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Miztiki

Boyden challenged me and I need help

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Really happy you and Boy are having a better day and that there's some good news. You can tell you really love them both and will stop at nothing to make sure they're both happy and healthy. Don't worry I don't intend to just stop the steroids that's for sure, I know it's way harder on the body that way, it just kind of puts another concern there. It was a really hard decision to put him back on them. I cry because I know how hard it is to worry and not know what's wrong, to feel so helpless when all you want is for them to feel better. That and I'm a pretty emotional person on the best of days. lol.

 

Thanks for the info Annette, I look forward to hearing the results of your next read.

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Thanks. Since I drive cars for 10 years+, a new one is always an exciting event, at least until it has dog hair everywhere.

 

Thanks for the 40 comment. If it wasn't for the whole body-going-down-hill kind of thing, it wouldn't bother me a bit.

 

Gael is doing well. She's really smart. Still have the leash issues when walking with many leashed dogs in sight. She LOVES going but never relaxes, so I have to be careful not to let her overheat. Colby is convinced it will only take about 6 more trips to trails/lake for her to relax. We'll see. (This is kind of interesting, when she sees horses or cows, she shakes.) I think if Loki takes over the alpha role maybe she wouldn't be so uptight. But I could be way off base. He's definitely challenging her lately, it's interesting to watch.

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I meant that as a compliment! I hope you didn't take it as anything other than that. When you said you hit the big 4-0 I just couldn't believe it. I thought you were MUCH younger than that.

 

Do you think Loki is alpha enough to be above her? I didn't get to know either of them as well as I would have liked, but I thought she seemed pretty level-headed. I agree, it is interesting to watch.

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Oh, all you children just be quiet in your playpens. I think you all look about 12. So there! Because, otherwise, I must be a lot older than 30. (Don't tell my kids that I'm now younger than they are.)

 

Michelle, the idea of family dynamics is sure a possibility. When my 3 kids were young (and at home), I never knew which two were going to be united against which one. Or if each would be battling both others. Especially when all three weeere teenagers at once. And you seem to have two "teenage" dogs. I swear I've seen that face you posted on each of my kids!

 

I sure wouldn't tease. If I did anything to sort ofcheck on attitudes, I'd be definitely overt.

 

I find it hard to believe this of Fergie's favorite, Boyden. He was so laid-back at the picnic. Even when that Jack Russel tormented him. So there has to be something special going on.

 

I had a friend, years ago, who was told to take steroids - cortisiods. She ended up using organic cleaners and drinking lemon juice instead, because of what the cortisoids did to her mind.

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Oh I took it as a compliment - I meant turning 40 wouldn't bother me. Your eyes must have been blurred by driving so much. :rolleyes:

 

She is calm, happy, and serene until she's on leash walking trails/etc. Even when no dogs are around, she's on high alert and over excited. I have the feeling, she'd be fine off leash, like when she walked with Boyden and Tristan. She seemed kind of respectful of Boyden. Loki, I think, is a dominant pup (8 months old now), but she has always put it to him when he pushed it too much. But lately outside the chasing is reversing, and he is staring her down alot. I keep thinking if he takes over as he matures that when we walk/hike, she'll relax and let him lead?

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Originally posted by ErinKate:

On one hand I agree with Julie in saying don't give him anything to grab, hence you needing to take away, but it really doesn't solve your problem. Heck, one day you may need to take away a sock, or something from him that he doesn't want to give up.

quote:
I averted my gaze, took a step back, cheerfully said something about going outside and both dogs went out while I put the meat in the fridge.

You averted your gaze = submiting to HIM

took a step back = submiting to him

cheerfully said... = reward

 

Sorry Miz, IMO this was the last thing Boyden needed. I know it was scary, and your first fright, but after him biting, aauuugghhh!!! If he was mine, he would have eaten every tooth he showed me. If you can do it without scarying Fynne, yell in a big booming voice, "are you kidding me!!!" (kiss of death for my boys) Then tell him to drop it, back up, get out, load up, whatever gets him away from what he was guarding. Maybe for a bit you should send him out to pick up his bones. I think he is totally bulldozing you. He knows you won't do anything. The day you do, he will totally change his tune.

