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Dog aggression tips (new dog introduction)

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
I've done it again. I took in another dog from the pound :p went to the pound today to walk dogs/help out, and donate a bunch of stuff.. And came home with a dog we named buddy.


What I know so far about buddy:
-he's a basset hound mix. I think I see beagle in him. A few years old, not (yet!) neutered
-loves people and doesn't have a care in the world around people. He lets you hug and love all over him, pick him up, bathe and groom him - no problem.
-he was dumped, so the pound doesn't know where he came from.
-he was very dirty (he's had a bath), his ears were by far the dirtiest I've ever seen on a dog (been cleaned) he doesn't seem like he's been walked on a leash ever (has a harness and he'll learn) his nails needed clipped (conquer that tomorrow)
-he's a bit thin and seems a little picky on what types of food/treats hell eat, but that could be do to all the change and stress
-he doesn't like other dogs, at all. At all. But we hope hell learn to like them.
-he drinks a lot of water!
-he HATES being away from you. He loves people and wants to be RIGHT by your side 24/7, but no where near another dog.
-he doesn't seem used to being in a house. I can't tell if maybe he was always an outside dog, or just getting used to a new house. He seems confused by things like dog beds and blankets, which makes me sad. He's also not potty trained but he will go outside, he just doesn't seem to know the difference between going inside or out. It should be easy to train him. I don't think he ever really lived in a house.

I'm hoping getting neutered will help some of his dog aggression issues but I'm not sure. He was SO easy going at the pound and pet store (we stopped on the way home to get him a harness) and LOVES everyone. He was also in a kennel with another dog, so we figured he was okay with strange dogs.

When we got home I put buddy in the yard and my fiancé carried rascal out. Buddy growled and jumped up and bit rascals leg! Not too hard or anything, but definitely a bite. We have him separated by a gate from the other dogs but he still growls at them when they come to the gate, and when I tried to hold one of the puppies near him (with Cory holding onto buddy) he growled and snarled and snapped. It's crazy because he's SO sweet if the other dogs aren't around.

Any tips? I called the dog warden and we are doing as she said she does with her dogs.. Keeping them separated, slow introductions, and time out when he growls or snaps.(this is a HUGE punishment for him because he hates being alone) also lots of praise, etc, when he's calm when they are near the gate. I know it takes time and patience, but just wanted tips or support from anyone who has been through this. (And maybe some encouraging success stories - as some people have already told me stories of dogs who never really stopped being dog aggressive)
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
Whenever I try to take his photo, he just runs up to me, so it's hard to get a good shot. He doesn't like being an inch away from you. :p

 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
I'm also thinking of signing him and the puppies I recently adopted (rascal is perfect :p) in dog training. I think I found one that I may be able to work around my schedule. I think going to the classes would be good for all of them.
 

Amy SF

Dweller in nature
I'm also thinking of signing him and the puppies I recently adopted (rascal is perfect :p) in dog training. I think I found one that I may be able to work around my schedule. I think going to the classes would be good for all of them.
I agree. I think that's a very good idea. An experienced trainer can look at Buddy's behavior and determine the best way to train him.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
What's hard is I work full time, and I can't find a trainer closer than about an hour and a half or so away. We live in a smallish town and most people here would laugh at the idea of a dog training class. But I'm really looking for one - was already looking for one for the pups, for basic obedience and I think they'd like going to it - but now looking for one for buddy, too.
 

Amy SF

Dweller in nature
What's hard is I work full time, and I can't find a trainer closer than about an hour and a half or so away. We live in a smallish town and most people here would laugh at the idea of a dog training class. But I'm really looking for one - was already looking for one for the pups, for basic obedience and I think they'd like going to it - but now looking for one for buddy, too.
:eek: WHAT? Holy crap.

Maybe Victoria Stilwell can help you.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
We got him a kennel - which I feel horrible about but not sure what else to do with him at night, and it's better than possibly being put to sleep in an over crowded pound.

Anyway, I put a big fluffy comforter in there and got him all nice and cozy. He went in fine and started situating his blanket all happy, and laid down - happy as can be. Then the other dogs walked past his kennel so they could go outside before bed, and he immediately jumped up and and went to the front of the kennel and started snarling and growling. :(
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
At the pound, he didn't snarl or growl at the other dogs and he was even doubled up in a kennel with a dog.
 

KLS52

“SnarkMaster”
Whenever I try to take his photo, he just runs up to me, so it's hard to get a good shot. He doesn't like being an inch away from you. :p

Haha...I knew that was the problem when I saw the pic was out of focus. :)

I know it's hard but try and be patient with making progress. Training class sounds like a good idea and the crate, too. I kept my kittens in a crate at night up until two nights ago. It was amazing how well adjusted they were to going in there for so long. I figured I would keep it up for as long as I could.

