Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by sara, May 20, 2012.
Well thank you very much! I try my best, although it's very much been a learn as you go experience.
I really wish V. had more doggy friends; I think it would be good for her, evfen if it was limited interaction. Sadly their does not exist a match.com for dogs.
And I do think she would be better, maybe allot better if she had the opportunity to be around other dogs and could learn how to relax and behave...//
I think you are right, i do. To me, it seems, like each and every time that i get Buddy to make a new pal (again, not a fast thing to happen, not usually)
it seems this sort of helps bring his da behavior down yet another notch. Just seems to help turn it down just a tad.
but wow, do i hear you, about the difficulty of finding ppl who we can attempt this with, and suitable dogs to attempt this with. Plus, last thing i want to do, is upset my dog,
or upset some other dog either.
so it's a dicey thing to strive for at times.
Me, i began with the circle of our friends dogs. We all go out with all our dogs a lot, so, i wasn't having Buddy left out, so we got him used to all those dogs. Wow, one of those dogs, Buddy loathed that dog, with a passion, and it took a whole year to get Buddy to change his mind.
then i began working with relatives dogs, luckily, most of the relatives don't know much about dogs at all, and were all quite fearless about the whole project. and luckily, per sheer chance, they all had the types of dogs Buddy mostly liked fairly readily, mostly.
Meantime, i am also working jsut to desensitize Buddy to neighborhood dogs that he sees regularly, just to make Buddy's world a more peaceful place to him,
but, turns out, quite a few dogs in our hood were dogs Buddy ended up loving.
There are still some dogs in our hood, that Buddy just hates, but, we are working on it. There's two dogs i've given up on, and i agree with Buddy, those dogs are bad news anyway.
Each time i do it,
it seems easier, for me, and for Buddy, too. Its not what i'd call "easy" in general, nope, not really, but, it gets easiER, i think anyway.
Oh Veronica thinks humans are the greatest thing EVA. She is a little people slut. Theone thing I will say is I have gotten maybe 1% neg, reactions b/c of her breed; and 99% positive. V. is really cute, aside from my being biased, she has a sweet face and most people think she's still a puppy. V. actually looks to interact with people, she tries to make eye contact and once they acknowldge her in any way she's all soft eyed and wiggly butt and maybe 80% of the time she actually manages to get people to come over and give her attention. 50% of the time she manages to get a mouth to mouth kiss and 20% of the time we encounter some wacko who actually gets on the ground and pretty much sucks face with my dog.
Ey, Jazzy, doncha love the looks (or the comments) you can get if Veronica decides she is not liking that other dog over there ?
Once i was walking Buddy in a small human park, and a bunch of other ppl arrived with dogs to be walked around, and Buddy lost his mind, just smack lost it, lunging, barking away, just giving those dogs whatfor, and i had nowhere to escape, to get him away, and we had to go through gate to get out, and the other dogs also moved over to gate, cuz owners think it is fun to have dogs greet each other,
and someone yells, as i was dragging Buddy away as Buddy yelled at all their dogs, "Ey lady, you need the dog whisperer!"
and pals and articles about if we just showed leadership, or got our dogs to trust us, etc etc etc.
then our dogs would be "normal".
rofl, i'm behind, cuz i think we are simu-posting, (my homemade word for when ppl post at same time)
but i just saw, and laffed out loud for real, about Veronica's love of humans!
Buddy is same way, he LOVES humans, just adores 'em, all of 'em, any kind. He used to bite everyone, but he is da dog, not a shy dog, so it wasn't that that hard to get Buddy to change his mind about humans are okay afterall, it sort of happened in increments, slowly at first, and we had to put in some special work for kids, ppl in hoods, big men, but, Buddy did change his mind on humans, completely.
and then bam, he began to fall in love with everyone, just everyone.
I kind of think, between having a dog who reacts to other dogs,
and having a dog who reacts to humans,
i think having a dog who reacts to other dogs seems easier to me. There are way way more humans in Buddy's world, than there are dogs. It's way easier for me to control buddy's contact with other dogs,
than it ever would be to control all the humans coming through our home, at parks, picnics, parties, gatherings, etc etc. That seems like it'd be even harder than a da dog, for the way *my* life is, anyway.
but, i don't know for sure.
See here is where the pit bull stigma is a double edged sword...in one camp are the people who think pit bulls are supposed to be DA; and the fact that she actually doesn't want to kill other dogs is seen as a weakness.
Then their are the other people who think that if she's a little DA; she's one step away from eating their toddlers.