I agree. Don't ever let him see or sense your fear. In other words, mask it... he starts his funny buisness... stay calm and use a Mama voice say "NO or EXCUSE ME!or ANTT Get to your crate NOW!" Poppy just used this trick when dogs got ideas of being boss. He would put the leash on and it stayed on ~they had it dragging behind them. It worked on Bear and Duke.. but both these were black lab and black lab with retriever.

 

Hope the behaviorist can help. (((HUGS))) in mean time for you... BAD BOY!

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Miz,

 

I'm taking time out to read Applied Dog Behavior and training VOl. 2 by Steven R Linday. It's a bit dry and is like boring text and so far regarding aggression all I've made out is that most studies conducted seem to contradict each other and the only thing that is generally agreed on (so far in reading) is how to classify aggression and that with Interspecies aggression (humans) it's generally a defensive effort to gain control of environment. So far there is no mention of aggression induced or aggravated by drugs and the only thing they site hormonally that worked really well was to give progestin as a testtosterone antagonist, dogs became calm (to lethargic?) and after a 3 month course many dogs retained their lack of aggression but some didn't and the practice of using progestin got much criticizim because there were alternate drugs available with less side effects apparently.

 

Based on my reading, everytime you backed off of Boy, he got a jolt of endorphins at his resulting win. This reinforces further (and more intense) displays of aggression. So you can't give him an inch and when you approach him for testing the way you did, you need to be prepared for any result so you can act accordingly without having to go back and think about it. This is not a criticizim, just a clinical type of assessment.

 

So once again, I ditto- ErinKate!

 

18 hours smoke free- concentrating is hard about now. Gonna do it this time- I can change my behavior if I can change my dogs. Thats my new mantra.

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Nutrition and aggression:

 

Generally it says that dogs fed high- protien diets decrease excitability and increase trainability. BUT

some evidence suggests that adjusting dietary protien levels may provide a viable means for influencing the behavioral thresholds of some forms of aggression.

 

Basically, excess protien in the blood significantly reduces the amount of tryptophan reaching the brain for the production of serotonin. Decreasing the protien intake, increasing carb intake, and adding the suppliment 5-HTP yielded a significant decrease in aggression scores.

 

(This might help! I know you can't really give him carbs but you can give him 5-HTP, available in health food stores)

 

Edited to add: this makes sense to me in that wild canids need to be geared toward aggression for survival so what they eat should support the hard wiring necessary for survival. I suppose in individual domesticated subjects the results could vary widely from little display of aggression to big displays - which is why we do not see raw fed dogs becoming dangerous as a whole- but this is just my musing.

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Originally posted by Annette & the Borderbratz:

Decreasing the protien intake, increasing carb intake, and adding the suppliment 5-HTP yielded a significant decrease in aggression scores.

 

Interesting reading (and I'm not being sarcastic, honest!)

 

Nicholas Dobson wrote a book about nine years ago titled "The Dog Who Loved Too Much." It ran through a few heartbreaking individual accounts of dogs' behavior changes, and most times his response was to reduce the protein in the dogs' diet and treat the undesirable behavior with medication (I believe his drug of choice was Prozac.) This is oversimplifying of course, but that's the gist of it.

 

Granted, this book was written in 1996 and the author is (was?) a behavioral pharmacology professor, but it would be interesting to see just what (if anything) has changed in this treatment regime.

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Annette,

Gotta run and cut brush for sheep fence (don't have time to summarize), but you might find this article by Karen Overall interesting. It ties the neurochemical processes (e.g., serotonin) behind dominance aggression with behavioral and pharmacological treatments.

