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I lost my temper with Ranger tonite and I feel SO horrible. I am typically a very calm person so this took me by surprise, as it did Ranger. All day today, Ranger has been snarky with our other dog, Mayzie...for seemingly no reason. (Although I'm sure there's a reason in Ranger's mind.) Normally, he's pretty tolerant of her...and in fact, they play together very well...but today for some reason, he's just been all over her case. Usually I just clap my hands or say "hey" loudly and that's the end of it.

The final straw came as we were all laying on the bed as we do every night. They were both chewing on toys. Mayzie was COMPLETELY ignoring him and I don't know if he was resource guarding or wanted Mayzie's toy or what but all of sudden, he just leaped on top of her, snarling and carrying on like an idiot. Well, I grabbed him and actually yelled, "What the hell is wrong with you?" and then pushed him roughly off the bed. Then I picked him up and shoved him unceremoniously in his crate. I was just SO mad at him for acting like such a bully!

The worst part is that he cowered away from me when I picked him up to put him in his crate. He has NEVER cowered away from me. I've never given him any reason to be afraid of me until tonight and it just makes me feel like the worst person on the planet.

After about 30 seconds, I let him out of his crate and even though he came right out, there were calming signals flying left and right. I put him back on the bed with me and told him how sorry I was and stroked him and he wiggled right up to me, licking my face.

Ugh! I am just heartsick over this. I want my pets to always feel safe. I never, ever want them to feel afraid. Ever. Plus it's so stupid. It's not like my actions solved anything. I'm sure Ranger had no idea what the hell was wrong with ME.

I think part of Ranger's problem is that my husband is out of town right now and he and Ranger are VERY bonded. I really think Ranger is missing his dad and is feeling kind of depressed. In addition to being snarky with Mayzie, he's been acting kind of mopey today and has been very demanding of my attention. (And I'm certain that he's not sick. Plenty of appetite and lots of energy when we went on our walk today.)

I dunno. Maybe I'm using this as some sort of bad doggie parent confessional. :eek:

So have any of you ever lost your temper with your pet?
 

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Yes.

I very often just yell at my puppy (Usually from the next room over, so it's not really yelling when it reaches her) when she starts screaming for attention, or to announce she needs more food once she finishes a handful of food from her Kong, etc. Just loud enough to be louder than her.

It never works to do anything but make her look at me funny, because she's apparently already figured out in under two months that I'm nice, and I'm never going to be meaner to her than yelling at her from a distance.

Stupid smart dog.
 

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Yes I have. I've grabbed the dog before or jerked the collar/leash pretty hard.

I think someone else in my family smacked one of the dogs once as well.

Dogs and kids tend to get on someone's nerve at one point or another. And do tend to get a slap/smack just from anger.
 

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I'm glad you made this thread, because I lost my temper yesterday and lashed out, and I've been thinking about it ever since. What happened was this:

I came home in at around 10am and discovered that my cat, Thomas, had vomited all over my bed. And I mean, ALL OVER. It was like a puke bomb. I know it was thomas because there was a lump of orange hair in it. It had soaked through my comforter cover into my comforter, and it was on one of the pillows, where it had also soaked in, and on their kitty cup bed, and on the mattress, where it had soaked through the sheets and the pad and gotten to the mattress. I was so, so angry. I started cleaning it up, but I was cursing and literally seeing red, and he suddenly jumped up on the bed to get attention.... And with one arm I swept him off the bed so hard that he hit the dresser.

He ran under the bed and I immediately felt so, so bad. I sat and tried to coax him out for the longest time, but he wouldn't come out. I can't remember the last time I lost it like that, if ever. It's a horrible feeling.

Today (well, Sunday) he acted normal, but I went out of my way to give him extra affection. I have a feeling that if he jumped up on the bed and I suddenly moved my arm towards him, he would flinch or run under the bed again. I'm just being very careful to move slowly around him so he regains his confidence and trust.

I still feel so bad about it, and every time I look at him I feel guilty.
 

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Yes. And, to make things worse, any time I've reacted irrationally to a situation is usually when my dog is afraid of something.. like the time I collar popped her for trying to run away from the noises on the block..

