Some Dogs Are Born Dog-aggressive, Imo

Discussion in 'Dog Behavior Problems' started by tigerlily46514, May 23, 2011.

  1. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Even besides my Buddy,
    there ARE 100s if not 1000s of examples
    of dog-agressive dogs
    whose entire life WAS observed.

    the dog was treated well, socialized, etc etc, you name it, all done the dog in the book, "Click to Calm", raised by an experienced dog behaviorist!!! Still, her puppy was dog-agressive. For it's entire life.

    and against all odds---
    they showed up as dog-agressive as PUPPIES
    and stayed persistantly dog-agressive
    for their ENTIRE lives,
    dispite all manner of dog behaviorists, or dog trainers, or any kind of effort you wanna name, it was tried,
    this dog, let's call him Fido,
    remained persistantly dog-agressive, for his ENTIRE life, and could not be cured.
    IT IS PERSISTANT, regardless of the dog's life, or situation, or desensitization, or training, no matter what you do, the dog will be dog-agrssive. always.
    no matter what.

    yes, yes, most dog-agressive dogs DO have dog pals, but only a select few. Many live peaceabley with dogmates in their home. It does not negate the fact they react to *most* dogs, though.

    those dogs make more compelling examples of an inherently dog-agressive dog, than my own dog.....(who is persistantly dog-agressive.....for his entire life, dispite years of efforts now....)

  2. Lexy88 Well-Known Member

    Like you said in a much earlier post, you and Buddy are taking on the world one dog at a time ;) Maybe Buddy can be completely cured. Youll just have to introduce and work with him to every single dog in the world!! Lol.

    Also, I try very hard not to compare dogs with wolves, but wolves will get on with their pack but will be aggressive to new comers. This is just territory/pack/resource protection really and is quite normal. Normal for dogs too. They want to protect their territory/pack/resources.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  3. Lexy88 Well-Known Member

    Also, Fido, for example, may not be wired wrong, just wired differently. Maybe he is wired to react the 'old ways', and react to all dogs that may be threatening to his safety/pack/territory/resources. Maybe Fido's dog aggression, hard wired as it is, born with it, isnt wrong, just more, well, reactive than most dogs, who have either been bred or trained out of it. Maybe its a throw back gene? Maybe this 'aggressive gene', or whatever it is, plain old aggression, is just more instinctive, more raw, more reactive unconsciously, than other dogs. Just a thought.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  4. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    Don't forget, I may be new here, but I agreed with you from the start. I just got home from the tire store, (I'm very poor now), and need to catch up on this thread. I am only 2 posts in right now and I have noticed that there are three pages already. I have some catching up to do.
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  5. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //"Like you said in a much earlier post, you and Buddy are taking on the world one dog at a time ;) Maybe Buddy can be completely cured. Youll just have to introduce and work with him to every single dog in the world!! Lol."//

    ha ha, aint that the truth!!? ha ha!! I have found some things that work *sometimes* for Buddy. I've got a few assorted miracles to report. I really do, i have had moments, that to any passerby, would look like some ordinary moment, yet, my heart is beating outa my chest out of pride that my DA dog is acting normal. I never had those moments with my 'normal' dogs.

    Still, i'd be lying if i said i "cured" him. nope, he's a gangsta, but, he's MY lil gangsta, and i love him with all of my heart, i would not trade him away for a million normal dogs, nope, he is my beloved lil gangsta.:) to the end. He and i ARE doing the best we can, right Buddy? He is doing the best he can. I have no doubts on that.

    And i do not regret taking on a dog with these issues, cuz, i've learned wayyyyyyyyy more about dogs in the two years i've had him, than i ever learned in a lifetime of 'normal' dogs. (cuz i never had to learn anything beyond the normal stuff for those dogs. never had to. i used to be one of those ppl who thought, "Geez, if you just treat a dog right, he'll be FINE!!"...... before i met Buddy.)

    //"Also, Fido, for example, may not be wired wrong, just wired differently. Maybe he is wired to react the 'old ways', and react to all dogs that may be threatening to his safety/pack/territory/resources"//

    now there is a brand new idea to me. I had not ever once considered this angle you present. who knows? they say dogs were selected, and then later on, bred, from wolves who had tendencies/abilities (here we go scrappping for right word again) that made them hang out around humans/compatible with humans.
    Wolves that maintained a more puppy style of behaving, even into adulthood, were chosen, so they say.