 

Kim

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Originally posted by Annette & the Borderbratz:

Based on my reading, everytime you backed off of Boy, he got a jolt of endorphins at his resulting win. This reinforces further (and more intense) displays of aggression. So you can't give him an inch and when you approach him for testing the way you did, you need to be prepared for any result so you can act accordingly without having to go back and think about it. This is not a criticizim, just a clinical type of assessment.

Hey Miz - I saw a great t-shirt this weekend. It said "Cross the line, your A** is mine!" :rolleyes:

 

You are doing a great job with your dogs - don't get discouraged. Both of them have a lot of baggage from their previous lives that you will never know about; gotta just let it go, and start from there. I know it seems like you have had them for a long time, but really it hasn't been that long since even Boy came into your life. I bet your pack dynamics are just truly starting to surface, and "the honeymoon" is coming to an end. I agree with Annette above, as hard as it is, try to make yourself into a firm but benevolent leader, and do not back down to their "tests". Hold your ground, but I wouldn't purposely put yourself in a position to have to defend yourself. I'd set up feeding time so that it is safe and trouble free for everyone involved. I do think that getting him checked out physically is a great idea, too, since physical pain can solicite all kinds of unexpected behavior, and many stoic dogs never show outwards signs of discomfort.

One interesting note...The more herding you get to do with your dogs, the more you will see how these sweet little monsters will try their hardest to beat you- on a regular basis. I parallel all my dogs' "regular" behavior to their behavior when herding - I think their "true colors" show up most in herding because that is where "nature" and instinct figure so much more important than "nurture" and training. It helps to see what I'm really dealing with in the underlying pack dynamics. If I didn't herd with my dogs, I would never have guessed that my seemingly "sweetest, most submissive" girl at home is actually a domineering devil who tests me every step of the way. And my "Mr tough guy" at home is really a "softy - Mama's boy" who gets flustered when he thinks he did something that displeased me or doesn't understand a command.

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Kim,

 

I read that page by Dr. Overall today, it took me all day to read because my concentration isn't so good today. I'm on Bupropion myself as I go through some personal behavior modification-quitting smoking.

 

I did however retain what I read because I took it so darned slow I find it interesting that every behavior that is abnormal is neuropsysiological- here I just thought underlying things like anxiety and phobias were. And so as such, a neurologist is a good place for Boy to start out and the recommendation of one does not necessarily mean a serious, life threatening thing, but along with a behavior modification treatment possibly the shortest route to lifetime management.

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Hi,

 

First post here....sorry for coming into it a little late.

 

First up...a bit of an introduction - I live on acreage in Brisbane, Australia....hope you folks don't mind having a non-Nth. American BC owner onboard.

 

My two dogs - Jack (BC) and Keg (BC-Lab cross) are only pups - 17 and 9 weeks, respectively....but I've owned many dogs in the past - ranging from Dachshunds, through Corgis, Boxers, Labs - and BC's, obviously :rolleyes:

 

Onto the topic and generally good advice that others have given - I've seen similar behaviours around food when there's more than one dog involved.

 

It is, as has been suggested, perfectly normal for dogs to guard their food/covet the food of other pack members.

In general, I think that it's often best to let them sort it out - but obviously, if there's extremely aggressive behaviour that results in damage to another dog....it needs to be kept in check.

 

I've found that simple things like feeding the beta dog (YOU are the alpha in the pack) before feeding the gamma dog is the easiest way to establish a pecking order.

 

Having said this - no dog is fed before the alpha (and the rest of the alpha's other pack members - i.e. the humans).

 

Dogs are separated - preferably out of visual range - and fed (beta dog first).

From here, you need to keep an eye on both dogs to ensure that they don't try to sneak a look/mouthful from the other's bowl.

 

If this happens (and it WILL :D ) - correct the dog in whatever way you feel comfortable.

- a sharp "no" or "bah!" usually does the trick. I follow this up with a "you should be ashamed of yourself" as Borders are pretty easily embarrassed - and know this tone of voice. They will generally look away because the nature of the BC is to please it's humans.

