Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

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Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby rman » Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:00 pm

I've got a 2 year old pp bitch. She's great with people and loves to hunt, but she's pretty aggressive and growsy with other dogs even while hunting. Any tips or resources on training dogs to not growl and fight other dogs?
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby GONEHUNTIN' » Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:31 pm

That can be a tough one. First thing is, you have to be the boss. If you're not, you'll never cure the dog.

If when you say NO immediately when she growls she ignores you, your problem may be unsurmountable. Personally, I have never been able to CURE a dog that was aggressive to another one. I can control them most of the time, but not cure them. It's a part of the dog's personality.

If the dog doesn't respect, and yes fear you somewhat, forge it.
I just hate seeing birds die of natural causes unless I'm that natural cause.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby orhunter » Wed Dec 20, 2017 5:21 pm

What Gonehuntin' said. You gotta be more aggressive than the dog to put an end to it. Your response has to be immediate and with enough force there is no confusion as to what the message is.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby 3drahthaars » Wed Dec 20, 2017 6:47 pm

Just some of my observations and experiences:

Canine vs. canine aggression is a complicated issue.

It can be the result of an over indulgent owner/handler where the dog becomes the alpha and leader of the pack.

It can be pure genetics... some just come out of the womb like that.

I've heard of dogs that crane their heads to avoid contact with other dogs... they do so because they know that they'll get the $hit knocked out of them if they do make eye contact. Obviously they have a strong handler who had to show them... but they fit the #2 slot.

In some dogs it's pure genetics. I had a bitch that was fine until about 4 years old. Then, she turned. I had a litter out of her and a couple pups turned sharp at about 4. I did an outcross the second time and had one really sharp pup. When the research was all done her sire had issues, and so did a lot of his pups... took years for people to fess up.

When I got my current pup I knew what I wanted and where to get it. she's a rock solid temperament around all dogs, all sizes, all temperaments! She stands her ground, but she doesn't push to fight.

When you peruse the various forums and groups you will see the discussions about hard on fur, cats, and yappy little dogs... and, they laugh it off. It's the last category that should get attention.

You can try as you wish, but my bet is that unless you've let your dog run all over you she's got the gene. Do what you will, but you may/will never be able to trust her 100%.

Next time, pick based on disposition. Most of these tested dogs have the skill set...

My $.02,

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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby Doc E » Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:11 pm

Here is a pretty cool article about Canine Aggression and Omega-3 Fatty Acids.


Aggressive dogs are characterized by low omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty
acid status
Veterinary Research Communications
March 2008;32(3):225-30
Simona Re, Marco Zanoletti, Enzo Emanuele

FROM ABSTRACT

Canine aggressive behaviour is one of the most common problems being reported by dog owners. However, the biochemical basis of this phenomenon remains unclear.
In humans, alterations in omega-3 plasma polyunsatured fatty acids and elevated omega-6/omega-3 ratios have been linked to behavioural alterations, including aggression.
Thus far, however, the relationship between plasma polyunsatured fatty acid status and aggression has not been investigated in the dog.
Eighteen adult male German Shepherd dogs, aged 4.9±0.9 years, showing no
clinical signs but aggression, were investigated.
Eighteen healthy male dogs, aged 4.8±0.7 years, with a negative history of
behavioural and neurological disorders served as controls.
Baseline fasting plasma polyunsatured fatty acid composition was determined by gas chromatography.
Compared to normal dogs, aggresasive dogs showed lower docosahexaenoic acid (22:6 n-3) concentrations and a higher omega-6/omega-3 ratio.In addition, they showed reduced cholesterol and bilirubin concentrations compared to their normally behaving counterparts.
Altogether, our results suggest that low omega-3 fatty acids may adversely impact behaviour in dogs, resulting in greater propensity to aggression.
THESE AUTHORS ALSO NOTE:
“Aggressive behaviour is a common behavioural problem in dogs, resulting in
bite injuries, reaching epidemic proportions.”

“In humans, abnormalities in lipid metabolism have been found in a variety
of mental disorders, including pathological aggression and anxiety.”
Altered lipid profile may play a relevant role in hyperactivity, aggression and
impulsiveness.
The relationship between blood lipid status and behaviour is mediated by
central serotonergic activity. Central serotonergic activity is reduced among animals fed a low-fat/low-cholesterol diet.
Hypocholesterolemia occurs in aggressive dogs.
“Of great interest, human studies have also pointed to a role for alterations in
omega-3 plasma polyunsatured fatty acids and elevated omega-6/omega-3 ratios in the pathophysiology of aggression and hostility.”
In this study, the aggressive group consisted of 18 German Shepherd dogs
selected on the basis of aggressive behaviour. They all had a history of aggressive incidents and attacks without warning (bites toward humans).
Eighteen healthy male German Shepherd dogs with no history of behavioural
and neurological disorders served as controls.
Fasting blood samples were collected and analyzed for arachidonic acid
(20:4 n-6), eicosapentaenoic acid (20:5 n-3), docosahexaenoic acid (22:6 n-3) and omega-6/omega-3 ratio.
RESULTS
“There was a significant reduction in the concentration of bilirubin and total
cholesterol in the aggressive group compared to the control group.”
“Compared to normal dogs, aggressive dogs showed a significantly lower
concentration of docosahedoxaenoic acid (22:6 n-3) and a higher omega-6/omega-3 ratio.