    Interesting to mull over. Still, i think, most wolves do not fight with their own pack.....i don't know. (but, then again, many dog-agressive dogs do not fight with their very own home boys, either, just the 'stranger' unknown dogs)
    Maybe there is something there to consider, but, my goodness, it sure sounds more acceptable, doesn't it?
    "My dog reacts in old style ways" ha ha!!

    When i finally ever learned "dog language" (i went to seminars and read books, and online resources, too, became quite fascinated with learning this 'language')
    i was surprised how MUCH of their language (as we understand it) is devoted to peace keeping. Keeping the peace in the pack is crucial matter of survival, for dogs to get on with each other....... dogs who hunt in packs eat better and survive better than the lone dog, though...
    i kinda hate to admit it, but, my dog is the fluke kind of random aberhancy type who would probably starve on his own, with no pack to hunt with...but, who knows? I do think, in the wild, the dog-aggressive dog would die out.

    //"Don't forget, I may be new here, but I agreed with you from the start."//
    ha ha, there are not words to describe my utter shock, that anyone agreed with me!! ha ha!! Yes, i am behind too, and will have to reread this whole thing again tomorrow, again. I'm sure i missed things!!
  6. Ina Well-Known Member

    ..hmm I've been reading and reading and reading ... and thinking and thinking and thinking <scratch head>

    In humans everyone accepts the fact that some chemical imbalance can cause depression. People with depression are not necessarily depressed every day - they can go on for ages until something throws them out and this chemical isn't produced.

    Now my personal view on the topic is that these dog aggressive dogs which are born that way might just have a chemical imbalance which triggers a basic instinct. Buddy might be able to make dog friends when his chemical balance is right (what WE HUMANS consider RIGHT), but if he meets a new dog when the chemicals aren't right he goes into protective/aggressive mode.

    Pity that there won't be any funds for scientists to clarify this further. They haven't even gotten far analysing chemical imbalance in the brain with humans, never mind dogs :(

    Tigerlily, what I would like to know ...
    • When Buddy has playtime with his dog friends and a strange dog joins in, will Buddy attack that new dog?
    • Is he aggressive towards little puppies (under 3 months of age) ?
    • If you meet a new dog and you go go for a walk on leash together with the other dog owner (have to dig out that video that I saw on that) - like dog on the left, dog owner, other dog owner and dog on the right) will Buddy settle after a few steps or continuously try to get to the other dog?
    • What made him be friends with his dog friends? Is it the same scenario for each dog friend?
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  7. Dodge Well-Known Member

    Gosh,I ve got square eyes now after reading all this . . .and brain ache from taking all this in:LOL:
    Not much to add to this,just one thought,as I totally agree with you tigerlily, if it would not be inherated ,then why is the one biggest most important advice when somebody gets a puppy to see at least the mother.How she interacts with her pups and what her temperament is like,even better if you can see the dad,too.
    Well,like I said,just a thought,there must be something in it (y)
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  8. sara Moderator

    Tigerlily, can you send me a private message with the link to the DA forum you're on? I want to read more about it. You have a convincing argument, though but I truly believe that what you're talking about is a manifest of a personality, not a personality in and of itself.

    Another question, in another post you stated that dogs are not born people aggressive, but if they can be born dog aggressive, why cant they be born people aggressive? Oliver is both DA and HA, with strange dogs and people, but fine with the ones he knows (like your Buddy is with dogs) he's also extremely fearful, and high strung, and prey driven, and a terrier, likely an IT, plus he had to fight for what he got as a puppy, so he is a multiple whammy, all contributing to his aggression...

    Plus he was neutered too young, which many believe is a cause of DA as well. Dogs go through a "supermale" stage from 9-18 months, I do believe, where they put out large amounts of hormons... Many believe the function of this is for the other males around to teach the "massively hormonal" adolescent some manners. They get put in their place, and repeatedly told off... Without that, they often dont get the proper manners bullied into them, which causes them to be a tad wrong in their approach of other dogs. It also causes a dog shy or nervous by nature to lose even more confidence without the testosterone that helps give confidence. When a male is neutered at 6 months, the hormones take a couple of months to completely leave their system, which puts them in that all important fear stage that happens around 9 months of age...

    Oliver developed MAJOR fears at around 8.5 months, and new ones cropped up almost daily for a few weeks... It was a miserable time for him!