- another method is to remove the food bowl of the "thief" for a couple of minutes....and then, when the other dog has finished, allow it to eat. This lesson can also be accompanied by playing with the other dog while the "bad" dog is finishing off it's meal.

 

With the "look" from Boy, I'd suggest the same kind of thing - the sharp/loud "no", and "you should be ashamed of yourself".

If this doesn't work, consider "smiling" back at the dog while telling it in your most authoratitive voice that you "will not have that behaviour"....and walk two or three quick, short steps towards the dog. This will shock the dog - and it will, for the briefest instant, be confused.

Immediately(!!!!) issue a come, sit/drop command (you must be standing).....

When he/she responds to the commands, tell the dog that you will not have the behaviour (in a softer voice, but still firm...and then move onto the "you should be ashamed" tone)....do this while stroking the dog's neck and ears - and slowly become more "calming" in tone as you go (BC's tend to slow down as you speak more slowly and in a lower pitch).

 

This tells the dog that you're the boss - and gives it time to reflect on what just happened - while under your control!

The other plus is that you have "shocked" the dog (by the "no" and the 3 quick steps) and have immediately issued a command, reinforcing your "working relationship". You have also then calmed the dog.

 

Reissuing a command basically creates a space where the dog thinks it doesn't have to obey the first one.

Obviously, while training, this is inevitable - but once the dog knows the command, it should happen first time, every time.

I've found that this type of response can be achieved by a mixture of rewards (sometimes a pat, sometimes a treat, sometimes a bit of extra playtime - ALWAYS a "good boy/girl").

All commands are accompanied by a hand signal as dogs (particularly BC's) are very visually cued.

Even at 10 weeks, Jack would come, sit and drop without me uttering a vocal command.

Basically, I've always trained this way because I've never met a dog that actually speaks English :D

 

I still use the vocal commands (partly for my benefit) because these can be issued from a distance - with "come" being the toughest one to teach.

As a tip, bite your tongue when using the "come" command to get your dog to stop doing something you don't want it to do. ALWAYS reward it for coming, no matter how much you want to punish it for digging up your prize-winning roses.

 

My....I've gone off on a tangent here....getting back to Boy....

If it isn't a health or diet issue, I suggest that you put some time into your "working" relationship. Make Boy your "business partner", not your pet.

I don't know if your time permits this (or whether or not you already do this), but consider some agility training/flyball/frisbee....and if not, teach Boy (and Fynne - although do this in individual training sessions where they're isolated from each other - this makes it "special" one on one time with the "alpha" - a big problem when you have multiple dogs) some new tricks.

 

BC's need to have a "purpose" in life (in my vocabulary, this means pleasing me, in his vocabulary this means "working" to please me), so I try to teach Jack (and Keg, although he's a little more Lab than BC...and therefore a lot "slower" at everything - except eating) new things each day, or reinforce what he already knows.

 

As examples of the repetition/learning (that maintain our working relationship, my status as alpha, and Jack's interest - outside of the daily walks/play sessions etc.)....

- insist on walking in/out of doors or down the hallway first - use it to teach the "heel" command as you walk around the house (it makes lead training/taking the dog for a walk so much easier)

- talk conversationally with the dog, while you're going about your daily chores, making breakfast etc. This strengthens the "partnership", and helps the dog to learn your different "tones" more quickly - so he'll know when you're angry, disappointed etc. because the tone isn't the same as your normal voice.

- always make time for a formal training session of at least 5-15 minutes each day. Use whatever rewards you wish - food/play etc. - or make the training session itself the "reward" for good choices that your dog makes throughout the day.

