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I have a Beagle-Pit Bull mix and I had a friend move in about 9 months ago with his pure Pit Bull it was like heaven for my dog Toby-Boyz for the first 7 months and one day while BBQ the 2 of them went at it I was able to break them up I scolded the 2 of them and they went on playing.

about 1 week later they went at it again this time in the house I really laid into the 2 of them this time.

I did some research and ended up choosing my dog Toby as the alpha leader because he seemed to start the fights and do the most damage I almost never paid attention to my roommates dog and they were fine for about 3 weeks.

Then Blanco the other dog was playing with my daughter they like to wrestle and play tug a rope , well Toby did not like that and again they went at it now every time Toby sees Blanco he goes after him.

Blanco is now kenneled 70% of the day mainly because my roommate is a crappy master and should just let someone else take Blanco to love him, (that's another post)

So my question is I am afraid to take Toby to the dog park were he loves to go and I like going as well, good people there. When I walked him tonight, there was a dog running loose that came up and barked at us and Toby did not do anything just lifted his leg on a pole and peed then pulled me on.

Do you think it safe to take him to the dog park? If not how do I re-introduce him to other dogs?

No he is not fixed.

Thank you guys for you help
 

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Is there a reason why he isn't fixed? It could fix a lot of his aggression issues. Unfortunately having two males can be quite an issue especially if they are similar in age and size. If your room mate is truly a poor master (as it sounds like), maybe you can talk him into rehoming his dog?
 

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I agree with the neutering suggestion. Why isn't he neutered?
Also, you mentioned your dog pulling you on. Maybe you should try being more assertive with him. If he's pulling you around and stuff like that, he might have the idea that he's in charge, thus making him more prone to displays of dominance with other dogs.
 

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Neutering is not going to make much, if any, difference in his temperament.

Pulling on his leash does not mean that he thinks he's the "Alfa," or "in charge," or make him more prone to displays of dominance with other dogs. It simply means he needs more loose-leash training. True Alfas rarely fight, they psychologically rule; it's the middle ranking or lowest ranking dogs who do that.

It's hard to really know, but, it sounds like resource guarding. Dog parks are risky, and people often bring toys and treats, so this could trigger Toby. You might want to have him evaluated by a behaviorist. In the meantime, implement NILIF into daily life, and work on obedience training.
 

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I should have made my wording more tentative. Obviously I'm going out on a limb, because there really isn't enough information here for me to make any assumptions about the dog's alphaness. I have read though that dogs should walk next to or behind their person, and that dogs who pull their person around behind them are taking charge. And when dogs take charge over their people, behavioral problems ensue -- including aggression.
I'm not saying this dog is taking charge, though, merely saying he might be based on something I inferred from the poster's wording.

Edit: Neutering sometimes does make a difference. Oh and, by the way, why not do it?

Another Edit: My statement about dogs walking next to or behind their person was ill-considered. I don't think the position of the dog is that important. It's more an issue of the dog pulling.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It's my wording when I said he pulled me i just ment he was not interested at all in the other dog he just wanted to keep walking. Both dogs know I am the Alpha.

He is not Neutered mainly becouse the Vet said that if I Neuter him it will not calm him down the hyperness is just in him. I also work 10 hours a day and would not be able to give hime the proper care while he heels.

Sorry this is probly a dumb question but what is NILIF??
 

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The biggest issue is training, on your dog and your room mates. I don't see why your dog is allowed to free roam, and his dog is stuck in a kennel when you're home. If someone is home both dogs should be out, if no one is home both dogs should be crated.

Your dog doesn't seems to know you're alpha. He wouldn't be forcing his dominance on another dog if you're the Alpha. There is only one Alpha. He'd have no reason to want to dominate the other dog, and if you were truley Alpha he would know that him even trying to be dominant of the other dog isn't excepted.

What could be an issue is not knowing if they are playing, and when it goes to far. Once it starts to seem violent you shouldn't run in scolding. You need to distract them, make a noise, clap, call them over. Make them completly forget they were fighting.

As for the dog park, I don't see the real issue, other than the other person's dog should be under control if it's running around barking.

Sadly, you need to step it up on your training. Let you dog know what he can and cant do... and once he knows that he wont do it. And walk the dogs more, less energy is less agression.

Also neutering isn't the answer to this problem... just an answer to any future breeding you might not want happening.
 

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Your dog is the aggressive a-hole and yet the OTHER dog is the one crated 70% of the time?

No, do not take your dog to a dog park. He is aggressive. You need to get control of him before inflicting him on other innocent dogs.