”DISCUSSION
“There is consistent evidence from other studies, especially from human
epidemiological investigations, that a low omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid status could be linked to aggressive behaviour.”
Low cholesterol levels may also be correlated to canine aggressiveness.

“Resuslts of our study showed that German Shepherd dogs with a history of
aggrssive behaviour displayed a significantly lower docosahexaenoic acid
(22:6 n-3) concentration and a significantly higher omega-6/omega-3 ratio when compared with non-aggressive dogs.”
Several studies suggest that low-omega 3 fatty acid status may adversely
impact serotonergic function in the central nervous system.
“The connection between hypocholesterolemia and dog aggression may
similarly occur via altered production, reuptake, or metabolism of
neurotransmitters.”
“Reduced serum cholesterol may be a biochemical feature associated with
canine aggression.”
Reduced bilirubin may be related to dog aggressiveness, because bilirubin is
neuroprotective to the central nervous system.
“In conclusion, our pilot study suggests that low concentrations of cholesterol, bilirubin, docosahexaenoic acid and a higher omega-6/omega-3 ratio may be biological correlates of aggressiveness in German Shepherd dogs.”

.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby Doc E » Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:38 pm

While Fish Oil does contain some DHA (docosahexanoic acid). the best source is Tuna Oil
.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby Chadwick » Thu Dec 21, 2017 2:11 pm

A dog growling at an other dog does not necessarily mean the dog is aggressive. The growl is intended to keep the other dog at a distance. It may look like offense to a human, but it can be defense as well.

For example, if something bad (from the dog's perspective) has happened to dog 1 when dog 2 approaches (and the "bad" thing does not even have to directly link to dog 2), dog 1 may growl to keep dog 2 away, so the bad thing does not happen.

If that is the case, punishing dog 1 for growling as dog 2 approaches can cause dog 1 to exhibit the behavior earlier to try to keep dog 2 even farther away.

The thing to watch is dog 1's behavior when the dog 2 is at a distance. Aggressive dogs will give a hard stare at the other dog with the intent of engaging the other dog. Dogs that are concerned about the other dog approaching them will avoid eye contact.

As indicated above, dealing with true aggression is complex and difficult because it is typically hard-wired. If the situation is a dog growling in defense, then treats can be very effective by making dog think that other dogs equal goodies.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby rman » Fri Dec 22, 2017 2:39 pm

So from a training standpoint, for the positive reinforcement, when exactly would you give the treats? 20 yards from other dog, within scent of other dog etc?
From a control standpoint, when exactly should I assert my dominance? I'm assuming at first tensing, prior to growling escalation, but there's a reason I'm asking for advice? She doesn't show the typical signs of agression that I've noticed in other dogs, she seems fairly centered at first, but as a dog spends more time near her, she generally escalates.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby Chadwick » Fri Dec 22, 2017 8:57 pm

rman wrote:So from a training standpoint, for the positive reinforcement, when exactly would you give the treats? 20 yards from other dog, within scent of other dog etc?
From a control standpoint, when exactly should I assert my dominance? I'm assuming at first tensing, prior to growling escalation, but there's a reason I'm asking for advice? She doesn't show the typical signs of agression that I've noticed in other dogs, she seems fairly centered at first, but as a dog spends more time near her, she generally escalates.


Based on what you said above, I would say your dog is growling out of fear of other dogs, not aggression. Without seeing the dog for myself, I can't know sure. So what I am going to describe below is to err on the side of caution.

Go to a fenced in dog park where you and your dog can be on the outside of the fence away from the other dogs, so you can control the proximity to other dogs. Or go to a park with paths where dogs have to be leashed, so you can control the proximity. If someone is coming toward you with a dog just ask them to please stop as you are training your dog or move your dog off in the opposite direction.

At whatever distance that her behavior appears normal toward other dogs is where you want to start rewarding her. What you are looking for is her to be looking at a dog and not reacting. When you see that behavior, say "yes" and give here a reward. Now even if she is aggressive, which I don't think is the case, you are rewarding her for normal behavior. The same applies if she is fearful of other dogs. Go slow and work closer toward other dogs during multiple outings using your dog's behavior as a guide of when to move closer. Use really good rewards and give the smallest reward you can get away with. And when she does really well, give here 2 or 3 treat is succession.

As you work closer, watch for her to make eye contact with you. She will look to you for reassurance. When she makes eye contact with you, tell her she is a good girl. The reason you want to encourage that behavior in this situation is that so when she becomes anxious as you move closer, she will look to you for reassurance and you can praise her.

If you have time, do some research on Turid Rugass. She has some great insights on dogs that will help you read your dog better.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby LongHammer » Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:53 pm

orhunter wrote:What Gonehuntin' said. You gotta be more aggressive than the dog to put an end to it. Your response has to be immediate and with enough force there is no confusion as to what the message is.


Being agressive to a dog that is already being agressive is a slippery slope. You are way better off reading your dogs signs and stopping it before hand. I had a giant land shark that could be very dog aggressive later in life. With him he would lock eyes on another dog if they did it back it was on. So if I saw him looking a poke in the giblets or just stepping between would end it. It is your dog you need to learn the signs and act before it escalates. Sometimes that means your dog goes back to the truck and you head home.
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Re: Stopping Aggression towards other dogs

Postby Doc E » Sat Dec 23, 2017 8:35 pm

A bottle of Tuna Oil capsules is less than $25 ... Pretty cheap way to find out if it is biochemical or not.
.
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