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Thread: On Leash Agression (towards other dogs)

  1. #1
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    Default On Leash Agression (towards other dogs)

    Hi all

    This is a brilliant post from 4paws uni about on lead dog aggression, what makes it worse and what you can do to make it better or at least relieve your dog's stress.

    Every day I see someone whacking their dog for being bad on lead. Which is appalling to me - because hurting your dog like that, will only make your dog blame the other dog for its pain and humiliation. Which will lead to even more aggressive displays intended to drive the other dog away before it can get your dog.

    On-Leash Aggression, Leash Reactivity, Dog Aggression

    I found I might be doing something wrong... my dog currently hates any unknown curly coat dog. Some days and places are worse than others. So if I see a curly coat dog before she does - she goes on lead until the curly coat dog is "out of range" but sometimes we get into trouble because the curly coat dogs almost always want to get in her face and their owners are entirely clueless. So even if we're walking away as fast as we can - we sometimes still encounter the rude curly coat dog.

    Mostly what I have been doing - is holding her by the collar and preventing her from moving - which the article expressly says not to do. But it sometimes works because it stops the other dog from approaching because she's not moving or interesting that way. But not always - some will still jump on her head despite the ferocious noise she's making.

    And I can't tell them because if I yell at someone - even if it's just a distance thing so they can hear - my dog feels she must help me yell and joins in. And I can't go talk to them either because my dog goes nuts. But she also knows I'm pissed at this person for letting their oodle jump all over my dog's head without a proper introduction. sigh.
    Last edited by Hyacinth; 04-28-2015 at 03:07 PM.

  2. #2
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    It is quite good. I personally have had three very large lead aggressive dogs come into my care..to me the one thing people do not mention is reading your dog. By learning from the likes of Turid Rugaas you can learn so much from your dog as to what they react to and what is OK. By knowing/seeing this you can anticipate and defuse a lot of stuff before it ever happens. S many people are not aware of what is happening with their dog or what is happening around them...i agree the way we react to it is a lot to do with how the dogs behave. i know that I can often take a seemingly aggressive dog and it will be realxed and casual, because i am. I also use a lot of BAT and highly reward all good responses and behaviour.....they learn to enjoy seeing this other dog. I never use terms like "leave it'' as it is so aggressive in its nature, I use "puppy", in a very friendly happy voice. or "say hello".....keep it all casual and loose. I will walk away before anything happens and find the spot where they are not reactive and reward them if they are happy. I know it works as we have done this with a lot of dogs.

    I also never just leave or ask the other person to leave. As I belive this is what the fearful dog wants. i find the spot that they can deal with it, whatever the distance and work on getting closer and it does not happen overnight

    I do use our Obedience classes, but i go one on one with the handker and dog and we walk the perimeter inititllay and go in with the more advanced classes for paralell walking and also dog passes dog at distance..........all controlled

    I still think knowing and seeing what our dogs reaction is and being very relaxed about it all is the best. Punishing and anxious handlers are the worst thing that can be done/happen and this includes that constant realing in of the leads most people do. Keep the distance and keep it loose, until you can come closer, relaxed

    It is why I like luring in Beginner classes where there are a lot of people who do not have perfect timing and are nervous. I get them to tie the dogs (hopefully puppies) to their belts and lure them everywhere and from that to rewarding. This teaches them not to pull on the lead, no hands allowed, and this means we do not seem to get aggression in our classes....this is more about prevention than cure. Once you get the more experinced Handlers, we can click/yes and use the drives.
    Pets are forever

  3. #3
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    I have never seen this as a problem...because we were taught at GSDL training years ago to simply check your dog and turn him or her away as to avoid eye contact and it works...well with GSDs anyway.

    We also kept our dogs on short leads and kept our dogs at a reasonable distance just in case as dogs don't like other dogs and bitches don't like other bitches and some don't like either.

    At All Breed Training I always kept both Rex and Tara (only took one at a time) on a short lead to protect them from the idiots who let their dogs just run up to my dog. I remember one night at all breeds a guy had a Rottie...I walked up to him and said "Is your dog alright with other dogs"? and he said yes...so I walked Tara closer and all of a sudden this Rottie lunged and bit Tara and when I asked didn't you say your dog was fine with other dogs he said he only just got the dog.
    Chloe & Zorro
    Rottweilers and German Shepherds are Family

  4. #4
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    I'd like to do some of those things with Frosty...

    But usually we are at her safe distance and it's all good but the curly coat will approach us and fail to read her or me, and the owner has about the same control as the owner of the legendary "Fenton" deer chaser from youtube. And that's when Frosty does a whole lot of bad things because we can't get away fast enough.

    And I have to be really careful not to punish - because she will blame the other dog. And I can't use food rewards because then she back chains the unwanted behaviour (aggression) then paying attention to me (or the treat) to get the treat. All I can do is tell her what a clever dog she is and give her pats if she remains calm.

    We had a close encounter today which went reasonably well from my point of view. There was a curly coat that decided to get in and greet a whole bunch of dogs that Frosty was with (she looks like such a good dog with her friends of all shapes and sizes), fortunately I kept her attention and told her what a good dog she was, the other dog didn't get quite close enough to get into trouble and no bad behaviour from Frosty. Yay.

