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Old 02-12-2014, 04:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Slight Aggression towards other dogs - well socialized

Hello All.

I have an intact 12 month old male GSD. He has been in daycare since he was 3 months old and has been off leash before than as well. Daycare staff have made comments that Jaeger would never hurt a fly he is so sweet, gentle and submissive. He has never showed any aggression towards any human, cat or wild life.

Very recently we have noticed he has begun to snarl at other dogs off leash and on leash. His patience for playful dogs is rather limited. About 3 weeks ago he went after a lab puppy (who also was intact) nothing happened he listens well. So I was able to stop him and go.

Today however he was in daycare and bit a puppy that wouldn't leave him alone. The staff say that Jaeger gave several warnings to the puppy before the bite (not separating them is a different concern).

I would like to nip this aggression in the butt as he is a huge 75 lb dog (and growing) that can't afford to be aggressive.

I poke him in the ribs when I see him snarl at other dogs and say NO. I cant do anything with him at daycare.

Any tips that I can curb this behaviour for when I am present and when I am not (daycare)? I prefer doing the training at home instead of obedience but if I have to take him due to aggression I will.

Thank you all for your tips.
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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He's a growing intact male that is starting to mature. Most people will tell you that this is something you're going to have to manage and you won't be able to train him to not do anything. The issue with "correcting" the growling/snarling is that he'll just stop growling/snarling and will just go for the bite when he's had too much.

Most of us with intact males do not let them interact with other males for a long time. I make sure to really watch my boy when he's around unknown dogs (like in a dog park setting) and make sure he doesn't start getting aggravated by other dogs. I'm actually very surprised that the day care allows your boy to go there, every single one around me only allows altered animals past the age of 6 months. Just because he gave the puppy the warning, doesn't make how he acted alright. I'm sure if damage was done, the puppy's owner wouldn't be as understanding about the situation.
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Old 02-12-2014, 04:36 PM   #3 (permalink)
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My very personal, non-expert, opinion is that it sounds like you don't really have an aggression issue as much as a training issue. He sounds to me like he just gets annoyed with other dogs and when enough is enough he makes it apparent. It also sounds to me more of like a trend with puppies and he doesn't like them in his space.

For when you are around, and he growls at another dog, I would distract him with something, a ball if he's driven, treats and do OB, basically get him accustomed to the idea that another dog in the vacinity means he gets to have fun with you.

Not an expert by any means so maybe someone else will come along with a better idea, but it just doesn't sound like a reall "agggression" issue.
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Old 02-12-2014, 05:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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It seems your dog is training puppies to have manners. First comes posture, then growl, then nip. This progression teaches the puppy to abide by warning signals so it can understand communication later in life. If you are present, you can help your dog by controlling the puppy before the nip. If your doggy daycare staff doesn't understand this behavior, I would find different accommodations for your dog during the day.

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Old 02-12-2014, 08:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by David Winners View Post
It seems your dog is training puppies to have manners. First comes posture, then growl, then nip. This progression teaches the puppy to abide by warning signals so it can understand communication later in life. If you are present, you can help your dog by controlling the puppy before the nip. If your doggy daycare staff doesn't understand this behavior, I would find different accommodations for your dog during the day.

JMHO
Agree completely!!! The other dogs are annoying him and were probably to young to really pay attention to his warnings/body language. Sounds kind of messed up but I don't think there is anything wrong with you dog saying he doesn't want to play, especially if he isn't ACTUALLY hurting any one. When dogs correct it normally sounds way worse then it actually is.


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Old 02-12-2014, 08:17 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
I poke him in the ribs when I see him snarl at other dogs and say NO.
And he takes you poking him as a part of the process. If something is of a nuisance to you, like a swarm of moskitos, would you stop slapping yourself and killing them? His behaviour is a pack behaviour, just the puppies are not his puppies and he might nip them much harder than if they were of his own. I'd question myself about professionalism of that daycare - why do they let puppies to interfere with adult dogs? I always thought that puppies are kept with other puppies only.
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Old 02-12-2014, 08:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'd question myself about professionalism of that daycare - why do they let puppies to interfere with adult dogs? I always thought that puppies are kept with other puppies only.
I tend to agree. Why are the puppies mingling with adult dogs? That just sounds like a recipe for disaster to me.
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Old 02-12-2014, 11:33 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by martemchik View Post
I'm actually very surprised that the day care allows your boy to go there, every single one around me only allows altered animals past the age of 6 months. Just because he gave the puppy the warning, doesn't make how he acted alright. I'm sure if damage was done, the puppy's owner wouldn't be as understanding about the situation.
He has had a vastecomy, so he can't breed and that was the only thing the daycare was concerned about. There was damage done to the other dog and we are paying for the bill.
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Old 02-12-2014, 11:35 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by wyoung2153 View Post
My very personal, non-expert, opinion is that it sounds like you don't really have an aggression issue as much as a training issue. He sounds to me like he just gets annoyed with other dogs and when enough is enough he makes it apparent. It also sounds to me more of like a trend with puppies and he doesn't like them in his space.

For when you are around, and he growls at another dog, I would distract him with something, a ball if he's driven, treats and do OB, basically get him accustomed to the idea that another dog in the vacinity means he gets to have fun with you.

Not an expert by any means so maybe someone else will come along with a better idea, but it just doesn't sound like a reall "agggression" issue.
I agree with you that it is more of a puppy issue. I also like your idea about play time when other dogs are around. Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2014, 11:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by David Winners View Post
It seems your dog is training puppies to have manners. First comes posture, then growl, then nip. This progression teaches the puppy to abide by warning signals so it can understand communication later in life. If you are present, you can help your dog by controlling the puppy before the nip. If your doggy daycare staff doesn't understand this behavior, I would find different accommodations for your dog during the day.

JMHO
They understand the behaviour but have to stay neutral when another dog is injured. We are paying their bill, but I dont want this to be a continuous situation. I understand that he put the pup in his place and explained him the rules however not all dogs go for the jugular when they are annoyed. His reaction shouldnt have been to bit because all other warning systems failed. I want to be able to train him to do something else. His heckles rise around any dog but only seems to be bothered by ADHD dogs.
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