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We moved into our new place almost 3 months ago, the way it's set up we can always see our next door neighbor working in his garage which he does all day every day.. Toby is almost 8 months now. Anyways, toby took a long time to realize this man means no harm, we did a lot of work, sitting outside letting him get used to the man being there etc. Lots of treats. He was finally at the point where he could walk out our door, see this man and not bark at him.. Toby generally loves everyone. He does an initial bark when someone comes over but he's instantly wanting pats & cuddles. He's a bit anxious of people he see's in the street, they don't come over for pats, he barks at them. But he stops once i redirect his attention/tell him enough. We're working on the random people spotting..

Anywhoo, yesterday afternoon we came home, i was getting Toby out of the car, the man was right next to the car, washing his car. And there was a cat in the drive way. Toby was barking at the cat, the man must have taken it as toby barking at him, and he walked over to us, where i thought he was coming to say hello to Toby like he has done a few times. Instead, he stood right over toby, leaned over him, pointed his finger at him and yelled "TOBY! NO!" And i don't know what he did, kind of went to tap/hit toby on the nose with his finger, and toby absolutely snapped. He went savage. He certainly would have attacked and bit this man if i didn't have him on leash..

The man was then yelling at me saying "you need to put a muzzle on him before he attacks somebody" i was in such fear of the situation (probably didn't help toby, me being scared) i couldn't say anything. I was just on the ground by that point holding toby by his leash & harness. I tried to say he's never like this with anybody, he really is a friendly dog if you're friendly to him.. But the man just kept yelling that i need to muzzle him, and socialize him better. Toby wouldn't calm down with his yelling, and my fear. I had to carry him inside.

I was in such shock. And i'm really angry at the man for yelling at my dog. Toby has been raised purely on positive reinforcement. I had one friend watch him for a night when he was very young & they use negative force on their dogs, and they've yelled at him, despite my insisting, and now every time he sees her and her boyfriend, he pee's. He's very nervous around them still. So i knew the moment the man yelled at him that it was going downhill..

I don't know where to go from here.. I'm worried about seeing this man again and how toby will react. He complained to my landlords who live upstairs. I understand him being worried, but the most toby can do to him is bark. We're only here at night, we leave early & come back before 6 to eat l sleep. Toby is always on leash when going from our door to the car.. As long as he doesn't come up to him and yell/threaten him again he won't go savage. I'm just worried in general. I've got a friend who's cattle dog was yelled at & it bit the person, they had to give it away :(

I'm just stressed. I don't know what to do. I'm trying to find a new place to live, but it's not easy given my price budget & people aren't willing to allow a dog in a place unless it's a tiny one. :(
 

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Poor Toby - he was showing fear agression in response to your neighbor's screaming at him - perfectly understandable. Did the incident take place on your part of the property? It sounds like the man came into your space, and that Toby was reacting, not only in fear, but in a protective way. If the man was on your property, tell him to leave if he tresspasses again, and to quit threatening your dog.
 

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Poor Toby - he was showing fear agression in response to your neighbor's screaming at him - perfectly understandable. Did the incident take place on your part of the property? It sounds like the man came into your space, and that Toby was reacting, not only in fear, but in a protective way. If the man was on your property, tell him to leave if he tresspasses again, and to quit threatening your dog.
Yeah, i don't blame Toby, but it wasn't an ideal situation to be in, and these neighbors already think he's untrained. They asked me a few weeks ago if i've taught him to sit yet!? This dog is incredibly smart, he does all kinds of things (bow, stick em up, bang, weaves my legs, plays piano, rings a bell at the door etc), and they don't think he can even sit! I was offended when they asked that. But yeah, he makes bad impressions on people lol.

It's hard with the property thing, it's kind of 2 houses on the one lot. We share a driveway down to the middle of the two houses. There's no real property line divider or anything. The space is all shared really, so i don't think Toby realizes how much is his. I can't tell the man to stay off either, him & my landlord who lives upstairs are really good friends. If he didn't yell at him, things would be fine! I just don't understand who does that to someone elses dog, approaching them, threatening them, yelling at them, and going to hit them?! I don't want his old school ways of dog training, i have that under control with positive.. Can't believe he did that. There's no way negative would ever work for Toby, even as a puppy with biting while playing, if i yelped/said ouch, he'd get more excited and come back for more biting. Yelling clearly does the same to him, makes him more worked up. :(
 

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With fear aggressive dogs you have to take command and be in control of every situation, just as you would with any dog. If someone starts to come over, no matter what you make them state their intentions, I never let anyone pet my dog, or anything without them asking me.
I think you assumed it'd be okay but there lies your problem, you should never have assumed anything if your dog barks at random people in the street. It's those kinds of things that would make me think something COULD happen.
I'm not saying to be paranoid, but I am saying to be more cautious, if you are tense or paranoid, it's gonna transfer to your dog

Plain and simple, tell them to not tell you how to train your dog and to not discipline your dog. You'll handle the situation, they don't have to.
 

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Is it possible that your neighbour could occassionally help you train your dog (with your methods, of course) ???

Politely ask him if he would mind actually FEEDING a few treats from time to time. Pats on the head are good, but nothing makes friends faster than chicken wieners.



That said, it's up to you to carefully gauge whether or not this suggestion is appropriate in your particular case. If not, then consider consulting a behaviourist for first-hand advice. You sound as if you're on a tight budget, but it might be well worth the effort and expense, just to regain some peace of mind for yourself and to prevent your dog's behaviour from escalating.
 

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He certainly would have attacked and bit this man if i didn't have him on leash.
I don't think he would, he was mostly reacting to your leash. Leash pressure is agitating the dog causing stress and aggressive reactions so things quickly escalate.

I was in such shock. And i'm really angry at the man for yelling at my dog. Toby has been raised purely on positive reinforcement. I had one friend watch him for a night when he was very young & they use negative force on their dogs, and they've yelled at him, despite my insisting, and now every time he sees her and her boyfriend, he pee's. He's very nervous around them still. So i knew the moment the man yelled at him that it was going downhill..
Part of this is really your fault to be honest. If someone did this to my dog he/she would never step foot in my yard. I will tell you one thing, it takes quite a talent to create such reaction overnight.

Since your dog is only 7 months old this could fall into puppy fear aggression. Also, shock, fear, stress etc. these are not good ways to handle it. You should expect puppy aggression, not be in shock when it happens.

I highly recommend you watch this 3 part video explaining fear aggression with puppies and young dogs and how to properly cope with it.

Hope this helps some, good luck!
 

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As for socialisation, I'm against letting strangers and generally other people pet/reward your dog. The best way to socialize a dog is to have other people simply ignore him, whenever possible. The video I linked explains it better.
 

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As far as I'm concerned, if you yell at and touch my dog and you get bitten, you got exactly what you deserved.

Unfortunately, you live in an apartment and that complicates things. I would tell the landlord what happened and point out that you always have the dog on a leash and there is simply no way for Toby to hurt this man unless the man walks up to Toby and bothers him, so please tell him to stay away from your dog. The next time you see the man, ignore him. If he tries to approach Toby, put yourself between the man and Toby.
 

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As far as I'm concerned, if you yell at and touch my dog and you get bitten, you got exactly what you deserved.
Local laws won't reflect this attitude though. You need to be over and above careful with him about the people next door. The man was really, very stupid to do something like that but on his side it would be very unpleasant to live right next to a dog that hated you and feel unsafe in your own driveway. I think it would be best to try and mend fences, maybe knock on their door (without toby obviously!) and try to talk it out. Ignoring the issue won't solve it (you two WILL be thrown into contact) and it could be an opportunity to teach the neighbours how to properly handle toby. Also, it would mean them seeing how much work you put into him and make them less likely to tell your landlord "she has this vicious dog that almost killed me!"
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Plain and simple, tell them to not tell you how to train your dog and to not discipline your dog. You'll handle the situation, they don't have to.
If I'd known that was what he was planning on doing to him, I would have certainly told him to not do it. But he's come to say hi to Toby several times, this time was just so sudden and unexpected. I can't really tell my neighbor to just "back off" either, that alone would get me kicked out, they're really good friends with the landlord. Definitely going to tell him to keep his distance and not approach Toby from now on though, I'm sure he'll obey that much after the incident.

Is it possible that your neighbour could occassionally help you train your dog (with your methods, of course) ???

Politely ask him if he would mind actually FEEDING a few treats from time to time. Pats on the head are good, but nothing makes friends faster than chicken wieners.
I tried this approach with my dad when Toby didn't like my dad, he was happy to take the treats from him but as soon as he was out of treats, he was back to barking at him. It was really just time and treating him for not barking at dad that got him happy to be around dad..

Part of this is really your fault to be honest. If someone did this to my dog he/she would never step foot in my yard. I will tell you one thing, it takes quite a talent to create such reaction overnight.
I know it's partly my fault, but as I said earlier, there's no real separation of property/yard so it's hard to keep him "off" our part. He certainly wont be allowed to come near us again though. And I don't think he'll try.

Since your dog is only 7 months old this could fall into puppy fear aggression. Also, shock, fear, stress etc. these are not good ways to handle it. You should expect puppy aggression, not be in shock when it happens.
How can you not be in shock though when your dog is basically spitting everywhere, being absolutely savage towards someone.. That certainly can't be expected? I'm having a lot, I mean A LOT of trouble with his fear and stress in the car. It happened once before a few months ago he went through a short phase of this stress in the car, crying when we'd pull up anywhere, even at lights, and bark at ANY person he saw outside the window, even my sister and friend who he absolutely adores, once they're outside the car he'll bark at them.. But he got over that, I would just say "enough" and he'd stop and settle down, then get a treat... Then he kind of just got past it by himself, didn't need to be told enough. But it's started up again, and a lot worse, he cries a lot more in the car, he's very stressed... I'm not sure what to do.

Thanks, I'll watch the video after this.[/QUOTE]
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Local laws won't reflect this attitude though. You need to be over and above careful with him about the people next door. The man was really, very stupid to do something like that but on his side it would be very unpleasant to live right next to a dog that hated you and feel unsafe in your own driveway. I think it would be best to try and mend fences, maybe knock on their door (without toby obviously!) and try to talk it out. Ignoring the issue won't solve it (you two WILL be thrown into contact) and it could be an opportunity to teach the neighbours how to properly handle toby. Also, it would mean them seeing how much work you put into him and make them less likely to tell your landlord "she has this vicious dog that almost killed me!"
Haha, yeah, good luck with the law taking that reasoning..

As far as the man feeling it's "unpleasant" to live with a dog next door like that, Toby has been fine with him for the past few weeks. Like he hasn't barked at him. So it's been quite good.

I think even if I went over there, they wouldn't really listen to me. He's older, probably late 50's, 60's? I dunno. Very active though, always camping, kayaking etc.. I'm 21, but I look like I'm 15. The way he talks to me, always, is like I'm some child, like I know nothing. It would be a lost battle even trying..
 

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Hmm, that sucks. I guess you'll just have to keep toby way out of their way unless you're specifically training, too bad you couldnt work together. Its such a shame that toby would pay the price of your neighbours stupidity.
 

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Hmm, that sucks. I guess you'll just have to keep toby way out of their way unless you're specifically training, too bad you couldnt work together. Its such a shame that toby would pay the price of your neighbours stupidity.

It does suck.. But, I'm trying to move. Yes, I live in a very small studio room with a cattle dog.. But we're ALWAYS out. We just sleep there really. But I also haven't had a job all year, I'm studying online. But I'm finished for the year next month and I'll have several months off and I'm hoping to find a job until I start up studying again next year. I can't leave Toby home all day in the small studio room while I work, so I've been trying to find somewhere that has even a small fenced yard or courtyard type thing. Anywhere he can go outside as he pleases, lay in the sun, dig and swim in his pool, chew his bones out there etc, rather than being confined to a small room while I'm out.

With this incident, it's just made me want to move sooner rather than later. I'm really lucky where I am now though for the price, and the fact they allow me to have Toby. But, hopefully I can find something else suitable.. It's tough trying to explain to people that he doesn't NEED huge acreage, he wouldn't use it anyways. He loves his enrichment, toys, pool, and puppy play dates and then seeing my family, more than he would a big empty yard, he's a happy dog generally.
 

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Anywhere he can go outside as he pleases, lay in the sun, dig and swim in his pool, chew his bones out there etc, rather than being confined to a small room while I'm out.
The leaving him outside while you're out, does that mean while you're outside with him or he's outside while you are gone. Don't think the latter would be a good idea. Just sayin'....
 

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Okay.... My opinion of what is going on is probably going to be different than others based on ACD specific experience.
Nothing you have said rings any fear aggression to me.

Remember the breed is SUPPOSED to be Aloof and Suspicious with strangers.

So you move into a new place and your dog can see a stranger standing near. He is going to naturally want them to leave. Hence he barks at him. If he was loose he would probably go and try to "push" the man away. This is typical of ACDs. Not based in fear but they tend to want to control their area and the comings and goings of all life in it.

They can become very fixated on this and it can become their "job" Think OCD......
Over time with work from you, he came to accept the man as part of the local scene. Probably was not happy about it. But would have let it go...