But yes, their have been times when she has made me beam with pride; and others that I dearly wished the ground would open up and swallow me whole.
I have also been subjected to the bunk (by a trainer no less) that "if she respected me more"...
the only humans Buddy still occasionally worries about, is small girls with rounded pigtails, one on each side of her head. I usually avoid any child with small rounded pigtails on her head. If i knew lots of little girls, i bet i could help buddy get past that one, but, i don't know many right now. And he doesn't always seem worried about pigtailed kids, if he can get a good look at them, or sniff them, to see they are not dogs. It's more far away kids, small kids, with rounded pigtails, he almost sorta kinda reacts to those small kids, but, once he can see them better, he settles down.
I think maybe the shape of the pigtails might remind him of dogs ears. At stop lights, Buddy can bark his head off at girls with short pigtails in the car next to us.
//; I guess I would just expect a DA dog to always react in favor of a fight, not to act like you want one until the very real possibility of one exists and then you're singing an entirely different tun//
Yes, i hear you there, but, that is how my da dog is much of the time. Like a bully hiding behind his mom skirt or something, becomes more gangsta if he knows he is protected from any consequence of his yelling out other dogs by being on leash, or perhaps the leash itself is a trigger to escalate my dog, mess up his communication or mood or something, set him off? simply an explosion, as all rules are now changed, since he can't fight that dog now.
not sure, but this happens if i leash Buddy while he is staring at a dog--bark bark bark.
Anyway, Buddy does sometimes wait to be leashed, and then barks at other dog after he is leashed, that is often the case for Buddy, and i've heard some other owners of da dogs, notice same thing. but, prior to being leashed, Buddy was tense, stiff, hard eyed stare, lip up on one side, or even slight crouch. It wasn't like, buddy was "just fine" and then, leash set him off, he was already escalating...but not always barking, more scarey looking stuff than barking.
or maybe the barking is a de-escalation, from the scarey stuff he was doing staring dog down, and making up his mind when to attack. I"m not sure, maybe barking is less threatening than the hard stare was/just an explosion, since his plans to attack are now messed up by the leash..(?)
but, i think, if i did not get there quick enough to leash him, at some point, he would charge that dog.
Maybe even da dogs have a few properly functioning brain cells that don't want to fight. still, there are the hard eyes, the whole posture, the growl, the snarls, the crouch, the stiffening, lots of signs he is up to no good, if he gets close enough now. Years ago, all his reactions were like cujo actions. Buddy can still have that type of reaction, if no one helps him, and occasionally, despite our best efforsts, he goes for ugly. so we leave.
Other times, it's just bark bark bark, especially if leashes and fences are involved.
But, my dog can and will attack another dog, oh he will. My dog has gotten into fights, full on fights, before i knew how bad off he was. which shows how stupid i was, as Buddy was covered in wounds, and dog bites, when i met him,
but, back then, i thought i could "cure" him, and stupidly, mistakenly, thought i had. duh.
but, of course, i had not, and Buddy did end up in a dog fight, right before my eyes.
what a horrible day.
so i am no longer fooled into thinking, "oh look, he is just bluffing", nope. I don't think "oh, i see signs he does not want to actually engage in a fight, so he probably would never actually fight".
Plus, i'm not altogether sure, if a dog moving from a hard stare,
to barking around when leashed up,
isn't a DE-escalation of the threat level, not sure, like an explosion of all that energy build up he was fixing to use to charge that dog. not sure, Buddy won't tell me why he often releases barks when he gets leashed up, (instead of being allowed to charge the other dog.)
it does take Buddy a while to charge a dog, it does. It's not all instant like this author said. NOw bunnies, Buddy will charge bunnies right away, not much sizing it all up, no signalling, just CHARGE!!
but not dogs, Buddy gets stiff, tense, builds up, sizes up other dog, sends signals, escalates, and hard stares, etc, and then charges. (if no one does anything to stop him).
In the off chance, the other dog submits, (almost never happens) Buddy won't fully charge, but, then, being in charge, makes Buddy nutz, and he torments the other dog. Buddy is an "alpha-wanna-be" and really does NOT want to be in charge, he is most content if a confident dog is in charge, not him. If any whack dog does agree Buddy is in charge, Buddy goes bully, obnoxious.
Now, taking turns with his friends, Buddy can do the chin over, i'm in charge, no you're in charge, game, that is normal dog play, and dogs takes turns, no problem, with dogs he knows. But for real in charge, freaks buddy out if another dog, or an unknown dog, agrees that Buddy is top dog, goes to his head, and Buddy becomes bully in that case and has to be removed.
