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  • in reply to: Dog Aggression #15624

    I don’t know the background on your dog, but it sounds a lot like he is protecting you from other dogs. This is common in many dogs, not just APBTs. Does he instigate the aggression or does it happen after the two dogs have sniffed one another? If it happens after the two have sniffed it could merely be that you have too much tension on the leash, and he is sensing that something is wrong. If it is before the problem may be a little more deeply rooted. Desensitization is probably your best option, but you’re going to have to find a trainer to do it for you, as i doubt there are many of your neighbors willing to let you use their dogs for the process. Until then, manage the situation, as a responsible pet owner. Purchase a muzzle for when you are in public.

    Another option is static correction training – this is what it was original intended for, but i would still exhaust all other options first. When you are out in public, if you see the glint in your dogs eye that he is going to start the behavior use the appropriate level of static correction. Remember to use the collar appropriately and responsibly. Never leave it on him when you’re at home, and never use it if it’s not warranted.

    in reply to: Separation Anxiety. #15618

    Treating Separation Anxiety in any dog is very tough, and I applaud your desire to fix the problem rather than just simply put the dog down, or get rid of him. The problem develops for three main reasons.

    1) The most common is the dog fears you will never return. This is especially common in adopted and rescued dogs. When I got my Cutler, he had already passed through 3 owners before me (he is only 8 months old). In this case, the easiest solution is desensitization. Try leaving the dog in your bedroom with the door shut for a minute or so – if he whines or cries, ignore it. Go inside after the few minutes and give him an amazing treat, like steak or chicken. Once you can do this for several minutes, move up in time.

    2) Another common cause is lack of leadership. In some cases separation anxiety is caused by a dog who does not want a pack leadership position stepping up into one. In nature the pack leader is the one who leaves, he is not left, that is why he gets destructive while you are gone. Out of panic.

    3) Built up energy is the final common cause. Sometimes, you can solve separation anxiety by merely talking your dog for a 45 minute walk before you leave.

    Until you’ve figured out the cause, you have to manage the problem.

    Dog proof your home, use Fooey, and give plenty of durable toys. Frozen Kong Extremes with Peanut Butter in them are a great option. You could also look at the everlasting treat ball. Leave plenty of other toys they can play with.

    Also, vary your routine before leaving. One morning brush your teeth last, the next brush them first, so on.

    The most important and most difficult is to follow the no talk, no touch rule. 20 minutes prior to leaving, cut off all touch and talk with your dog. Do this when you get home as well, you want it to appear “business as usual” rather than making a big deal out of it.

    Good luck 🙂

    in reply to: Help Puppu Keeps Biting #15617

    The trick to the ouch trick is you have to simulate how it would happen in nature. You do indeed have to make the high pitched OUCH! but then you have to part company (walk away) and ignore the dog for a brief period. This is the part that is often times left out. In nature when an older dog in the pack (or a wolf, in simpler terms)is playing with a puppy, if the puppy bites to hard (this also happens during same age play) the older dog will Yilp and then completely part company with the puppy, sometimes for days. However when it comes to domesticated pets, 5-10 minutes is often times long enough.

    Another option is to check out “Pet Corrector” made by The Company Of Animals. I have used it many times in aggression work. It makes a very very loud hiss like a natural predator and quickly the dog associates the behavior with being stalked by a large snake or a big cat. They generally run about $14.99 at your nearest PETCO. *WARNING* do not turn the can upside down when you use it, it will spray freon. Also, the trick to it is, the dog can’t see you do it.

    in reply to: Dog Aggression #15616

    As many have mentioned, same sex aggression can usually be fixed by a spay/neuter. However, in some cases it doesn’t do the trick. In this case you are going to have to put in work and desensitize the dogs to one another and be sure they know that YOU are the pack leader and that it’s your den. You merely share it with them. If you are uncomfortable desensitizing the dogs on your own I recommend that you seek professional help with it.

    Three easy steps to pack leadership:

    1) Schedule your dogs feeding. The pack leader determines when the pack eats in nature. Not to mention: What comes in on a schedule comes out on a schedule.

    2) Never let your dogs go through your front door (or any other door that leads in or out of the building before you). This shows your dogs that you are going to look out for them and make sure the area is safe.

    3) Take your dogs spot. This shows both your dogs that YOU are the pack leader. If they are on your couch, make them move and then sit down in the spot they were in, and then invite them back up. Also, if they are asleep on the ground, wake them up and make them move.

    Once you have established yourself as the pack leader, if the aggression continues begin the desensitization process. I recommend a baby gate. One dog gets one side of the house, the other dog gets the other. Gradually let them get used to smelling each other. Once they can smell each other at the gate without growls and barks or hair erection, then let them mingle for 5 minutes, then once they have been okay at 5 minutes for awhile, move it to 15, so on. *WARNING* Desensitization is a very slow process.

    Also, were the dogs introduced on neutral territory?

    in reply to: Pit Bull Help!! #15615

    Try walking much more briskly near the end of your walk and as mentioned, don’t think about “Oh, well this is where she’s going to lay down”. Staying outside isn’t an option, YOU are the pack leader and you determine when your packs migration (Your walk) is over. If you keep thinking that she’s going to stop she’s going to sense something is wrong. With the canine nose being appx. 150 times stronger than the human, she’s completely capable of smelling your pheromones change, and this could be the cause of her stopping.

    If you have to, another option is to consider running the last leg of your walk.

    On a side note: Thank you for saving a Pit Bull’s Life.

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