- grooming is THE most important part of my "working" day with Jack (he's a long-haired BC) and where I repeat (and originally taught) stand/stay ("inspect"), sit, drop/stay, roll and release (he liked chewing on the brush handle when he was younger). It makes grooming easier and more pleasurable for us both, it's good bonding time - and Jack gets to select a "special" toy from a soft bag after he's been co-operative while being groomed, checked for ticks (a problem on acreage) and burrs, cleaned his teeth, ears etc.

 

Sorry....I've gone off about my dog(s) more than commenting on the original post/problem.

Hopefully, you can sort through the chaff to find some wheat...and maybe some tips/ideas on re-establishing your partnership with Boy. :D

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Welcome to the boards!

 

This is not directed at you specifically, but to everyone.

 

Maybe I didn't describe well enough what happened the other night, but anyone who advised me to do anything other than what I did is wrong and giving out DANGEROUS advice.

 

When a dog freezes, silently stares you down, lowers it's head and snarls (smiles) with it's ears up and forward, you are a split second from being bit and have one choice - and that is to back down and give the dog some room. Any other action you take will result in a bite at that point.

 

I don't know why that happened the other night. I'm trying to find out. But I do know for a fact that I did the right thing (I am 100% confident on this) and the advice I've heard about that in particular has me concerned.

 

I'm hoping I just did a poor job of describing what happened.

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Hello JacknKegsDad! Your post included some really good, basic stuff that will be helpful to me, as you also explained why it works. I thank you for that.

 

Beck's last owner used the "BAH!" expression, but I don't. I think I will start that up again. I have been using only audible commands and not visual ones, but you just explained why last night Beck came to me when I simply snapped my fingers and gestured for her to come, without any verbal command being given. And I like what you said about making our BC our "business partner" per se. I talk to all of my animals, as in having regular conversations with them. (My family thinks I am a nut case for doing so...but every time my mom comes over she begs me to talk to Pumbaa the cat, because he answers me by emulating my speech patterns...not with meows. *LOL*)

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Dogs pay way more attention to body language than verbal. In fact, talking to your dog too much is not a good idea.

 

Just as you can tell a happy dog from a scared dog from an angry dog by the way they hold their ears, mouth, eyes, tail, etc., we can communicate volumes with our bodies and facial expressions.

 

So yeah, the expression on your face, whether you are leaning forward or back, what you do with your hands and arms are all part of what the dog takes into consideration when you give a command. The word itself is a very small part of it. (Tone of voice is crucial too.)

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Miz, everyone who gave you advice is thinking no doubt of if their own dog did the act. (atleast I was, mine would have come face to face with death.) You bring up a valid point that no matter what the opinions are, you know him best, and you know his limits. Never go against your gut if you think the situation is too much.

Everyone trains in a diff. way. Rescues can be tricky.

I have to say though, I have never seen a dog ticked with it's ears UP. When mine get mad, they are flat. Is this position common for Boyden? Do the rest of you get this reaction?

 

 

OT:

18 hours smoke free- concentrating is hard about now. Gonna do it this time- I can change my behavior if I can change my dogs. Thats my new mantra.
Yeah!!! You can do it Annette! Think of how great you will feel in a month!

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Boyden is a dominant dog. Dominant meaning confident, sure of himself, a natural top dog and alpha-type. I don't mean dominant like pushy, bossy, etc. His ears go up, not back, when he's serious. Fynne tries to look all kinds of mean but her ears go back. She doesn't have a fraction of the confidence of Boyden. Boy doesn't feel the need to put on such a show.

 

Dogs put their ears back as a way of protecting them in a fight, just like they protect their genitals by tucking their tail under.

 

dogs1.gif

 

This is similar to what Boy did that night. His head was lowered a bit and his eyes were wide open, and I could clearly see the whites of his eyes under the pupils, just like in the picture I posted on the first page of this thread. The other differences were that his lips were not pulled back on the sides like that (from my perspective and past experience) and there were not wrinkles on top of his muzzle (at least not like in the pic). He lifted the front of his lips to show his front teeth though, what I call a "smile". He did not growl, but was silent. I thought "who the heck do you think you are" and stood up and stared back at him and was about to "give him hell". That's when he stepped towards me without blinking and I backed down.

