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Thread: Dog to Dog Behavior

  1. #1

    Dog to Dog Behavior

    Hi, I'm new to the forum and right off the bat I have a question.

    I've had a westie terrier for about a year now and have just adopted a wire fox terrier about a month ago.

    They both get along really well and play for hours together.

    But when we feed them, the westie is terribly possessive of her food bowl to the point that she attacks my other dog.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on how to handle that?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Waltham, MA, USA
    Does the puppy even approach her food? Or is she just getting possessive preemptively? Do you feed them at the same time in the same spot?
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Northern California
    Your answers to Karen's questions will help clarify the situation

    Until then, you have two terriers. Terriers are notoriously feisty dogs. They require firm, benevolent leadership. Such leadership usually entails clear household rules, such as: 1) dogs will always be fed in their crates 2) you will never leave food or treats laying out in the open 3) you refrain from handing out "freebies". These are pretty standard rules for multi-dog households.

    You can train most dogs to share space, toys, human attention, etc. But food is a very different subject altogether. I would enact a strict feeding schedule asap.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Spirit Lake, Iowa
    My two boys, a chocolate lab and a Siberian husky, have never gotten along, never played, never been friends, and have definetely never liked to share. For quite a while, I had to feed them in seperate rooms and keep a close eye on them to make sure no fights erupted.

    After eight years together, the boys are just fine to be fed together. They know their exact places in the "food room" and never go near each others' bowls.

    I think the best thing you can do--with any type of training, really--is to provide consistency and assert your dominance as the leader of your pack. Maybe start by feeding them at the same time, on opposite ends of the room, with you in the middle. See how this works, and progressively move them closer to each other or remove yourself from the room, bit by bit. Reward them both for doing well, but firmly squash negative behavior.

    Good luck!

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