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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 3 year old Black Lab/Coonhound mix, and he has recently started showing jealousy over me towards my boyfriend. . . or he's being protective/possessive over me, I'm not sure which.

My boyfriend has lived with me and my dog for over a year now, and there has never been any issues between them. The other night when I was laying on the couch by my dog, my boyfriend came to sit next to me and my dog reached over me and snapped at him. I told my dog to get off the couch. We thought maybe my BF startled dog, etc. so we didn't really think anything of it.

Last night we had a similar situation - I just got home from work and laid down on my bed, dog jumped up by me (he's always been allowed on my bed) and I was petting him. My BF had just gotten home too and came to lay behind me. My dog snapped at him again - no growl, no fur up, just a single snap. My BF left the room startled and my dog moved to the end of the bed away from me. When my BF came back in and went to lay down behind me again, my dog snapped at him again, and I made him get off the bed.

My dog just had a vet visit (blood work, etc.) and was given a clean bill of health. He isn't acting/eating any differently, other than these 3 recent (all within the last 30 days) occasions of him snapping at my BF. Afterwards, he's fine with my BF - they play together, he pets dog, etc. My dog acts like nothing happened. I don't want anything to escalate, but I don't know how to address the issue. I also can't afford a behaviorist/trainer, so I'd like to avoid that route at this point in time if possible.
 

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I was going to ask if you've had him checked for illness, but you said he's healthy, so instead I'll ask if there's been any changes to his routine. Is he getting enough exercise, so he's not feeling frustrated or antsy? Have you or BF changed anything about your routine, like a new deodorant or laundry soap, which makes you smell different, going to work or back home at different hours, etc.?
 

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No more couches or beds for the dog or at least until he earns it and understands who owns it.

Every time your dog snaps at your BF and he moves or you do nothing, it'll just get worse. I'm glad you mentioned after the second incident you made the dog get off your bed.

Research NILIF training for your dog and see what you think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The only change I can think of is we used to go for a walk every evening when I got home from work, but we'd had a string of bad luck and haven't been in a few weeks - I was sick, bad weather, it got too hot to go as early as we would and then fireworks. Dog hates fireworks.

Another thing I just thought of is he wrecks my bed while I'm at work. . . I'm not sure if it's related. I make it every morning, and when I get home, the comforter is pulled back on my side or my pillow's on the floor - it looks like he makes himself a nest. He started doing it out of the blue and has been doing this for several months now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks. I checked out the NILIF training off the Humane Society's web-site, so I'll give it a go. I definitely don't want it getting worse - we thought the first incidence was a fluke and were both so startled when it happened again last night.
 

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Another thing I just thought of is he wrecks my bed while I'm at work. . . I'm not sure if it's related. I make it every morning, and when I get home, the comforter is pulled back on my side or my pillow's on the floor - it looks like he makes himself a nest. He started doing it out of the blue and has been doing this for several months now.
I'd guess it is completely related. The nesting behavior can be a classic example of how a dog marks its resting area by leaving its scent via the sweat glands on their pads. They also exhibit the same behavior for other reasons as well.

It sure sounds like your dog has claimed the bed as "his" bed and is sharing it with you but not so willing to share it with your BF at this point in your dog's development and the dog has just flexed his "muscles" and driven your BF off of "his" bed. There is no reason for the dog to stop this behavior unless you reestablish or create proper boundaries and behavior.

Dog sleeps on floor and not permitted to be on the bed or couch until you help your dog figure out who controls all of the dog's resources.
 
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