I'd bet a bag of kongs, that if Buddy had the chance, he'd still fight an unknown dog, if no one intervened. Yes, there is some posturing before a fight, mmmHm, but, it can still end up as full on bloody dog fight.
and probably would.but, i would not test this to see if i am right.But if just passing by on leash, it's bark bark bark.
actually, i think Buddy has four (4) distinct types of reactions. One of them seems fear-based, the other 3 do not. at all.
It depends on the type of dog he is looking at. I bet i could pretty much watch a film of Buddy reacting, and tell you what type of dog it was he was looking at. Probably, to anyone else, all 4 types of reactions would all just look like a da dog, but, to me, the 4 types are not the same.
I'll read rest of your posts later! I just editted up that last post, i am not sure if the barking when i leash Buddy if he is posturing towards some unknown dog, isn't a de-escalation of threat level/release of excitement since his focus on how best to attack that dog is now foiled,(?) like a gas can being ignited,
hope you see it, wonder what you think.
maybe my teasing view of it, as being "bully behavior behind safety of mom's leash will save me", is all wrong. It is odd-funny, how Buddy waits to get leash on to bark, anyway.
All the nuances are fascinating aren't they?
I have no idea why some of my type took as colored and some didn't but I can't correct it.
//OMG; I had a book typed out and hit one wrong key. //
OH i hate that, and for me, it never comes out as good a second time. Lol, for me, i always end up editting all my posts, as i can't get things out right til about 3rd edit anyway.
Have you tried switching to Google Chrome browser? Helps reduce that, and also tends to 'save' stuff you were typing, you can even "arrow back" sometimes, and re-find your reply.
Chrome is free download, takes 5 minutes, and you can have more than one browser, no need to delete your current browser.
That book looks interesting, i have not read that one. I like the part in your description of the book which said
//The aggression occurs in absence of threat behavior from the other dog: in fact the other dog may be socially appropriate in every way and this dog will still use aggression. //
cuz that is SOooo "Buddy".
//I see her rowdy behavior displays as saying "don't come near me"; not "boy, I wish I could get closer".//
OH, i see, Buddy's are definitely a forward type motion. He pulls towards the other dog, not away from other dog. So maybe V is not the same thing as Buddy has. at all.
What is it V does when she sees another dog, if you do nothing, or if your attempts to distract her fail? do your attempts to distract V from reacting ever fail? Or, are you having 100% success?
//When she had opportunities to run up to other dogs off leash (generally in class, breaking a stay or doing off leash work - don't do that anymore) //
How long ago was that? That observation, i mean. How old was V back then?
But my point is; I don't see V. as "throwing the first punch" so to speak//
oh, i see. I am not sure, in that one fight i did observe, which dog threw first punch, cuz i was distracted at the exact moment, but, i have no doubt in my mind, my Buddy 'started' it up by his aggressive displays, whether or not Buddy threw first punch, i have no doubt that Buddy instigated the whole mess.
To my mind, a dog displaying an aggressive display, IS instigating the trouble, whether or not he throws first punch.
I completely understand your concerns of possible outcomes of V being offleash and getting into fights, i sure do understand. I think you are wise to prevent that possibility.
//but I know in my gut that with her leashed and by my side around other leashed dogs - the worst that will happen is she'll verbally act like an ass and I'll be embarrassed.//
that is the worst that can happen for me, too. Lol, i've posted those exact words many a time, right here on DTA and on other boards, when trying to help a person who is stressed way out about having a da dog, with my hope being, that those words could hopefully help the other owner see it as not so bad after all. Those exact words.
bet i could find my posts here on DTA saying those exact words, about my saying"what's the worst that can happen?" is we look bad to others. Of course, i'm referring to a leashed da dog, not like, a da dog at a dog park.
When i first realized, Buddy is a da dog, well, back then, i was quite tense and worried a lot, but, overtime, i came to realize, "ey, worst that happens, is, my dog barks around a lot and we look stupid and other ppl glare at us." and then i relaxed very very much, completely.
Nowadays, i still understand and remember what that stress feeling is like, cuz i once had it myself, but, i don't now. I even chuckle at Buddy, i'm so used to living with a da dog now.
bark, bark bark. that's it. so what? that's the worst that can happen. Buddy is also always with one of us, and goes everywhere we go, too, it is just as you describe, for Buddy, too. Anyone leaving our house, almost always takes Buddy along. If you see us, you see our dog. Buddy also is a perfect lil gentlemen, in public, and even does some informal therapy dog work in local nursing home, goes visiting our friends, even our friends with dogs, goes to parties, boating, picnics, outdoor cafes, in hardware stores, anywhere we go, Buddy goes. Everywhere, Buddy IS with us, he's rarely home alone.
