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Phineas (chihuahua/toy poodle mix, age 2 1/2 ish)
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I'm Blinky, I'm Canadian and 21. I got this account for my mom's sake, as she impusively adopted a puppy from her best friend's dog's litter and now a bit over two years later the consequences of such an action are coming to a head. I'm more of a cat person myself (I can only stand calmer dogs so I've just accepted that I can't take that gamble), but I do find dogs very cute.

Other interests include Pac-Man, art, and writing.
 

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Hi and welcome.

What do you mean that the consequences are coming to a head? Can we help?
 

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HiYa Blinky..Welcome!

I second the question.....What's up with those consequences? Sounds ominous.
 

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Phineas (chihuahua/toy poodle mix, age 2 1/2 ish)
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Discussion Starter #4
He's very unpredictable. Just this morning I popped out of my room to say hi to my mom, he started growling at me from her lap, and then turned around and started biting at HER, immediately went to his crate (where she puts him if he's misbehaving) and started growling MORE because he couldn't open it. She says he has a lot of anxiety, and has one of those collars for him that are supposed to release calming pheromones. She says it's been a day past when they were supposed to change it and that's why he's acting that way, but it's only marginally worse than how he usually is.

Lately her response to him growling has to been growling back at him, which I don't think works, but she's not listening to me.
 

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There is a lot going on here.

Does he often growl and bite? How serious was the bite? Did he break skin?

When he went to his crate, did he go of his own will or did you or your mother put him in there? Does he like his crate or does he associate it with punishment?

Growling at him is unnecessary and unhelpful. Your mother doesn't ”speak dog”.
 

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Phineas (chihuahua/toy poodle mix, age 2 1/2 ish)
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Discussion Starter #6
I'm not sure. My mom says he has anxiety or panic attacks, and that's when he does it.

The bites haven't broken skin, but they do leave marks and mild bruising.

I have no idea what he thinks of the crate. We have two, one in the living room and one in the master bedroom that he sleeps in at night. The living room one is only used when they need him to be quiet or if he does something bad. I've never seen him resist going in there unless he's purposely defying me (he tends to respect me less since I'm not around as much). When this perticular incident occured, he promptly approached the crate, which was closed but not locked, and could not get inside until my mom opened it for him, which he immediately went inside.

I'll let her know (again).
 

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There is really not enough information here for us to give any meaningful advice I'm afraid but there are some things I should point out.

First, it would be helpful for you and your mother to learn about canine body language. Whatever led him to growl, then bite, will have been preceded by a lot of him trying to communicate that for some reason, he has been uncomfortable. When a dog bites, it's because he has already given every ”back off” signal he can and the bite is a last resort because he has nothing else left to warn you off with.

These signals could be muscular tension, lip licking, yawning but if you don't see them, and more importantly pay attention to them, he has to keep escalating them - shouting louder if you will - until the bite is all he has left.

Second, the crate should be his safe happy place - so never used for punishment.

I really think you and your mother need someone to observe in person. I realise it is difficult with Covid but this has been going on for two years.
 
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