    I will never again neuter a dog by choice before the age of 2... EVER AGAIN! In my mind, it was a major, major cause of alot of Ollie's people aggression, and fear of laundry, plastic bags, rollerblades, my bike, flapping blankets.... etc.

    So a few of the [male] dogs that you may see as naturally DA, may infact be DA due to early neuter... if there are no other factors that seemed to trigger it.

    Maybe your right, some dogs are born DA, (and only DA with it not manifesting from a personality), but I think it's extremely rare.

    But again, I AM NOT SAYING ALL DA DOGS ARE CAUSED BY THEIR PEOPLE DOING SOMETHING WRONG. I'm really not, nor am I saying all DA dogs had to have an outside trigger... we are in agreement there, but I am finding it hard to believe that DA is a stand alone, and not, as I say, a manifest of a personality type.
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  9. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    From what I have been able to read here, we are having the classic argument of "nature vs. nurture". From what I have been able to gather, most psychologists have tentatively agreed that it is some combination of both. I imagine that dogs can have similar problems. Perhaps all dog aggressive dogs are born with a possibility (some with more, some with less) to become DA, and their life experiences can really change the outcome (a combination of nature vs. nurture). However, I really do think that some dogs cannot be "cured" of DA 100%.

    With my wonderful Dane Lena, it very well could have been something that happened before 10 weeks of age when I picked her up. Another thing that could have happened was that we didn't live in the best neighborhood when she was young, and I have always wondered if people were teasing her through the fence. EVERYBODY had black labs there, and she was most aggressive towards labs and dogs of that size. For some reason (unless there was food involved) she LOVED small dogs, like teacup Poodles and Jack Russel Terriers. Maybe she was not truly born DA, but all of us were shaped by our experiences, what makes us think that our dogs are any different? That being said, like tigerlily said, her dog was the only one in a litter of puppies with similar experiences that ended up DA. I agree that he is wired differently (or uniquely if you prefer), as is EVERY dog. They say that not every person with a bad childhood turns out to be a serial killer, but that all serial killers did have something very traumatic or something very bad that happened in their childhood.

    Lets not forget however the original reason for this discussion. Cesar Milan blames the owner/handler's own "inner issues" for ALL DA. I really think that whether or not it is nature or nurture, it is not singularly the fault of the owner (in a loving home).

    Just my 2 cents. ;)
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  10. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    To Ina,
    I think a more comparable human mental disorder would be schizophrenia, (more than depression) which is there at birth, is thought to be in the brain itself, but often does not manifest until maturity, is genetically influenced, and is barely managable but not "curable".
    Lolz, my dog is a schizo!!

    Ina, you asked some good questions. Buddy IS def affected EVERY day, too, unlike depression in humans.

    • When Buddy has playtime with his dog friends and a strange dog joins in, will Buddy attack that new dog?
    Ha ha, i rarely do this. He has rarely been playing happily with one of his few dogs, and had another dog introduced. Since he gets so few opportunities, and since most ppl "know" how he is, few if any ppl bring their dogs around Buddy.
    I can only think of one time that happened to Buddy.
    We were trying to get Buddy to accept a new dog, "Dog #2", it was tense, Buddy did not 'like' his new playmate and was pestering him, a fight was about to ensue and we were fixing to end the whole thing, and another new dog, "dog #3", came over, and everyone calmed down. So in that case, it all worked out, and the addition of dog #3 was good thing.
    But, other than that time, i can't recall any other time Buddy experienced this, cuz, like i said, everyone 'knows' Buddy and do not want their dog around Buddy. He is seen as the neighborhood 'brat', ha ha.

    • Is he aggressive towards little puppies (under 3 months of age) ?
    Yes. This embarasses me! He will do his "Puppy Reaction" (a bark, a step toward the pup, and then Buddy ends it and walks away, like, "Get off my lawn, kid". I have no idea, if the puppies owner did not always scoop up their infant dog, what would happen, but, no one ever risks it, but, Buddy walks away even before i remove him, he is removing his own self.
    Buddy DOES occasionally accept baby female puppies, or young female dogs. sometimes. But it's dicey. NO males, nope.

    • If you meet a new dog and you go go for a walk on leash together with the other dog owner (have to dig out that video that I saw on that) - like dog on the left, dog owner, other dog owner and dog on the right) will Buddy settle after a few steps or continuously try to get to the other dog?

