What am I doing wrong?
We have a 3 year old, 120 pound GSD named Major. He is mild mannered and loves everybody yet he is a fiercely loyal mama protector. We adopted an 18 month old GSD from a kill shelter so Major has a buddy to play with. Preacher is emaciated (about 30 pounds under weight) and we are working with him to slowly build his muscle and gain weight.
We introduced the dogs but Preacher would have no part of butt sniffing and immediately attacked Major. Major coward and slinked away. We have to keep Preacher in a metal crate or on a leash while in the house or outside.
Two days ago, Preacher was playing ball with me and nipped me by accident while he was giving me the ball. Major came unglued on Preacher. Preacher is no match for Major and Major had Preacher down in a heartbeat. He didn't hurt Preacher, just had him down and let him know that he is not one to be messed with. Preacher was submitting quickly. I gave Major the command to let go and he did. Herein lies my grief:
As soon as Major let go of Preacher, Preacher was in attack mode on Major and the fight lasted less than 15 seconds while I tried to break up the fight. Major had Preacher back down but wasn't hurting him. In the meantime, I got bite four times on my side (serious puncture wounds) and my hand was tore up (18 stitches).
Now every time Preacher sees Major, he growls and lunges at him. Major stays away from Preacher's "area". Major is not afraid of Preacher, he just doesn't want conflict.
What can I do? What did I do wrong and how can I rectify this? :help:
Well, you are obviously well- intentioned! However, neutered or not, it is advisable to go with two members of the opposite sex. Also, dogs are primal creatures and your healthy dog may not appreciate the unhealthy dog's presence simply for that reason- just like younger dogs turn on the elders.
Even if you had greater harmony, the two dogs would fight to ascertain dominance, and then it would be settled.
Is playtime with other dogs necessary for your adult? Perhaps the premise is flawed- purely a question!
Major is telling you this dog has a problem! He needs to be retooled, I would start here, pretend you just got him...start over:
I just got a rescued dog – what do I do? | stickydogblog
And this should prove helpful:
Wheres my sanity: Sit on the Dog, aka: The long down
And this should prove helpful for awhile I'd combine it with the 'Long sit" for awhile:
A Great Small And Lightweight Nylon Mesh Muzzle
Consider it more of a training muzzle, not as secure as a basket muzzle but as long as you have eyes on the dog it works. It should be helpful in moding his behaviour. But don't short cut the other stuff! Dog can quickly learn ..he can get this muzzle off! But it's a OK muzzle on dogs that aren't wildly out of control! Sort of like... OH muzzle off?? It's go time!
I been where you are only difference is my rescue took 7 months to turn into a "tool!" Had I followed most of the links I posted, before learning all this stuff, the hard way, maybe I would not have had stitches??
More links here in post 8: And especially "Who Pets my Puppy or Dog.":
And multi dog homes:
Introducing a New Dog into a Home with other Dogs
Two or More Dogs
So safe to say...your not alone! Sit down the ground work on who is in charge is the first step! You can't correct a dog who has little or not enough reason to respect you as a leader! Well I guess you could but...not recommend!
It's going to be alot of work!
Oh yeah one more look at Rank Drive here:
(Elements of Temperament, by Joy Tiz )
Good luck and yeah welcome aboard. :)
To answer the questions:
Major is a registered European Military War Dog and still intact. Preacher was neutered last week before we picked him up from the shelter. It is obvious that Preacher was a "field, stray" and had to scrap just to survive.
Major, the healthy dog, wants to do some butt sniffing and has tried to play with Preacher but Preacher gets "that" look in his eyes and begins to snarl and lunge at Major. As long as he doesn't lunge at me, Preacher is safe with Major.
Major loves to play and we have a 17 year old GSD that just wants to be left alone, so we got Preacher for Major.
Thank you for the advice so far. I will check out everything advised to me and go from there. We thought about walking the two dogs together so they can get better used to one another away from the house (we live in the boonies) and maybe some butt sniffing can ensue.
I was told to purchase the Don Sullivan package and use his techniques to train Preacher. Major is a trained military war dog and could use a refresher.
Have you heard of this guy and if so, what do you think?
He basically...does not take crap from dogs! Maybe an over simplification but that's the essence!
That works fine "if" you first know what your doing and you are that kind of leader!
I would think "I just got a rescue" and "The sit on dog" is a much more reasonable first step for most people.
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Pack walk is fine but that does not mean he still won't have an issue at home! You run a real risk of having the dog "come up leash on you" if you get the "because I say so method wrong!"
I don't see Major as a factor here he's being "forced" to deal with a lack of discipline in this dog. Not his job but if you don't he will...not good!:eek:
I've lived with same sex aggression for years with two of our girls. Not worth it. Will never do it again. Find Preacher a new home without any males dogs and test him with females to make sure he'll get along with them as well.
Boxer and Buddies policy is "NO" female Boxers in a household with a female Boxer! A different breed maybe???
Not the case here. Male male pairings are pretty common. Dynamics are much different! I will "Never" do a two female household myself. Don't think that's the problem here, the younger dog has no respect for pack members because he has little respect for the pack leader.
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