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I have 3 GSD's.. oldest is a 6yr old male, female 4yrs old and 1 1/2 yr old male. My female did not have any aggression towards the older male until 6 months or so after we brought the puppy into the family. She is loving, and very mother like to the puppy but each day she will growl and push around the older male. The older male never instigates a fight with her and always just ignores her when she gets an attitude towards him- although sometimes he will fight back for a min until we yell at them to stop. Its like she is pushing him around showing him she is the leader of the pack. She does this everyday and its quite annoying and I feel bad for the older male. She will growl, paw at his back, and then will instantly smell his rear-end. I am assuming this is some kind of behavioral thing with her, but I would like to somehow fix this problem. Please help!
 

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I was at a house today with 4 adult(3 male 1 female) and two 11 week old pups all in the same huge run. Female is the alpha of the pack. They just adopted a male, which is why we went over, to see him, and the pups(one blue) and the pack order is really something. Is your female spayed? Males intact? It does make a difference. Maybe separate her from the others and bring her down a notch for a while.
 

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too late to edit, but these people also have three adorable small yorkies, and the GSD's are fine with them(they are not in the run together) even when they steal their tennis balls! Owner says she takes them for walks together and they get along great!
 

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What I do with my boys is practice a pack mentality. First and foremost, I am the leader. I show this through NILIF and everyday activites. I also practice positive reinforcement. You may need you assert yourself as the leader over everyone else, and then establish an order among the dogs that they are comfortable with. The female sounds like a dominant dog by nature, the others sound a bit more relaxed about the order. Do you treat her different than the others? Do you exercise her more or less than the others?
 

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Originally Posted By: Coleen although sometimes he will fight back for a min until we yell at them to stop.
If I'm understanding correctly, after he starts fighting back you tell them to stop. It sounds like you are unintentionally showing her that you agree she is dominate and that her behavior is allowed. You correct him for fighting back and not her for starting. It is probably going to get worse. I suggest that you prevent her from pushing him around in the first place.

I also suggest getting your oldest male a health check. While to me it sounds like her continued behavior is because of my first paragraph, he could having something physically wrong with him that started the aggression. At six, a physical wouldn't be a bad idea, and if he does have something wrong, this could help the living situation.
 

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As clarification... each time she gets pissy with the male we yell at her to stop. We aren't in any way telling her its ok to do that.

I figured that she was taking the role of the pack leader.... as someone told me when you have more than 2 dogs it becomes like a real pack. I am definitely going to read over NILIF, as GSDOwner2008 talked about. The males are neutered and the female is spayed. I think in a way we do treat her a bit different.... for example breakfast time she wont want to eat so we have to kinda coax her into it.... the others are fine on their own. She is kinda a baby and in turn we tend to baby her. We exercise them all the same. She is very very competitive as well.
 

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1. Vet check for both the oldest male and the bitch

2. Sounds to me like the order of attention has changed with the new arrival Look at that and see what you might do to reinforce the old order.

3. Quit yelling at her. This is giving her attention for her behavior. Find another way to stop it. You could try redirecting. If that doesn't work, put each dog up and any fun stops.

OK that's what I've got.
 

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Definately read over NILIF, become the pack leader. I would start by feeding them in the order of the pack rank. Make them wait for their food, and one by one release them to eat. Lately I've been mixing my dog's food with my hands so my scent is in their food. Don't know if this actually works yet because I just tried it, so you might want to try it, you might not. Set the food down, if they don't eat, they don't eat. pick the food up in 10, 15 minutes. The female will get hungry enough to eat. Dogs can go a few days without eating if she's that stubborn. You could even take it a step further and hand feed her, making her work for every handful by doing a command. This may not be necessary yet.

Also, making them wait for you to go out a door first is good, not giving solicited attention, no more babying the female, this only gives her more power to be a bully. When she tries to instigate a fight, put her in a time out in a corner in a down stay. Release after she's relaxed, and if she still wants to fight, in her crate she goes, as well as any other member of the pack that wants to fight. You have to be a calm assertive pack leader that will protect all members of the pack. In doing so, you will have earned everyone's trust and respect.
 
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