Yikes! My Guy Got Too Aggressive With Neighbor's Dog!

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  1. Hi everyone. I have two doggies. One is a black lab mix, Tess who's 3 years old. And I also have Charlie - we've had him since he was 8 weeks. He was a rescue dog and the reason why I picked him out of the adoption litter was that he was such a LICKER! What an angel! He's a little over a year now. He gets along great with our other dog, and he's really fine with people we know - my Dad, HIS dog (who's about 6 - he's a male American Spaniel)....and my friends, etc.,

    What freaked me out is that we're not like the most social. I know I need to get him out of the house more often, but we have a ginormous yard with a hill, and with all the playing with the other dog and my four kids, he's pretty okay. But I know he needs to get out and see cars and stuff. Anyway, he doesn't like strangers. I mean like the mailman came to the door and I opened it and Charlie kind of got down on his honches and his back ruff went up and he sniffed him and then he started barking. He barks at the gardener when he's outside but ONLY if he's outside WITH him - hence, I keep him inside when they're doing the yard.

    We once had to put them at Petsmart Doggie Hotel and during the day during social hour, Charlie had to be put in a solitary kennel because he wasn't "playing nice". He HATES the neighbors dog - Percy (who's a male dog), a little Bischon and my neighbor, were standing in the cul de sac talking to my hubby and Charlie bolted past me and charged at Percy - he was snarling and barking and looked so scary! Like he was going to bite him on the side! My neighbor was trying to kick Charlie in the face (:cursing:) and finally hubby grabbed him by the collar and dragged him back into the house. Now my neighbor is afraid of nothing - she's a kick-ass 65 year old English woman who'd beat up a gang member if given the chance, and she didn't seem too upset by it. I can assure you she would have sued if my guy hurt her guy.....

    I know that we as people don't see the subtle behaviors that dogs give off to one another and normally I'd think it was just the neighbors dog given off a bad vibe, but he doesn't like strangers, and he didn't play nice with the other kenneled dogs when we were away......

    Several people have thought he might be mixed with a Rhodesian Ridgeback, but the fur doesn't go the opposite direction on his back - it is wirey not like the rest of his fur and he does have that kind of face, but he's the sweetest dog with us - licks us, very obedient, very very easily trained, and ironically, he LOVES the vet! I mean, I was so paranoid he was going to go insane there, but he was so friendly with them - and there was even a mascot beagle there who he just sniffed at and walked away.....:confused1:

    I just don't know - I don't do doggy parks. Do you think just walking him around the neighborhood would be a good place to start?

    I have included pictures too so you can see him - maybe someone else would be good at telling what he's mixed with. I want to get them both swabbed so I can know for sure what they're both mixed with. Tess is the black one, Charlie is the brown.....

    TIA!!!!! :wacko:
     

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  2. Have you talked to your vet about this? It's obvious he needs to be socialized more, because the behavior he's exhibiting now is dangerous. Your neighbors dog wasn't giving off a "bad vibe," your dog is aggressive and you don't have control over him. If I were your neighbor, I would have tried to defend my dog from yours too, be it kicking or otherwise. It would be one thing if he were only dog aggressive - some dogs are. But the fact that he has exhibited aggression towards people is a major problem.

    Taking him on walks around the neighborhood is not going to be enough. You need to find a behavioral specialist now, because if you don't address his issues immediately you're asking for trouble. This is not something you will be able to tackle alone, you need to seek the advice of a professional. I wish you the best of luck.
     
  3. But only some people? He loved the vet, he loves everyone that comes INTO the house. He doesn't care for SOME people when they are standing OUTSIDE of the house. I wonder if it's territorial? If he was an "aggressive" dog wouldn't it be towards everyone? I'm not going to say he's an aggressive dog like some red zone dog on The Dog Whisperer who's totally out of control. This is a pick and choose sort of situation that I need to figure out. I just didn't want this to turn into a "let's bash the OP's dog" but rather just suggestions.

    I find it hard to believe that everyone on this board has perfect little creatures that maybe will pee in a corner every now and again. Maybe everyone's nervous to post about behavioral problems because they're going to be judged harshly as people. It just wasn't the first post that I was hoping for after my opening thread.....
     