If I had what I considered to be a DA dog; the worst that could happen is another dog would wander in just close enough for mine to grab it by the throat, which would pretty much be it's first reaction//
Yes, the author of this article also seems to think da dogs go instantly into kill mode, but, mine doesn't, and i know lots of other da dogs who also do the typical posturing/signalling/escalation. LIke i said, with bunnies, yes, yes, my dog goes straight in for the kill.
but, with facing unknown dogs, Buddy begins with laser-hard focus, eyes hardening, scarey looking changes in facial expression, body stiffening, often escalates to slight crouch, etc etc.
Even the few times a dog approaches Buddy, it's not "straight for a bite" and i can remove Buddy. Buddy still stiffens with a closeby dog, but, i just remove Buddy away, it's not impossible to do.
lol, i tend to be pretty darn good at keeping my dog away from unknown dogs. It's a pretty rare event for an unknown dog to get that close to my dog. Not an impossible event, but, hardly ever ever happens, and those are usually offleash dogs.
In places like Petsmart, i tend to go during quiet times, and take care to avoid other dogs. I keep those visits short, as Buddy gets too tense/too overly excited, after only a few moments in there.
If anyone with a dog tries to approach us, i call over "My dog bites." which tends to keep them away. (if i say "my dog doesn't like dogs" does not work, they smile and reply, "but my dog is friendly" and keep coming )
The handful of times an offleash dog has approached us, (one of the few times i ever feel stress over Buddy) it has gone well, but, that might be sheer luck on my part.
There was nothing i could do, as an offleash dog came to us, nothing. Yet, on a few of those times, Buddy did send the other dog packing/leaving, the other dog moves away from Buddy, as any smart dog would, sometimes offering sniffs in the grass to calm Buddy as they leave away, too.
and on a few of those times, Buddy decided he was in love with this dog. That is how Buddy met and fell in love with his pitbull girlfriend, was, she was a rude dog and rushed him, nose to nose,
Buddy looked like a cartoon, with heart-shaped eyes popping out of his head, and he immediately layed down, in a soft relaxed sphinx pose, gave her soft eyes, and smiled, and he's loved her ever since.
whew, right? But, it was young female, one of Buddy's favorite types.
Buddy memorized that pitbull's address, and on walks, Buddy whines and sits down in her yard, staring at her house, and hopes to see her. A lot of times, the owner sees Buddy and brings out Maddie so they can kiss around for a while.
Another time, a woman was frantically chasing her dog, who rushed my dog, not nose to nose, but, did stop a few feet away, and after some moves, the two dogs liked each other. When the woman finally caught up with her dog, i told her we were lucky, as my dog is a da dog. She said, "so is mine. He fights all dogs." and she apologized profusely, and we were both shocked out of our heads as our dogs played with each other.
so we took our dogs and left, in case they changed their minds, but, wow, eh? two da dogs who got on together!?
Buddy has never ever bit another dog when he is onleash beside me, never. NOt that he wouldn't, nope, nope, it's just i can control his world, and i can control his access to other dogs.(usually)
I agree with how you see the barking upon leaving,
or upon my leashing Buddy, as more an explosion, since their plans to start trouble are now interrupted, not necessarily an escalation.
//Intellectualizing again but have you considered Leash/barrier aggression as part of Buddy's issue?//
OH, i have worked with Buddy on leash and fence behavior, certainly. I'm doing very very well with dogs behind fences, especially.
I hope i didn't mistakenly give impression that is only time Buddy reacts. Buddy can react to any dog, anywhere, in any situation. It's not Just onleash, it's not Just with fences.
Leashes and fences are common triggers for da dogs,
as are gates, doorways, narrow hallways, toys, places like Petsmart which are super-stimulating, etc.
//I don't know much about it because that isn't part of V.'s behavioral repertoire but I do know it is considered to be sort of a subset of aggressive behavior.//
Fascinating!! So if you do nothing, V would NOT react to an unknown dog passing by her? I can also 'often-but-not-always' get Buddy to calmly walk by dogs when he is on leash, or walk calmly by dogs behind fences, but, if i do nothing, oh, i do think Buddy would react to almost all unknown dogs as i walk him, on leash, or offleash, either way. (it's just different type of reaction if he is leashed vs. unleashed).
but, you could put V on a leash, and if you did nothing,
V would calmly walk by unknown dogs?? <---that is NOT "part of her repertoire"?? V could calmly walk by unknown dogs all by her own choices, no intervention or cuing from you, she does NOT react on leash to seeing unknown dogs??
