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> What To Do About Fights, When other dogs start but my dog responds
essexgirl
post 22nd May 2017, 10:46 am
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Hi

We have a couple of other young male dogs around and both have had a pop at Bertie when he's on the lead. If they start a fight, he will join in and I hate it. I've been working hard at getting him to feel safe and happy around other dogs by using distraction training but then he'll meet one of them again and it all kicks off. He is beginning to send out signals himself too now so he's learning the wrong thing.
Other than trying to avoid them (I do), what else can I do to stop him from becoming more reactive and what should I do if a scrap kicks off?

Bertie is a 22 month D GSD by the way.

Thanks

Carol
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woofgang
post 22nd May 2017, 12:47 pm
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so is he on a lead around them? How does he get close enough to join in?
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kilmousk
post 22nd May 2017, 4:01 pm
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Stop dogs approaching him either by telling other owners to recall theirs or physically blocking their approach or sending them away.
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mokee
post 22nd May 2017, 8:19 pm
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You could going to the places where you walk with Bertie, but without him, and catch the owners and having a quiet word with them to explain how this is damaging Bertie.

You could try stepping in between Bertie and the approaching dogs and using the voice of doom to order the approaching dog to leave. I usually shout something in one syllable like "stop". I use the same voice of doom on approaching children, hasn't failed yet.

You could try reporting the irresponsible owners to the Dog Warden, or even the police if you feel personally at risk when they approach.

Failing all that, you could always try walking somewhere else.
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xKTPx
post 22nd May 2017, 10:06 pm
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lol.gif Sorry...laughing here at 'the voice of doom' I think it does work on many dogs...but not on my 3 year old Grandson!
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essexgirl
post 23rd May 2017, 5:57 am
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I do try to avoid the people but it's a small village with limited walks (during to a strict farmer). One lady effs at anyone who says anything. The other has been told that her dog will grow out of it so takes no responsibility. And I'd get blanked by half of the village if I reported them.

As for how do they get that close. We were on the playing field when dog one was introduced as the lady's new dog. Bertie was friendly with her old one. She smilingly told me he had beaten up another dog the other day as he launched into mine. I never for a minute thought she'd allow that, or swear at anyone, I was really shocked. She says she has been told to let dogs sort it out for themselves. I despair.

This post has been edited by essexgirl: 23rd May 2017, 6:02 am
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essexgirl
post 23rd May 2017, 6:02 am
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Dog two used to play with Bertie. One day it appeared out of a high crop of beans and went for his throat. I didn't even know they were about. The owner was nowhere in sight.

For most of the year, I can see people coming but this time of year, crops and grass and foliage make it difficult. I have started to put Bertie on the lead when I can't see far ahead but then he doesn't get much off lead time.

I really wanted advice on getting him to respond to me and not fight if anyone can help. Please.
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ceri1
post 23rd May 2017, 7:55 am
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The lady in our village with over friendly staffies seems to be keeping them on a lead since Winston had one by the neck when the owner was still in the next field. Maybe explain to her the cost of vets bills if her dog starts fights?
Winston. Is on a lead and we are muzzle training him. Off lead time is for safe places.
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nikirushka
post 23rd May 2017, 8:00 am
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To be honest, it's very difficult once another dog has already started on him: he's on a lead, he's trapped, and he's already worried about dogs from what you've said. Any normal dog is going to defend themselves in that situation (which makes it all the more infuriating when other people let this happen).

The best you can do is to keep plugging away at him when things like that aren't happen - keep working on his response to you (name game, recall work, engage-disengage game, that sort of thing) both when dogs are and aren't present. Get that whiplash response to his name if you can, and to a marker word or clicker, so you can really work on him every chance you get. That will increase your chances of keeping his attention when other dogs are looking for trouble.

On that note - if you can (helped by the above), try to keep his attention and get him in a sit, facing and looking at you, if you see one that looks iffy. A lot of dogs will stop coming over at this point because you've made your dog boring and uninviting. I've stopped a few approaches this way.