  4. I do think that other dogs can give off bad vibes. This isn't something I know as fact, just what I have experienced while walking my French Bulldog in our development. Some dogs meet up and get along, others meet up and one wants to chomp on the other! I also think that my approach to the other person/dog sets the tone for my Frenchie. If I am holding the leash tightly or backing up, she may sense that I am apprehensive and react aggressively.

    Territory is another big thing. My girl barks like crazy when UPS or FedEx comes to the door, but if I were to invite them in and she would see me welcoming them into the house, she would give them lots of kisses!

    The best bet is to consult a dog trainer. They will definitely be able to help you get her more "socialized".

    Your dogs are beautiful, by the way :yes:
     
  5. Thank you. :love: Yes, my number A-1 thing to do on Monday morning is to consult our vet. She's theee most wonderful caring, medically-trained AND holistic approached doctor I've ever encountered. Funny - there was a mascot dog there at the vet and Charlie just gave a sniff and walked away!
    Thank you. I was really upset after my last post. I'm like "I'm a failure. I have a !@#$d up dog and I'm lost." But hubby was like "he's our doggie, he's wonderful and we love him. He needs some training and that's what he'll get." I'm just in a twist last night. I'm so worried about our neighbor hating us when we're just such nice normal people with a little bit of a tweaked territory doggie....:shrugs:
     
  6. You've gotten good ideas, glad you are stopping by the vet too. Your hubby has the right attitude!

    As for your original post, re: walking to help, I think it would. Dogs get used to one another and check each other out when you walk. My dog (I have a Charlie too!) has lots of dog friends that we see while out. Although that is not your goal per se, it would help to socialize him, in addition to a trainer/behavior specialist or whatever else your vet recommends. He's a very pretty dog, too.
     
  7. my dog has been exhibitng antisocial/agressive behaviors too!!! and he jsut started doing this...going through puberty I suppose, so I have to have some training also
     
  8. I wasn't bashing your dog, I wasn't judging you harshly. I'm simply telling you what I think you need to hear. My ex boyfriend had a dog that was exhibiting EXACTLY the same signs as your dog is now (becoming aggressive towards certain people, dogs, etc.). They thought they could cure her behavior by simply taking her to dog parks and bringing more people into the house, but it only got worse. By the time she was three, she was territorial to the point that she had to be locked up when anyone outside of the family came over. She was typically fine on a leash outside the house, but sometimes would become aggressive towards other animals. She wasn't always this way, as I said, she got this way because they didn't seek any sort of professional help. Eventually she had to be put down before she was even 5, because she had bitten 2 people and was a hazard to have in the house.

    You still have time to address the problem, but I think first you need to recognize how serious of a problem it is. No, not everyone has perfect angels of pets, but aggression can rapidly get out of control if you don't acknowledge it for what it is.
     
  9. Ichi, it sounds like Charlie is under-socialized. I agree with heartandspade that walks will not do much to help if you do not get Charlie proper instruction. He may be motivated by his desire to defend his territory and protect you and your hubby when someone crosses the perimeter charlie assumes is his, but you won't be able to socialize him until you train him to obey you in spite of his aggressive tendencies. When you're able to tell him to sit and stop barking/charging on your command, I suggest you find a similarly-sized naturally submissive dog for him to start the socializing process with. You'll be able to teach him with the dog's aid what's acceptable and what isn't. It's a long road, but the alternative (allowing the aggressive tendencies to take root and grow) is not a healthy option.

    He looks like he might have some Rhodesian to me.

    good luck! I hope you find a wonderful, patient trainer to work with!
     
  10. BTW, orally fixated dogs do have a tendency to become aggressive or play roughly. We think of licking as kisses, but truly, licking is sometimes a natural response to anxiety in dogs. It's sort of the equivalent of a baby sucking its thumb -- it releases feel-good hormones in dogs to help them calm themselves. The more naturally anxious a dog is, the easier it is to move towards aggression, if not properly addressed.
     
  11. Oh no....well I gess bring him toobedience classes would be a good start and there he will be around other dogs too so it will be helping with both surrounding him with other dogs as well as getting him trained. And in the meantime I would just CLOSELY watch him around other dogs, especially small dogs IMO i wouldnt have him near smaller sogs just in case, he could really hurt one due to his size, and that would be heartbreaking. I also suggest when walking your dog and other ppl have their smaller dogs let them know he can get aggressive so they dont just let their dog go all up in your dogs face. As an owner of a small dog I NEVER have him near larger dogs we dont know just because its very dangerous even if they are just playing.
     