Also, does your method of getting V to calmly walk by other dogs work 100% of the time?? Mine doesn't, not 100%, only about 60% to 75%.
Somedays are better, somedays are worse.
I have a higher success rate, if Buddy is getting tricks lessons daily, if his life has been kept exciting/interesting (boredom makes Buddy worse)
and if Buddy is not all pent up with unspent energy/has been exercised.
Different types of dogs, different scenarios, can be easier or harder for *my* dog,
cuz Buddy has his "types"
so there's other factors, as well. sometimes, the best i can do, is "Let's Go", or "look at me". Sometimes i can walk him calmly by unknown dogs. It varies somewhat, depending on the set up, the other dog, and my dog's current level of being tuned into me, there's a few factors which can make it easier, or harder, that day, etc. But, it's not 100%, nope nope nope!
What all do you do to get V to walk calmly by unknown dogs?
Lol, that you once mulled over the idea that V could be an "alpha wanna be". Buddy often tries to tell other dog, "ey, i'm top dog here" but, other dogs bust out laughing and arguing, cuz they immediately realize, "no you're not! You are no alpha!"
I wish i had a nickle for everytime some owner says, "Wow, my dog never reacts to other dogs, but, he sure did to your dog!"
i smile, "Yeah, i get that a lot" cuz i feel, the other dogs ARE right, that my dog's trying to tell them that he, Buddy, is top dog, and other dogs do know an alpha when they see one, and they know Buddy is no alpha. nope.
When other dogs disagree with Buddy, the other dogs are correct.
// They generally are good with a 6 to 8 foot buffer zone in the presnce of other well mannered dogs.//
Is Veronica okay with unknown dogs 6 -8 feet away? if you do nothing? I can bring my dog that close to some dogs, not all dogs, and have him be calm, but, i see that as a big success moment, and it is not typical, of Buddy anyway.
Also, my idea is, alpha's only correct wrong behavior, and then stop from further escalation,
whereas my dog would "correct" ANY behavior, even proper perfect dog behavior, my dog will still argue about that, and my dog WOULD continue, not stopping.
My dog's reaction, like your book says, requires no trigger, no wrong behavior from other dog, buddy just reacts cuz.......the dog is THERE. (if i did nothing to keep him calm) Buddy is not "correcting" wrong behaviors from other dogs, nope.
//Especially the part about being fine around other well behaved dogs with enough space. //
NOw that is very interesting!! My dog will occasionally, spontaneously "like" an unknown dog on sight, but not too often. But V does like most dogs on sight, if the dog is well behaved?
That is NOT like my dog at all.
How much space does V need?
//Yes at the end of the day we can intellectualize all we want (or at least that's what I seem to do )//
well, i hear you, but, i'm not sure my saying i think my dog would indeed, end up in a dog fight, if he had the chance to do so, is "intellectualizing", at all. I think it is an honest guess from me, and probably true. I also don't think, my preventing Buddy from actually fighting, in any way, means Buddy is not a da dog, since "he doesn't bite any dogs or fight any dogs".
He would fight, i think,
he is merely prevented from doing so. Like that story i mentioned of the alcoholic on an island with no booze, kinda thing.
Buddy is not cured, he is just prevented from indulging (in dog fights) <---now THAT might be "intellectualizing"! rofl!
I don't see preventing possible dog fights as evidence the dog is not a da dog/cuz he "never bit another dog", but, that's just me. There are other owners of da dogs, whose dog has never been in an actual full-on, dog fight, cuz those owners are smart.
There are owners of shy/aggressive dogs, who have never actually bitten a human, cuz their owners are smart.
But, i think preventing bites/fights a very very smart move!! Yes, i totally agree! Like most owners of da dogs, or shy/aggressive dogs, this prevention of bites/fights is definitely one of my goals.
//; but what matters is knowing our dogs and taking steps to keep them, and everyone else's dogs safe! //
i agree, 100%, totally!
That I think is what it is about for us as well; controlling access and managing the environment.
Oh No no no!! I just meant that V. would react not because she's on leash but because she's V. and that's what she does. Take her off leash and it may look different; but it won't end any better. So I don't consider it leash reactivity if removing the leash doesn't solve the problem.
Same with the fence; remove the fence and we still have the same problem.
Copyright © 2013 Dog Trick Academy. All Rights Reserved.