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How To Overcome This Issue?


Guest twhitehouse
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Guest twhitehouse

As many of you know, Lexi is our "issue" dog. She's got lots of them. With a lot of patience, we have worked through just about all of them except one. This one issue is one I don't really know how to overcome.

 

Lexi exhibits fear aggression towards dogs she hasn't met or doesn't know well. Once she gets to know them, she is completely fine. For example, my in laws have two dogs. Lexi would snap and growl at them probably the first 5-7 times we visited them. Now that she used to them, she is fine and will even follow them around the house or yard like they are best buds.

 

She is typically fine with greyhounds, so this is mostly a non-breed issue, although she has been known to do it even with some other greyhounds if she doesn't know them.

 

So my question is, how do I try to help her with this issue? I like to walk my dogs and it's typically not an issue since we walk in places where dogs SHOULD be on leash. However, lately, I've noticed she's starting to get aggressive (growling, snapping) towards a dog even if it's on leash. Now...she only does this if the other dog whines, barks, growls, or if the dog is off leash and comes running towards her. So I guess I don't really blame her. But it's gotten to the point where the issue is getting worse and I'm nervous she's going to redirect onto Tess...or me.

 

Has anyone else dealt with an issue like this or similar? How do you get them over this fear? Any ideas....?

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Does she only do this while she's leashed or when she's running free too?? You might try PMing the user "Giselle" who I know has worked with her leash-aggressive dog.

 

The only suggestion I have is to try and use the distraction method - be really vigilant and try and locate the problem dogs before she reacts, distract her with a *REALLY* yummy treat by using "watch me" or another command, hold her gaze and the treat until the on-coming dog has passed the danger point, then praise praise praise and give treats!

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Guest Sunset123

Yup. I ended up taking Arrisa for socialization training. Granted, we didn't have any aggression, mostly just fear.

 

A lot of it had to do with conditioning a positive emotional reaction to dogs rather than a negative/fearful one. First, I used a barking dogs cd at home and rewarded her with a tiny high-value treat every time the dog on the CD barked. Then, with the help of the trainer and a friendly canine/human volunteer duo I had a few sessions conditioning exercises with dog-dog interaction. We had our leashed dogs at opposite corners of a large training building, and at the trainer's cue we would approach each other, starting from far away and gradually reducing the distance. When Arrisa was relaxed, she was praised and rewarded. When she was comfortable with a certain distance, we would start to go a little closer. We did a number of hours of approaching and then going back to the corner before we got close enough to do a parallel walk with the other dog. Once she was comfortable with a parallel walk, we switched to walking toward each other (much more threatening than the parallel walk) over and over until she was happy with it. Finally, she was able to approach the dog and sniff.

 

 

Oh, right. I forgot to mention that it worked great! Arrisa loves meeting dogs now (as long as they're not barking at her or charging at her too quickly).

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Guest twhitehouse

Does she only do this while she's leashed or when she's running free too?? You might try PMing the user "Giselle" who I know has worked with her leash-aggressive dog.

 

The only suggestion I have is to try and use the distraction method - be really vigilant and try and locate the problem dogs before she reacts, distract her with a *REALLY* yummy treat by using "watch me" or another command, hold her gaze and the treat until the on-coming dog has passed the danger point, then praise praise praise and give treats!

 

Well to tell you the truth, I don't know if she does it when she's running free. I've never had her running free with non-greyhounds. However, I don't think it's leash aggression....but I"m not sure. I know that if another dog just walks quietly by she is completely fine. It's only if she thinks that dog is going to approach her.

 

Or actually...she did do it at first when we were at my in laws house and the dogs were just together unleashed in the house. So she does do it off leash as well.

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Guest Scouts_mom

My Tia was like this when I first got her. She had scars on her muzzle that looked like they came from a dog fight, so I didn't blame her at all. I went to a trainer and got help. First I was told I needed to stop comforting her when she got nervous around dogs. Instead I was to ignore her, or be very upbeat. Next we joined an obediance class the trainer was teaching. It was held in a large room and the first sessions we stayed at the far side of the room away from the other dogs. After a while, the trainer had some of the calmer dogs join us for short periods--It's hard to be scared of a newfoundland puppy. Finally we were able to join the group. Tia was never real comfortable when surrounded by lots of strange dogs, but she did come a long way.