Please do the world a favor and neuter him. The last thing you need is to have him breeding.
 

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I did some research and ended up choosing my dog Toby as the alpha leader because he seemed to start the fights and do the most damage
I'd love to see your research. Where did you get the idea that an alpha dog starts fights and does damage?? That's absolutely incorrect. And YOU don't get to choose who is the alpha dog, the dogs decide that among themselves. You stay out of it.

What I see here is that Toby does not see you as a strong leader (And I don't mean a bully, but a strong, confident leader) and he is stepping up to try to fill the void, but falling short.

The way you describe Toby's behavior is not indicative of an alpha dog. An alpha dog does not start fights or boss the other dogs around. He is usually laid back and the other dogs defer to him (or her). They are NOT bullies or fighters or mean or any of that. They are confident and calm.

Then Blanco the other dog was playing with my daughter they like to wrestle and play tug a rope , well Toby did not like that
This shows me that Toby doesn't see you as the leader. Why would he need to jump in to protect the family if he thought you were doing your job? Toby is insecure in his position. I would start NILIF with him right away and forget about making him alpha because it puts too much pressure on him that he's not ready for.

So my question is I am afraid to take Toby to the dog park were he loves to go and I like going as well, good people there.
I wouldn't be afraid to take him to the dog park. But instead of socializing with other people, watch your dog. Observe his interactions with the other dogs.

Toby's problem is not with other dogs, it's with his home environment. And the insecurity he feels about his position among the family, including Blanco.

No he is not fixed.
Get him fixed. There's no reason for a mix-breed dog not to be fixed and it could cause trouble with other intact dogs or bitches in heat at the dog park.
 

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The biggest issue is training, on your dog and your room mates. I don't see why your dog is allowed to free roam, and his dog is stuck in a kennel when you're home. If someone is home both dogs should be out, if no one is home both dogs should be crated.

Your dog doesn't seems to know you're alpha. He wouldn't be forcing his dominance on another dog if you're the Alpha. There is only one Alpha. He'd have no reason to want to dominate the other dog, and if you were truley Alpha he would know that him even trying to be dominant of the other dog isn't excepted.

What could be an issue is not knowing if they are playing, and when it goes to far. Once it starts to seem violent you shouldn't run in scolding. You need to distract them, make a noise, clap, call them over. Make them completly forget they were fighting.

As for the dog park, I don't see the real issue, other than the other person's dog should be under control if it's running around barking.

Sadly, you need to step it up on your training. Let you dog know what he can and cant do... and once he knows that he wont do it. And walk the dogs more, less energy is less agression.

Also neutering isn't the answer to this problem... just an answer to any future breeding you might not want happening.
While I agree the rest, testosterone definitely has behavioral effects, in all mammals, and neutering can and does lower certain drives and behaviors.

Might help in this case, might not, hard to know what's actually going on even when you know and can watch the dog much less over an internet forum.
 

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Too much male posturing going on here if you ask me.

IMHO you should forget the whole Alpha/Pack Leader stuff and just work on more training with both of your dogs.

As far as going to the DP - I'd advise to stay away. If you have a dog that looks like a APBT and there is any doubt whether he will behave around other dogs than do the rest of us Bully owners a favor and don't go. The last thing these dogs need is to be put into a bad situation which could potentially feed fire to the already horrible image most people have of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Well thank you for the help I cant say that answered the question:

the few that answered about the park 1/2 said sure and the other 1/2 said no

Sorry I'm probably not going to get him fixed I understand Toby is a mutt and we shouldn't let him breed and we will do our best to stop that, but the Vet did say it wouldn't do anything for his hyperness or "his want to protect what he believes is his"

I have looked into NILIF thank you very much today is the first I have heard about that and I will start that training right away. I am also working on his "Resource Guarding" Issue as it seems that can be adjusted with NILIF and some other behavioral modification training.

Just a side note, with so many post that contradict other postings it seems like their are more emotional responses then actual experience or knowledge (not claiming I have the knowledge that's why I asked the question) but what if I would have taken one post as gospel I could of ended up hurting other dogs or people if I had not done some research and unfourtantly allot of people don't do the research needed to make the right decision. Just saying some emotional posts should be left out of certain topics and only the first hand knowledge and experience should be shared.


Again thank you very much for your advice and turning me on to NILIF.
 