Of course, none of this will work if you don't see the other dogs coming so you can only do what you can do in those circumstances - try and frighten the other dog off or stop them with the voice of doom or throwing a handful of treats in their face then legging it while they search; it may be that some aren't looking for a fight but Bertie's posture and body language tip them into one when they reach him (not his fault after bad experiences, but it happens) so distracting them before they reach him might work.

As far as other people go - frankly, it doesn't sound like it would be a bad thing if the other villagers blanked you, you might get some peaceful walks then lol.gif And as for the lady who'd been told to leave the dogs to it - if you talk to her again, tell her that a behaviourist who deals with an awful lot of dog aggression (that would be me wink.gif) has told you categorically that you do NOT just let the dogs sort it out, you PREVENT fights occurring as best you can and you teach your dog how to behave nicely, not allow it to be a bully and practice being a bully. That dog is going to get very good at what it's doing if she lets it carry on, you mark my words.
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essexgirl
post 23rd May 2017, 8:31 am
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Thanks. I have been practicing lots of sit and look at me so it's good to hear I'm on the right track.

You're right about his body language too. That's what's worrying me. He used to be so dog friendly.

And the bully dog is getting very skilled. A friend told me that it ran across a field to attack her three, who were all on lead.

Bertie is going to have to learn to listen to me and dragon Carol is going to have to make a return. Thanks.
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nikirushka
post 23rd May 2017, 11:18 am
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Blanked or not then, that dog needs reporting NOW, before it starts to do serious damage (if it isn't already). That is not acceptable.
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ceri1
post 23rd May 2017, 12:52 pm
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I would report it. How would you feel if it actually injured a dog and you could have done something.
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Annieskel
post 24th May 2017, 5:07 pm
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Report them, the owners will just get a warning unless they have bitten someone. The dog warden can't tell anyone who reported them, if they do they will be out of a job.

I used to have a dog that was attacked quite a lot and one day 2 Weimaraners attacked him, my other 2 dogs took a dog each and sorted them out but it left the dog that was attacked terrified of other dogs, he would have a panic attack when he saw a strange dog which lead to a seizure later in the day. Dogs like that are out of control, we are working hard to get the owners take the blame instead of the dog as it is the owner's fault.

These dogs could one day attack a dog that a child was walking and the child get seriously hurt, they need reporting them. Don't report to the police yet unless the Dog Warden does nothing.


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Ianr
post 30th May 2017, 12:25 pm
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QUOTE(essexgirl @ 23rd May 2017, 6:57 am) *

She says she has been told to let dogs sort it out for themselves. I despair.


The traditional view of those barky little dogs who have no serious intention of fighting rather than anyone who has ever seen two dogs seriously go for one another I suspect. Hard to part them & risky to both you & them if they really mean it.

Ask her if she is happy to pay the vets bills that any serious fight will inevitably incur should you follow her advice on this or would she prefer to put her dog back on a lead, just as yours is? I suspect she'll then appear shocked at the very idea rolleyes.gif


Personally I don't think you can or even should want to stop yours from defending himself should another dog be allowed to charge over with the deliberate intention of attacking him. You may or may not find that a loud shout or bang, perhaps a water bottle or something would deter this dog from continuing to approach, some may think that unkind but ultimately he is the problem here not your dog walking quietly on a lead.

If a firm & direct word with the owner fails, shunned or not - just talk to the other / sensible half of the village & hold your head up high! - I'm afraid that I would be putting my concerns in writing to both he dog warden and police.

This post has been edited by Ianr: 30th May 2017, 12:33 pm
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Annieskel
post 2nd Jun 2017, 2:33 pm
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QUOTE(essexgirl @ 23rd May 2017, 9:31 am) *

Thanks. I have been practicing lots of sit and look at me so it's good to hear I'm on the right track.

You're right about his body language too. That's what's worrying me. He used to be so dog friendly.

And the bully dog is getting very skilled. A friend told me that it ran across a field to attack her three, who were all on lead.

Bertie is going to have to learn to listen to me and dragon Carol is going to have to make a return. Thanks.



It is time that the DW was told about these dogs, even though they are attacking dogs they could bite someone and if a child is with a dog and they do this the child could be seriously injured. The DW will only warn the owners at first but if this continues they will take more action.



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