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Hello my name is Matthew. I have a 4 year old border collie Aussie cattle dog mix. I adopted him about a year and a half ago. He has always been a fearful dog but he seems to do ok when we go to dog park. He freaks out over loud noises like the trash can moving or lawn movers or just anything he always seems to have his guard up ready to run away. There are times when he will lash out at me and my family for what seems to be no reason. We can just be sitting next to him then bam he snaps. I don’t know what sets him off but it’s not getting better. He shows teeth at us as well. If we are sleeping and he comes next to us and we tell him to move or push him he snaps. Then he runs and hides or is submissive. He has always looked fearful so I don’t know if it’s part fear part dominance or what. Oh and he also snap if we stop him from getting food on the table. Please help he is a great dog.
 

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Dominance between dogs and people doesn't really exist the way common TV dog personalities have portrayed it, so I wouldn't worry about that. Fear is a powerful motivator. It is natural for dogs (or any creature) to want to run away from something scary. It is also totally normal for them to get defensive or go into "fight" mode when they feel like they can't run away from something scary.

Just like in humans, being constantly stressed out and on edge can make dogs lash out for what seems like no apparent reason to the humans, although probably if you could ask the dog, they'd think they had a very good reason. To be honest, it sounds like there is a lot going on and that life for him right now is really stressful, not necessarily because of anything in particular your family is doing; some dogs just find regular (modern, urban) life stressful, especially a lot of herding dogs like border collies and border collie mixes.

It would be a really, really good idea to get in touch with a certified behaviourist, either with an IAABC-certified canine behaviorist, or a board-certified veterinary behaviourist who can help you sort through all of the things that are making your dog afraid or uncomfortable, and how you can help your dog learn to relax. They may suggest a protocol to provide more structure/routine to your dog - that helps him learn what to expect, reduces the number of unknowns, teaches your dog your house rules, and helps build consistency. Being able to predict what will happen (like through routine) helps anxious/fearful dogs (and people, tbh) relax.

It sounds like he doesn't like to be touched, and that he guards things (which can have definitely have roots in fear). To combat those two issues specifically, I would:

1) Teach him a "Go to bed/mat" behaviour and have a dog bed on the floor hear your couch so you can send him there when he is on the couch instead of physically moving him.
2) Teach him a hand target, so you can move him without physically touching him.
3) Until he's learned those two skills, I'd use cookies (assuming he's food motivated) to lure him off of the couch and toss it onto his bed.
4) Keep food off of all surfaces except for (human) meal time, during which I would crate him (if he's already crate trained) or put him behind a baby gate so he can't access the kitchen until it is cleaned up.

But really you would benefit from professional help. Your dog sounds like he is a complicated dude who needs a lot of understanding to overcome his issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes thanks for the reply sometimes he jumps in your arms for some love and rolls on his back and will lick you then other time while next to someone he snaps which has been the big issue I never know when it’s coming. He will show teeth and snap then after his episode is over he is either submissive or runs away hiding. I honestly don’t know we play frisbee and go to dog park and he is ok but I know he has lots of Anxiety/fears
 
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