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Please can I have some advice to get on top of a situation?


We recently moved house next to neighbours who have two Mastiffs. They moved in just a couple of weeks before us.
The female Mastiff appears to be very territorial. She often comes to our wall and barks. The barking doesn’t appear to be aggressive and she often wags her tail while she is doing it. I just talk to her and she goes away. She seems to be a bit nervous of people.

The houses up here don’t really have clear boundaries as they are pretty much open to the road, so I think the dog thinks she owns more land than she does, if that makes sense. Sometimes when I am out with Rafa, she will appear on the road and bark at him. At first he wanted to play, but she didn’t so now they just tend to have a quick bark each and that’s it. When she comes to the garden and barks, Rafa now just ignores her.

Unfortunately this morning, she ran out barking. Rafa backed off but she still came towards him. I don’t think she intended to attack, just to warn him off. At this point Rafa didn’t back off but barked back and then they went at each other. No damage was done, it was just a quick scrap, but I’m worried it could escalate another day.

I’m thinking of inviting the neighbours round with the dog as I would like to try to get them to become friends, or at least tolerant of each other. I think it is best if the dogs don’t meet on the Mastiff’s territory.

I don’t know if we should do this meeting with the dogs on or off lead. On lead, we will have more control, but Rafa gets very excited when he meets other dogs and he is on a lead and I’m worried it will make him worse. Off lead, we won’t have as much control.

Any ideas on how best to handle this?
 

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Is there any way you can put up a fence? That would probably be the best solution.
 

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i think introducing the dogs on lead is a good idea. make the
first encounter short. then i would let them meet a lot more.
each time they meet i would make the encounter a little longer.
 

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Carry dog treats with you and whenever you see her toss her a treat. Ask your neighbors if that's ok first. That will train her to associate you and your dog with good things. Once she becomes more relaxed around you guys, you can arrange a meeting at a park near your home.
 
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