(Sigh) My older dog is resource guarding my GSD pup - Page 2 - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 12-09-2012, 11:47 PM   #11 (permalink)
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If Sam just didn't want to share toys I'd be ok with that but the difference here and what some people don't seem to be understanding is that he will get aggressive and bite without much of a warning that I'm able to see... no snarling, growling just bam!
Watch him more closely because I can bet there is a warning. Watch his eyes, that is how I was able to tell mine wasn't happy. 95% of the time I was able to see the change, say something, and snap him back. The other 5% it went to a full snarl and growl, which was my fault because I didn't "see" it. Mine has never been in a fight(except when he was attacked as a puppy)and I think he would almost be sad if he hurt anything(he's just way to happy of a dog)I'm glad that mine doesn't do it anymore, because it isn't nice to see and who would believe a golden can look like that??? Well they can and you have a VERY short period to catch it.
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Old 12-10-2012, 12:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Totally agree with llombardo usually they have a "tell"
Anything from tensing the whole body, staring, or even just a wrinkling of the brow. My first dog was very dog aggressive, we did a lot of work with her and yeah finding her "warning" was so important - once I had it I could mostly divert her before anything bad could happen. (with her it was 2 wrinkles would appear between her ears as she got attentive) toward another dog.

With your golden "guarding" his puppy - he's not allowed to do that, while you are there it's YOUR responsibility not Sams to keep puppy safe. ATM Sam is taking leadership over both of you and in my book that's not acceptable.
The fact that the snapped at the other puppy is bad but also - he snapped AT it - if he had have wanted to he could have grabbed it and shaken it in a split second.
The puppy yelping and screaming and running away is also normal - it's how they defend themselves. It's letting the other dog know "I'm only a baby don't hurt me" - it sounds awful lol you'd think someone just cut their throat.

If I was you and I wanted to take both of them to the park together I'd get someone (ideally your partner if you have one) to go with you. One of you to watch over the puppy, the other one to take Sam on lead away from the puppies and just do some really basic walking and perhaps a few sits and drops (for food treats) - you demand Sams attention, he's supposed to look to you not the puppy.
If you are worried about him hurting another dog - get a muzzle - better safe than sorry and it will allow you to relax a little and not be so tense as he will pick up on that.
Even if you get him a "cute" pink muzzle
I think getting a behaviourist or a trainer may be a good idea just to give you a bit more confidence in handling the situation - sometimes it's nice to have some "backup" someone that knows how dogs work and don't think that you are the worst person in the world because your dog happened to growl or bark. So many people at dog parks just have no idea and get all rude and offensive.
How old is your puppy?
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:15 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Thank you, that is some great info!

I totally agree with you about Sam taking over things that are not his job, we have had this issue with him for awhile and that is why I've been doing NILIF with him! It worked beautifully as far as him respecting and obeying me goes but when it comes to other dogs he takes over again. I'm not sure how to teach him that he doesn't need to guard things/people/dogs... He does not resource guard with people and he obeys the leave it command, I'm just pulling my hair out trying to get that to translate to dogs as well. I don't think he should have to share but its totally unacceptable for him to take it to the level he does.

That's true also he's never aggressed with the intent to harm, I'm just worried about it someday escalating to that. He's actually a golden doodle and he has A LOT of hair on his face so it's difficult to read him, sometimes I can't even see that he's snarling because of his beard, LOL. The only thing I've been able to read so far is sometimes his body goes rigid otherwise it's very hard to pick up his signals. The good news is Ollie is learning his boundaries and what he can and can't do with Sam so there has been a lot less issues at home... We were incident free for a long time but then Sam snapped at Ollie last night when Ollie was invading his space but I guess there's really nothing wrong with that. It's just like you said Ollie made a huge racket of crying and carrying on that its hard not to go into momma bear mode, lol.

My husband was there with me, he tried to take Sam to the other end where it was empty to play fetch but he was just not having it... he wanted to be with Ollie. We did correct him when he was growling and snarling at one dog trying too forcefully to play with Ollie and soon after that is when he snapped at the other puppy without any warning that I could make out... Should be not correct growling? Like you said I was mostly not wanting someone in the park taking offense to my dog growling at theirs. I just wish we knew people with dogs... The ONLY reason I go to the dog park is because this one is locals only, I know most of the people there and they all know us and everyone knows Sammy by name(he loves people more then anything in the world). So I know what to expect, when to go and when not to. It's very important to me that Ollie is good with other dogs and people.

