Dog Aggression

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Dog Aggression

This is a discussion on Dog Aggression within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; This is an old problem with a dog that is long gone, but I did want your opinions on it. Here is the story of ...

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Old 12-10-2009, 01:41 PM
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Dog Aggression

This is an old problem with a dog that is long gone, but I did want your opinions on it.

Here is the story of Earl, my GSD, that I had as a kid. I got Earl as a birthday present when I was in middle school, I think 6th grade. We got Earl to replace our old GSD that we lost the previous fall. Earl was mainly an outside dog, but I did smuggle him in quite a bit and let me tell you, it is hard to smuggle in a 130lb dog. Anyway, when he was a pup, about 6-9 months, the neighbor's 2 boxers go loose and came over and attacked him. These two dogs had a history of aggression, especially the female, but this was the first time they attacked anything. We weren't home when the attack started, but came home and put an end to it. Earl was scared and had blood on his coat, but he wasn't actively bleeding. From that moment on, he was extremely dog aggressive. Prior to that, we could take him anywhere and he was fine with all the dogs he met, but after that he would totally freak out.

Is this something you could work out of a dog, or would this be more of an issue that the owner would just deal with and try to manage the best as possible?
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Old 12-10-2009, 01:44 PM
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I have never had a dog that was DA. But I do believe that you can retrain a dog not to be dog aggressive. There are many people on this site that can offer you their experiences.
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Old 12-10-2009, 01:50 PM
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Thanks Brittany. We lost Earl June 03, so there isn't a whole lot that can be done now, but I was just interested in case I ever run across an issue like this again.
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:04 PM
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would he actually attack other dogs or just go bonkers?

lots of dogs let their brains fallout of their heads when they see another dog, but that doesn't make them DA.



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Old 12-10-2009, 03:39 PM
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ya know that's a good question, I'm not sure. He would go kind of crazy, barking, growling, the hair on his back would go up but it was always when he was on a leash so he never got close enough to actually touch another animal.

One thing that I guess I didn't mention about Earl is that he was a big baby and the nicest dog ever. We always joked that personality wise he was more like a Golden Retriever than a GSD.

Aside from when he saw another dog I don't think he ever growled or acted aggressive in anyway. That just wasn't in him.
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Old 12-10-2009, 03:50 PM
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dog and human aggression are not related, so thats very normal that he was fine with your family.

many dogs that react the way you describe are just very frightened and are trying to make the scary thing go away by making a bunch of noise. Even if they are pulling towards the other dog.

I have a dog that behaves the same way if behind a fence or on a leash, but he is actually quite friendly with other dogs.


but anyway to answer your question, yes those behaviors can be replaced with more apropriate ones with training, absolutely.



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Old 12-10-2009, 03:54 PM
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When we first got Kelsey she would bark and lunge at other dogs on a leash and her fur would stand up. But all she wanted was to greet. After allowing her to greet a few dogs after she sat nicely she was fine.
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Old 12-10-2009, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Criosphynx View Post
dog and human aggression are not related, so thats very normal that he was fine with your family.

many dogs that react the way you describe are just very frightened and are trying to make the scary thing go away by making a bunch of noise. Even if they are pulling towards the other dog.

I have a dog that behaves the same way if behind a fence or on a leash, but he is actually quite friendly with other dogs.


but anyway to answer your question, yes those behaviors can be replaced with more apropriate ones with training, absolutely.
I always figured it was a fear based response to other dogs and he was a large shepherd, so I always tried to avoid letting him near another dog. The darn animal out weighed me by close to 30 pounds and I knew that if anything DID happen I wouldn't be able to force him away.

But you said something that really made me go back...He was only like this on a leash, something I never put together. A few of mom's friends would bring their dogs over to play and he would be fine with them, but I would take him to my younger brother's soccer games and that is where we would have the most issues. Hmm... wow, I never put those together.
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Old 12-10-2009, 04:39 PM
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hahah! So theres your answer!

or it could be like britney said...barrier frustration...he wants to meet the other dog so bad that he acts out in frustration.



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Old 12-14-2009, 05:52 AM
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I just posted a similar thread about Rally, my dog who has been attacked while on-leash, and is now Dog Aggressive..However, he doesn't hate ALL dogs, just overly excited, high energy dogs..Rally used to be the way your Earl was, Sweet, kind, loved playing with other dogs, etc..But since the attacks, he is just OUT on all other dogs while he is on the leash. Rally is also insane when he see's dogs on the other side of the fence, but I dont think its because he wants to meet them, I think its because he is threatened by them. If he has the opportunity to 'meet' like at a dog park, or off leash he is usually quite sweet..UNLESS the other dogs are overly excited, or insecure, and then he automatically HATES them.

They have given me some awesome advice about a book called "Control Unleashed" and I"m reading it, and trying to incorporate that into Rally's behavior issues..Its going to be a LONG process, but hopefully it will pay off..
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