    Buddy will continuously try to get to 'Enemy Dog', continuously, never ever ever loses his focus on other dog. Ever. Buddy tenses up at mere sight of another dog, and it takes earthquakes to break his focus on other dog. Even if other dog is far away, Buddy gets tense. Even blocks away, Buddy begins his laser eye onto that dog. Even if bunnies go by, even brand new squeak toys, Buddy keeps his eyes locked onto enemy dog nonstop.
    Soon as he gets close enough, he reacts. (i mean, if i do nothing to help Buddy)
    If we go by that same spot again, Buddy tenses looking to see if "Enemy Dog" is still there in that area.
    (this is what happens if i do not intervene, i do interrupt this though) Buddy especially fears all GSDs, and has memorized all their houses, and tenses up to even drive by their house, inside of a car!!!??? Buddy can be lying on car seat, and knows when we are going by his nemisis' house, and stands up, on alert, to see if he can get glimpse of the GSD out the window!! HOw nutz is THAT!!??
    • What made him be friends with his dog friends? Is it the same scenario for each dog friend?
    No, each one was different. HIs most beloved pal, Duncan, a male golden retriever, Buddy loved on sight, no work from me whatsoever. See, if Buddy WHINES, i know he will like the other dog. I always listen for that wonderful but rarely heard WHINE, which means "Mom, i LIKE that dog!!"
    I heard Buddy WHINE so i asked the guy if my dog could meet his dog, he said, "duncan loves all dogs" and so i allowed Buddy to meet Duncan, and wa-la, he loved Duncan. That one (1) dog, just Duncan.

    I was stunned, and to this day, Buddy loves Duncan, gets happy to even go by Duncan's house, and if he sees Duncan out the window, he whines and cries to go sniff Duncan. I wish i knew why he loves Duncan so much.
    Another lil female pit bull, 7 mos old, who got loose and ran full speed up into Buddy's face, nose to nose, oh dawg, i was worried he will bite her, but Buddy instantly layed down in sphynx position, smiled at her, and loved loved loved that lil girl, and still does. NO idea why Buddy accepted her.

    Those are only 2 dogs, out of 100s of dogs, that Buddy ever liked without effort, Just those 2 dogs.

    For those two dogs, i have 100s of stories of dogs Buddy rejected.

    A few dogs in our hood, LIKE 2 OR 3, Buddy gave his "Unknown Dog" reaction to, when he first met them, (which is NOT his worst reaction) but NOW likes them, but, it only took a year of passing them every day. He can now play with those dogs, too.

    Other dogs, owned by our friends, that Buddy did not like at first, but we've slowly desensitized Buddy to, over time, slowly, and Buddy can play nicely with them, usually......... but he has to see them often and regularly, or he will default to 'hating' them. Even one month of not seeing our friends dogs, he defaults back, cuz 'he' did not choose to like those dogs.

    Buddy is NOT an alpha, and the few times Buddy has ever met a true alpha, he is very very respectful. He gives them room, stays away, and behaves. Buddy does not seem particularly relaxed but not quite tense either, but will not play with true alphas. Buddy respects and leaves alone the alpha dachsund next door, but argues with their other dogs if the dachsund is not there.

    Buddy also tends to be WORSE/even MORE agressive and violent, with dogs known to be insecure, young inexpereienced dogs, Buddy is an "alpha wanna be". When he meets another dog-agressive dog, Buddy also goes straight for violent.

    HA, I WISH i had a nickle, for everytime some startled human, whose sweet friendly dog is arguing back with Buddy, say, "Geez, MY dog NEVER acts like this!" and i smile and say, "Yeah, we get that a lot..Buddy has that effect on other dogs."
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  11. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    To Dodge,
    the thing is, so far as i know,
    a dog-aggressive dog,
    or a shy dog,
    can be born to parents who do NOT manifest this disorder. The parents can be FINE, and still whelp puppies with either of these disorders.
    I do not know enough to know, if this gene is a recessive gene (one that is carried but doesn't always show, like blue eyes) but can be passed on.

    LIke i said, i met a breeder guy online, whose happy outgoing friendly dog, ALWAYS always produced some dogs in the litter who were born shy. Always. His dog, although fine, always made shy pups. NOt all the pups, but always some of the pups would be born shy. This does make it sound like it is a recessive gene.

