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Old 12-18-2013, 12:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Serious probelm!

I have a beautiful 11 mo old long haired GSD. She has been raised with a 6 year old male Bichon and has always gotten along with him great but she has never liked other dogs much.

This all changed 2 days ago. In a 24 hour period she has attacked the Bichon 4 times! I was not home for the first 2 so I just assumed a family member was overreacting. Not the case, she was attacking like she wanted to kill him. The Bichon is scared to death of her now and shakes when she walks in the room. And frankly, I'm scared to death that she will kill him. One of them is in the kennel at all times now to keep that from happening.

She is perfectly fine with people and was perfectly fine with the Bichon up until 2 days ago. I love her dearly but can't have her killing our other dog. If I can't fix this asap I need to place her in a good home. Help Please!
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Old 12-18-2013, 12:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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How is your GSD with all the other dogs she has met? In dog classes? When you are taking her for walks?

What does the breeder say?

Can she be sick?

Absolutely keep the 2 dogs apart while you figure this out.
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Old 12-18-2013, 12:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MaggieRoseLee View Post
How is your GSD with all the other dogs she has met? In dog classes? When you are taking her for walks?

What does the breeder say?

Can she be sick?

Absolutely keep the 2 dogs apart while you figure this out.
She is not good with any of the other dogs in my neighborhood. People that use to walk their dogs down the sidewalk cross the street to avoid walking in front of my house because she goes crazy barking at them. (We have windows that go to the floor)

We I've taken her to Petsmart there has been issues, I took her to the dog park and I was asked by the regulars not to bring her back. On walks we just avoid other dogs by crossing the street.

I bought her about 3 hours away and I have not been able to get a hold of the breeder for several months.

I am going to take vet to see if there is anything going on. But by appearance and behavior (except with the Bichon) she seems fine. Normal eating, normal poop, normal running and playing in the backyard.
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Old 12-18-2013, 01:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Has she been spayed or is she in season, this could be one of the problems. But i would defiantley get a dog behaviourist to assess them ASAP.
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Old 12-18-2013, 01:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Has she been spayed or is she in season, this could be one of the problems. But i would defiantley get a dog behaviourist to assess them ASAP.
She is spayed.
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Old 12-18-2013, 03:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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She is not good with any of the other dogs in my neighborhood. People that use to walk their dogs down the sidewalk cross the street to avoid walking in front of my house because she goes crazy barking at them. (We have windows that go to the floor)
For starters, I'd nix this right away. Either close the curtains or blinds, or put up a barrier so she can't get close enough to the windows, but do something to prevent her from continuing to practice this behavior. The longer she's allowed to do it, the more entrenched it becomes, and the harder to get rid of.
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Old 12-18-2013, 04:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
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She is not good with any of the other dogs in my neighborhood. People that use to walk their dogs down the sidewalk cross the street to avoid walking in front of my house because she goes crazy barking at them. (We have windows that go to the floor)

We I've taken her to Petsmart there has been issues, I took her to the dog park and I was asked by the regulars not to bring her back. On walks we just avoid other dogs by crossing the street.

I bought her about 3 hours away and I have not been able to get a hold of the breeder for several months.

I am going to take vet to see if there is anything going on. But by appearance and behavior (except with the Bichon) she seems fine. Normal eating, normal poop, normal running and playing in the backyard.
Oh that is so stressful for you! I second Cassidy's mom.

We had a situation with our neighbor's bulldog who was very fence reactive to everyone and everything and ours became that way too. They got into a barking/ running the fence match everytime they were both out at the same time. I am training him out of this by keeping him in the house whenever the other dog is out and just throwing treats on the floor to distract him. Then we progressed to calling him away from the door and havign him sit and lots of treats. I take him out on leash and play with him while the other dog is out. If I am not there ofcourse, forget it. He gets wild. But this is still a huge step up and hopefully will keep getting better.

At the park, I do pretty much the same thing at a distance from other dogs. But instead of playing I do obedience, and make it interesting by running around and feinting, lots of happy sounds, etc. All this while holding on tight to the 6' leash

We also recently used a bark collar for car rides because he started barking at other dogs he sees walking by when he is in the car. After just a day he doesnt bark anymore. Sometimes it is good to interrupt the behaviour because they just ramp themselves up with their barking. If I am able to, I now treat him every time there is a dog on the road.


I hope some of what I wrote will be helpful to you. There is so much material on the web about counter conditioning and modifying reactive dog behaviour. First thing to do though is lots of 'focus and attention on you' training. Hope you will find good resources and work this through.
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Old 12-18-2013, 04:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Does she know "leave it"?

One of the people whose dog I help train had this issue with a puppy attacking their older dog starting around 8 months of age and practicing "leave it" worked for them. I don't think it was as bad as your situation, but she said she was afraid the puppy would literally kill the other dog. This puppy was also very reactive to people going by the house, unfamiliar sounds, etc.

She practiced this by:
Increasing the dogs exposure to things that arent "hers" to handle and then teaching "leave it".
Taking the dog out on leash and teaching her to "leave" other dogs alone that pass by: turning her around and walking in the opposite direction if she starts barking and lunging, forcing her to sit calmly as other dogs walk by.
Having her pup practice leaving alone other things that aren't hers - your items, guests, etc. and practicing with treats and toys with a release command.

This might not help everyone, but it helped her and we taught Warden "leave it" because he was also reactive to strangers and other dogs when we got him. He's gotten a lot better but I dont think these cases are as bad as yours :-(

Hope I at least helped a little... good luck
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Old 12-18-2013, 04:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Does she know "leave it"?

One of the people whose dog I help train had this issue with a puppy attacking their older dog starting around 8 months of age and practicing "leave it" worked for them. I don't think it was as bad as your situation, but she said she was afraid the puppy would literally kill the other dog. This puppy was also very reactive to people going by the house, unfamiliar sounds, etc.

She practiced this by:
Increasing the dogs exposure to things that arent "hers" to handle and then teaching "leave it".
Taking the dog out on leash and teaching her to "leave" other dogs alone that pass by: turning her around and walking in the opposite direction if she starts barking and lunging, forcing her to sit calmly as other dogs walk by.
Having her pup practice leaving alone other things that aren't hers - your items, guests, etc. and practicing with treats and toys with a release command.

This might not help everyone, but it helped her and we taught Warden "leave it" because he was also reactive to strangers and other dogs when we got him. He's gotten a lot better but I dont think these cases are as bad as yours :-(

Hope I at least helped a little... good luck
Of course I also forgot to mention rewarding good behavior and boost your dogs confidence as much as possible... Reward when they look to you for guidance, any sort of focus in these situations, etc.
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Old 12-18-2013, 05:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you all for the replies. I made a vet appointment for tomorrow morning just to rule out any medical issues.

She was doing better about barking at dogs walking on the sidewalk, I was doing the distractions with a ball or treats. I think that is something that we could overcome.

I'm REALLY worried about her attacking our other dog. She just stares at him like she does if she sees a squirrel outside...you know, the full concentration where the house could on fire and she still wouldn't take her eyes off him.

I have not worked on "leave it" so to speak, but there have been things on the ground that she has tried to get and I tell her "no" and she leaves them alone.

She really is a wonderful dog besides this. She sits, shakes, comes and opens our bedroom and bathroom doors (not good).

I just don't understand how she could go from running around the house and yard playing with the other dog, to attacking him every time she sees him the next day.
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