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I was wondering if you have ever had any trouble with Toby and other dogs besides Blanco? I assumed you didn't as you said you went to the dog park and you both loved it. Ever had any trouble or fighting there? That's why I said I didn't think you should stop going. I assumed you haven't had trouble with any dogs - only at home. I just wanted to explain why I said what I said. :)

If you HAVE had trouble with Toby fighting with other dogs, then I'd say stay away from the park.

I hope my post didn't come across as emotional, but I do tend to get a bit "preachy" at times, especially as regards the misconceptions out there about alpha dogs. If that's how my post sounded, I apologize. :)
 

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Well thank you for the help I cant say that answered the question:

the few that answered about the park 1/2 said sure and the other 1/2 said no

Sorry I'm probably not going to get him fixed I understand Toby is a mutt and we shouldn't let him breed and we will do our best to stop that, but the Vet did say it wouldn't do anything for his hyperness or "his want to protect what he believes is his"

I have looked into NILIF thank you very much today is the first I have heard about that and I will start that training right away. I am also working on his "Resource Guarding" Issue as it seems that can be adjusted with NILIF and some other behavioral modification training.

Just a side note, with so many post that contradict other postings it seems like their are more emotional responses then actual experience or knowledge (not claiming I have the knowledge that's why I asked the question) but what if I would have taken one post as gospel I could of ended up hurting other dogs or people if I had not done some research and unfourtantly allot of people don't do the research needed to make the right decision. Just saying some emotional posts should be left out of certain topics and only the first hand knowledge and experience should be shared.


Again thank you very much for your advice and turning me on to NILIF.
Actually I did answer the question of whether or not you should return to the DP:

"As far as going to the DP - I'd advise to stay away."

As for the emotion and contradictory advice you received - Welcome to the forum!! People have different opinions and on a forum you are sure to hear everyones. :) For the other people you are referring to who don't do the additional research and take what people on a forum say as gospel; they have bigger problems than dog aggression. ;) IMO, a forum isn't the place to go to try and cure aggression anyways. Good luck either way.
 

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the reason for neutering is to prevent unwanted litters.

as far as the aggression..

a. NO DOG PARK. NO OFF LEASH.

b. www.pbrc.net has a protocol called "crate and rotate" I believe this would be highly applicable in your situation.

you want to minimize the chances of your dog initiating aggressive displays. aggression is a self reinforcing behavioral pattern. the more your dog gets the opportunity to aggress, the more likely he is to do just that. NO contact with other dogs for now.

nilif is a very good start. call it "doggie boot camp" if you will.

but its not the end all.

first I would drop the alpha idea. it isn't scientifically feasable.

look at it this way...

there is a cd player in your dog's head. the cd in it is playing one track on repeat with the button stuck. your job is to figure out how to skip to a less intense track.

so say there is a point in the track where the track forward button will work for a few seconds. this is your "threshold". its the point in the behavioral "loop" where you can hit the forward button and move past the unacceptable behavior.

think back on the times he has become aggressive and jot down all the details you can recall. there should be a point, right before he launched into full threat display where he stiffened.

that's probably your threshold.

to hit the button...you need to work first on being able to direct his attention towards you amidst a variety of high level distractions.

teach and reinforce a focus cue.

then teach and reinforce a steady stay. one where you can do just about anything with him remaining stationary.

generalize these two cues and then chain them.

then you will be ready to redirect under distraction.

and if all this sounds confusing...seek assistence from a qualified behaviorist in your area.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you guys very much; I am trying my hardest with Toby because he has shown how good he can be inside the house.

Anyways I hope my last post didn't come off wrong I appreciate all of you taking the time to talk with me. I will be posting how things are going in the near future.

Again Thank You guys for all the advice and now I am just trying to figure out how to do it all.
 

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I don't really think everyone's posts contradicted eachother. Although most were preachy, the common answer was you need to work on controling your dog.

And I think everyone also agreed that you should step up and work with your room mates dog too.
 

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I was wondering if you have ever had any trouble with Toby and other dogs besides Blanco? I assumed you didn't as you said you went to the dog park and you both loved it. Ever had any trouble or fighting there? That's why I said I didn't think you should stop going. I assumed you haven't had trouble with any dogs - only at home. I just wanted to explain why I said what I said. :)

If you HAVE had trouble with Toby fighting with other dogs, then I'd say stay away from the park.

I hope my post didn't come across as emotional, but I do tend to get a bit "preachy" at times, especially as regards the misconceptions out there about alpha dogs. If that's how my post sounded, I apologize. :)
Same thought here, if you have been to a dog park and not had any issues with fighting or aggression I don't see why you should stay away. But I would watch very closely if I went, and leave if any aggression was shown.
 

