How to stop my dog from snapping?

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How to stop my dog from snapping?

This is a discussion on How to stop my dog from snapping? within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Teddy is a year old yorkie/poodle mix and we just recently moved into a new house with a friend of mine and her chihuahua and ...

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Old 08-01-2013, 10:50 AM
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How to stop my dog from snapping?

Teddy is a year old yorkie/poodle mix and we just recently moved into a new house with a friend of mine and her chihuahua and Boxer. He has always gotten along with other dogs and the only big dog he's ever been around, but he does NOT like the boxer at all. She chases him wanting to play and he snaps and bites her. The boxer doesn't care, obviously he isn't hurting her but it has to be stressing him out to be that afraid of her. I don't know how to get him to stop, we've been here over a week and it's no better. Any ideas?
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Old 08-01-2013, 12:00 PM
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I think perhaps you are approaching this issue from the wrong end. The real question is, how to do you teach the boxer to not be such a pest to your small dog?

Your small dog is not doing anything wrong by expressing his discomfort with the larger dog's advances. The larger dog needs to learn to respect these signals.

Start with managing the situation better with gates, crates, leashes etc, to give the two of them time apart. Then when they are together, reward the larger dog for calm behavior. Keep the larger dog on a leash and ask for a "sit" and reward her with food bits for good behavior.

Keep the training positive, so the dogs think positively about being together (any punishments doled out when they are together, may make them eventually dislike each other.)
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Last edited by Tess; 08-01-2013 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 08-02-2013, 01:15 PM
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You need to let the dogs handle it if you can most small dogs rule the house. As long as there is no fear of injury back off and watch. You maybe surprised at how quickly they work it out without human interference.
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Old 08-03-2013, 03:07 PM
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Looks like two opposed responses here. Perhaps the answer is time. If you don't see a significant change within a few days (or less), I'd follow Tess' suggestions. I would not let this continue.

Another aspect here is to carefully look at how that Chi handles the Boxer, as that may give you a clue on your approach.
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Old 08-03-2013, 03:17 PM
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It only takes a misstep from the bigger dog to end up standing on & potentially hurting a small dog. I would supervise the interactions & when the boxer gets over the top or pesters when it been told no by the other dog I would reinforce the message for the little dog if needs be. But be careful often the little dog is the boss anyways so start with observing the interactions from start to finish & not allowing any interaction without you supervising.
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Old 08-03-2013, 05:25 PM
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Quite honestly I would step in now (following Tess' advice) and not wait for the dogs to sort things out on their own. IME letting them handle things on their own really only works when both dogs listen and respond appropriately to each other's signals. It's pretty clear that the boxer isn't going to back off when your little guy protests, so you and your roommate need to intervene.

This article came to mind when reading your post. Hope it helps you to at least think about things a little differently.
He Just Wants To Say "Hi!" | Suzanne Clothier

Also, I thought you and your roommate might be interested in these links about canine body language so that you can better read each dog. If you intervene when your guy first starts to show signs of discomfort (interrupt and redirect the boxer to an acceptable behavior or even just remove her) then he will be far less likely to be pushed to escalate his behavior to growling and snapping at the boxer.
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Last edited by kmes; 08-03-2013 at 05:39 PM.
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:53 AM
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When I got Kris, my Dobe at 11 weeks, I had to keep her separated from my Shih Tzu x Maltese as she was just too rough with them. She is separated from them still when they are outside except for Remmy who puts her in her place if she gets too rough, growls at her and she lies down and behaves. She is 7 months old now and I can let her out with the others as long as I am there to supervise and separate her from them if she gets too rough.

You should probably keep them separated until you can get the Boxer to leave her alone as he could hurt her.
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