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Discussion Starter #1
Our dogs never really did the grass-kicking until we brought Raleigh and Nellie home. Both of them are grass kickers, and consequently now our dogs are too (especially Chisum).

It's not really a problem - they're not ruining our yard or anything - I'm just wondering if it's something I should be concerned about behavior-wise, particularly with Chisum.

I ask because Chisum, reactive as he is, isn't nearly as dog-reactive. In fact, when it comes to friendly, social dogs that are willing to put up with a bit of his "social awkwardness" he does really, really well.

Chisum does not get along with Nellie at all, but then Nellie from day 1 has had a very negative reaction to Chisum and [I believe] her growling at him makes him insecure and afraid and that is what causes him to react. She's crated indoors right now and as long as she doesn't growl at him Chisum is totally content to ignore her.

However, it seemed to me that Raleigh and Chisum were getting along swimmingly. They've had a few minor scuffles - all instigated by Raleigh and all relating to resource guarding - but otherwise are fine. Most of the time Chisum ignores him. They've even had a few little play sessions! :thumbsup: Sometimes during play Chisum seems to get a bit unsure/insecure but in those instances he will simply stop play and come sit by me. No biggie, Raleigh moves on.

BUT...Raleigh and Chisum do get into "pissing contests" - there is a lot of territorial marking and grass kicking going on. Particularly on Chisum's end.

Is this a sign that Chisum is more insecure/upset than I'm reading into, or is just a matter of dogs being dogs? :confused:
 

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Just from the general info I know about it, I don't think you have to be worried. Its more of a marking thing. Wolves do it, and some dogs do and some don't. My sister has a little terrier mix (female) that does it sometimes. In Chisum's case I would say its probably just a learned behavior from Raleigh. I think as long as they are getting along well and your not noticing more stress then normal I think he should be ok. Is Raleigh neutered?
If I remember correctly you've only had the Nellie and Raleigh for a month or two (?). It could be, how for example when some dogs go to some ones house or new area that has or had a dog they go around and have to pee every were the other dog peed. Maybe the marking will settle down as they become more comfortable/confident/settled in with each other.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
@Sabina88 - thanks. I'm hoping it settles with time. And yes, Raleigh is (recently) neutered.

I'm not so concerned about the behavior itself, if that makes sense, but rather whether or not Chisum isn't as comfortable as I think he is. I'll have to grab some videos this afternoon and see what you all think.
 

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It is a stress related activity, it has nothing to do with territory marking (dogs don't have the mental capacity for that kind of future thinking, they live in the moment). To a dog, it is movement and no different from actually running.
 

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It is a stress related activity, it has nothing to do with territory marking (dogs don't have the mental capacity for that kind of future thinking, they live in the moment). To a dog, it is movement and no different from actually running.
Would you consider urine marking to be a stress related activity as well?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Okay, so here are a couple of videos if anyone wants to provide additional feedback. The first video shows the grass kicking, and it appears Chisum is a bit apprehensive (??) about the play that Raleigh is trying to initiate. In the second video he seems very thrilled about the play, probably in no small part due to the fact that this sort of "rougher" play is totally Chisum's play style and he has yet to meet a dog that will play that way with him. :p

The videos are of one concurrent instance of them being together, they're only separate because I noticed halfway through I was recording in vertical mode and I HATE that.




EDIT: For some reason I'm just seeing empty boxes for the video embedding, so here are the links if you need them:

Video 1:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_9jdt3j2xc

Video 2:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRR04lok4eA
 

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I'm by no means a dog body language expert but I don't think he looks to apprehensive to me at least. Maybe a little in the first video but I don't think if he is it to much. Chisum was doing lots of play bows and some chassing, and towards the end of the first video (and in the second) it looked like he was inciting Raleigh in play.
Is he peeing more frequently then he used to?
I'm not sure if your still working with the trainer with Chisum, but maybe you could ask your trainer what they think since theve worked one on one with him.
If you look on google there's actually a few articles/ short blurbs about the topic of dogs scratching after going to the bathroom.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks again, @Sabina88.

I think I'm just a bit overly-thorough when it comes to Chisum in general, particuarly with other dogs. He wasn't socialized terribly well with strange dogs for a good chunk of his life because he was so reactive toward people it was just impossible. The first day Jake brought Stella home (and the first strange dog he met face to face) I swore it would go badly, but it didn't really - it actually went really well. I think I'm pleasantly stunned that he's fine with other dogs (for the most part, anyway).

The biggest thing, for him, that starts fights is when another dog instigates something he just chooses fight vs. flight (as opposed to what he does when people are around). So, Nellie growls at him frequently and that gets him going. One time Raleigh resource guarded some food and actually lunged at Chisum which started a fight. BUT I'm thankful Chisum isn't the instigator and we'll work on it as best we can :)

I'm just happy he finally found a "friend"!
 

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I see no problem with the way they are playing. Dogs always strive to move well, moving well gives a sense of well-being, this is the case for all creatures, we evolved to move well. So the kicking to Chisum feels like running, moving well, once he has done that he is able to engage and play with Raleigh.
 
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