 

Check out these sites about dog body language:

Read the "frontal attack" part.

 

body language quiz

 

Here's a site with lots of links about dog body language. Also, a Google search with those words brings up alot of sites.

 

Annette, have you killed anyone yet? :rolleyes:

 

I'm really proud of you. I think you might inspire me to try again.

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I re-read your original post. To me, it sounds like Boy may have reacted this way for a couple of reasons. 1) You fed Fynne first from the pork shoulder. Boy knew it and may have already been ticked off to come home to find her eating "their" food. Can you separate the food into portions and feed each dog individually so thery don't perceive it as "taking it away from one to give the other" or having to share resources? 2) You sat on the floor in between them, which lowers yourself to their level and status. I would stand or sit above them during feeding time. 3) I agree that you did not need to escalate the confontation. A pack leader would not do that, he would simply and quickly put an end to it and ignore the other pack member. My true alpha bitch does not usually bother with "posturing" over the obnoxious lower status pack members. One snarl, or look of disgust and she walks away. She de-escalates the attempt by ignoring it an making it a "moot point". In your situation, by staring at him, you may have been saying "Ok, buddy, bring it on" rather than, "knock it off, you worthless worm". I would have stood up, broken off the confrontation by not even returning eye contact acknowedgement, and quietly put him into a crate without the rest of his dinner. Effectively you are saying, "Too bad Boy, play by the rules or don't eat. I don't have the time for your unwarranted behavior."

Don't feel bad about the way things played out. It IS freaky to see your dog act/react that way. and you were not prepared for it. Now that you know it is a possibility, just be ready next time, or better yet, defuse it before it happens and hope there isn't a "next time".

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M'ki, if you didn't want the advice, then why'd you ask? If you supposedly know all the answers, then again, why'd you ask? When you ask for information over the net, you are asking people to assume a lot of things based on sketchy, emotional details given by you... never a good idea when dealing with a serious problem. Pretty much everyone told you the bottom line was to consult a behaviorist, which hopefully you've done.

 

I for one do NOT think you did the right thing. You put yourself in a dangerous situation you couldn't handle. I'm not saying you shouldn't have backed down when you got in over your head, I'm saying you never should've put Boy, Fynn and yourself in that situation in the first place... THAT was your error. Hopefully it was just a naive mistake, but please consult a behaviorist before attempting something like this again. Good trainers never have to back down, because they never allow the situation to develop to that point. Dog training is like chess - you have to think 3 steps ahead of your dog.

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I am by no means a dog behavior expert but I wanted to say that one possible reason for an increased BUN is to much protien which goes along with what a few others have said about a possible link to Boy's behavior and protien.

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hi there:

 

I just wanted to mention something again, that may be part of the root of some of your problems with Boy. You mention that you hide Boy's food in a tree, and that he gets to find it, and you can sit next to him, and he brings it next to you while he eats. This is sending, imo, the wrong message to him. Part of the pack leader's job is to procure and/or determine when the pack eats. That is, be in charge of what and when the pack eats. When a pack of wolves eats, the lower level pack members don't eat until given permission; if they do the pack leader will teach them where their status is in the pack. I suggested earlier not giving Boy something he could grab, and also, hand feeding is a very good thing for him. If are going to feed the whole prey items, then YOU take out the prey, YOU rip it up, YOU give it to him. If he grabs or gets pushy, NO food, until he does a down for several minutes (2-3). By you letting him forage for and find, and eat at will his own food, you have effectively removed any need for him to respect you whatsoever. Dogs live to eat, and most of their behaviour is rooted around getting something to eat- if you control that, you control him.

 

Julie

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Here's an easier reading version of the article by veterinary behaviorist Karen Overall:

 

Dominance Aggression in Dogs: Part 1

 

I find it interesting because it presents a viewpoint that is different from what some have suggested.

