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Snapped At Friend's Dog


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So I've had my new grey for 3 weeks and I'm a first time dog owner (still trying to figure out dog behavior in general). He is a very sweet guy who loves people and has a low prey drive (he's fine around cats, geese, small children etc). He is sometimes unsure about meeting new dogs but he's met about 20 new dogs now and has been fine with all of them. However, he had in incident with a friend's dog and it scared me.

 

My friend's dog is a 3 year old 90 lb Golden and he's insanely hyper and not well behaved. He jumps on people and bowls you over as soon as he sees you. He also will nip your hand and while it doesn't break the skin it definitely hurts and you have to keep your hands away from him if you don't want to be bit. My other friend's will not take their dogs near him because he can't behave himself and their dogs get fed up with him too.

 

I thought my dog was OK with him because he went on a walk with him for hours at a time before, but today he was not ok. The golden was in rare form today, being super hyper. He nipped at my wife's hands and tried to nip a stranger too.

 

My dog was standing there stationary and the golden throws himself at him (and me) and knocked both of us back. My dog immediately barked, lunged, and snapped at him. He was not happy. My friend's friend then tried to pet my dog while he was worked up. The golden came back for round 2 and my dog snapped at him again, this time while this random person was petting him. He didn't snap at the person but it scared the crap out of her.

 

I felt so bad that my dog scared this random person and that he was snapping/barking in general. I know that dog is a total jerk (I love my friend's but they do not properly control their dog) but this was the first time I've ever seen my dog get aggressive (or rather defensive).

 

Is it normal or OK for this to happen? I mean the dog did make hard contact with him unprovoked, is this an expected response?

Edited by incredibletaco
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Yep! Johnny hates wild, pushy dogs--he is master of the snark. He snarked at my mom's golden, she still hasn't learned to leave him alone.

Current Crew: Gino-Gene-Eugene! (Eastnor Rebel: Makeshift x Celtic Dream); Fuzzy the Goo-Goo Girl (BGR Fuzzy Navel: Boc's Blast Off x Superior Peace); Roman the Giant Galoot! (Imark Roman: Crossfire Clyde x Shana Wookie); Kitties Archie and Dixie

Forever Missed: K9 Sasha (2001-2015); Johnny (John Reese--Gable Dodge x O'Jays) (2011-19); the kitties Terry and Bibbi; and all the others I've had the privilege to know

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My Henry got kicked out of doggie day care for snapping at a dog. I know the dog he snapped at and that dog totally deserved it. I think Henry got blamed because he was bigger. A few weeks later that obnoxious dog was also kicked out of day care. Dogs have a right to defend themselves.

 

Sounds like your friend's dog needs some behavior training.

Edited by Scoutsmom
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Yes it is a normal response but when it happens it can be surprising at the speed of the snap.

 

I agree with Scoutsmom, your friends dog definitely needs behaviour training

Grace (Ardera Coleen) b. 18 June 2014 - Gotcha Day 10 June 2018 - Going grey gracefully
Guinness (Antigua Rum) b. 3 September 2017 - Gotcha Day 18 March 2022 - A gentleman most of the time

 

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Hi. It sounds like your grey is very well behaved. Some Golden Retrievers are complete jerks around other dogs, and the owners often seem clueless, or don't teach their dog manners, or have given up trying. Do your grey a favour and never force it to be around other dogs, especially ones like the GR you describe. Cheers.

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Your grey just told that golden that he is a total jerk and he won't tolerate this impolite behaviour.

It is normal behaviour. Your boy seems to expect manners from his friends. He is a true gentleman.

Sorry for butchering the english language. I try to keep the mistakes to a minimum.

 

Nadine with Paddy (Zippy Mullane), Saoirse (Lizzie Be Nice), Abu (Cillowen Abu) and bridge angels Colin (Dessies Hero) and Andy (Riot Officer).

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I completely agree with the others who have responded. The Golden was out of control and your greyhound had had enough of his behavior. He was telling him to back off (and it was deserved). I can understand your friend's friend being scared, but actually your greyhound did well - even while worked up and with the Golden coming back for round 2, he did not react to a stranger petting him. I think you have a great dog.

