Dog Forum banner

1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Okay, so a bit of background.

In January I moved my then one year old hound mix here to IL. My husband at the time had two huskies. A 14 year old male, and a 5 year old female. Introductions went well. Ginny the female and George, my hound seemed to hit it off. They get along well, occasionally have their tiffs. Usually just Ginny losing patience and telling George off. No big deal.

Sam the 14 yrld passed away about a month ago. Neither of the two seemed to notice. Shortly after his passing I brought home my 15 year old Japanese Chin. Ginny has a very high prey drive, and becomes very unresponsive once she latches on to something. So I do not take the little guy out unless she is locked up or supervised. When I do take him out, she seems very jealous and will follow right beside me the whole time.

She doesn't have a very good "leave it" but it is being worked on. In general she is very hesitant to be obedient. I've really worked on her coming when called, sitting/laying down for food. Just generally adjusting her to working for what she wants. She has improved drastically.

We have encountered a problem here recently however. She is becoming very over protective of her food, or the area in which she eats. To the point where she has attacked George 3 times now for even going near "her" spots. Even if she was finished eating hours ago. These aren't small little corrections but full blown attacks. Its progressed to the point where I do not feel safe leaving them unsupervised at all.

So far I have removed any bowls and feeding spots to defend. She gets fed in a different spot every feeding and the bowl is then removed. I try to make feeding a positive time. I start her off with a small amount and slowly add food as she eats.

She obviously feel insecure. But why I am having a hard time figuring out. They have been together without issue for 8 months and now this. They have never been fed together or even near each other.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
669 Posts
If she was a younger dog, I'd probably recommend trying to counter condition her to other dogs being near her food, but given her age, I'd just continue to do what you're doing. Move food bowl every time she gets fed, feed her slowly, don't leave things out that she can guard, and don't leave the dogs loose together when you're not supervising.

Old dogs can learn new tricks, but counter conditioning severe resource guarding towards other dogs is usually something measured in months and years, not days or weeks. At 15, the issue is not likely to be resolved within her life span. And also, older dogs do tend to start getting more possessive of food and snarky towards other dogs, IME. That kind of stuff I see more as something to manage than train out, personally.

As to why she only started showing this after 8 months- my guess is it took her that long to settle in enough to feel things were "hers".

Alternatively, it could be a sign of a medical issue. Possibly hormonal. You could take her to a vet if you have the funds, but I wouldn't rush her off to one. If you have a regular vet you trust I would maybe call and see if they think its a behavior change that warrants running tests or if they think it's likely just due to her settling in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
273 Posts
My dog does this, also, and what I've done to somewhat help it, is that once he's done eating and BEFORE I let another dog around, I take up all bowls and all traces of food and let him sniff and investigate a little until I'm satisfied he knows there's no more food left. Otherwise, he may still guard an area if he's not sure the food is all gone. Definitely get a behaviorist or trainer out to help, if needed.
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
Top