It's hard.. everyone is going to reach that limit at some point, though. I try not to.. because I try to tell myself that even if she is acting like a butt, it's because she's afraid of something and not because she's misbehaving.. But UGH it feels so bad afterwards. And then I usually try to make myself feel better by showering her with treats and toys and cuddles. She likes it, but of course, has no idea why she's getting them.. lol.
 

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So have any of you ever lost your temper with your pet?
Don't beat yourself up too much. I have lost my temper, and I'll bet just about everyone has lost theirs at their dogs. It is called being human.
 

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Oh yeah, I've lost my temper..with my dogs, with other people, with my cats, with my car..oh I could go on..lol.

I have a VERY long fuse but when it goes it goes. This is part of my reason I only do positive training because I KNOW that I would be/could be a person to get frustrated and go too far and that this is not what I want in a relationship of any kind.

I have developed some coping skills, recognizing when I'm getting frustrated, breathwork, looking at ANYTHING BUT what I'm angry at, walking away etc.

It still happens occasionally and I also spend a good amount of time afterwards "making up" and feeling guilty, but it is more and more rare as I work on MY stress responses.
 

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I would have shoved him off the bed too, temper or not, for unacceptable behavior.

Most everyone loses their temper at times.

I'm a big fella and when I boom out in a big loud low voice the dogs get scared and show it, usually not what I want. They also remind me I also intimidate people at times as well when I don't mean to and teaches me to stay calmer and think about it.

But if a dog does something that wrong, and I shove it off the bed or sofa, I expect a little appeasement and calming signals etc. to follow. After all that's why they have that natural behavior, for just that type of situation. I would be more concerned if I didn't see it.

Getting a little cowering isn't the end of the world either, as long as it was very temporary and an isolated event. I don't like to have my dogs do it, but in my experience it's going to happen at times if you are going to give a correction for bad behavior.

I had an incident just last night, I have to give Hope and Kaya pills twice a day, well Hope is learning the pills are in her smelly pill pockets (things to put pills in so dogs will eat them) as she has exhausted hot dogs, peanut butter etc. and dropped hers on the floor.

Kaya zoomed in to gobble Hopes pills up and I very quickly used my hand on the side of her neck to shove her physically away. She yelped in shock and back way off and looked at me with a lot of fear with her ears down and tail tucked between her legs. But I had no choice.

I called her back and petted her, a couple of treats, had her sit, down, shake many times with many treats and her tail and ears came back up and all was ok in the world again.
 

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If one of my dogs was peacefully chewing a bone and another of my dogs got up and jumped her, I would scruff the attacker and stare him right in the eyes and shout, "NO!!!!!!" and in the crate and off the bed he/she would go. But for me that wouldn't be losing my temper. It's the fact I do not tolerate that shit from my dogs, period. I've only had to do it a couple times, and never with my current pack. My Holiday will ocassionally lift her lips at a dog with a toy she wants. I immediately step in and work some obedience with her. I also routinely take toys from my dogs and trade them off to others. *I* am in charge of all resources. All toys and bones are MINE, and I decide who gets what and when. Works well- all five of mine can be loose together with high value treats and bones.

So, I don't think you were out of line at all!

I definitely prefer positive training, but for me, corrections for things like that (and leash pulling, that's just another one I can't stand for even a minute with my muscle and back issues) work, and they work quickly. I'd never use them to teach commands like sit, down, come, and formal heelwork.

To answer the question, it's rare (never?) since I got health insurance and the psych meds I need that I lose my temper with anyone or anything ever.
 

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I have gotten angry at Bella plenty of times. Usually its when she is completely not listening and I just over react. I have smacked her a few times but I don't do that anymore (that was a big overreaction on my part)...I have been known to flick her on the rump when she trys to chase the cats.

Bella doesn't react to being punished (not that that makes it ok) so I don't think she is emotionally scarred. The worst thing I can possibly to do her is take her to the vet (or as bella likes to call her ... "lucifer") :p
 

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Yep, happens to everyone. I think I've only lost my temper with Corona twice, that I can recall. I gave her a swat (not very hard, but plenty hard enough for a dog of her size!) and instantly regretted it both times. It doesn't solve anything.