 

Key points/quotes:

 

"rule out any medical causes of aggressive behavior"

 

"Once medical causes have been ruled out, a diagnosis of dominance aggression is based on the recurring presence of the atypical aggressive behaviors described above. A definitive diagnosis can be made if an aggressive response intensifies when a dog is physically or verbally corrected or its behavior is interrupted." (Examples given in article.)

 

"Dogs with dominance aggression can be divided into two broad groups: 1) those that know they are in control and can compel their owners to do their bidding, and 2) those that are unsure of their social roles and use aggressive behavior to discover what's expected of them."

 

"Most dominantly aggressive dogs are in the second group."

 

"Because affected dogs have an anxiety disorder and are using provocative behaviors to get information (my italics), physical punishment has no place in teaching appropriate behavior. Physical punishment removes uncertainty and convinces these dogs that the person punishing them is a threat. Accordingly, their aggression worsens. Hitting, beating, or kneeing an affected dog creates an adversarial relationship and reveals a lack of understanding about canine aggression and anxiety.

 

Treatment involves the following steps:

 

? Avoidance of all circumstances known to provoke (my italics again) an affected dog (e.g. if the dog reacts when hugged, don't hug the dog; if the dog reacts when sleeping on the bed, don't let the dog sleep on the bed). (Note: I think Laura's latest post was on the mark regarding the cause of the problem but I also think you handled it as best you could, given the circumstances.)

 

? Passive behavior modification to encourage dogs to defer to their owners. Passive behavior modification also ensures that undesirable behaviors aren't rewarded (e.g. if the dog stares at you, walk away; if the dog won't let you put on a leash or collar and instead rolls over and tucks in its neck and jaw, walk away); the key here is to prevent a struggle over control and decrease the dog's reactivity in the situation. Passive behavior modification also involves spontaneously praising or rewarding a dog whenever it exhibits a desirable behavior.

 

(here's some information about behavior modification & aggression )

 

? Active behavior modification in the form of desensitization and counterconditioning to teach the dog a new, less aggressive way to react in the situations it regards as provocative

 

? Antianxiety medications, if necessary. (r/t to the neurochemical causes)

 

I think working with a good behaviorist is an excellent suggestion.

 

Kim

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Hey Miz

I think you did the right thing given the circumstances. Being bitten in the name of a lesson is still being bitten. I'd rather not!

 

I do think he was challenging you. For whatever reasons. I was also thinking about my little alpha B Raven. She does some resource guarding with her food. I allow her to protect it while she is eating, as they all have their place to eat and we have our routines.

 

But, I did remember being confused one day, as she was trying to guard me and my bed from the other dogs. I was lying there loving on her and all of a sudden she was growling. I was totally confused till I realized another dog was trying to come into the room and that is what she was growling at. By looking at her, she seemed to be looking right at me. She was. I figure she wasn't looking at the intruding dog as to not give it something to challenge her back. She is not allowed to guard anything else. But that was way back when.

One other thing....Same dog was on the bed getting lovies again. I somehow was lying on top of her and made her nervous. She growled a warning and I got mad at her growling at me. So I towered over her and continued getting in her face. I came away with a small cut under my eye. At that point I was so shocked I literally threw her from the bed. Haven't had an incident since then but I would never keep challenging her in that way again. I can hardly blame her. She warned me, she was nervous, she is like a rescue (I bought her from a farmer who had kept her in a kennel till she was 10 months old with no socialization), Yes, I was right in claiming my bed and my space, but I would never be that stupid and keep my face in the way again.

If you have the resources, I would love to see Boy go to the doggy chiropractor. Another rescue was having difficulties and my own chiropractor found his neck was way out of alignment. He was a different dog after adjustments.

Good luck and keep reading and working, you'll figure out what to do. I think you've thought this one to death. Chalk it off to learning, yours and Boys, and move on. :rolleyes:

Kristen

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