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Thread: Aggressive SBT Attacking German Shepherd

  1. #1
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    Default Aggressive SBT Attacking German Shepherd

    Hey, guys... I'm in a bit of a pickle at the moment re: what to do about a situation I know about.

    There is a family down the street (parents & two grown boys, maybe between 20 and 25) who owned an aggressive German Shepherd when my family moved here 12 years ago. That makes the dog at least that age or more. For years there have been rumours among the neighbours that these people were locking the GS under their BBQ, which has cabinet-like doors. My friends and I would walk past and hear muffled barking, too close to be coming from inside the house. It is also an outside dog.

    Over the years, I've witnessed them walking this dog maybe 2 or 3 times a year, each time on a very tight check-chain because the dog lunges at people & dogs that go by. They may walk it more but I honestly don't know.

    Anyway, maybe 3 or 4 years ago, they got a second dog, I believe in the hopes of calming the GS's aggro behaviour at people walking by. Big mistake. The dog in question is a male Staffordshire Bull Terrier who is EXTREMELY dog-aggressive. I don't walk by there often as my dogs are usually exercised on bush trails, but every time I go by the SBT is aggro.

    It tries to grab dogs through their fence and if the GS so much as approaches the fence while he is there, the SBT grabs him by the throat and shakes him. The GS is much more meek now than it was years ago; he cowers in the corner the other dog gets this way. The SBT re-directs aggression to the GS, some times worse than others. Most times it is a snap and a pointed warning to stay away from the fence while he is there.

    However, this evening, when I took my dogs by, the SBT was worse than I've ever seen it. Frothing at the mouth, baring teeth, snarling, the whole nine yards. I didn't see the GS; usually he is slinking around out of interest when he hears dogs go past, but he was standing off to the side. He appeared to be severely limping on one of his hindlegs, and I couldn't be 100% sure, but I think I saw that there were bite marks and scars. Obviously the SBT has done it because the dogs are practically never taken anywhere, and they made no effort to socialise the SBT that I have seen (our neighbours are all very social and talk, etc. They've been asked about whether they exercise the dogs before; answer was 'almost never').

    Now my dilemma is this: do I lodge a report to the RSPCA? Can they even do anything? The GS is clearly in need of medical attention; he isn't a spring chicken anymore and the SBT is young, powerful and much fatter than him. I would barter he gets the majority of food put outside for them.

    I don't know that Sydney RSPCA can really do anything, anyway in this case. The poor GS is just an old man now who is losing out to a younger male. (SBT is desexed, thank god. I think the GS, too.)

    What are your thoughts, guys? I hate knowing that this dog is suffering just down the road.
    Last edited by Sierra; 06-10-2010 at 05:08 PM.


    like a rolling thunder chasing the wind...

  2. #2

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    Ive had neighbours in an act of retaliation on me (they never liked me and i always got abused upon leaving or coming home) report me and my dog to the local pound (since moved house and have lovely neighbours now). The pound lady who came out was a lady i knew as she also did the lollypop crossing for school kids in which i would walk my daughter to school,she also knew the dog in question. I offered her to come in the yard and view my dog,pat her,touch her all the rest,but she merely looked over the fence and saw the dog was well looked after,laughed off this accusation that was made,and drove away.

    Councils do have the power,as does any animal shelter i would imagine,to impound and/or seize any animal they feel is in danger. Thou i do believe that they would have to try and contact the owners and have tried to resolve the matter first. At least then that GS wouldnt be in danger,and maybe something could be done,but i would guess most likey they would be put down as to old or set in ways to rehouse. A shame Some people should never have pets.

    Perhaps someone else may know more?

  3. #3
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    Yeah, I tried asking around the street, but nobody is interested in the welfare of the GS but my sister and I, it seems. It is this neighbour against neighbour mentality; nobody wants to speak up for fear of friction in the street. I am tempted to do a letterbox drop offering to help them with the SBT's behavioural issues as I think it could be a case of little to no socialisation outside the GS. I have a lot of experience with DA-dogs and all of them deserve a chance to change. It's not his fault.


    like a rolling thunder chasing the wind...

