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We have the most wonderful Poochon, who is now 8 months old. He is a really loving and affectionate dog to both myself and my daughter, with my wife he always growls at her?!
This is up to the point he has shown real aggression at lashed out with warning nips.

Even stranger is he will actively go and find her and offer his paw to her, cuddle her, yet still growl at the same time.

We have done the following:
Got her to be the sole feeder, constantly give him treats, walk him, play with him, reward him when he doesn't growl, my wife has tried everything with him, but he carries on being a jerk.
We have tried telling him off when he does it, have tried time outs pretty much run out of ideas.

Worse still is he loves both my parents and inl-aws, goes mad when they come round, yet my wife comes home and he barely goes to say hello to her...... and yet he will go and snuggle with her, beg her for food, beg her for attention... and still growl at her after.

She jokes they got a love hate relationship, but it seems to be getting worse and worse.

At a guess he is jealous of her as he is closest to my 13yr old daughter and maybe protecting her, but even so we are all REALLY STUCK and confused.... Can anyone help pls??
 

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It sounds like he's sensing something with your wife.

You say you've "got her to be" the sole feeder, etc. Does she want to be, or even enjoy it? If not, she may very well be sending non-verbal signals to the dog.

"Telling him off" does nothing, so don't bother with that.

I recommend getting the Dog decoder app. It will help you read the dog's non-verbal communication so you can figure out what he is feeling when he does it. Why he's doing it will determine how to counter it.

I always suggest people just talk to the dog as they go about their day. Just voice thought out loud and direct them to the dog. Like "Joey, what shall we have for dinner tonight?" or "I guess it's time to do the laundry, what do you think Joey?". Often, that helps the dog relate to the person better.
 
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I had a dog that was sort of like this with a person on anti-seizure medication (after a severe head injury). While the person was on the medication, the dog was very much like this.

When the medication was discontinued, the dog no longer acted like this.

The question for you is this:
Does your wife have any condition (including depression etc) that she is taking medication for (or a condition that you know of that is not being medicated)?

We do not need your answer here. It is not our business. It is for you to consider.
 

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We have the most wonderful Poochon, who is now 8 months old. He is a really loving and affectionate dog to both myself and my daughter, with my wife he always growls at her?!
This is up to the point he has shown real aggression at lashed out with warning nips.

Even stranger is he will actively go and find her and offer his paw to her, cuddle her, yet still growl at the same time.

We have done the following:
Got her to be the sole feeder, constantly give him treats, walk him, play with him, reward him when he doesn't growl, my wife has tried everything with him, but he carries on being a jerk.
We have tried telling him off when he does it, have tried time outs pretty much run out of ideas.

Worse still is he loves both my parents and inl-aws, goes mad when they come round, yet my wife comes home and he barely goes to say hello to her...... and yet he will go and snuggle with her, beg her for food, beg her for attention... and still growl at her after.

She jokes they got a love hate relationship, but it seems to be getting worse and worse.

At a guess he is jealous of her as he is closest to my 13yr old daughter and maybe protecting her, but even so we are all REALLY STUCK and confused.... Can anyone help pls??
It would be nice to see video because that would give more information. However, from what you describe it sounds like the dog is spoiled and has no respect for your wife. The dog views her as a "pez" dispenser and not someone of authority.

Obedience and boundaries are your friend. Make the dog do things to earn rewards such as down, sit, come, etc.

If the dog views you as the authority then you need to step in and take charge when you see this nonsense. Allowing the dog to practice unwanted behaviors is reinforcing.
 

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@TinoA I suggest that you take the above post with a grain of salt. I disagree with what it says, so I will let you know why.
The fact that your dog growls at your wife is not proof that the dog is spoiled, or that he lacks respect for anyone.

Teaching the dog tricks is fine, but is not addressing this issue at all.

There is no need to "step in" or "take charge" in this situation and in fact that would be likely to cause the dog to associate your wife with unpleasant things, and that would make the situation worse.

Dogs growl when they don't like what is going on. It's like us saying "hey, don't do that please". It is not by any means necessarily aggressive. The one thing you never want to do is scold or punish in any way if a dog growls. The growl is a communication. Ignore it and the dog will stop trying to communicate that way and will up the ante. You don't want that.
Stopping whatever you are doing if a dog growls does not "reinforce" the growling. Instead, it respects the dog's request that something stop.

In the case of your wife, I strongly suggest that she stop doing anything at all with this dog. She may very well be pushing him in a way he doesn't appreciate, however well-meaning she is.

Instead, ask your wife to ignore the dog completely. If she feeds him, then just put down food and then walk away. She should never approach the dog or even look at the dog. Pretend the dog is not there. If the dog approaches her, she could respond, but only for a few seconds, then stop. If the dog wants her attention, she should pet the dog for two seconds and then stop. Or not pet at all, just say a few nice words and then walk away. Let the dog be the one to initiate any contact, and keep it very very brief. It is possible that the dog wants attention, but then gets more than he is comfortable with and so asks for it to stop.

