Fear/Submission Aggression

Submitted by mmayfield on Tue, 08/03/2010 - 10:30
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Almost two years ago, I took in two pitt mix puppies from a bad situation. A male and female. I brought them home to an older boxer female, I had adopted from the pound, five years earlier. The male puppy was very, very shy and scared from day one (even before I brought him home). Only after a month or so, did he finally start trusting us, got over his fear and start playing/acting like a normal puppy. He was the puppy-you're never supposed to adopt.
The problem is this. The male has never gotten over what appears to be fear/submission aggression and severe defensiveness over the family and home. Both puppies were fixed right away and raised in a loving home with semi-young children. They are not aggressive to us at all and are the sweetest most loving, loyal dogs you could ever have. They are now almost two years old. No one can come into my home (or yard even) unsupervised without being nipped (not full blown attacked), especially by the male. He acts instinctively and goes right for the leg. No hesitation. They are kennel trained, and create a ruckus when kenneled, when a stranger is in the house. Its very loud and scary to the person.
The male rides very well, so I take him places to see new things and walk him around the neighborhood, etc, letting him encounter people. Sometimes I leash the dogs, working with them when someone comes over. It works to a point. As long as he's not threatened, its ok.
I've tried everything recommend so far, besides sending him to a professional trainer (in house). I also want to point out, I'm his security blanket. Any one else encountered this type of behavior before? Any suggestions?

I adopted Raisin from the shelter and he is very shy around people he does not know. When we walk at night he can be aggressive esp towards men. During the day he does more of a velcro sticks to me and doesn't move. I was really lucky to find out our SPCA does dog training so I enrolled him in class where they are helping him get better w/ people. During daylight he does not nip or bark but he when they tried to walk him he would plant himself and not move. So we introduced chickn, hot dogs, the dog food you buy rolled up in a tube. When they approach him they come in w/ their side facing him and look down as they squat and offer him the food. I have started saying friend when he meets people and I carry dog treats and have the people give him the food. So far he is getting better. Maybe have your friends come help you? Also try and contact your local SPCA or shelter, they often have great resources and are willing to help. = )