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matthewm11 03-18-2014 10:30 AM

1 year old male rescue very leash reactive to other dogs
I posted a few weeks ago a traumitized, half starved (presumably) working line male I found in a city shelter. 'Wow, what a mellow low key dog' I thought as Rocky was literally nodding off on the pain meds he had been given since the shelter had just neutered him days before his adoption. Lol. Yeah, a little self delusion on my part!
Rocky is mostly a good boy, he is obedient and is friendly when approached by humans of all sizes and ages and aloof when someone just passes by. His problem though is with other dogs. He goes insane when he even sees another dog. I have a three year old female; they get along great although rocky is imcredably dominant towards her. Indiana has always been a submissive dog and we have lived with other dogs so she is fine with it.
Rocky, pulls, barks, jumps and whines when we are out walking and he sees another dog. Neither myself nor my female Indy (as far as I can tell) have no anxiety or fear about other dogs so I don't think he is picking up a cue from one of us and I try to divert his attention whiLe continuing to walk forward but this doesn't do much go break his focus on the other dog. I recently bought a prong collar with has helped a lot and a gentle leash correction along with distraction have helped to a degree.
Ive heard it could be due to testosterone remaining in a dogs system for some time after neutering; if that's the case I can manage this until he matures and mellows. If its something else, this is bad innapropriate behavior that needs to be addressed and fixed. Have I contacted a trainer or behaviorist? Not yet although I started looking into that. Am I getting him enough exercise and stimulation? I work from home so I am always out with the two dogs hiking etc and I make sure to work with rocky one on one as often as possible to.
I mentioned his dominance towards Indy my other dog. Its pretty blatent . I put two bowls of food out and he blocks her from access of either bowl and eats from both until he is satisfied. She comes to me for affection and he pushes her out of the way shoving his massive head between me and her. When he barks and reacts to other dogs he doesn't growl, bare teeth, hair On his back isn't standing up. Nothing overtly aggressive or hostile in his posture.
Thoughts? Suggestions?

matthewm11 03-18-2014 10:38 AM

Btw sorry for Typos and syntax errors posted from my phone but I think the problem is conveyed. Should of mentioned its mostly when leashed. Off leash he will chase and bark at other but doesn't get physically aggressive. He always shows little to no apparent fear in new situations, to new people or objects seems like a pretty confident dog

matthewm11 03-18-2014 10:47 AM

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Just for curiosity sake this is rocky (he is dog in foreground of first pic my female can be seen in background

Blanketback 03-18-2014 10:54 AM

That was very kind of you to give this pup a loving home! I'd be more careful with the feeding situation though. If he's already bullying your female now, when you've had him for hardly any length of time, then look out once he gets comfortable, lol! But it's not fair to your female, she was there first, it's her home: why not feed them separately? I think this is very important, and I had to mention it. As far as reactive goes, I'm not one to give advice on that, since my pup is as well, lol. I have noticed he's a million times better (as in, you'd never even know he's reactive at all) when he's been thoroughly exercised first, before any outings.

Shade 03-18-2014 11:08 AM

I would start NILIF hardcore, step in and be firm that pushing your female around is not tolerated, and feed seperately so that she can eat in peace.

As for the leash reactivity, it really seems to be a common problem in GSD's. LAT (Leslie McDevitt: Control Unleashed®: Home Page) and BAT (Official Behavior Adjustment Training (BAT) site: humane help for aggression, frustration, and fear in dogs, horses, and other animals.) have been extremely helpful for Delgado

matthewm11 03-18-2014 12:11 PM

NILIF is definitely something I enforce and believe in strongly! As far as feeding, I read somewhere along the line not to meddle too much in issues of rank between two dogs of the same household but my sense is that I am letting him be too pushy and of course Indy deserves to eat in peace.
Rocky listens to me and is an obedient dog except of course regarding the issue at hand. He can also get high strung at times; over-excited- especially before walks. Ill make him sit but he can still barely contain himself. This I chalk up to his age (even for a one year old he has a good off switch and is usually mellow and lazy in the house)

rumhelka 03-18-2014 12:24 PM

I would not allow any of my three females to bully anyone: I'm the boss and they are looking to me to find out what I consider as proper behavior. They can not bully a cat either. When my shepherd tries to bully my small dog, I say strong "NO" and I mean it. Yes, we should intervene and protect the ones in our household who are the weakest. The pecking order will still be there but at least, the ones we love will not suffer. Also: feed them separatly and make sure that your young shepherd knows that he has to deservce his food and BEHAVE in order to get it. As far as leash aggression, I try to divert attention of my shepherd by saying "look at me" and offering a treat for proper behavior. Very common problem among shepherds even raised from the puppy.Good Luck!

matthewm11 03-18-2014 12:25 PM

Ill tell you though its a challenge I enjoy but in so many ways he is the complete opposite of the dog my female was at his age. Indy had a bit of the husky independence and indifference to pleasing me but on the other hand was non reactive to other dogs and wasn't very high strung (stamina and energy for days though) and was very adaptable. She was a dog I could leave with a friend for the weekend and they would be reluctant to give her back and Indy would have little or no seperation anxiety. Rocky is eager to please and listens and is glued to me following me watching everything I do. He is more spastic and high strung at times and at this point he is not a dog I would feel comfortable in the hands of an inexperienced or novice dog handler (not that im an expert by any means lol hence why I will likely be seeking pro help) because of the dog reactivity

matthewm11 03-18-2014 12:28 PM

I am glad I posted for the clarification on rocky and indy's dynamic I will be much less permissive in his bossy attitude and feed them seperately. Thanks

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