  12. Only go to obedience classes when the dog knows the exercises. Once in a class work the dog at a distance from the other dogs until dog can give really good attention to the handler. Move closer very gradually. A good trainer totally understands the issue and will work with you on this. If trainer doesn't understand this find a different class.

    Remember a dog looking away is good. Looking at a person or dog is not good. Reward for dog not looking at person/dog, that is what you want. Maxwell can do this now, I tell him he made a good choice. People think him looking at them means he wants to come up and get petted. No, he is thinking about barking at them. People don't like a cute dog looking at them, coming towards them and then barking at them!
     
  13. Interesting updates...(well at least to me)....:upsidedown:

    I've started with two things. One is, riding in the car. Tess, no problem. Sits like a little passenger - doesn't budge EVER. Charlie on the other hand, has always cried and whined and just been REEEALLY stressed in the car - yawning, shedding, etc. So the past few days I've been taking him around with me and the kids when we drop off at school (I go to 3 separate schools! Yikes!) and at first he was whack. I drive a large car and he wants to go clammering about all over including my lap which is BAD, so I had him on a leash and kind of wrapped it around the handrest as well as a nice towel on the seat from home (also don't want him tearing up the leather! ;)) Well, it's been a few days and wow - what a difference. Instead of concentrating on what's going on in the car, he's now discovered that there are soooo many things to see OUTSIDE the window (window is closed however except for about an inch so he can smell the outside goodies at least). So I'm feeling like progress is being made - but I have to stay on track.

    Secondly, the walk. I must get Ceasar's Mastering the Walk book. Tess is good - she needs a tiny bit of correction every now and again, but I see that when we first start out Charlie is all gangbusters - I'm afraid I'm going to break my hand and I need to wear a Michael Jackson glove on my left hand just to protect my skin from the tugging. And I know I'm supposed to be correcting him pulling to the right rather than back - believe me, I'm all about the Milan Man. Anyway, by the time we were into the walk, Charlie had calmed way down and even when he was hearing all the neighborhood dogs bark, he ignored them. His interest was peaked when he saw a dog across the way with another walker. I let them go down the way a bit, so I wasn't in competition for him. Don't want to do TOOO much too soon. Interestingly enough, there are two very large Setters 2 houses down from us. I know our dogs and her dogs converse all the time. Well, in a nice way. I was walking by on the way home, and of course they were right there behind the fence. Charlie sort of stood on his haunches and looked like he wasn't going to LUNGE, but more like "hey!" but what I did notice was his ears went down and he backed down and looked up at me as if to say "Mom?" Seriously...I'm totally serious....and he did that because he knew I was going to just keep walking and not give him the opportunity. I don't know. I'm feeling good about this. Much better.

    My Dad's coming over for lunch today bringing Lukie like he always does (they're buds)...I'll take some pictures. The three lone rangers.....actually we laugh - Tess is black and Luke and Charlie are caramel so it sort of looks like a reverse peanut-butter Oreo cookie.
    :yes:
     
  14. :woohoo::woohoo::woohoo::woohoo: Great work!!!
     
  15. Well, me back in my own sweet thread! :graucho:

    Second day walking, and man, that Charlie's got SOME energy abounding! I walked for 45 minutes and thank goodness halfway in, he wasn't even pulling - his tail was down, he was focused on just going straight and next to me!

    The news was that as I was headed back up my street, my neighbor was coming down in her car and pulled over next to us...'uh oh' I thought since last night before we went to bed and wanted to take Charlie out, Percy was outside again and Charlie started barking and cookooing it up again....but oh my gosh - she's like "Hello Charlie!" in that major English accent of hers....and just went on about how territorial he is and that he's a good dog and she's glad to see he's being walked because it's good for both of us, etc., It was all in good intention and she was actually quite loving about it. Thank goodness - I had them both sitting next to me on either side - they looked like sentinels and I was so proud.

    So I love my Charlie and I picked up that Ceasar book: http://www.amazon.com/Cesars-Way-Everyday-Understanding-Correcting/dp/0307337332 and hopefully I'm on my way.
    I do have to get "Mastering the Walk" though. I had to wear a gardening glove on my left hand because of the tugging and "pssstsing" and correcting.....:rolleyes::crybaby: