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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. Pretty sad right now because I’ve realized my relationship with my 3 year old Akita chow isn’t the same as it use to be. She has always been a little reactive towards people and it just got worse as she got older even though I socialized her. We use to be very close and then she slowly started to favor my mom and it’s very obvious I am the least favorite, like VERY. Now I recently adopted a puppy and ever since then she has been more aggressive towards me than usual. She use to growl at me occasionally and then would get off without hesitation but would never actually bite or snap at me. She now actually goes for my hand and doesn’t give me a warning. She is not aggressive towards me any other times besides that. I am actually scared of her and I’ve been crying nonstop because she use to be my bestfriend, yes she would be a little difficult but she would want to be around me. Now it’s like I have to force her to even be near me with treats. I have treated her with nothing but love and I have been her primary caregiver but she treats me like shit. I got her as a baby like 2 months so this makes this even worse that she could just turn on me. (She’s not sick she’s in perfect health so it’s not that) any advice?
 

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I think she showing domination if you don't stop this behavior things gonna get worse. You better establish your leadership. I've been using hand feeding, games, and obedience training.
 

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First off, this has nothing to do with 'Dominance', so please don't try to remedy the situation with additional techniques to establish 'leadership' as this could exacerbate the situation.

I'm not sure that I understand the situations where she is actually snapping at you, but if she used to express her displeasure with a growl & that didn't work (you didn't stop the action that was making her uncomfortable) then she (in her mind) had to escalate her warnings to you - ie: now she's snapping. In a situation like this where a bite is potential (or perhaps already occurred?) I would strongly, strongly suggest that you employ the assistance of a really good trainer who utilizes modern, scientifically proven techniques (NOT someone who will promote dominance based methods) to help you rebuild your relationship with her.

For right now, I'd suggest that you STOP trying to 'force' her to interact with you, even with treats. Sometimes the more we try to befriend a dog, the more resistant they become to interact. If you need her off of somewhere/something, toss a treat across the room for her to get, thus moving her willingly, rather than by force. Go about your day, and don't fuss at her or try to pet/love on her. Give her the space she is seeming to need right now.

Adding a puppy to the household raises stress levels all around, and she may be acting more out of character in response to the generalized stress, but without seeing the situation in person, it's really difficult to say. And, even though you say she's in 'perfect health', did you actually have a full exam & physical (including blood work) at the vet recently? Not feeling well can also make a dog crankier than usual, but sometimes there isn't very obvious physical signs.
 

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That's rough. How much one-on-one time is she getting, either with you or your mom/other people in the household? Walks, training, etc. without the puppy around? Trying to balance the needs of an older dog with a new puppy can be rough, especially when the new addition is especially energetic or demanding in some way.

BKaymuttleycrew has some great advice. I'd also consider looking into options for a behaviorist or veterinary behaviorist in your area so you can have an experienced professional evaluate her in person and get an idea of what the source of this behavior might be. Especially since she's putting teeth on skin and it seems to be escalating.
 

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Akita and Chow Chow are both very much "one person" breeds, and tend to be aloof and stand-offish towards people other than their chosen few once they are fully mature, which at three, your girl now is. And their main caregiver doesn't always wind up being "their person".

Forcing her to come to you for treats puts her in a horrible state of conflict.... she wants the treats, but is uncomfortable around you for whatever reason. As BK said, when growling at you was ignored, the next step was snapping, just to make it more clear that she doesn't want to be handled. If she was physically or mentally punished (scolded, smacked, whatever) for the growling, then yes, the growling will go away, and the "out of the blue" bites will start happening.

I also agree that a vet check with bloodwork would be a good idea, as would getting a referral to a behaviorist.

And puppies... oh my... I love my little guy, but there are times I just want to strangle him, as well. My pittie is hoping that if she ignores him hard enough, he will vanish from her life. My GSD is happy to play with him, but even she gets fed up with him when he keeps pestering her after she's had enough.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
That's rough. How much one-on-one time is she getting, either with you or your mom/other people in the household? Walks, training, etc. without the puppy around? Trying to balance the needs of an older dog with a new puppy can be rough, especially when the new addition is especially energetic or demanding in some way.

