Help. Dog chew another dog's ear off

Discussion in 'Dog Behavior Problems' started by qatm, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. qatm New Member

    Hello all. I found this site while googleing for an answer to my problem.

    I have two dogs. An 18 year old mixed female and a 2 year old male. The old one is really starting to show her age and the young one actually chewed her ear off and ate it tonight. I really don't know what to do. Can anybody help me ? Did anyone see anything like this happen ?

  2. Jean Cote Administrator

    Your dog ate her own ear? Got any pictures?
  3. qatm New Member

    Sorry, maybe i wasn't clear enough. The young dog chew the older dog's ear. As I said before, the older dog is really starting to show her age and i'm thinking maybe the young one is trying to show who's boss. But even so that's a little extreme, isn't it ? The young one has had some behavioral problems in the past, but we've managed to get past those somehow. This one has really left me baffled. I don't even know what to do.
  4. shastakiradog New Member

    Wow!

    Okay well I dont really know what to even say in a case like this but I do know that dogs will eat things that came off of or out of another dog. Like when a dog has puppies she will sometimes eat their poo. I dont know why but they do. It may be a related case but I really honestly DON'T know! You should ask your vet or dog behaviorist about it because they may know! Other wise I dont know what to tell you! If you find the answer PLEASE post it because i would REALLY REALLY like to know why this occured!
  5. qatm New Member

    Hey again,

    I just talk to the vet. He says this is a pack behavior, the kind of behavior you see in wild dogs. The older dog is near the end and the younger dog's instinct is telling him to force the old dog out of the pack (what pack I have to wonder) and let her die. The thing is that the young dog knows that he's done something awful. He went under the bed last night (his usual hiding place) and I practically had to drag him out for his morning walk. And after that, he went back under the bed.
    For the time being I'm going to keep them separated and wait for the older dog's end.
    Oh, and I forgot to mention that both of my dogs were stray puppies and I actually picked them off the street, so maybe the pack instinct is stronger in them than in a breed dog.
  6. drivingtenacity New Member

    "wait for the older dog's end."?
    That sounds really terrible.
    Is the younger dog neutered?
  7. cppugs New Member

    Typically, you do not see pack behavior in two dogs, usually it starts when you have three dogs, UNLESS, this younger dog is considering you as part of the pack. Have you had your older dog, the one that had the ear chewed to the vet? Often times if a dog has an infection of some sort, another dog will bother the area affected. When he chewed the older dogs ear, was there a fight or were they just laying together and he was licking and chewing the older dog?
  8. qatm New Member

    Hey again, sorry for the delayed response.

    For future reference and for my ease of writing, older dog's name is Sascha,
    and younger's dog name is Sergei (and no, i'm not Russian).

    I really don't know if Sergei considers me as part of the pack, and if he does, I'm definitely the alpha.
    Sascha is really really old so I have the vet coming over at least once a week, so there's no infection (or none that the vet could find). She's as well as she can be, considering. In the time that has passed since my first post, Sascha has completely lost her sight, hearing and most of her smelling senses. She has lost control her back legs, her bladder, and her weight has really dropped. I can actually see the bones through her skin, although she used to be quite fat (and no, she has no parasites).

    Back to the subject, I wasn't in the room when the chewing/eating happened but I'm sure there wasn't any fight because there wasn't any barking or growling. Granted that Sascha hasn't barked in over a year but Sergei is really not the quiet type, quite the opposite, he's always voicing his feelings. After that incident we've kept them separated most of the time and they've only been together under close supervision. And when they're together, he ignores her. I've had more than one dog for most of my life and this really is the first time I've seen this behavior. But then again, I've never seen a dog's state degrading as fast as Sascha's, I'm open to any conclusion.
    We also have one cat that we literally saved from a certain death, by the time Sergei was a puppy, and the cat has a somewhat aberrant behavior (but this is another story). Maybe Sergei is considering the cat as one of the pack, and thus the three dogs theory.

    @drivingtenacity
    I know it sounds terrible. I wish thing would be different. You have to understand that she has been my dog for almost 19 years and I love her more than anything. But unfortunately a dog's life is shorter and we have to cope with this.

    Other than this, I really don't know what other info to give you. This is a first for me too. Just add this to the list of possible abnormal behaviors.

    Thank you !

    Off topic
    Ever since I found this forum I read every post on every thread and I'd like to say thank you for being here :)
  9. snooks Experienced Member

    dogs aren't wolves and don't live in a pack they live with people. that one flawed pack study gets way too much press. vets aren't behaviorists either. they may be good vets but I’ve had several tell me some things that were just wrong. no offence to anyone but vets learn and study medicine, some specialize like oncology etc.

    this is not normal pack behavior and has little to do with how each dog perceives you. gee people are or are not boss so I’ll eat the dog's ear. i suggest separating and protecting ur older dog and consulting a behaviorist. it is ur responsibility to protect both dogs. consider that ur younger dog may become habituated and do this to ur next dog. so it's time to find out why and correct or at least prevent cruelty.

    check the listings. if a behaviorist is not near u call several as they are very giving of time and will refer. all the ones i emailed answered me and helped. i felt sooooo much better when i had a plan and some help. most vetmed universities also have behavioral med depts that are a resource. good luck. hope ur older dog is ok. :dogsad:

    http://www.animalbehavior.org/
    http://www.veterinarybehaviorists.org/

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