    So "seeing the parents" of the puppy you take home, in no way guarantees your infant dog would not grow up to be dog-agressive. Nope. Adopting an adult dog, with a known personality, is only way to be sure you do not get a dog-agressive dog. (dog-agression is always present and undeniable by about 4 to 6 months old, by nine months, there is no way to miss it, so taking home a dog older than that, who reacts fine to other dogs, you are safe).
    Shy dogs however, DO show up from birth on, in the litter box they can be spotted.
    Again, shy dogs also can be born to dogs who are 'fine'.
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  12. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    After reading your post to Ina, your Buddy is much more difficult than Lena was. Wow! I thought I had it rough with my dog. There are some distinct similarities to both of them, but Buddy is worse.

    Something else that I noticed with my dog, when she was young, between the magic 4-6 months, I took her to play with another Dane. She did not attack, but rather was very aloof. She was with the "pack", but not. It was really weird.
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  13. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    To Sara,
    //"Maybe your right, some dogs are born DA, (and only DA with it not manifesting from a personality), but I think it's extremely rare."//

    well, most ppl totallly reject the notion completely and instantly, so thank you for even mulling over my idea. It is hard to imagine it is "rare" with so many 100s and 1000s of stories of dogs,
    whose entire life was observed
    and yet,
    against all odds, dispite being well raised,
    these pups grew up to be dog-agressive.

    i have never ever ever yet, in my years of studying dog-agression,
    heard of an adult dog, like 5 years old, a happy outgoing friendly dog, suddenly BECOMING persistantly dog agressive, NOT EVER.
    (i am not including very elderly dogs in pain, who in their final years, in pain, undergo a personality change in pain, THAT is not what i am talking about---aged dogs who are sick, in pain, or very weak, are not the topic herem that is whole other factor in itself. Nor am i talking about dogs with known illnesses, some health probs give dogs behavior problems. I am talking about physically healthy dogs only, okay?)

    never happened. Never ever heard of a healthy, normal adult dog, suddenly becoming severly, PERSISTANTLY dog-agressive. Sara, if your theory were true, wouldn't there be at least SOME dogs who were "created" or "became" dog-agressive, as adults? after being previously 'normal'???

    it always manifests by about 4 to 6 months old, and is undeniable by age 9 months old.
    True, SOME dogs can be made temporarily dog-aggresive, but, not PERSISTANTLY dog agressive. {By 'persistant' i mean, the dog, when removed from the setting, and efforts made to help the dog, the dog REMAINS dog-agressive.}
    Some normal dogs who are "created"/"caused to be" dog-agressive, sure are! But THAT kind of INDUCED dog-agression, is curable and temporary. No one, not evne Michael Vick, can create a "PERSISTANTLY" dog-agressive dog from a previously normal dog. The induced kind IS curable,, cuz they have normal BRAINS in their skull, and will, if given half a chance, display their normal brained behaviors once again.

    LIke i said, (note i have always tempered this next remark, each time i've said it, with: "so far as i know now") dogs are not born ppl-aggressive. My own dog was ppl aggressive, and i cured him, 100%. I've known or heard of, many many other dogs who were also completely cured, with daily excercises involving other humans, etc. Much targetted effort was made to help the dog learn humans ARE GOOD. But, i do not rule it out completely, but, so far as i know, ppl-agression is curable, but, i do not know enough about it to say for sure, which is why i always temper that one, with "so far as i know now" etc.

    I have no idea how much chances Ollie gets to work on getting comfortable with other humans, what methods are used, etc etc.

    Dog aggressive dogs come in unnneutered, neutered after age 2, neutered as babies, there is zero correlation to age of neuter. They are BORN that way. I know, i know, it is hard to those of us who love dogs, to accept, that our previously thought to be perfect creatures, could ever be born not perfect. We prefer to idolize our dogs, they are perfect beings, and any defect in them is result of evil humans. But born wrong? NO! COULD NOT HAPPEN!! Or only "rarely". It does hurt one's head.

    Sara, i do not really quibble, with the semantics of what word you want to put into this sentence: "I think some dogs are born with dog-agressive ____________" Personalities? Traits? Dispositons? i do not know what word is right, to use.
    but, my point is, whatever word you call it-------------it is BUILT IN, hardwired into their BRAIN, *NOT* the result of mistreatment. It is uncurable, it is present 24/7, it persists dispite all efforts, and it lasts their entire lifetime. Whatever you wanna call that, i don't know right word.

    It might not affect any other part of their personality. My dog is otherwise perfectly normal in every way. Certainly, there ARE dog-aggressive dogs, with multiple issues, but mine is not that way, and i've heard of or met, otherwise 'normal' dogs, in every way, who are dog-agressive.