Now... You come home... Your dog is barking at a cat, no untypical behavior.... This stranger comes up and stands over your dog and scolds him.... The man is Lucky he did not get EATEN UP! My dog Merlin, would have absolutely clobbered the guy. My Bitch (the Hellbitch) would have Eaten him and gone looking for his family and friends. The Bitch I co own but does not live here would have Eaten him, his family, anyone he has ever known, then gone and dug up his ancesters and eaten them. Yes I am being a bit dramatic but you get the picture.

An ACD, most I have known anyway, and I have known a BUNCH, is not the type of dog that is going to react anyway but the way you described to a stranger doing this. To further escalate the situation... You, the center of his world, the apple of his eye, the one he has sworn his ACD blood oath to be forever faithful to, were upset and intimidated by the situation. He was going to PROTECT you.

The guy is really really lucky...

More later I have to go to work.....
 

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The leaving him outside while you're out, does that mean while you're outside with him or he's outside while you are gone. Don't think the latter would be a good idea. Just sayin'....
Both...? Of course the latter would be a good idea, if i had an outside. Hence the moving..
 

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Both...? Of course the latter would be a good idea, if i had an outside. Hence the moving..
i agree w/ the latter NOT being a good idea while you are not there....you have a dog that has shown aggression and you intend to leave him unsupervised in a yard while you're not home? think on this a min and you might see where it being a bad idea comes in.....dog out alone, stranger comes by and wants to come to the door/leave a pkg/whatever...dog bites stranger, lawsuit city......
 

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i agree w/ the latter NOT being a good idea while you are not there....you have a dog that has shown aggression and you intend to leave him unsupervised in a yard while you're not home? think on this a min and you might see where it being a bad idea comes in.....dog out alone, stranger comes by and wants to come to the door/leave a pkg/whatever...dog bites stranger, lawsuit city......
I'm not sure what kind of yard you're referring to, but my idea of a yard is around the back, no way he can be at the front door if someone was to come by to the door or leave a package? Now unless someone decided it's a smart idea to jump the fence & attempt to enter my house through the back door, there's no way Toby would have any possible way to reach said person.. I certainly would not leave him in a front yard where that type of thing could happen, no. But a backyard, yes..
 

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Over time with work from you, he came to accept the man as part of the local scene. Probably was not happy about it. But would have let it go...
Yep, we were at the point where he was accepting the man standing there, and no haha probably wasn't happy about it, but he dealt with it.

Now... You come home... Your dog is barking at a cat, no untypical behavior.... This stranger comes up and stands over your dog and scolds him.... The man is Lucky he did not get EATEN UP! My dog Merlin, would have absolutely clobbered the guy. My Bitch (the Hellbitch) would have Eaten him and gone looking for his family and friends. The Bitch I co own but does not live here would have Eaten him, his family, anyone he has ever known, then gone and dug up his ancesters and eaten them. Yes I am being a bit dramatic but you get the picture.
Yes! I do think Toby would have gone to a similar extent. He was NOT taking the scolding from the man, it was like a challenge. He is very lucky Toby was restrained.. He shouldn't be yelling at people's dogs, period..

An ACD, most I have known anyway, and I have known a BUNCH, is not the type of dog that is going to react anyway but the way you described to a stranger doing this. To further escalate the situation... You, the center of his world, the apple of his eye, the one he has sworn his ACD blood oath to be forever faithful to, were upset and intimidated by the situation. He was going to PROTECT you.

The guy is really really lucky...
I really enjoyed your descriptions. And yes, i do feel very safe living alone with Toby, i'm quite sure if the situation ever came up, he would definitely fight to the death to protect me. He resource guards me like i'm oxygen or something. Looking forward to more of your cattle dog descriptions..
 

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there's no way Toby would have any possible way to reach said person.. I certainly would not leave him in a front yard where that type of thing could happen, no. But a backyard, yes..
Unless you have a magical backyard where trolls and human are vaporized as they either climb over a fence or walk in through a gate it still is not a very good idea.

Since I am the type of person that believes some people have to learn things the hard way I will say no more except good luck to your dog(he may need it)

You said (I believe) you were 21, most of the 21 year old people I knew, myself included were not very experienced, worldly etc To be blunt we were dumb as rocks. Also having a dog that will protect you is very ego satisfying and protecting others from your dog may not be high on priority list.

I don't know this for sure, it's an assumption and you know what they say about the word assume.
 
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