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OK with giving up (should I)

1882 Views 10 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Kayos and Havoc
Dog on dog aggression kinda big topic on this forum.I have rescue dog who is NOT people/food /otherwise aggressive but absolutely dog aggressive.I have done the whole NILF thing and he is SO willing and compliant.I have worked really hard to make him look to me as pack leader when he is exposed to other dogs.It has been a long struggle (about 3 yrs) and I have gotten to a point (starting where he just wanted to attack any/all dogs)to where he will focus on me with strange dogs who are under control of therir owners.If they are out of control (and I truly mean out of control NOT for a moment but continuing)I do NOT seem to be able to stop Jake from responding with his own aggression.He I believe accepts me as pack leader but I truly CAN NOT get beyond his reaction to off lead/pushy-aggressiveout of control owners.I accept he may be weak nerved and NEVER able to deal with 'dogs gone wild'but in an area with HIGH dog population what can I do?HELP
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Look up some of Pat Miller's articles on dog on dog agression. Pat, I think, also does consulting. She may even have a book out exclusively on this. That said, you may be at your limit and bound simply to be able to remove your dog from those situations that are threatening.
I think middle is right. No matter how good your control of YOUR dog is, if you live in an area where other people aren't controlling THEIR dogs, there's only so much you can do. If dogs running loose are a given, then either Jake wears a muzzle in public, or he just stays home.

I know your finances are tight and you probably can't afford to hire a professional to help, and really, I think that's the only way you *might* get a handle on his aggression. Even then, it may always be more of a management situation. I don't know that I'd give up necessarily, I think I'd always work on it to whatever extent I could, but you do need to be realistic. You may never be able to "fix" him, so management is key.
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Thank you both for replies.The only thing that keeps me thinking his isolation done BY ME is OK is that he seems just such a happy dog.We train at least once a day-usually twice if I am not working too much.I hate that HOT summer coming cause in moderate weather if I am in car Jakester is with me.We do agilty/?kinda with lawn chairs/find-track with hot dogs.and all obedience-he LOVES it but can be kinda a butthead at times.He has large fenced yard.SHUCKS I just love this doofus and because of stress of loose dogs and numerous incidents/that only seem to stress us both out just feel maybe he can be OK like this.He right now does not react to dogs outside his immediate vicinity and this is great improvement.He has been here before and has had bad setback due to aggressive ankle biters and bigger dogs that maybe want to meet and greeat but he perceives as danger.
Our GSD was also dog aggressive and we dealt with it as best we could. She lived to be a ripe old age of 14 yrs. plus...she was a dream with people but other dogs just set her off. She was rejected by her mother and the rest of the litter was terrible to her so her beginning was the problem she had...

We did the best we could...kept her on leash at all times and had a fenced in yard...

We loved her dearly...and still miss her. Judy
A very nice reply. There are times when you accept the German Shepherd for what he/she is. And as you said deal with it as best you can. I have gotten similar advice, and have decided to accept it.
Judykaye thanks for thought.Jake is with me to the end and he is a very happy dog who is loved by many humans.If I can NOT control his dog aggression in the world at large he will ALWAYS have a home here with me--just to add I have NOT given up on life outside our "home"but need to take a step back(I think)
Quote:There are times when you accept the German Shepherd for what he/she is. And as you said deal with it as best you can. I have gotten similar advice, and have decided to accept it.
I couldn't agree more. Michael is dominant and he is dog aggressive. We continually work towards improvement and management but it is my responsibility to accept it; whether today's outcome is good or disappointing, it is I that must remain calm and realistic.
I appreciate your reply. I have a GSD, bought at eight weeks old, and a five year old rescue I just adopted a few weeks ago. The rescue has long a long way toward being more playful, settled and adopting to our home. But there are other issues, none major, which I have decided to accept.
I guess it is a fault of most dog lovers/adopters/companions/buyers to maybe not accept a dog who is not what you think you bought/adopted/rescued.I rescued a problem dog but D--- he has progressed MORE than expected and may NOT be perfect (but HE and I continue as a team to work on it)The best advice I have gotten on this board is sometmes you have to accept them as they are-but I would add continue to WORK for change.
My rescued GSD is "dog aggressive" and will lunge at out of control dogs that get into his space. I put that in quotes because I am not really sure he is. He is a rescue so I have no way of knowing his past and can't put a reason on the behavior. He did it when I got him and got worse after we were attacked several years ago. He too has improved with work. I really see the behavior as leash reactive as appoed to aggressive as he does do well with some dogs that he plays with.

My other two GSD's are not thrilled about out of control dogs that get in thier space either but are not as apt to lunge. I do not consider tham dog aggressive at all as they get along fine with dogs under control and they play well with other dogs.

Now we digress... define dog aggression. Are you sure your dog is truly dog aggressive? Just because he will aggress at out of control dogs that run up on him does not mean he is dog aggressive. It may mean he is just not happy with rude dogs and he tells them about it. That is his right as a dog.

Unfortunately since he is the big dog and everyone assumes he must have started it he gets labeled "dog aggressive". The sad thing is that many folks just say my dog is friendly and just wants to meet your dog and they do not understand that this behavior is considered rude by dogs. Thankfully many dogs are tolerant, yours is not, neither is mine.

I no longer worry about it I just use a Gentle Leader when I walk him and make sure I turn him away and leave. Or I put him behind me and deal with the other dog.
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