    My Buddy is lovebug, normal in every way, outgoing, friendly, lovable, obedient, well behaved, easy going, NOT fearful, NOT shy, at all, a very happy lil dog, (esp since i taught him how to smile, ha ha, WHAT a difference in him!! wow, i wish i had done THAT years ago) Buddy is such a perfect lil dog, VERY tolerant, puts up with ANYTHING at all i have to do to him, or any other human has to do to him, Buddy is NOT quirky or jumpy, at all, no other issues at all, fine in every way............ just he hates most dogs.
    He is energetic, (border collie) but he is not quirky. not fearful. not jumpy.

    Buddy HAD tons of issues when i first rescued him oh TONS of issues, but, we worked throught them all, and cured them all, permanently. BUT He does have ongoing, off/on fear of the dark, which i attribute to his first year or two of life being kept in the dark, 24/7 for his entire life, 24/7, in the dark. And if i work on that with him, he gets past it, and it does get less each year, BUT, he will default back to "very alert" if he is in the dark, if i don't work with him on his fear of the dark now and then. Plus, he can not see super well, so he probably is almost half-blind in the dark.

    and it is NOT rare, more dogs are euthanisized for dog-agression, a/or ppl agression, THAN CANCER, or disease, or all illnesses put together!! rare? by whose standards?? What, allll those dogs were caused by human mistakes? What about all the humans who have other dogs who are normal,
    but ONE dog is dog-agressive? and they euthanize the da dog? What, their other dogs just overlooked the 'mistreatment' and turned out normal? come on!!!
    What about all the humans, who euthanize their da dog, but, EVERY other previous dog they had was normal? And they tried and tried to help their one da dog, but, couldn't cure him? come on!! THIS IS NOT RARE!!! Who DOESN'T know someone who has had a da dog?
    anyone? is there ANYONE who has not had a neighbor, a friend, a relative,
    with a da dog?

    i sadly cringe, that prior to getting a da dog myself, i once thought like everyone else, "Well THAT human is doing 'something' wrong! Look at my dog he is fine! THEY must be doing something wrong!"
    LOOK at all the 1000s and 1000s of rescued dogs, who SHOULD be persistantly dog-agressive, but are NOT.

    I will send you the links, i belong to two, but one i find kinda snotty, and hard to navigate, and rarely go to that one, the other one, is wonderful resource, i learn something every day there. There are vets, dog behaviorists, all kinds of experts there. Many of them also know some dogs are BORN dog-agressive.
    But thanks to dog whisperer, the bulk of USA alllllllllll have been hypnotized, "Dog-agressive dogs are only manifesting their owners secret inner issues" Horsepoppy!!! i say.

    SORRY FOR LENGTHS OF POSTS, but i can actually read BOOKS, so to ME,
    a thread is nothing.:ROFLMAO:
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  14. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    Lol, Abby, i have often heard that, that Buddy is far worse case than most da dogs!!
    when i FIRST got him,
    he even reacted to the sound of a distant dog barking!! if you can picture THAT!!!!

    He IS better, he is. HIs reactions USED TO sound like life or death was on the line.
    It made my eyes water. he does not do that now.
    His reactions are less severe, briefer, and sometimes, and, most exciting---sometimes now HE ends them himself!!!
    (he NEVER did that ever in the past, i'd drag him away still arguing)

    I think, since Buddy did fight with probably every dog he met prior to living with us,
    that Buddy is now starting to absorb the notion,
    "I can yell at that dog, but i don't HAVE TO try to kill him, i can yell and walk away,. Me and my mom are just going to go home like we always do, so bye to you, Enemy dog."

    (unless it is a GSD, in which case, Buddy does think he should at least TRY to kill the GSD).

    He still looks like a nightmare to others, but *i* can spot his improvements!! He has 4 distinct reactions, too, not all the same. I could watch his reactions on film,
    and tell you
    what kind of dog he is reacting TO.

    i am professor of Buddyology!!