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I should have made my wording more tentative. Obviously I'm going out on a limb, because there really isn't enough information here for me to make any assumptions about the dog's alphaness. I have read though that dogs should walk next to or behind their person, and that dogs who pull their person around behind them are taking charge. And when dogs take charge over their people, behavioral problems ensue -- including aggression.
I'm not saying this dog is taking charge, though, merely saying he might be based on something I inferred from the poster's wording.

Edit: Neutering sometimes does make a difference. Oh and, by the way, why not do it?
ARRRGH! Enough of the DW!!!! Dogs pull becaues they have not been trained to NOT PULL. It has NOTHING to do with ALPHA and LEADER or any of that pure and utter NONSENSE. Dog walking ahead or behind is NOT AN ISSUE for anyone but the dog owner. I have a neck injury. I don't need to be twisting around looking for my dog. She needs to be walking at my side or in front. She has never givien any indication of "taking charge..." She is worked mostly off leash. She is trained.

Dogs pull because the dog thinks he HAS to pull. The owner has LET him pull and has not taught the dog to walk nicely on a leash, has not taught the dog a "by me" or "heel" cue.. has noth *taught* the dog.

Before going to the dog park or anywhere else with other dogs, you need to do a lot of basic training. Glad to hear you are invoking NILIF. You also need to teach your dog to heel, lie down, sit, come when called and to stay. You need to teach this in about 20 different places too so the dog generalized the behavior to your cue, not to your cue only at home or only in the yard.. dogs do not generalize traiing to new places unless we make the effort to train them in new places until they "get it."

I would also suggest you enroll yourself and your dog in a basic obedience class. Your dog will see other dogs there and you will have to work him with other dogs present. You may be required to alter him before attending class but that depends on the class and not all require this. IF your dog does show aggression, you will be asked to leave. Classes, BTW, are typically 1X a week for 6-10 weeks and are usually not very expensive. The investment is worth its weight in gold. If your dog shows aggression towards other dogs in a class, you will need to get advice (behaviorist etc.).

You need to have a 100% reliable recall on your dog b4 going to a dog park. This means the dog comes when called no matter what when you call. You will need to teach this recall in several different places before going to a dog park so you know for sure your dog will come when called any time, any place and no matter what the distractions are.

I suggest you read two books that will teach you more about dog behavior.

"The Other End of the Leash" by Patricia McConnell
"The Culture Clash" by Jean Donaldson

You will come away with a better understanding of what dogs do and why they do it.

the reason for neutering is to prevent unwanted litters.

as far as the aggression..

a. NO DOG PARK. NO OFF LEASH.

b. www.pbrc.net has a protocol called "crate and rotate" I believe this would be highly applicable in your situation.

you want to minimize the chances of your dog initiating aggressive displays. aggression is a self reinforcing behavioral pattern. the more your dog gets the opportunity to aggress, the more likely he is to do just that. NO contact with other dogs for now.

nilif is a very good start. call it "doggie boot camp" if you will.

but its not the end all.

first I would drop the alpha idea. it isn't scientifically feasable.

look at it this way...

there is a cd player in your dog's head. the cd in it is playing one track on repeat with the button stuck. your job is to figure out how to skip to a less intense track.

so say there is a point in the track where the track forward button will work for a few seconds. this is your "threshold". its the point in the behavioral "loop" where you can hit the forward button and move past the unacceptable behavior.

think back on the times he has become aggressive and jot down all the details you can recall. there should be a point, right before he launched into full threat display where he stiffened.

that's probably your threshold.

to hit the button...you need to work first on being able to direct his attention towards you amidst a variety of high level distractions.

teach and reinforce a focus cue.

then teach and reinforce a steady stay. one where you can do just about anything with him remaining stationary.

generalize these two cues and then chain them.

then you will be ready to redirect under distraction.

and if all this sounds confusing...seek assistence from a qualified behaviorist in your area.
Take every word of this post to heart. The poster knows her dogs and especially understands Pit Bulls and Pit mixes. Please do exactly as she says. She has her resources, 1st hand experience training and rehabilitating dogs and her reasoning correct.
 

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ARRRGH! Enough of the DW!!!! Dogs pull becaues they have not been trained to NOT PULL. It has NOTHING to do with ALPHA and LEADER or any of that pure and utter NONSENSE.
For the most part that's correct, but at some point when you allow your dog to lead you arround by pulling they feel they are in control.

Pulling to pull is because they haven't been trained not to.

Pulling to lead you around, and you following. WILL 'cause the dog to think it's Alpha.
 
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