Make sure your wife never leans over the dog to pet or talk to him, and instead gets down to his level so as to me unthreatening to the dog (in case that is part of the problem).
 

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The fact that your dog growls at your wife is not proof that the dog is spoiled, or that he lacks respect for anyone.
I never said growling is reason for being spoiled.

With the information given:

"constantly give him treats" ... "yet my wife comes home and he barely goes to say hello to her...... and yet he will go and snuggle with her, beg her for food, beg her for attention... and still growl at her after.

She jokes they got a love hate relationship, but it seems to be getting worse and worse."

The above sounds spoiled to me with the information given.

I also said video would be better because words don't usually describe things accurately.

Dogs growl when they don't like what is going on. It's like us saying "hey, don't do that please". It is not by any means necessarily aggressive.
The OP said "This is up to the point he has shown real aggression at lashed out with warning nips."

This is the first warning before a real bite. Have you ever dealt with aggressive dogs before @Khecha Wacipi ?

And yes, you show fear or hesitation when dog growls at you in aggressive manner then you will reinforce it. That is a fact.

I agree that dogs growl for very various reasons and it is important to understand the difference. OP said that the dog growled and showed real aggression - whatever that means.

You cannot properly assess this situation without good video or seeing the dog in person. I suggest the OP find a good balanced trainer that has more than just hot dogs in their training tool box.
 

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If the dog wants her attention, she should pet the dog for two seconds and then stop. Or not pet at all, just say a few nice words and then walk away. Let the dog be the one to initiate any contact, and keep it very very brief. It is possible that the dog wants attention, but then gets more than he is comfortable with and so asks for it to stop.
If the dog wants attention you tell the dog to "sit" and praise the dog for sitting. Or you tell the dog "place" and then call the dog to you and reward the dog with praise.

A dog demanding attention, in this case, is being pushy towards wife. What you are suggesting is rewarding the dog for being pushy and reinforcing the dogs view that she is nothing more than a "pez" dispenser. The wife needs to be in control by using obedience and then rewarding the compliance for that obedience. If she practices that, I'm willing to bet, it will solve most of her issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That's great thanks for all your replies, loads to think about in here, admittedly some conflicting advice, but we are willing to try anything ATM. I will try and get a video posted
 

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You are assuming that the dog is an "aggressive" dog. That the dog only acts this way with one person suggests it is unlikely to be true aggression. Far more likely, there is something that causes the dog to be anxious or fearful about the wife. And in that case, trying to force "control" over the dog is only going to make things worse.
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yes he is definitely NOT aggressive, very affectionate, very happy... Thinking about it he loves everyone who comes through the door only does the growling with my wife, but also one other person... My auntie who he hardly ever sees..I'd also say he is very well socialised as it's not a quiet house

Is it just not possible that some dogs just don't like someone for no reason?
 

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It is possible. But there is always a reason - it just may be one that we as humans don't understand.

I would definitely check out the dog decoder app I linkid to above. It can really help you figure out what he's trying to say.

And some dogs, especially small dogs, can make "growling" sounds that are simply talking rather than a warning - so identifying the dog's body language will help you figure that out.
 
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Yes he is definitely NOT aggressive, very affectionate, very happy... Thinking about it he loves everyone who comes through the door only does the growling with my wife, but also one other person... My auntie who he hardly ever sees..I'd also say he is very well socialised as it's not a quiet house

Is it just not possible that some dogs just don't like someone for no reason?
Yes, this is always possible. But there is likely to be a reason for this.

And you can safely ignore any advice being given about "aggression", since your dog is not aggressive.

If your dog has attempted a nip, it is because the growl was probably ignored, and the dog needed to get a point across. this Is solved by your wife simply not paying attention to him.
 

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I never said growling is reason for being spoiled.

With the information given:

"constantly give him treats" ... "yet my wife comes home and he barely goes to say hello to her...... and yet he will go and snuggle with her, beg her for food, beg her for attention... and still growl at her after.

She jokes they got a love hate relationship, but it seems to be getting worse and worse."

The above sounds spoiled to me with the information given.

I also said video would be better because words don't usually describe things accurately.


The OP said "This is up to the point he has shown real aggression at lashed out with warning nips."

This is the first warning before a real bite. Have you ever dealt with aggressive dogs before @Khecha Wacipi ?

And yes, you show fear or hesitation when dog growls at you in aggressive manner then you will reinforce it. That is a fact.

I agree that dogs growl for very various reasons and it is important to understand the difference. OP said that the dog growled and showed real aggression - whatever that means.

You cannot properly assess this situation without good video or seeing the dog in person. I suggest the OP find a good balanced trainer that has more than just hot dogs in their training tool box.
Yes, I have worked with dogs, many of them, who exhibited this kind of behavior. The vast majority of them were not aggressive, just trying to get a point across. If their first signals went unnoticed (from the dog's point of view they were ignored), then the dog started to growl, and if that were ignored then they might lash out. Once the dog's signals were being seen and respected, the problem of the growling stopped.

