Need help with 10 year old Beagle mix with aggression issues.

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Need help with 10 year old Beagle mix with aggression issues.

This is a discussion on Need help with 10 year old Beagle mix with aggression issues. within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; Hello, first time poster. It has come to this, I am in desperate need of help. I came across (long story) adopting a beagle (possible ...

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Old 06-16-2018, 11:48 AM
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Need help with 10 year old Beagle mix with aggression issues.

Hello, first time poster. It has come to this, I am in desperate need of help. I came across (long story) adopting a beagle (possible coonhound, we're not sure) mix in may of 2009. He is an awesome dog and I love him very much. However, over the years he has developed aggression issues. I may attribute this to his lack of socialization with other people or even leaving the house very rarely. He is OK with other dogs but his main issue, and the reason I am posting this, is that he has bitten people upon entering my house. It is awful, embarrassing event of which I am truly ashamed of. Thankfully it was minor incidents and the person afflicted was cool about it. But now I have no idea what to do.
When people do come over (which is very rare because if this reason) I usually place him in my bedroom with a peanut buttered kong... but he knows what's up and simply barks by the door the whole time. I feel AWFUL doing it, but simply the only way I can 100% avoid another potential bite from happening when someone must come over (again, which is rare). I have thought of working on this with him but the potential consequence of a bite occurring has essentially deterred me.
I have since had the attitude of "that's just the way he is, and I have to do whatever I can to avoid another bite from happening". I hate it and it feels wrong, but that's why i'm posting here. If there is any advice anyone can give me, I (and Nugget) would greatly appreciate it. I know he's an older dog, but I understand this dude can live a long life and would hate for it to be lived this way if avoidable. Open to all suggestions, and thank you all in advance.
-chip
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Old 06-16-2018, 06:47 PM
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My dog doesn't bite, but she can bark and snap at people... so when there are people over that she doesn't know, she gets crated.


That being said, we saw a trainer and her behavior has improved a lot, and she was fine the last 3 times we had people over... so that would be my first advice, if it's really important to you that he can be around your friends. But at 10 year old, frankly, I would probably just keep doing what you're doing (but I hear you and I hate having to do that too, mostly because it's not exactly very relaxing when your dog barks the whole time you have guests over).
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Old 06-16-2018, 08:57 PM
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Chip, first off, welcome to this forum!

I personally am so glad you are here trying to seek help for you and your dog. And I really commend you on being so ULTRA responsible with your dog and other people.

It is so hard having a dog with any aggressive tendencies. It can be very isolating as you have found out. No fun having to worry about if your beloved dog will suddenly decide to bite or lunge or bark,etc. Yup, better safe than sorry, put him in a safe spot when company comes over, but it does suck. For now.

Have you considered working with a behaviorist? Not a regular obedience type trainer, but rather someone who specializes in working with dogs like yours? Perhaps a behaviorist can help you figure out what the triggers are for your dog's aggressive issues.

Does your dog give any warning signs before the bites?

Also, a good behaviorist can help you learn to read your dog's body language to see if your dog is feeling stressed or nervous before the behavior escalates. You can also learn dog body language on your own by looking online and studying many websites and utube videos. This has helped me immensely with learning to read my dogs stress/comfort levels.

Even though your dog is older, I think there is most always hope! I applaud you for wanting to learn. With your positive attitude I am pretty sure there will be ways for you to help your dog cope in a more positive fashion.

And just to make sure, have you taken your dog to the vet just to make sure there is no underlying problem causing pain/irritability? Or sometimes when dogs lose sight or hearing they can have more aggressive actions.

Thanks again for seeking help!
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