I recently brought in a dog that was owner relinquish from IN. There was no talk of any aggression, just severe anxiety issues...tearing up her crate, eating carpet... Her background...the woman said she bought her from a puppy mill, three months of age, and she said "She was scared of everything, I carried her around the first months of her life." Well you and I know what that will do to a dog. She was never exercised, and no training. the assessment showed no signs of aggression. And for the first couple of days, I didn't see it either. The first time, we were on the couch. She was sitting next to me. Now I was eating toast, so I am not sure if it was about the toast, or me, or what. Freckles was laying on the floor with her back against the couch directly in front of Gia. Someone started grumbling, but I cannot say WHO. The next thing I knew, Gia was growling, then Freckles, Gia was zoned in on Freckles back, and Freckles was completely unaware she was being targeted. I said "Knock it off you two," and the loittle shit launched at Freckles. I caught her JUST IN TIME. She got some of her fur in her teeth, but would have had the back of her neck. I put her on her side, and she was like a frickin tasmanian devil. I finally had to put her in her crate for a time out. Yesterday morning...I am preparing breakfast. Muna stands where she always does, in front of my legs, head down, waiting. I look down, and see Gia standing over her, completely erect and focused on the back of Muna's head. I quickly reached down and took her by the collar, pulling her back. There was no growling, nothing, but I trust my instincts, this was about to be an attack. I placed her behind the baby gate, and fed her in her crate. Yesterday afternoon afternoon...playing at the dog park, I sat down on the grass, and everyone came and had pets while we threw the ball. Freckles came over, and Gia launched at her. I had to put her down again. I released her when she submitted. She took a couple of steps towards me when I had Freckles in my arms again, and I gave a loud AAAAAAAAH!~ and she backed off and went back to playing ball. Tonight...I decided to test my instincts and see if there was an actual targeting of Muna. I placed a muzzle on Gia, and began to make supper. I turned and did what I always do, call each dog in their order of rank, Muna, Frodo...and she immediately went on the attack on Muna. I gave her a swift flat side of my bare foot to her ass, and sent her to the other room behind the gate. Well, it has gone from bad to worse. After supper, the dogs were all outside, and Freckles was looking through the fence at the neighbour's dog. She started to bark and hop around, and Gia went berserk. She attacked her so savagely it was all I could do to get her off. She now has to be muzzled in the house when loose with the others. Thankfully, all she got was a huge chunk of hair. I have been checking Freckles for punctures, but haven't found any. I later muzzled her and let her out of her crate, and she started stalking my females. She only seems to target the females, thus far. I do not have the space to deal with this kind of aggression. Had I known she was like this, I would never have brought her into rescue. THis is breaking my heart, because this dog is very sweet with humans. Any advice?
My first suggestion would be to have her thyroid checked. From there it all depends on what you want to do. If what you are currently trying isn't getting you anywhere I can say that I had good luck with Control Unleashed's c/t for looking at other dogs. I am sure there are posts here about it, and I am not sure is he behavior is more than what you want to work with. But, I had really good luck with reactivity and c/t for looking at other dogs. With Dave he had severe dog reactivity, which started 10 days after his first rabies booster shot. I eventually had him treated via homeopathy for vaccinosis, which made a huge difference. He had gone from a dog that used to get along with every dog he met to a dog that blew up at the sight of other dogs. Once we had him treated a couple of times his reactivity reduced by about 80%. We worked on the remaining 20% by c/t for looking at other dogs. Now he is great with other dogs, I honestly haven't had an issue since (and this is a dog that was so bad he was on Prozac at one point.)
I have never heard of vaccinosis. That is something to look up. She was a puppy mill dog purchased by someone with NO dog sense at all, much less BC knowledge. She told me that "Gia was so scared as a puppy, that I carried her everywhere." Well, there's the start of all of her issues. There was no socialization either. Kyle and I are going to be working with her according to some guidelines set out by a friend who works with dogs like this at a shelter. We are awaiting her direction. I n the meantime, she will only be with the other dog (Kyle's) with a muzzle. It is heartbreaking to see such a sweet dog behave this aggressively. ETA-20/20 hindsight...I realize after the fact that allowing Gia on the furniture was really stupid, and it is something I never do with new dogs. She was just behaving so well, and I was tired from work, and sat down to eat some toast...not an excuse, but there you have it.
Wow. I agree with other posters here that a thorough check-up by the vet is in order. If there is some physical problem, it can be corrected. If it's strickly a behavior problem, there are a number of training techniques to try. Then again, some dogs are just not fond of other dogs, would much rather socialize with people. Regardless of why Gia is so dog-aggressive, I don't know how fair it is to your other dogs to have to live with a whacked out canine. You mention that Gia is extremely good with people. I'm sure there is a home for her where she can be an only dog and have a great life. My Sophie is far from being a social butterfly and it wouldn't break her heart if she never saw another dog for the rest of her life. But I've learned to accept her as she is, monitor her behavior around other dogs--some she actually likes!--and control her when she's pissy. And she can be very pissy! She tries to make it clear to other dogs that she really doesn't want to associate with them with very subtle lip lifts and growls at first. But when she has it in for another dog after an initial unpleasant encounter, she'll attack first and ask questions later. On the other hand, she is an absolute extrovert when it comes to humans. And that's a big plus. I figure she has to get along with people. It is not essential that she be dog friendly.
I just hope that Gia is not one of these poorly bred dogs that essentially is born nuts and only gets worse. A friend of mine had to put down a cocker that had issues and went further and further around the bend no matter what she did. Of course, that dog was aggressive to anyone and everyone, regardless of species. I know that some people think that's awful to put a physically healthy dog to sleep, but if the dog's mind is that far gone what quality of life does the dog have? Imagine yourself living in a constant state of fear and/or anger and it just keeps getting worse....
She was born in a puppy mill...so that will tell you about her breeding She was purchased by someone with no dog skills, who carried her around for the first months and babied her fears. Right now she is in foster care with a larger male dog, and is fine with him. They are not fed in the same room, food is one source of her issues. We are going to keep watching her for the next while, work with her and make sure there is no human aggression down the line, and then we will place her for adoption as an only dog. I will also get a thyroid panel done.
WOW - Sally I am so sorry to hear the trouble with Gia. I assure you I never saw any of that aggression. But then again I do not think she ever felt "comfortable" with us. She was so nervous pacing back and forth.
BUT NO aggression???? You know I would have been emailing - maybe because my dogs are pups - she did not see them as a threat or maybe she saw them as a "pack" since Sam & Dee are very close.
That is terrible - I hope they can help her.
Any news from the vet.
Sorry I have been off line - crazy at work 12 hr days and no rest.
In fact, I was here this morning at 730 and I am writing to you now - from my desk at work LOL
let me know if there is any thing I can help you with
I have some back ground on the horrid puppy mill she came from.
Talk soon and again - let me know if you need anything
Kimber *~* In honor of my girls Sammy & Holly" *** And my precious furbabies - Samson & Delilah (and Summer!)
*~* In honor of my girls Sammy & Holly" *** And my precious furbabies - Samson & Delilah(and Summer!)
She did pretty good today, although when she is anywhere near my guys, I am always watching very closely. I don't have the space to keep them separated all the time. Feeding time she is crated. She has been behaving very well.