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I have an 11 week old lab mix and have been feeding him a raw diet for 6 weeks now. I have been feeding him in his crate due to this diet but now I'm concerned since he's been left alone during his meals he has developed food aggression. Today for his meals I sat with him and petted while he ate, needless to say he was quite aggitated with me, growling and snarling. He never did snap but I was ready to be bitten. Not sure what to do if I get bit in this circumstance. I'm not sure if I've waited to long and should just continue to feed him in his crate, or if I should attempt to rehab him? I do have several children in the house so it is crucial he is accustomed to a lot of handling. My children and I have been training him and he is a smart pup and catches on quick to basic commands, when he's not in alligator mode.

Also, today while at the park a mom and toddler approached and properly asked if they could pet him. I had him sit and allowed the toddler to approach him. When she reached out to him he snarled and snapped. I was stupified. I've put in great effort to socialize him since the day he came to live with us and I have a toddler of my own and there has not been a problem with any interactions between them. Here again I was unsure of what to do with Teddy. After affirming the little girl was ok I had him sit again and petted him all over and he seemed fine.
 

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The first thing I would do is get him to a vet for a checkup. Anytime there is a sudden change in behavior, you want to get a clean bill of health from the vet so you can rule out medical causes. You'd be surprised at how much effect a small medical issue can have on a dog's irritability and general demeanor. Even a little thing like a painful tooth can make a dog extremely grumpy.

The other reason I recommend a vet checkup is because I don't think this is really an aggression problem. If this pup were 6 months old or older I would be less sure to say this but aggression is practically unheard of at 11 weeks, save neurological problems (and I don't think this is the case, don't worry).

There should be no reason to stop feeding him in his crate. What I will say though is that if you want to minimize the aggression by handling while he eats, you need to keep below that threshold where he will start growling and becoming agitated. By the time he's growling, he's already in defensive, vulnerable mode... and you want to keep him out of that mode as far as possible. If you are petting him all over and he is growling, you've pushed him too far. Try just sitting next to him without touching him while he eats. Is he growling? Yes? Sit a little farther away. If he's not growling, good. Next meal, try touching him on his back and sides. If he growls when you do that, go back to sitting next to him and try touching him again a few meals later. The whole point is to teach him that being approached and handled during meals is a GOOD thing.
 

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Sounds like you moved down the ranks in your house - new owner ... "Teddy"
Might want to reconfirm that you're the boss. 11 week old puppies go by trial and error and will test you to see what they can and can't get away with. My dobe is 4 months old and he's tests the limits at least once a day.


Puppies can be aggressive much earlier than you think.... it shows clear aggression in puppies 8 weeks old...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNQuqY1oXpE
 

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remember, that a meal of raw will be more of a "prize" than yucky old kibble.

You will see dogs act a little more possesive/proud of their raw meal. Ask around on the rawfeeding list.
 

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If dog is 11 weeks old and you been feeding him raw for 6...that means you got him at 5 weeks?

He was a bit early to be away from his mom...and siblings and didnt gain manners? maybe..

Most dogs that are taken away from his family too early always have a bit of issues like this early on..

Good luck!
 
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