It is not spoiling a dog to give treats, attention, and petting. My dogs get those things when they ask or when it is treat time. Believe me, those dogs are not spoiled and in fact are welcome everywhere because they are so well trained and behaved.

You say "You cannot properly assess this situation without good video or seeing the dog in person. " But you certainly assessed this situation by saying the dog was 1) aggressive 2) spoiled and 3) being pushy. That is a lot of assessment from someone who says the situation cannot be assessed. ;)

And finally, yes, I have worked with aggressive dogs. They are a whole different matter from what the OP is describing here.
 

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Yes, this is always possible. But there is likely to be a reason for this.

And you can safely ignore any advice being given about "aggression", since your dog is not aggressive.

If your dog has attempted a nip, it is because the growl was probably ignored, and the dog needed to get a point across. this Is solved by your wife simply not paying attention to him.
OMG! LOL

What you wrote is the definition of aggression.
 

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Yes, I have worked with dogs, many of them, who exhibited this kind of behavior. The vast majority of them were not aggressive, just trying to get a point across. If their first signals went unnoticed (from the dog's point of view they were ignored), then the dog started to growl, and if that were ignored then they might lash out. Once the dog's signals were being seen and respected, the problem of the growling stopped.
This is aggression LOL
 

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Yes, I have worked with dogs, many of them, who exhibited this kind of behavior. The vast majority of them were not aggressive, just trying to get a point across. If their first signals went unnoticed (from the dog's point of view they were ignored), then the dog started to growl, and if that were ignored then they might lash out. Once the dog's signals were being seen and respected, the problem of the growling stopped.

It is not spoiling a dog to give treats, attention, and petting. My dogs get those things when they ask or when it is treat time. Believe me, those dogs are not spoiled and in fact are welcome everywhere because they are so well trained and behaved.

You say "You cannot properly assess this situation without good video or seeing the dog in person. " But you certainly assessed this situation by saying the dog was 1) aggressive 2) spoiled and 3) being pushy. That is a lot of assessment from someone who says the situation cannot be assessed. ;)

And finally, yes, I have worked with aggressive dogs. They are a whole different matter from what the OP is describing here.
I'm starting to wonder if you even own a dog SMH
 

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If the dog wants attention you tell the dog to "sit" and praise the dog for sitting. Or you tell the dog "place" and then call the dog to you and reward the dog with praise.

A dog demanding attention, in this case, is being pushy towards wife. What you are suggesting is rewarding the dog for being pushy and reinforcing the dogs view that she is nothing more than a "pez" dispenser. The wife needs to be in control by using obedience and then rewarding the compliance for that obedience. If she practices that, I'm willing to bet, it will solve most of her issues.
No, I am not suggesting "rewarding" the dog for "being pushy". How do you reckon the dog is being "pushy" without having seen it? Also, I did not recommend that the wife offer treats all the time to the dog, but rather for her to ignore the dog most of the time, so that is hardly being a "pez dispenser".

This is not a matter for "control". This is a situation in which the dog needs to be better understood. Simply exerting control over the dog with domination is only going to make the dog feel less comfortable and it will backfire. The wife in particular doesn't need to "control" the dog and if she attempts that she will make the situation worse.

If there is someone you do not feel comfortable around, do you feel all better with them if they start ordering you around? Will that make you happier to hang out with them?

I am all for training tricks and behaviors to dogs and rewarding them for that. Anyone training a dog is going to build a relationship with that dog. but I don't think that is the place for the wife in this situation to start out. Maybe later it would be good. But first the dog needs to stop feeling uncomfortable with her, and that is best accomplished by the wife ignoring the dog and only responding briefly when the dog comes to her. Treats or no treats, doesn't matter in this case - she wouldn't have to give treats, just a kind word and move on.
 

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So there are times it's blatently obvious he is protecting either me, my daughter or something belonging to us. But most of the times it's just wtf....??!!
Look up "NILF" and practice that and you should see improvement

Nothing in Life is Free

Things like make the dog "sit" or "down" before feeding dinner.
 

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No, I am not suggesting "rewarding" the dog for "being pushy". How do you reckon the dog is being "pushy" without having seen it? Also, I did not recommend that the wife offer treats all the time to the dog, but rather for her to ignore the dog most of the time, so that is hardly being a "pez dispenser".

This is not a matter for "control". This is a situation in which the dog needs to be better understood. Simply exerting control over the dog with domination is only going to make the dog feel less comfortable and it will backfire. The wife in particular doesn't need to "control" the dog and if she attempts that she will make the situation worse.

If there is someone you do not feel comfortable around, do you feel all better with them if they start ordering you around? Will that make you happier to hang out with them?

I am all for training tricks and behaviors to dogs and rewarding them for that. Anyone training a dog is going to build a relationship with that dog. but I don't think that is the place for the wife in this situation to start out. Maybe later it would be good. But first the dog needs to stop feeling uncomfortable with her, and that is best accomplished by the wife ignoring the dog and only responding briefly when the dog comes to her. Treats or no treats, doesn't matter in this case - she wouldn't have to give treats, just a kind word and move on.
If you don't see "pushy" then you have NO clue.
 
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