  4. #4

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    Is the GSD a male too? I used to own an GSD male and SBT male, they would occassionally scrap, but were best mates!
    Is the SBT grabbing the GSD by the loose skin/hair at the throat? If so this is a fairly norm scrap between the two breeds. If it is more than that, it is not acceptable.
    Both dogs should be socialised. It is a possibility the owners do not care for these two, which is wrong. Do they look healthy weight, do they look like they are regularly groomed? Do they continuously bark at anyone passing day and night?
    Maybe you could offer your services.

  5. #5
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    Bohemiannic, the GS is certainly a male. The dynamic between the two is not of a best-mates-that-scrap-occasionally; the GS is dead terrified of the SBT and it shows. I saw them have a full-on fight (blood drawn, open wounds) about four years ago when I was 15, completely unaware of dog behaviour and whether or not it was a one-off thing. Now I know better, I'm really worried.

    As for their condition, the GS looks mangy and thin. Has all his hair but hip bones are protruding, even through all that hair. The SBT is shiny and in very good condition, not sure if that's from getting food all the time. One of his eyes was a bit gunky but that's normal, didn't seem like a build-up.


    like a rolling thunder chasing the wind...

  6. #6
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    It sounds to me like the RSPCA should be involved, if only to find out the real facts of what's going on - it's not as if they are going to rush in like storm troopers and seize the dogs, presumably they would talk to the owners, inspect the dogs etc etc. Especially if the GSD is limping.

    Hard to say how the owners would respond if you offered to help, since I don't know them....but if they genuinely don't care about the welfare of these dogs I can imagine how they'd take to someone else sticking their nose in.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sierra View Post
    Bohemiannic, the GS is certainly a male. The dynamic between the two is not of a best-mates-that-scrap-occasionally; the GS is dead terrified of the SBT and it shows. I saw them have a full-on fight (blood drawn, open wounds) about four years ago when I was 15, completely unaware of dog behaviour and whether or not it was a one-off thing. Now I know better, I'm really worried.

    As for their condition, the GS looks mangy and thin. Has all his hair but hip bones are protruding, even through all that hair. The SBT is shiny and in very good condition, not sure if that's from getting food all the time. One of his eyes was a bit gunky but that's normal, didn't seem like a build-up.
    It definately sounds like something to be concerned about.
    SBTs don't need all that much grooming and he maybe taking the GSDs food as well as his own. Gunky eye's in SBTs is not unusual if it has been a little windy.
    Maybe talk it over with your sister and decided on a plan of action.
    If you think the GSD is in bad condition, think about calling council/rspca or something.
    I hope something can be done for those poor fellows!

  8. #8
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    COMPANION ANIMALS ACT 1998 - SECT 33 Meaning of ?dangerous?

    that bit is vague but I think the NSW dog and cat management act says that dog is dangerous or the council can do something if a dog is trying to attack people through the front fence. And if you have reason to believe it attacked the other dog on the property you may also report that.

    I suggest ringing your local council, and talking to the dog ranger, and asking them to keep your name / address out of it.

    In SA the law is more specific - a dog is not allowed to menace people through the fence. It is allowed to menace or bite you if you go on the property uninvited (tresspass). I think that's pretty much the same everywhere. However I think there is some other law about reasonable access to the front door by government officials like police, so nasty dogs are supposed to be confined to the back yard or the house needs an intercom system. Not sure how they deal with that.

  9. #9

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    I would be inclined to notify the authorities and let them do what they are there for. As suggested above, ask for your name to be kept out of it.

  10. #10

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    try contacting your local ranger asap, they will look into the matter if it's not a severe as you feel they will let you know.. if it is they will act... hope the dogs are ok and get help soon...

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