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Guest tinams8

My dog does this to an extent also, she is ok if the other dog is under control, but if the dog is barking at her or straining at the leash she gets nervous and shows some aggression. Honestly I don't blame them in some ways... I don't like it either when I see someone whos dog is not under control, it is a REAL threat, not like the dog is imagining it.

 

I think the common advice to go to obedience classes is based on the idea that the dog should trust you to be in control of the situation. But, without totally understanding the complex "dog language" it is hard as a human to keep the situation under control in their opinions. Not to mention the unpredictable behavior of the other dog's human, who is not keeping it under control. :rolleyes:

 

Obedience class did help my dog get used to walking on a leash with less nervousness, as well as lots of practicing on the heavily traveled bike path. Socialization classes sound great too.

 

Most importantly though, I try to be very careful to stay away from out of control dogs. If I see a problem approaching, I move to the other side of the road or have her sit and wait for it to pass. I don't want her to blindly trust me to protect her, because it's understandable that she doesn't in that situation... but I do make it my job to keep her away from dogs that look out of control. She does have to walk calmly by dogs who are under control though, and the key to that is keeping her focused on me. I also used high value treats to teach that when she was young.

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Guest LindsaySF

Honey does this as well, mostly with non-Greys. She is fine once she is allowed to greet/meet the dog. Cody on the other hand is very nervous and growly with new dogs. Once he knows them for a few days he's fine, but we don't interact with strange dogs on walks because Cody can't handle it. He's quiet until a dog comes really close to him though, so it's not too much of an issue for us.

 

Do a search on this forum for LAT training and posts by Giselle. She worked with Ivy a lot on this issue. Good luck!

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My Tia was like this when I first got her. She had scars on her muzzle that looked like they came from a dog fight, so I didn't blame her at all. I went to a trainer and got help. First I was told I needed to stop comforting her when she got nervous around dogs. Instead I was to ignore her, or be very upbeat. Next we joined an obediance class the trainer was teaching. It was held in a large room and the first sessions we stayed at the far side of the room away from the other dogs. After a while, the trainer had some of the calmer dogs join us for short periods--It's hard to be scared of a newfoundland puppy. Finally we were able to join the group. Tia was never real comfortable when surrounded by lots of strange dogs, but she did come a long way.

 

Just a quick "FYI."

 

Greyhound skin is exceptionally fragile. Please don't assume the worst about any scar your hound might have! She could well have gotten those playing as a puppy!

 

George's skin split in three places once when he TRIPPED and fell on the stairs!


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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sigh... you could be describing Fletcher, exactly. I have worked with him, and he has gotten better. Just yesterday, we passed a Schnauzer-ish dog on the other side of the street, and he didn't react at all. However, there are some breeds (big fluffy ones) that he just hates. Also, any dog that gives him attitude, regardless of size rolleyes.gif .

 

I have started walking him muzzled after he turned on the girls when he couldn't get to the dog he wanted. No real damage, but I didn't want anyone hurt. At 90 lbs, I can't take any chances with him. I am lucky that loose dogs aren't common in my neighborhood (although there have been a few times).

 

I try to walk the dogs at a time when not to many others are out, I stick to streets where I know the territory, and if I spot trouble ahead, we turn around, cross the street, do what ever we can to put a safe distance between us and the other dog.

 

I tried to refocus him on me, but once he goes into Cujo mode, I am nothing but a dead weight at the other end of the leash dunno.gif

 

good luck!

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Guest PiagetsMom

I've made a lot of progress with Mirage working on the "Watch Me" with treats. We're now at the point where anytime he sees another dog approaching (or anything else that makes him uncomfortable) he will look to me for a "Watch Me". It's made our walks very workable as long as the other dogs are on leash as well. I've taken to walking both pups on the left side leaving my right hand open for options if needed, and we've never had an issue with re-direction towards Piaget, although I know that it is a problem with some pups.

 

While this works great with other dogs that are leashed, I'm still fairly certain that if he felt antagonized or challenged by an off leash dog that approached him, I'd still have a major problem on my hands, and I don't know that he'll ever get to the point that he would not react negatively to that situation - or that I should even expect him to.

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