    I also suspect, the earliest signs of da dogs are missed.
    It *might* even show up earlier than 4 mos old,
    but, the infant pup may have not had many chances to display his true colors,
    and it *might* also be overlooked, thought of as cute, misinterpreted, thought of as "play" fighting, or just not even noticed, puppy play is SOOOOOOoo cute!!!!!! etc etc.
    Dodge likes this.
  15. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    To Abby:

    //"Perhaps all dog aggressive dogs are born with a possibility (some with more, some with less) to become DA, and their life experiences can really change the outcome (a combination of nature vs. nurture"//

    if THAT were true,
    HOW do you explain the da dog who was raised in loving home, well socialized, trained, etc, etc, but still turned out to be da dog?
    I've mentioned this SOOOOOOooo many times,
    but i guess,
    some ppl are not accepting that actually happens fairly often? There are even ppl here on DTA,
    who have said they were baffled their dog turned out to be da dogs. It is NOT unusual!!!
    Read "click to calm" about a dog behaviorist/trainer,
    who raised a well socialized, loved puppy, from infancy on------------
    against all odds,
    that pup was undeniably dog-agressive.

    what? how'd THAT happen, if "nurture" was in ANY way involved at all? How?

    and yes, for the 10th time, i readily accept, we humans can create a TEMPORARILY da dog, yes, we can,
    but NO ONE,
    not even Michael Vick,
    can create a PERSISTANTLY da dog.

    no one.
    none of us.
    Dodge likes this.
  16. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //" but that all serial killers did have something very traumatic or something very bad that happened in their childhood."//

    not true, some serial killers were well raised, their murderous rampage was horrible thing for their families to witness, but those killers were born with mental diseases like schizophrenia. Jeffrey Dahmer's parents loved him, but, he ws showing signs of not being 'right' as a kid. Same for Andrew Cunanen, had lovely childhood that anyone would envy. Some ppl, and i say some dogs, are BORN with malfunctioning brains. I could list many other schizophrenic serial killers who were raised with love. Many forms of schizophrenia are genetic, love can't cure it. I had a schizo inlaw, she was loved, treated well, adored, and smack outa her mind.
    It's wired in.

    //"Maybe she was not truly born DA, but all of us were shaped by our experiences, what makes us think that our dogs are any different? "//

    Please read post #55.

    //"Ollie's people aggression, and fear of laundry, plastic bags, rollerblades, my bike, flapping blankets.... etc."//
    Imo, all those things are curable. All of them. Buddy had many issues, too, at first, MORE ISSUES THAN NAT'L GEOGRAPHIC, ha ha,
    but, i desensitized him to things that bothered him. It wasn't that difficult, not most of them, and it didn't take that that long with persistant daily ongoing efforts focused on helping Buddy get comfy with those objects/things/activities that he was unfamiliar with before, or feared, or whatever.
    Was not stressful to do, either, not at all. NOt to him, not to me. almost kinda fun!

    He is now totally cool with all the things that he'd never seen before, or worried about. He's permanently, completely cool with those things. Let me know if those things are still issues for Ollie, maybe i can help you?
    Dodge likes this.
  17. abby_someone Well-Known Member

    Oops. I also meant to put in there that there are "schizoid" dogs too, dogs that have loving wonderful homes, training and are socialized properly and are completely DA. I completely agree with you. Only I think, perhaps, that there are differing degrees of screwed up wiring in the brain, and that some are going to be completely dog aggressive their entire lives (despite proper upbringing), while others only have the chance to be aggressive, and do become so their whole lives because of a combination of things (bad wiring/bad upbringing) that would be as hard to cure as to be impossible, because of the mis-wiring in the brain.

    I do agree, my dog was born different than "normal" dogs, and Buddy was born with more "mis-wiring" than she was. I have to admit though, I am not as well read as you are on this subject. I am learning from you and everyone else in this thread. I guess I will have to read Click to Calm. Out of curiosity, what were the thoughts from the author on the DA dog in the text?
    tigerlily46514 and Dodge like this.
  18. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    To Abby---
    I agree, there are degrees, same as for schizophrenics. Some human schizos can live independently, have jobs, etc. Some have to be fed and dressed, live in facilities/hospitals.

    There are indeed degrees of dog-agression, too, {and even 'normal' dogs can and will react aggressively at times, now and then, in various situations, but that does not mean they are dog-agressive.}

    And i've said many times, we can make the inherently shy dog,
    or the inherently dog-aggressive dog,
    somewhat better or worse,
    but you can't cure them.
    They will be that way their entire lives, from puppyhood on. (never ever ever suddenly develops in adult dogs, not ever).

    To me, the hallmark of the BORN THAT WAY da dog, is, he is PERSISTANTLY dog-agressive, no matter what you do for him. There are 1,000s of cases, where ZERO "upbringing" or "nurture" is in play AT ALL, at all, not a drop.
    NO human can create a PERSISTANTLY dog-aggressive dog, nope, can't be done. You can create a temporarily da dog, but not a persistant one.