Thank goodness for unconditional love. :)
 

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I have a question, since being on DF i have heard many times that a harsh/hard aversive given will have consequences years down the road. Now a person looses temper and gives an excessive jerk on lead or a slap to head of dog or whatever aversive comes to mind. (your choice) Are there a bunch of time bombs out there waiting to explode from lost temper exchanges. Just curious.
 

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Hmm wvasko I don't think so because you only lose your temper ever so often. I've only lost my temper twice in 6 months so I don't think she would remember it. Also the 2 times are for different things so it's not like I'm assigning one action to be bad and giving punishment every time.

I think the harsh treatment given applies if one action is always counteracted with a harsh treatment but I'm not very sure. I don't use negative training methods and I've actually never met a dog that has exploded like a time bomb because of negative training.
 

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I trained all dogs prior to current dogs correction based and did not have a single time bomb.....

This dog has been different but I have clearly corrected her a few times when I believed she understood good and well the cue and chose not to respond... and that is not acceptable.

Quite honestly, I am thinking what the OP did to her dog may have awakened in him something like, "Oh yeah.. I am NOT in charge here.. Mom is."
 

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Lost mine yesterday with Gizmo too..I was so pleased with how well he's been lately..I took him to the DP b/c the weather was gorgeous..and he played..but he found one older male dog that would let him hump, and he just kept going back to him, despite every correction and command that I gave..and it was pissing me off. Not to mention the other owner started freaking out and yelled at me and picked her dog up..Over reaction IMO, but everyone's different..I mean really, it wasn't like he was biting or hurting or he could impregnate her male dog (he would hump a couple times then go into a play bow..I'm thinking he was confused.)..so there was no need to embarass me like that. I put him in time out several times..and such, so it's not like I was just letting him hump..and we eventually left after her freak-out. I was already pissy..not at him in general, but from being so embarassed, when we pulled in our drive way. I took his seatbelt off, and was starting to get out of the car when the neighbor's pitbull started barking and Gizmo decided to fly out the door, over my lap and tried to take off..with luck I caught his leash, grabbed him, and popped him a good one on the snout..and just screamed 'what the %$%$ is your problem, cut the $%@#.' Felt horrible for it afterward, made myself look like an a-hole, too.
 

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I haven't yet, but I feel it coming.

Going to the park with a horribly LOUD Pom , struggling to send calming signals the whole time, being severely embarassed..oh yeah. The dog just..won't..STOP.:mad:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks, everyone, for your replies. It definitely makes me feel better.

This morning Ranger acts like nothing ever happened. Although interestingly, he HAS been much sweeter to Mayzie than yesterday...inviting her to play, licking her face, etc. I wonder if, because my reaction was so immediate, he was able to put two and two together and figured out that his behavior was unacceptable to me. OR he may just be in a better mood today. Who knows?

I don't have a problem with the occasional leash pop, etc, depending on the dog. I think the thing that disturbed me about last night was that I lost control. I wish I had reacted just as strongly and decisively but without the anger part. Does that make sense?

I'm just glad to know that there are lots of people on here who I respect that have been in the same position. I'm going to take last night as a learning experience and try to plan what I'll do should something like that ever happen again.
 

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That makes total sense. It's not the actions that you necessarily question- it's the fact you did it out of anger and without thought. I'd say think long and hard about how you want to handle such altercations in the future (if they even happen again!) and stick to your plan when it does happen :)
 

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I've openly lost my temper with Smalls ONCE. She attacked Magpie really badly a couple weeks ago. She had been giving her a hard time, but we keep Mag separate from every one for the most part. One night I brought her downstairs to watch TV with me, and all was fine until Magpie tried to play with Smalls. They were standing maybe two feet apart and Magpie play bowed and let out a little happy bark. Smalls responded by lunging and latching onto her face. She pushed her across the room, Magpie screaming the whole time, and just wouldn't stop. Between that awful sound and Smalls being a bully lately, I just lost it and pulled her off Magpie really hard and sent her sliding across the floor.

I didn't hurt her and I feel badly about it, but I can't think of Magpies screams without tearing up. She never even tried to fight back and Smalls bloodied her face and ear. And now? They play like crazy.
 
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