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The other dog was the problem - it was not well-behaved. In cases like this -- you have to step up and keep the other dog away from your dog before an incident can happen because the only way that your dog can tell you that it has had enough is to snap. Your dog was probably giving you cues that it was uncomfortable before the incident especially since it happened twice. FYI -- your dog got over-stimulated trying to protect itself.

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Most likely your grey was sending the signal for that golden to behave (you said your grey was standing stationary and behaving) and the golden wasn't recognizing dog language, so your grey took it to the next level of correction. I have found greys to be really good at dog signals. I had one grey who knew them all - I didn't teach him, he came that way. When a dog didn't pay attention to his quiet warning, he would growl, snap and warn the other dog it was out of control.

 

As others said, I think you have a great grey! I would also tell your friend that your grey doesn't like rough and tumble activity and not to allow their dog to jump all over yours.

 

Congratulations on being a first time dog owner and beginning with a greyhound! Do you have local walks or meet and greets for greyhounds where you live? I think you and your grey will really enjoy that.

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Thanks for the replies!

 

I'm still very new to this so I'm still figuring out dog queues and the like. There have been a few incidents were off leash dogs came out running to him barking their heads off. He got uncomfortable but didn't bark or snap. In fact in one case he actually became friendly with a crazy off leash dog after being unsure. I think this golden rough housing him while he was just standing there did not sit well with him.

 

Unfortunately there are no grey meet and greets where I live (a very small city). However, prior to the golden incident yesterday we randomly ran into another grey! They did the sniffing ritual and both tails were happy. So at least he had some positive interaction for the day :)

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Something that might be helpful incredibletaco is to find a nice local, mixed breed obedience class with a positive, rewards-based trainer. This was what I did when I got my first greyhound, Doc - it was one recommended by our vet. Over 2 or 3 months he got to learn about other breeds in a controlled setting, and I got to learn about doggy body language. And we both had fun!

Clare with Tiger (Snapper Gar, b. 18/05/2015), and remembering Ken (Boomtown Ken, 01/05/2011-21/02/2020) and Doc (Barefoot Doctor, 20/08/2001-15/04/2015).

"It is also to be noted of every species, that the handsomest of each move best ... and beasts of the most elegant form, always excel in speed; of this, the horse and greyhound are beautiful examples."----Wiliam Hogarth, The Analysis of Beauty, 1753.

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Something that might be helpful incredibletaco is to find a nice local, mixed breed obedience class with a positive, rewards-based trainer. This was what I did when I got my first greyhound, Doc - it was one recommended by our vet. Over 2 or 3 months he got to learn about other breeds in a controlled setting, and I got to learn about doggy body language. And we both had fun!

 

That could work really well. I have him in a private obedience currently (for his separation anxiety mostly).

 

He is really well behaved around other dogs once he gets to know them (it takes less than a minute). We went on a walk with our friend's hyper dogs and he was cool with them in no time. One of them even went under him like a low bridge and he didn't even flinch. He's very chill, but I don't think he liked when this guy ran straight into him at speed (and he has a good 30 lbs on him).

Edited by incredibletaco
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...he is master of the snark...

I like this word!

 

 

Your friend's golden definitely needs some training on how to behave around others. I would be embarrassed if my dog bowled people over and nipped at them, drawing blood or not, meaning to be playful or not. Not okay in my book.

 

As for your grey's behavior, i think it was merited. this guy was all in his business and wouldn't calm down. I would snark too! I get how you are feeling though. I've had my grey 4 months and last Sunday he had, what i though was, a bad day at the dog park. He snarked at 2 brother dogs and was not happy about a 3rd small dog. Having a background in psychology, anytime something happens with my dogs, i first ask "What did we do wrong?" rather than "Why did he do that thing?" Most of the time when i approach it that way i can see, Oh: he just got a brand new toy and i just invaded his space. he's afraid we may take his new toy. Or, Well those 2 brother dogs are a bit bigger than him and came up really fast. He's probably scared or uncomfortable. While i wish my pup was a love sponge to everyone all the time, it's not totally realistic. just like we can't be friendly and bubbly all the time, we humans have bad days too :flip

