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Thread: dog aggressive? advice.

  1. #11


    Wow Bernie. Harsh but neccessary words. OP you have a major problem, especially being in Victoria. I have to ask if the dog is properly and legally registered ( Proper description) because if it is not then you stand a really high chance of having the Amstaff seized and euthed by the dog wardens. COuld it be that your partner has not registered the dog properly and is scared of just such an eventuallity?

    If all is good and above board then a professional is the way to go. 99% of aggression is resultant from some fear the dog is carrying. It is essential to find what that fear is and what caused it so that you can start the long road to desensitizing him. Only a professional, working hands on with the dog, has the skill to find that trigger and work the dog away from it.

    In the meantime all advice given above is good. I would also look up "Control Unleashed" and teach the dog the Look at That Game. Use his dinner, fed by hand, to show him that you can be rewarding. Make him work for each spoonfull. Sit, drop, shake a paw, spin, beg and so on.

    YOu say you are able to get him to stay while you put his harness on. What sort of harness are you currently using? I have seen excellant results from the "Gentle Walker" harness and recommend it to all my students.
    Nev Allen
    Border River Pet Resort

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2009


    If I had an unpapered and unregistered amstaff or amstaff x - I think I'd be moving to the ACT or NT pronto. If I wanted to keep my dogs. NSW has some weird laws that allow you to get the dogs "temperment tested" and cleared - provided you keep them properly secured as per the dangerous dog requirements - I think. I think most of the other states are more about dogs are ok until / unless they do something wrong. Not like Vic where they can be seized just for looking like a banned breed. And for being unregistered.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Melbourne VIC


    I enjoyed reading this thread.

    msmely, good on you for helping these poor dogs. The second I read
    When we were just friends I knew she didnt take her dogs for walks and when I questioned why she always said it was because one of them was too aggressive with people and dogs and they were both just uncontrollable.
    I knew this was going to be an interesting read.

    The advice everyone is giving you is great. I just wanted to follow up about the fighting with Romper. This is called re-directed aggression. Anaki wants to attack (most likely) the object/stimulus in the distance but because you are preventing this from happening, she has no other way to release her energy on the stimulus so she picks the closest thing that she can reach...and unfortunately that is Romper. You are very lucky that she has chosen Romper and not you and I can only assume this is because they are pulling away from you, meaning you are behind her, whereas Romper is in her visual field making him the easiest target.

    I also suggest getting professional help. We can help show you different body language both dogs are exhibiting to help you predict what can happen if you don't address it at that moment. The smallest change, such as their walking speed, the positioning of their ears, the sway of their tail, etc can indicate their mental state and possible next move and understanding this will help you avoid possible injury in the future for all involved.

    Don't walk them together. They set each other off , so instead of having power of both arms controlling 20-30kg, you have half that with twice as much power from their adrenalin fueled bodies.

    Work on some tricks, such as the bed one suggested by Hyacinth. I'd also suggest "playing dead" would be a good one. I've taught this to my boy and if he is getting too excited/anxious when out on walks I say "bang" and he lies on his side and calms down. I wouldn't advise doing this around other dogs for now as this is a vulnerable position to be in for them and they are less likely to comply, especially when learning.

    To help with walking nicely on lead, practice walking around the house (with one dog only) and each time they pull ahead, turn and walk another way. Left, right, U-turn, whatever. The middle of the loungeroom is probably the easiest as it is a wider space in the house and can allow you to move lots of different directions. Set the walking pace slow. Don't let the dog set the pace or you will end up following your dog everywhere. You can use treats for this to encourage them to stay with you, however it also works without. If I didn't explain this clearly enough let me know and I'll do it in more detail for you.

    Please keep us updated in your progress.

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