This will be a long post; sorry, just want to be thorough! Also hope it's in correct section, I always worry about that.
My son moved home around 6-8 weeks ago. He is likely here to stay at least through the winter.
He brought his adult three year old WGSD intact female (Lexus). She lived here as an adolescent as well, so she and I are not strangers. She and I spent a lot of time together when she was here before over a six? month or longer period. There were many issues with her and my Shiba Inu getting along -- it was the Shiba that was the problem, not Lexus.
But anyway, now he and she are back. This time, though, we've fixed up the basement and my son and she live there. The only time she and the Shiba have contact is outside (never unsupervised) and for whatever reason, there is no conflict there -- only in the main area of the house. The conflict is always the Shiba. She instigates, bates and is in general not nice. Lexus would deal with it for a long time, but eventually, Lexus would pin her down by her neck and it scared me. There was never blood, never a puncture wound, never any evidence of an injury. So knowing that history when my son came back with her as an adult, I just decided we're not going to allow them upstairs together. Lexus is a big girl now and I can't risk it, even if it is the Shiba's fault. Another story, though, really.
Every day after work and many hours over the weekend, I am outside with Lexus and my pup Bailey. They're both awesome offleash - actually neither is ever on-leash in the yard. I play frisbee with Lexus for a good long time every night, Bailey chases, I throw Bailey's ball - they both get great aerobic exercise.
So the more time I spend with Lexus, the more I see she has a great amount of potential. She is a very sweet girl. She's never had any formal training.
She knows the basics; sit, shake, down, stay... and performs them well. She has excellent recall. She comes back immediately when called. I've purposefully put my hand close to her food when eating, no reaction. I've given her plenty of bones and also get close to her, no reaction.
She DOES react when a strange car pulls up the drive. (Barking, ears up at alert, even charging the car) She DOES react to new people. (Barking, ears up on alert, approaching them within about 6 feet, then called off, its okay.) Once called off, she does very well. My son has told me she doesn't like children, though I'm not sure what experiences he's had with her to say that. I've only personally seen her around one child and it was about an eight year old girl. The little girl wasn't doing anything to attract attention but Lexus was acting very strange and sniffing, very tense... hard to explain, but it was tense, so I put Lexus inside.
I've taken her to the vet over the years and she is hard to control. She is all over the place. She didn't bite, growl, etc... but not easy to control.
Again, this girl has had zero training other than being taught basic commands by my son.
She is the vision of awesomeness in our yard, at our home. She has never shown aggressiveness of any kind other than when she'd had enough with the instigating Shiba. She lives here with her son (my pup, Bailey) and she occasionally reprimands him, but mostly she lets him steal her frisbee.
I have never taken her into public settings. I don't know what she'd be like. I'm not confident to do that at this point; she's big and powerful. My son tells me she's good with other dogs for the most part. I don't know what that really means. So I'm going pretty blind here.
I don't know where to start here. I've decided my winter is going to be about my dogs - all of them - but I know where I need to start and go with the other three. I don't know where to start with her. I don't have full confidence in controlling her outside of our home. She loves me and we're bonded in a certain way - but not like my son is bonded to her. She and I spend the time, yes, but she won't kiss me like she will him... although she did allow me to help and be there with the birth of her pups.
I really love this girl very deeply and I see such incredible potential with her - I don't want to see it wasted.
Where would you start?
Thank you so much if you made it thru all of that!!!!!!!!!