BKaymuttleycrew has some great advice. I'd also consider looking into options for a behaviorist or veterinary behaviorist in your area so you can have an experienced professional evaluate her in person and get an idea of what the source of this behavior might be. Especially since she's putting teeth on skin and it seems to be escalating.
Thankyou for you’re reply! She gets a lot of one on one time with me, funny thing is she favors my mom over me and favors my dad over the both of us and she only sees him once a week. I take them for separate walks because my puppy is a puller and walking two dogs while one is pulling me is the worse. Yes I’ve considered looking for a behaviorist but the one I’ve tried used a prong collar which I was not okay with and then the next one that seemed very good was crazy expensive. I will look into more though because I’m not okay with this behavior.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Akita and Chow Chow are both very much "one person" breeds, and tend to be aloof and stand-offish towards people other than their chosen few once they are fully mature, which at three, your girl now is. And their main caregiver doesn't always wind up being "their person".

Forcing her to come to you for treats puts her in a horrible state of conflict.... she wants the treats, but is uncomfortable around you for whatever reason. As BK said, when growling at you was ignored, the next step was snapping, just to make it more clear that she doesn't want to be handled. If she was physically or mentally punished (scolded, smacked, whatever) for the growling, then yes, the growling will go away, and the "out of the blue" bites will start happening.

I also agree that a vet check with bloodwork would be a good idea, as would getting a referral to a behaviorist.

And puppies... oh my... I love my little guy, but there are times I just want to strangle him, as well. My pittie is hoping that if she ignores him hard enough, he will vanish from her life. My GSD is happy to play with him, but even she gets fed up with him when he keeps pestering her after she's had enough.
Hi Thankyou for your reply! Haha yes she favors my dad the most and actually my ex bestfriend. Then it’s my mom and I am last. I don’t even know when that happened as I have given her nothing but love but I guess she doesn’t feel the same. She still gets happy when I come home and isn’t ever aggressive towards me other than when I try and move her. She lets me cuddle with her and falls asleep in my arms. Ahh yes I sometimes wanna strangle my pupper too. He’s crazy and super high energy and he is always bothering her. She had a vet visit recently to get her shots and a checkup and they said she was healthy. I will look into a behaviorist. Thankyou!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
First off, this has nothing to do with 'Dominance', so please don't try to remedy the situation with additional techniques to establish 'leadership' as this could exacerbate the situation.

I'm not sure that I understand the situations where she is actually snapping at you, but if she used to express her displeasure with a growl & that didn't work (you didn't stop the action that was making her uncomfortable) then she (in her mind) had to escalate her warnings to you - ie: now she's snapping. In a situation like this where a bite is potential (or perhaps already occurred?) I would strongly, strongly suggest that you employ the assistance of a really good trainer who utilizes modern, scientifically proven techniques (NOT someone who will promote dominance based methods) to help you rebuild your relationship with her.

For right now, I'd suggest that you STOP trying to 'force' her to interact with you, even with treats. Sometimes the more we try to befriend a dog, the more resistant they become to interact. If you need her off of somewhere/something, toss a treat across the room for her to get, thus moving her willingly, rather than by force. Go about your day, and don't fuss at her or try to pet/love on her. Give her the space she is seeming to need right now.

Adding a puppy to the household raises stress levels all around, and she may be acting more out of character in response to the generalized stress, but without seeing the situation in person, it's really difficult to say. And, even though you say she's in 'perfect health', did you actually have a full exam & physical (including blood work) at the vet recently? Not feeling well can also make a dog crankier than usual, but sometimes there isn't very obvious physical signs.
Thankyou for your reply! Um yes so she only ever growls at me and snaps at me when I try to get her off my moms bed or off the couch. She’s never aggressive other than when she does that. I am obviously her least favorite and that is literally why I got a puppy haha. I don’t usually have to actually force her to interact with me it’s only when I want her to come In my room and to stay near me. It’s really sad though when I look back at my memories on Snapchat and I see when she was younger she would want to be around me and she would fall asleep in my room all the time and then to see the way she is now is crazy (I spent all night crying about it). I will look into a behaviorist it’s just so hard to find one that’s good and not crazy expensive. (The best one I found was $1,500)
 

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OK, as far as getting her off of beds or the couch goes, you need to stop physically removing her & train her to hop off on cue. Spend time training her when she's NOT already settled in & comfortable. Invite her to hop up & reward with nothing more than a quiet "good girl", then ask her to "off" & throw a hunk of steak on the floor for her to jump off & get. In other words - make getting off the furniture WAY more rewarding than being up there (resting in a nice comfy place is reward enough on its own) You might want to consider blocking access to the furniture when you can't actively be training her at this point, to completely eliminate the possibility of you having to physically remove her before she's responding reliably & happily to the "off" cue. Put a plush dog bed on the floor near the furniture & reward her heavily for lying on that, rather than on your furniture.

