, she is spayed. About an hour ago I slowly went over to her speaking softly to her and touched her back. She started yelping like I had just hurt her and she peed on the couch. I am so sad about this.

  6. #6

    Agressive pup

    I would most definitely give your vet a call. It is quite possible that she is ill, and the agressiveness is her way of "acting out" in order to get your attention. I often wish my dogs could talk and tell me what's wrong when they aren't well. This just seems so very sudden, that I am concerned that she really is ill, and I don't think I would wait much longer.

    Hope it all works out. Rat terriers are so adorable, and it was good of you to adopt her. I'm a four-chihuahua mom myself, so I love all of the little ones.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Take her to the vet! Her back may be in pain.
    Thank you so much for my siggy, kittycats_delight!

  8. #8


    Quote Originally Posted by KittyGurl
    Take her to the vet! Her back may be in pain.
    I agree. Talk to the vet. Maybe her back is hurting her, maybe she has an infection somewhere.
    But terriers can be incredibly barky and they can get a little snappish, too. Just in case, I think you should keep her away from your kids, especially the three-year-old. She can't really defend herself against a raging dog, and she might even think it's just playing.

    good luck!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Waltham, MA, USA
    Yes, take her to the vet - when you were touching her gently and she yelped, that's a definite sign something is up, that something hurts. I know I get cranky when I'm in pain ...

    Besides that, what kind of training have you done with her? I'd work on basic obedience training, like she was a new puppy - part of the point of training is increasing the bond and the relationship between you and the dog. She may be thinking she is in charge, and you need to remind her that YOU, in fact, are the big dog here, she doesn't need to run everything.

    Anyway, to the vet!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Northern California
    Hmm, something doesn't seem right with her physically. I agree with the others. Take her to the vet and check to see if everything is physically all right with her. Because she was found starving and neglected, she could very well have some health problems you haven't found out yet.

    If it is not a health problem, it sounds like your pup is being territorial. Rat terriers are, quite frankly, terriers. For that, they are feisty little creatures and require a bit of firm, loving authority. Have you heard of Nothing in Life is Free? It's basically a method that you use on a day-to-day basis. The underlying message is that everything the dog wants, the dog must earn. If the dog wants to eat dinner, he must sit. The same goes for toys, treats, etc. I would also agree with enrolling in obedience classes. These two combined will often nip most, if not all, your problems in the bud.

    Good Luck!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    North East Ohio
    I agree 100% with what the others here have said. If she did that when you touched her back, there is most likely something wrong with her and it's painful.
    She needs to be seen by a vet asap.
    If you can't afford to take her to see a vet today, I suggest taking her back to the rescue where she can get the medical attention that she so Desperately needs.
    It would be horrible to see her attack someone more severely than previous episodes because her pain had gotten worse.
    ~Angie, Sierra & Buddy
    **Don't breed or buy while shelter dogs die!**

    I suffer from multiple Shepherd syndrome

  12. #12
    I don't think she in pain at all, she was reacting to me (not wanting me to touch her.) My daughter picks her up, plays with her, rubs her back and her belly. Sheís doing it right now but when I go to touch her or even just talk to her she acts as if she is going to kill me. This morning my daughter put her up on my bed with us and she let me play with her and pet her and rub her stomach but the minute I got up out of bed she went in to attack mode again.

    I did call the Vet yesterday and I have an appointment for tomorrow afternoon.

    Thank you all for your responses. Iíll keep you up dated.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    That's great that you made an appointment for the vet. You said your daughter touched her back and she didn't yelp at all, right? Well, maybe she is just being territorial. Keep us updated on your puppy's vet visit. Good luck!
    Thank you so much for my siggy, kittycats_delight!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Alberta, Canada
    And maybe your vet or the shelter can recommend some low-cost obedience classes. I think they are as much for the owner as the dog - as someone here said, if she is not sick, she has to learn who the "big dog" is.

    (I dunno - try barking back at her- from a distance - and it might really stun her into silence!)

    Good luck!
    "To begin, begin." ~William Wordsworth

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    It sounds to me that the dog is taking the kids under her wing as if they were her own pups and when you go to touch her or go near the kids she gets aggressive because she wants to protect her "pups."

    But it is also very good that you got her a vet appointment, maybe the vet can give you good training advice to get her to stop 'protecting' the kids.

    Good luck with everything, I will pray for you and your terrier

    I will love you forever Bobo

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