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Greetings. I have an issue I hope you can help me with. I have 3 male dogs. 5 yo lab/shepherd, 2 yo lab/pit & the most recent addition a 11+ mo bouvie/poodle mix. All the dogs are neutered and get along great......until recently. My bouvie has started to aggressively attack my lab/pit mix Milo. Milo is the sweetest most gentle dog, and does not "fight" back. We have had the bouvie since March (got him from a reputable breeder when he was 16 wks). We just recently had the bouvie neutered as we noticed some aggression, but only with Milo. The breeder suggested we wait until he was 18 mo so he would receive all his growth hormones, he currently weights 82 lbs. I am guessing this is a pack dominance behavior but have to say I do not care for it. We do not use harmful training technics and the dogs are never hit. How do I stop this behavior before one of my dogs gets hurt? We do not have professional training centers in the small town I live in, the best we have is agility training. We have a large fenced in yard and all the dogs have plenty of exercise daily. Also the aggression only happens when the dogs are in the house. They play just fine outside.
 

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Is there an obvious trigger to the attacks? Like, does it happen when Milo has something your Bouv wants, like food or a toy, or when Milo is getting attention? If so, it could be resource guarding, which is usually manageable - a quick search will turn up a ton of threads on the subject. Is there a pattern to the fights?

How recently did you have him neutered? He might be extra touchy if he's still achy.

I don't want to be defeatist, but Bouviers are a breed known for being territorial, and for having a predisposition being aggressive with other dogs. Generally, dogs that are genetically predisposed to be dog-aggressive are still dog-friendly until around the time they reach physical maturity (it'd be very malapative for a puppy to be attacking adult animals!), at which point they start displaying their inherited temperament. If your Bouv is just dog-aggressive in general, as opposed to responding to some situation or trigger that can be avoided or counter-conditioned for, you might need to think about finding him another home where he'd be an only dog.

Just out of curiosity, why on earth was a reputable breeder crossing Bouvs and Poodles? What was the desired outcome there?
 

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Thank you so much for your input. Sometimes the trigger is a chew toy or ball that Milo has, sometimes it's nothing at all that I can identify. But it seems the bouvie (his name is Khan) only picks on Milo, not our other dog. When we feed them, Khan and Milo will eat together (from separate bowls) fine - no food aggression from either. They will even share their food with each other. Khan was just neutered last week. I scheduled it before 18 months because we were seeing some aggression with Milo. I know it is too soon for that to make a difference in his behavior. And you may be correct that Khan needs to be an only dog, but I hope not. I love Khan and all my dogs and I hate to think he can't adjust.
And I don't know why the breeder mixed bouvie with poodle. Around here the "doodle" is all the rage.
 

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And I don't know why the breeder mixed bouvie with poodle. Around here the "doodle" is all the rage.
Well, I think you just answered the question of why the breeder crossed a Bouvier with a Poodle... Very few reputable breeders will breed crossbreds. If they do, it will typically be to either produce serious sport or hunting dogs, or else try and correct a health problem in one of the breeds.

As mentioned, a lot of dogs, once they mature, start to become either very selective about what dogs they like, or just generally dog aggressive. Some breeds are prone to same sex aggression (I'm pretty sure that Bouv are one of them), and no amount of neutering or training can stop it. Even in breeds not generally known for SSA, having multiples of the same gender can still be problematic.

While I'd separate them for feeding and not leave toys laying around, keeping a log of when it happens, what's going on right before it happens, and what happens afterward can be a good idea.

One other thing to touch on is pack dynamics. Two dogs can get a long fine, but adding a third changes things. It could be that one of the established dogs decides they don't like the newcomer. It could be the newcomer deciding that they don't like one of the established dogs. Even if the third dog is added as a puppy, there is no guarantee they won't grow up to hate dog number one or dog number two, or even both of them. And as an FYI, having to live in a crate and rotate situation is no fun. I've done it (twice), and hope to never have to do it again.
 

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I've always loved the Bov's , the higher maintenance coat kept me away and they are a strong nature breed to bring into a multiple dog house hold. Current age is one factor, switching over from puppy to young adult (still with a puppy brain) and if Milo is the weakest makes him an easy target for an up coming puppy testing to see where he can win, (repeat behaviors that are rewarding and easy wins) if Khan can't behave himself and make good choices during this growing mental phase, then he needs some tough love restriction , baby gate area in the house, on leash with you inside outside if milo is also loose. structure daily routine by the clock the dog can count on, one on one time with you so you two build a strong bond especially in trust communication and physical skills together.

the adult male I brought into my house, strong personality. he may have wanted to rip every ones heads off for breaking his rules.. but it was our relationship that talked him down, and to let it go.. You can't be beating Khan down,, spend your time not giving him the opportunity to make bad choices,, set him up to win in your environment, and build him up with your one on one time learning razer sharp team with skills with you... Coming out of this growing phase towards a balanced adult that is focused on you,, and not Milo as what defines his daily life..
 

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Bouvier's can be successful IGP (formerly Schutzhund/IPO) dogs so remember that. There are drives there that you may not see in your other dogs.

Also, you may be causing the issues. First of all, you feed them next to each other. Stop that. Put the dogs in separate crates or rooms at meal time and keep them separated until all food is gone (or 20 minutes have passed and you take all the food up). Feeding dogs next to each other is just asking for trouble (even though you are not seeing it at the food dish).

Toys can be trouble. One dogs wants what the other has. It is just that way. Take up the toys.

Then, as noted above, keep track of when this happens so you can figure out the triggers if there are any. Then work to avoid the triggers.

If none of that works, then crate and rotate.. which is a lot of work but positively prevents fights.

As to "reputable breeder" that makes a "Doodle dog" there are none. There ARE opportunists who see a good way to make money and so they will breed for that reason (which is NOT why any dog should be bred). I am glad to hear the breeder is trying to help and is against neutering until older. I never neuter a male dog unless the dog HAS a problem. Neutering a dog does not "fix" temperament the way it can in Tom Cats or Stallions or Bulls.
 
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