As far as your changing relationship with her - I'd suggest that you take a step back & try to see the dog for who she is & what she likes. As LeoRose pointed out, Akitas & Chows are in general more stand-offish in their relationship with most people. What she might have tolerated as a puppy (hugging? cuddling?) she now simply doesn't enjoy. It doesn't mean she doesn't like YOU, personally, so don't take it that way. It just means she prefers a different show of affection. Not every dog is 'cuddly' (even if they are fluffy & seem that they should be!! lol) Figure out what she enjoys best (walks? hikes? playing tug? etc...) and do those things with her, rather than pushing her to do what YOU want. When you learn how to see & truly appreciate each dog for their own special, unique personality traits, you will be able to bond more closely with each one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
OK, as far as getting her off of beds or the couch goes, you need to stop physically removing her & train her to hop off on cue. Spend time training her when she's NOT already settled in & comfortable. Invite her to hop up & reward with nothing more than a quiet "good girl", then ask her to "off" & throw a hunk of steak on the floor for her to jump off & get. In other words - make getting off the furniture WAY more rewarding than being up there (resting in a nice comfy place is reward enough on its own) You might want to consider blocking access to the furniture when you can't actively be training her at this point, to completely eliminate the possibility of you having to physically remove her before she's responding reliably & happily to the "off" cue. Put a plush dog bed on the floor near the furniture & reward her heavily for lying on that, rather than on your furniture.

As far as your changing relationship with her - I'd suggest that you take a step back & try to see the dog for who she is & what she likes. As LeoRose pointed out, Akitas & Chows are in general more stand-offish in their relationship with most people. What she might have tolerated as a puppy (hugging? cuddling?) she now simply doesn't enjoy. It doesn't mean she doesn't like YOU, personally, so don't take it that way. It just means she prefers a different show of affection. Not every dog is 'cuddly' (even if they are fluffy & seem that they should be!! lol) Figure out what she enjoys best (walks? hikes? playing tug? etc...) and do those things with her, rather than pushing her to do what YOU want. When you learn how to see & truly appreciate each dog for their own special, unique personality traits, you will be able to bond more closely with each one.
Thankyou so much for your reply and I completely agree! I have started training her to get on and off the furniture. She is for sure not an affectionate dog to anyone even her favorites which is my dad. I should respect her boundaries though I will say we do cuddle and she’s okay with that as she always falls asleep in my arms. She LOVES walks and i take her on them frequently so I should focus on that as our bonding time
 

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Hi everyone. Pretty sad right now because I’ve realized my relationship with my 3 year old Akita chow isn’t the same as it use to be. She has always been a little reactive towards people and it just got worse as she got older even though I socialized her. We use to be very close and then she slowly started to favor my mom and it’s very obvious I am the least favorite, like VERY. Now I recently adopted a puppy and ever since then she has been more aggressive towards me than usual. She use to growl at me occasionally and then would get off without hesitation but would never actually bite or snap at me. She now actually goes for my hand and doesn’t give me a warning. She is not aggressive towards me any other times besides that. I am actually scared of her and I’ve been crying nonstop because she use to be my bestfriend, yes she would be a little difficult but she would want to be around me. Now it’s like I have to force her to even be near me with treats. I have treated her with nothing but love and I have been her primary caregiver but she treats me like shit. I got her as a baby like 2 months so this makes this even worse that she could just turn on me. (She’s not sick she’s in perfect health so it’s not that) any advice?
I am sorry to say no dog should growl at an owner or a person unless that person is hurting him/ her. There are issues here that need to be addressed. I don’t know your entire situation but I would be concerned about that dog.
 

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I am sorry to say no dog should growl at an owner or a person unless that person is hurting him/ her. There are issues here that need to be addressed. I don’t know your entire situation but I would be concerned about that dog.
A dog growling is nothing more than communication. Yes, there are "issues" to be addressed here (and, indeed, in any situation which involves a dog growling at their owner/people) but the growl is NOT the issue. The humans' lack of understanding/comprehending/respecting what is being communicated IS the issue.
 
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