And Ollie is just shy of four months but I will ONLY take him when the park is either empty or there are just a few regulars there with dogs I know. He's also in puppy class right now which is held at the humane society so he's already met a lot of dogs big, small and in between.
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Old 12-10-2012, 02:33 AM   #14 (permalink)
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My golden was used to having all the toys in the house, then along came the GSD and she now wants all the toys to be hers. I can have 50 toys out and she will want the one he has. At first he was not happy with this turn of events, but I stayed on top of it and he now lets her have the toys and goes and gets another one. He has never guarded food, water, bones, or people. Goldens are a nice size dog, at least mine is, and I feel he is(which I didn't before)a good deterrent. I think some training is needed and probably sooner then later.

A deterrent to/for what? For people to leave you alone?

Probably not likely, as most people have a VERY different concept of a Golden!
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Old 12-10-2012, 07:22 AM   #15 (permalink)
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A deterrent to/for what? For people to leave you alone?

Probably not likely, as most people have a VERY different concept of a Golden!
Uh, wrong...its very likely because it has happened. We always say that he's a golden that thinks he's a Rott. The thing that changed my mind about him is about a month ago it was pitch black outside and a kid came running out of nowhere(I'm sure the kid was up to no good) and he heard/seen him first..the kid got pretty close but the golden lunged at him growling, the kid said oh poo poo and went the other way, my dog went about his business immediately afterward. When he is in the house and someone is at the door his bark is also very much a deterrent. I have never had someone approach me when he is with me, he won't allow it. Now if we are at the pet store or the park he is fine. Just don't come near my house or me in the dark.
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Old 12-10-2012, 07:28 AM   #16 (permalink)
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We did correct him when he was growling and snarling at one dog trying too forcefully to play with Ollie and soon after that is when he snapped at the other puppy without any warning that I could make out... Should be not correct growling?
I had to correct mine every time he growled or attempted to growl. He got the point and doesn't do it anymore. I also don't think that he should just growl if the puppy comes into his space...he has to learn how to be nice. I can understand if they are eating a bone or something like that, but even then its a good idea to separate them. Growling over space, toys, people, and water has to be corrected.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:05 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I had to correct mine every time he growled or attempted to growl. He got the point and doesn't do it anymore. I also don't think that he should just growl if the puppy comes into his space...he has to learn how to be nice. I can understand if they are eating a bone or something like that, but even then its a good idea to separate them. Growling over space, toys, people, and water has to be corrected.
Well we do correct him, doesn't do a darn bit of a good. Now he just goes straight for the snap and bite instead of growling. We don't keep toys around the house anymore because even if one of my other dogs walked near one he had not even interested in it he would do that quick snap bite. He started doing this when he was around 3 months old, he even snapped at a puppy in puppy class over a toy right in front of the trainer. Trainer said, "oh it's fine" and we of course stupidly believed him. This is why I say his brain is not quite wired right or his temperament is faulty... Though I'm sure it's something I totally screwed up somewhere along the way. I'm just so tired of worrying about when he's going to bite one of my dogs next.

I hope to get a trainer in soon, it's just that we've spent around 20 grand in the last couple months... Seems like everything in the house broke at once(had one 10k plumbing bill alone) and my older cat racked up several thousand with health issues and testing. So moneys a bit tight right now.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:10 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Uh, wrong...its very likely because it has happened. We always say that he's a golden that thinks he's a Rott. The thing that changed my mind about him is about a month ago it was pitch black outside and a kid came running out of nowhere(I'm sure the kid was up to no good) and he heard/seen him first..the kid got pretty close but the golden lunged at him growling, the kid said oh poo poo and went the other way, my dog went about his business immediately afterward. When he is in the house and someone is at the door his bark is also very much a deterrent. I have never had someone approach me when he is with me, he won't allow it. Now if we are at the pet store or the park he is fine. Just don't come near my house or me in the dark.
Agree, my golden's defending the territory/house bark is pretty intimidating. And obviously mine takes his guarding very seriously... . I'm sure he wouldn't let someone get near me if he knew they had bad intentions.
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:49 AM   #19 (permalink)
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But thank you all for your help and suggestions even though Sam is not a GSD, I hope someone might find this thread helpful!

I've decided until I can bring in someone I'm just going to take him back to square one with training, everything just like a new puppy and work my way back up again!
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Old 12-10-2012, 01:40 PM   #20 (permalink)
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But thank you all for your help and suggestions even though Sam is not a GSD, I hope someone might find this thread helpful!

I've decided until I can bring in someone I'm just going to take him back to square one with training, everything just like a new puppy and work my way back up again!
This is probably a good idea. How old is Sam? Like you I was quite surprised that a golden would ever even growl...they obviously love their toys Good Luck..I'm sure it will be ok.
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