Edited by Alyse

Alyse with Archer (KB's Harper)

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Stella had words once with an overly rambunctious puppy. It was jumping and biting her. She tried to evade, but it kept coming. She stood right over it and loudly barked in its face. Puppy laid down and submitted and Stella gave him a little nudge. He has behaved mostly better since, but when he gets carried away she will do the looming over him until he lays down. She hasn't barked in his face since. I think she handled him well. She gets excited to see him on walks.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Most likely your grey was sending the signal for that golden to behave (you said your grey was standing stationary and behaving) and the golden wasn't recognizing dog language, so your grey took it to the next level of correction. I have found greys to be really good at dog signals. I had one grey who knew them all - I didn't teach him, he came that way. When a dog didn't pay attention to his quiet warning, he would growl, snap and warn the other dog it was out of control.

 

As others said, I think you have a great grey! I would also tell your friend that your grey doesn't like rough and tumble activity and not to allow their dog to jump all over yours.

 

Congratulations on being a first time dog owner and beginning with a greyhound! Do you have local walks or meet and greets for greyhounds where you live? I think you and your grey will really enjoy that.

 

 

I've thought for a long time that track-raised greys speak "dog" better than dogs who were taken away from mom & littermates when they were 8 weeks old and don't live with other dogs. Often, I think other breeds DON'T speak 'dog' very well! Your grey was doing the proper corrections that a momma-dog would do but goofy golden probably didn't even know what that meant!

Jeannine with Merlin, the crazed tabby cat and his sister, Jasmine, the brat-cat

With GTsiggieFromJenn.jpgAngel Cody(Roving Gemini), and Weenie the tortie waiting at the Bridge

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Does the Golden's owner think his/her dog's behavior is cute? Acceptable? It is not. Ask him/her if they are prepared to pay the vet bill for an "accidental" skin tear on your dog, or an ER bill if you get knocked down and injured.

 

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Sounds like a bit of a bully too, and should be removed from the park if the owner can't handle him or care for that matter.

 

To be honest, I stopped going to dog parks. Way too many people go to socialize with other people and don't pay attention to what they're dogs are doing. Won't pickup after them, won't step in if things get out of hand. Most of the time, mine run to escape the others that are annoying them, or just eat and lick grass on the edges and get sick.

 

My last park visit was when a golden decided Ry's winky was an amazing piece to lick. Whenever Ry was stationary, that dog was there. I had to actually grab the dog and hold him back. Finally the owner came around asking why I was holding their dog for the last 5 mins. I explained. They didn't believe me. I let go and boom immediately right back to Ry's parts. They laughed and thought it was so funny....but we shouldn't have been the one to have to leave.

 

Most other dogs in my experience are not well behaved at the park, and our breed often doesn't co-mingle with them well.

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10 year old "Ryder" CR Redman Gotcha May 2010
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  • 2 months later...

So the Golden is back at it again. My wife saw our friend and her dog immediately jumped on my wife and knocked her back. My dog immediately snapped and barked at him for hurting his mom and the Golden went and hid. He was protecting his mom so I was proud. This was a week or so ago.

 

Then today we saw the Golden on the other side of the street. My guy immediately recognized him and starting barking his head off at him. This is very much unlike him (he wants to make friends with all the dogs he meets) but it's clear he HATES this one particular dog.

 

Is this common for a dog to just have an "arch nemesis" with one other dog? Should I just not have him around that dog anymore?

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The easy solution, is as you say, is to keep the dogs away from each other. Another option is for your wife's friend and her dog to get obedience and socialisation training so the Golden doesn't jump up at people or other dogs and then reintroduce them in a controlled environment.

Grace (Ardera Coleen) b. 18 June 2014 - Gotcha Day 10 June 2018 - Going grey gracefully
Guinness (Antigua Rum) b. 3 September 2017 - Gotcha Day 18 March 2022 - A gentleman most of the time

 

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