I worked out a nightly routine with them. I would play with them for 10-15 minutes, letting them run/chase toys really hard to tire them out. Then, I would get their favorite treat and sit by the crate. They would come running (even Ben loved to participate in the ritual), have their treat and go right in the crate. They had dry food, water and litter in there. I then covered the front half with a sheet since they were in the bedroom with me...I figured it was best if they couldn't see me. They didn't make a peep until I removed the sheet and let them out in the morning. I think the reason they were so good the last two nights sleeping in bed with me is because they got used to night time being sleep time. At least I hope they continue to be good about it.

I'm sure you will work out something with Buddy where he will learn appropriate behavior around the other dogs. How do they react to his aggressive behavior? Are they fazed by it?

I have no valid advice when it comes to dog behavior, I'm afraid. I do think its awesome that you took Buddy in. :)
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
They aren't overly fazed. Rascal whines because he's so excited to play, but I think that bothers buddy more.
Murphy just kinda looks at him like WTF and Conner just kinda walks away lol
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
He's a really good boy & I think he'd do fine in the bed, but not with the other dogs being up here. :( part of me worries that maybe he'd be happier in a family without other dogs, but he was at risk for euthanasia at the pound so being here has to be better than that!
 
It may just be that he is afraid, not knowing his place yet in this new pack of dogs and humans. It seems that scared or nervous dogs tend to act aggressively. Since he didn't in the shelter, hopefully he will settle down and luv the doggies.

It sounds as if your ideas are good. Crating him will make him feel safe (I'm not a big crate advocate, but I think it is really helpful sometimes) and the training classes are a great idea. He looks like he has a good deal of hound in him, so smells may affect him more and make him harder to train. Some trainers suggest a little dab of vicks vaporub on the nose before training sessions for hounds, but I never did it and my dachshunds did fine.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
He sure smells like a hound, even after multiple baths :p

I hate crating and never have before, but I kinda seemed like my only option - and he was kinda on death row there.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
Sigh. Now he's doing something that's more scary to me - biting without any kind of sign first. No growling anything. He will be sniffing at them with his tail wagging, walking around the room (on a short short leash and my fiancé's hand on his harness) acting all happy, then he'll go back to sniff and gets praised, and all of a sudden he opens his mouth and goes in to bite! Silently!
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
He just had about 15 min or so of time with rascal, me kinda holding rascal and My fiancé holding back buddy. They sniffed eachother some and buddy would come up & lick me while I was holding rascal. Which got him lots of praise. (I think he was hit for face licking before, the first time he did it I went to pet him and he cowered down like I was going to slap him or something - now I say good boy! Give mommy sugar!) anyway so this was a 'success' meeting I'd say. He did go by the gate and growl at the puppies because they were play fighting in the other room. But it's only been a day and I see an inch of progress, which gives me a lot of hope.

Another thing is yesterday when I picked up rascal, (after their initial meeting went sour - much to rascals dismay, who just wanted to play) buddy jumped up and bit at his legs. So today I told fiancé to give buddy's leash some slack but be prepared to grab him if he tried. Pretty much letting buddy THINK he could jump up but we were prepared to stop him if he tried. I wanted to see if he would try to take the opportunity. So I picked up rascal and buddy did turn around but he just stared up. He didn't growl or jump or try to bite. I call that a success.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
He also knows "sit" but acts like he's in trouble when you tell him to sit. I'm trying to piece together the clues of where he may have came from (as he was dumped, the pound doesn't know who he could have lived with in the past) but some of the things he seems scared by makes me so sad. We've started telling him to sit and then giving him lots of praise and treats - almost as if he is learning the command for the first time. Positive association, so he isn't so scared if someone ever tells him to sit. Poor baby.
 

RascalsMom

Addicted Poster
He seems to be getting slightly used to them, but he will go to the gate or door or wherever they are, and growl if they play fight or bark or anything a little rambunctious.
I've yet to hear buddy bark.

A little update:
He has a vet appointment for Saturday morning. Going to get a general check up and start on vaccinations. Hopefully it won't be long after that that he can be neutered - and hopefully he gets a clean bill of health :)
 

Wolfie

World Class Member
Sigh. Now he's doing something that's more scary to me - biting without any kind of sign first. No growling anything. He will be sniffing at them with his tail wagging, walking around the room (on a short short leash and my fiancé's hand on his harness) acting all happy, then he'll go back to sniff and gets praised, and all of a sudden he opens his mouth and goes in to bite! Silently!
What kind of a tail wag? Fast and his whole butt is wagging? Or slower with tail straight up? There are always signs, they can just be hard to see. It's hard to tell without seeing him in action if he's just trying to get his spot in the pecking order or if he's really out to clobber the other dog.

Have you walked them together? That helps teach dogs they are part of the same pack.
 
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