    The author of the book, who was extremely knowledgable, and raised that puppy from birth on, and raised it well, with love, felt her dog was born wrong, or born that way, or born with hard-wiring to be dog-agressive. she SAW it happening, and she did NOT buy that, "it's something YOU did wrong"(nurtured incorrectly, or whatever you wanna call it)
    cuz she'd raised and trained many a dog, and like most owners of da dogs------- she KNEW *she* didn't do anything wrong to her baby dog.

    Is that what you were asking me?
    Dodge likes this.
  19. abby_someone Well-Known Member


    We seem to be on the same page with the DA. I do agree wholeheartedly that there is something that is different about their brains. The brain is a complex organ. Yes, the human brain is different, but many of the same structures are the same.Many people have looked at me like I am the crazy one because my dog would lunge at theirs.

    We know that schizophrenia and Bipolar disease are both brain problems, in fact, untreated schizophrenics can lose 25% of their brain matter . I do not think that it would be any stretch of the imagination to believe that other mammals do have similar brain abnormalities.
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  20. sara Moderator

    The author of the book, Click to Calm, knows she caused her dog to be DA. by correcting him for showing dominant behaviour, which the dog took to mean the other dog caused it... then it went from some posturing to down and dirty DA, due to more corrections. He may have been more prone to it, due to personality, but she knows she caused it with corrections.

    Ollie's fears are so strong. I am constantlytrying to desensitize them. nothing I do works. his people aggression only happens when a person looks at him, if a person doesn't look at him, he's fine, and will be crawling in their lap within 15 minutes, at which time, if they look at him carefully, he's ok. But Ollie, like your Buddy, does not generalize. but once he decides a person is fine, that person will always be fine. It's the same with dogs. But then, I know he wasn't born that way, I know what caused it, and I know why he is the way he is. And I have complete control over him at all times.

    I'm not saying DA is rare, I'm saying that if it's true that dogs can be born DA, it's rare. and dogs becoming DA in puppyhood is common. Though I've known several dogs who've become DA at around the age of 2-3 as full maturity has been reached.

    It's extremely common for a dog to develop DA around the age of 9 months, due to a fear stage gone through at that point.

    Yes, there are alot of DA dogs, but most can be attributed to something else, and sometimes it can be something most people dont see... an untimely correction, a reaction from another dog, a "look" from another dog that causes fear in the puppy.

    Besides, I must say that you DONT know what Buddy went through before you got him. He may not have been born DA, they may have put him in with a dog who scared him, obviously, he was scared and aggressive to people as well, though you've been able to cure that. Yes he's extremely reactive, but it doesn't mean he was born that way.

    He may have been born more fearful than others, and with one bad experience, it turned him reactive.

    On the other hand, I suspect Zoe was a Puppymill Breeder dog, and had zero experience with anything outside a cage... but as scared as she waas, she never turned aggressive, she just panicked and tried to get away, even when cornered. but she is a very dominant dog with other dogs, she is friendly and welcoming to all dogs she meets, but in the home, she's a ruler, and controls her space. And has been known to tell off the other dogs quite forcefully.

    As far as the difference between rehabbing people aggression and dog aggression goes. People aggression is much, MUCH easier, as people can be told how to act around the dog, how to move, and what not to do... You cannot do that with dogs. But if what you say is true, that dogs can be inherantly DA, then they can be inherantly HA

    As far as the neutering too young thing. You say that da dogs are all sorts, which is absolutely true, they can be neutered, un neutered, female, spayed, whatever... but I was giving you an example of a cause of DA that is unknown, and some of the dogs that you feel are born DA, this is actually the root of the issue, this obviously is not every dog, or even alot of them, but it is some of them.

    I never use blanket statements, when talking about dogs, when I give an example, it's not a blanket, "all DA dogs that are neutered before the age of maturity are DA due to that problem" it's more "in DA dogs with a specific temperament that are neutered too young, the DA can offtend be caused by by the pediatric Neuter"

    Every single dog is different, every case is different, I am just giving my reasons why, by the use of some specific reasons why I believe dogs are not born DA, the root is in the personality, and I dont believe that DA IS a personality by itself. Every, single DA dog I've met (there are lots of DA dogs I havent met, so again, not a blanket statement), the DA is based in fear... and the cause and triggers of that fear is important to the rehabbing of that fear.

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