    Bizarrely - she's much worse at the park she "owns" and out the front of my house - than at the beach - which is waaaayyyy too big for her to own or other parks.

    PS Frosty has been chomped twice by a Rottweiler that the owner said was "just playing". The owner was the worst reader of his own dog I'd met in a while - in complete denial - because his dog only attacked some dogs - and was friendly with others - he had no idea. He can't let it off lead or leave it tied up anywhere at club any more. Mine wasn't the only dog it attacked. "just playing" - yes my dog wasn't ripped to pieces but she couldn't use her paw for a good 15 minutes afterwards - frigging hurt.
    Last edited by Hyacinth; 04-29-2015 at 09:52 PM.

  5. #5
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    yes NEVER punish...hence i do not use "leave it" as words as it sounds aggressive."puppy" is so happy, but they know I know they are seeing the other dog, hence they know I am there for support..if anything I go into soft palyful voice mode. Make it seem I am so cool withthe other dog and i really like the other dog or person......all very friendly and animated.

    It is also why I like to go to our Obedience Club as I have relaible dogs and very dog savvy handlers to choose form and they help us so much.
    Pets are forever

  6. #6
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    This post came at the perfect time for me. Thanks Hyacinth!

    Our GSD x Mal puppy is 7 months old and it's almost like he's found his erm.. nuts in the last week or so. Last week at training, he behaved like a bit of a dingbat, lunging and barking at other dogs (not aggressive though). Obviously, as he is still so young, I'm not walking him very far yet, but I do take him for short walks, which are more training walks than exercise walks. Today, I took some home made treats (pup doesn't have any play drive and his food drive, even though he is a food guts, is not great - the home made treats seem to work better than anything bought) and took him for a walk late in the afternoon, during peak dog walking time. We hadn't gotten 30 metres before we encountered a dog who frequently walks past our house, that he likes to bark at. I made a point of standing in front of him, away from the other dog (the owner knows me and understands the training we're doing, so took a wide berth around us), feeding him treats and praising for paying attention to me, rather than to the other dog. I'm hoping this will save my arms a lot of pain as he gets older, as he's likely to be bigger than any of the other dogs we have had.

    Our 10 year old dog is a bit reactive to other dogs when on leash, and it's annoying. She's 22kg, so not a huge dog by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm wondering if it's too late to do some training with her in this regard. I can at least try. She is a food nut and fairly switched on, so might even do well with this exercise.

    Thanks again for posting this, Hyacinth :-)

    Cheers,
    GenY

  7. #7
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    When Brian, a mature french mastiff came for a visit, we walked the dogs. In the time they had had him (6months) he had become dog reactive. He wanted to kill a neighbours small white fluffy. So i trained that again during the day, dogs are fine, even if on our property. If i say its fine, its fine, stand down nothing to see or do here, with loadsa food for being a good dog.

    Next dog that approached, he ignored. So YES, its never too late to train a dog. And once a dog knows how to make treats come out of you, by obeying, its just a game to be played. for life.

  8. #8
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    Bernie is leash reactive to BC's. He has been attacked twice by a BC running free, out of control, owner oblivious situations. He is too old n senior to get over the BC racism he has. So i manage it, and always put him on leash, if there is a BC around. Thankfully its no longer summer.

    So all those small white fluffies and border collies get locked in a yard for 3 months now. And we have the lake and paddocks to ourselves for another aussie winter.

    Sad but true, dogs you see plenty of all summer long, not being walked now the sun has gone.

  9. #9
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    I just came back from a really awful walk with the pup. I'm really disappointed as he was so good when we walked the other night - in fact, he was perfect.

    I know it's not his fault. I chose a bad time (late afternoon on a Friday), but it's driving me crazy that other dog owners seem to think that it is ok to have their dogs off leash in the local parks - the entire suburb has become an unofficial off leash area and I'm so sick of it. Brisbane City Council don't seem to be doing anything about it as I've complained multiple times to no avail. It makes training really hard.

    It also doesn't help that we were placed next to a complete psychopath Pomeranian at training earlier in the week - it was barking and lunging at Bruno to the point where the owner had to muzzle it. Eventually Bruno snapped and lunged back at it.

    Sigh... I really hope this gets better soon

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gen Y View Post
    I just came back from a really awful walk with the pup. I'm really disappointed as he was so good when we walked the other night - in fact, he was perfect.

    I know it's not his fault. I chose a bad time (late afternoon on a Friday), but it's driving me crazy that other dog owners seem to think that it is ok to have their dogs off leash in the local parks - the entire suburb has become an unofficial off leash area and I'm so sick of it. Brisbane City Council don't seem to be doing anything about it as I've complained multiple times to no avail. It makes training really hard.

    It also doesn't help that we were placed next to a complete psychopath Pomeranian at training earlier in the week - it was barking and lunging at Bruno to the point where the owner had to muzzle it. Eventually Bruno snapped and lunged back at it.

    Sigh... I really hope this gets better soon
    I feel your pain, I really do!! Up until the last couple of months, there has been no law here stating that dogs must be on lead... People were legally allowed to have their dogs off leash wherever they wanted, it was an absolute nightmare for me when trying to train my boy.

    I still have heaps of issues with off leash dogs, but at least now I know that they're the ones in the wrong, not me!!

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