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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all, I'm a new member to the forums but I have a situation that I am hoping for some input on.

My boyfriend and I have been together for a long time, and we have only had one real issue: his overly needy and obsessive dog. This dog had extreme jealousy and aggression issues with me, despite the fact that I had been a part of her life for all but two months that he had owned her. Nearly a year of working with this dog did not help, but only made her more fearful and aggressive, even when using clickers and treats. This was only made worse by the fact that this jealousy and aggression would not only draw blood but would also be directed at my elderly blind dog (usually when she was just walking by.) Eventually, we had to let her go to a new home where she could be an only animal.

My boyfriend would like another dog, which is perfectly understandable, but due to his neediness when I'm away, I'm afraid he will nurture another jealous and needy dog as before. I think it would be better to wait for him to get another dog until we are living together, so that the new dog would not see the pack as consisting of only the dog and my boyfriend (making me the intruder), but see the pack as me/boyfriend/blind dog with the new dog being a newcomer. However, he would like to get another opinion, which I agree would help make our decision.

Therefore, my question is this: should we wait until we are living together to get another dog? Or should we give another try to him having a dog while living alone?

Thank you for your input.
 

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I would be not accept or allow any of my dogs treating a guest in my home the way you discribed your boyfriends dogs treating you. It's not the dog,, you boyfriend needs to set the rules. If I didn't set the rules of behavior in my household some strange guest that they not happy with isn't going to be able to bribe my animals that it's ok.
 

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The behavior you described isn't normal hesitancy with strangers that you see in some breeds. I'm not even sure it's possible to "encourage" a dog to act that way, even with no rules or boundaries. Aggression towards people is usually a temperament issue, not a training issue. What type of dog was it and where did it come from? You tend to see that type of temperament in poorly bred dogs, particularly those bred by puppy mills. So the issue may be less your boyfriend and more where he got his dog.

The "pack" thing is based on outdated misunderstandings of how dogs behave. Dogs don't "pack up" like that. Feral dog packs are ever changing, fluid groups without clear leaders of members. Any dog with a decent temperament, properly socialized and trained, should be accepting of any visitor to their home.

ETA: There's more to this issue than just you, btw. At some point, every dog has to interact with people outside of their immediate family. So it is imperative that every dog be socialized and trained to be able to at least ignore strangers, if not be friendly with them. If that's not something you or your boyfriend can do, it's not a good idea to get a dog.
 

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Hello all, I'm a new member to the forums but I have a situation that I am hoping for some input on.

My boyfriend and I have been together for a long time, and we have only had one real issue: his overly needy and obsessive dog. This dog had extreme jealousy and aggression issues with me, despite the fact that I had been a part of her life for all but two months that he had owned her. Nearly a year of working with this dog did not help, but only made her more fearful and aggressive, even when using clickers and treats. This was only made worse by the fact that this jealousy and aggression would not only draw blood but would also be directed at my elderly blind dog (usually when she was just walking by.) Eventually, we had to let her go to a new home where she could be an only animal.

My boyfriend would like another dog, which is perfectly understandable, but due to his neediness when I'm away, I'm afraid he will nurture another jealous and needy dog as before. I think it would be better to wait for him to get another dog until we are living together, so that the new dog would not see the pack as consisting of only the dog and my boyfriend (making me the intruder), but see the pack as me/boyfriend/blind dog with the new dog being a newcomer. However, he would like to get another opinion, which I agree would help make our decision.

Therefore, my question is this: should we wait until we are living together to get another dog? Or should we give another try to him having a dog while living alone?

Thank you for your input.
Majority of owners know what is truly going on and so strong in what they seeing in the whole picture to bring it up.. so I take this as a good base reason for a dysfuntion for the dog. Would another dog be the same, the word OP used is being NURTURE from the boyfriend. again not the dog.
 

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I'm always for a stable home situation, regardless of jealous tendencies. Not only will you be adding yourself to the pack, but you'll be adding another older dog (yours). How long before you move in together? I'd wait if possible.
 

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Thank you for your replies. Here is some additional information:

This dog was a small female rat terrier mix that he had gotten from an animal shelter. She was already of a nervous disposition when he got her. He lives alone and he likes having a dog in his lap constantly, or at least in his immediate vicinity. He knew nothing of dogs when he got her and thought her obsession was natural adoration. He liked having her touching him at all times, be it in his lap, beside him, licking his foot constantly (ew), or staring at him while she sat by him. She ate first, had no rules or limitations, and essentially ran the house until I came along.

She was perfectly socialized to a point, she loved strangers and was at least accepting of other dogs over time. Her aggression was only to me and my dog, entirely out of jealousy and wanting to have him all to herself. She liked me in general, happy to see me and enjoyed sitting near me as well. She would become aggressive almost randomly, then want to hide behind him. She would purposefully disobey commands and run, despite being very well trained, to the point of if he or anybody else told her to sit, she would grow roots. Her problem was entirely with me.

I was, as I pointed out, a major part of her life for over ten months. I was there every day, spent the weekends sometimes, and would take care of her at my house. I was no stranger. Besides my boyfriend, I was the second most prominent caretaker in her life. This is not stranger-aggression but me-aggression.

I have had extensive experience with dogs, having owned at one point or another over 20 of them, of all ages and temperaments and sizes. She was the first dog I have ever come across that I could not work these issues out with, due mostly to her obsession and jealousy with my boyfriend. He tried everything he could to help, but in the end, it's just that he was needy and made his dog needy too to an unhealthy degree.

However, please note that this is NOT what I have asked help for - she is gone - and I am pretty much entirely asking the one question of "should we wait to get another dog". I understand that this information on her situation helps you understand the circumstances, but some answers are simply not helpful. Case in point:

I would be not accept or allow any of my dogs treating a guest in my home the way you discribed your boyfriends dogs treating you. It's not the dog,, you boyfriend needs to set the rules. If I didn't set the rules of behavior in my household some strange guest that they not happy with isn't going to be able to bribe my animals that it's ok.
I understand that it's not okay for a dog to be aggressive, which is why she is gone. I am not a stranger, but a major part of her life, as I said. I was not bribing her, but setting rules and boundaries, not allowing her to get away with acting like a brat, and attempting to build an accord with her by assisting in training her with treats and clickers. And believe it or not, it's easier to bribe a dog than you'd think - plenty of robbers get a dog to like them with a nice cut of meat. Sorry if I seem snippy but your answer was not helpful at all.
 

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The boyfriend nurtured the dog's jealous and need nature and resource guarding of him (the boyfriend).


It really does sound like a temperament issue with your boyfriend's previous dog, rather than an issue with training, specifically. It is totally possible to have a "needy" dog that isn't possessive or aggressive, but if its something you're really worried about, and you are close to moving in together, then I say wait.

If he does decide to get a new dog, maybe go together to meet the dog and pick it out with him, for two reasons: 1) you clearly have more experience with dogs and will (hopefully/probably) be able to recognize a good temperament and 2) it will help ensure that the dog likes you to begin with. :)
 

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Coilfoot, I think PatriciafromCO's response wasn't aimed at the fact that she (Patricia) thought the dog thought of you as a stranger, or that YOU were bribing her. I think she meant that the problem wasn't the dog, but rather your boyfriend's acceptance of the dog's behavior towards you.

Just translating.....what I THINK she meant.

Anyhow, I would wait. And, before you do, sit down with the boyfriend and make a list of how you both want to raise the dog. It seems that one of the biggest problems is that YOU want the dog to have rules and boundaries (YAY!) and the boyfriend was more into having a companion dog. Unless you two compromise and are on the same page, you are liable to run into problems with how the dog is raised and trained.
 
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