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? for dog owners

Have any of your dogs ever been in a dog fight?  Last night, I was getting the dogs ready for their run and reached out the door to grab the leashes.  One of our dogs pushed past me and attacked a dog that was on a walk with it's owner in our driveway.  Our dog has NEVER shown any signs whatsoever of being aggressive at all.  NEVER.  The other dog was probably 12 pounds at the most and our dog is almost 80.  The other dog was hurt pretty badly and was rushed to the ER vet.  Thankfully the owners have been extremely understanding and so nice about the whole situation and their dog is okay now after 2 staples.  We feel absolutely horrible for their dog.  We also feel horrible for our dog becuase she truely is not an aggressive or violent dog.  I still feel sick to my stomach from the the situation.  We called our vet last night and she thinks that our dog was protecting her property and saw the dog in our driveway and for some reason felt the need to protect and she told us that this type of thing happens all the time.  But that really has not made us feel better at all.  We are getting training immediatley of course, but is there anything else that we can do? 

Re: ? for dog owners

  • Welcome to my world....

    First, (hugs) dog fights are SCARY.  Bella and Sophie have gotten into it several times, the last one with Bella ending up at the vet and she has some horrible scars on her face, head, and leg.  This past Friday Bella attacked my parent's dog. 

    We're seeing a behaviorist for it.  Bella has never really gotten along with female dogs, but it's getting worse.  I'm trying out this guy. It's $50 for an evaluation and I figure it can't hurt.  A behaviorist can get down on a different level than a trainer.  Bella has excellent recall and obey very well, but if another dog is involved she lunges and attacks.

    Bella also is not aggressive at all towards people, she has never bitten, growled, snarled, nothing at anybody.  She does bark, but then she runs off.  So much for a guard dog huh?

    (HUGS) I hope training or a behaviorist can help.  Our vet said we should never have our 2 females together ever again...I'm hoping to work past that.

    BabyFruit Ticker
  • I've only ever been on the other side of it. I used to live in a converted detached garage apartment, meaning I shared the back yard with the guy living in the main house. He had a lab, who got along great with my dog, never had aggression issues and seemed fine, until the day he attacked my mom's dog when they were visiting. These two dogs had had contact before, so it's not like it was a totally new dog invading his property. My mom's dog was fine after some stitches and recovery and we wrote it off as a fluke. Months later I got a kitten and was slowly introducing her to spending some time outdoors. We introduced her to the other dog a couple of times with supervision and he was always great with her, until the time I turned my back for a minute and he killed my cat.

    I'm not trying to be grim or anything and I'm not saying that because that happened with this dog, the same would happen with yours. I love my dog and if she ever did something like that, it wouldn't change my feelings. It seems like what happened was a total fluke and it's great that the owners of the dog that was hurt are being cool about it. I'm just saying that if it happened once there is definitely a chance that it could happen again, so get training asap and be super cautious with her from now on. Good luck.

  • It sounds to me like your vet was right and that your dog was being territorial. Since we live in an apt right now, one of our dogs is having problems figuring out territory whereas it was much more clear to her in our house / yard in Austin. So she barks pretty much any time another dog (not a person) walks in front of our apt. door. Also, some dogs just give off the wrong vibes to other dogs, like high energy and whatnot. One of our dogs always goes crazy around Jack Russell Terriers. I think they just really push her buttons for some reason.

    We no longer take our female off leash anywhere anymore and she has her leash on her collar before we open the door. We also have taught her to lie down and roll over on command (being submissive). As our trainer said, it's okay for a dog to have a guarding instinct, but NOT okay for the dog to use it against the owner's wishes. For example, when a dog is trained specifically as a guard dog, they have release words that they must immediately obey. So when we tell her that something is okay, she has to respect that we are telling her it's okay and we make her roll over as a sign of submission to that idea. Otherwise, it is giving her too much control over a situation. Does that make sense?

    Also, if you want to use a behaviorist, I recommend getting a rec from your vet. A lot of trainers advertise themselves as behaviorists when they are not and they are really two very different things.

    Business Cat. image
  • I am so sorry! I can imagine how upsetting this is to you. In the three years I've had my dogs, Kimber has brought me a squirrel, an armadillo, and two birds. These weren't even anyone's pets and I still cried each time. Thank goodness the other owners are being so calm and kind, and I'm glad they little dog was okay.

    However, ditto to pp. You dog was just guarding "her" territory. I certainly don't think she's going to turn into a snarling over-agressive beast Smile. Do what PPs suggested, and just be prepared knowing that this can happen (and could to anyone, it's not just your dog, I promise).

    Good luck! I hope this has the best possible outcome. Spend some time working with your dog and preparing for situations like this, take extra cautions, and give her some extra hugs. ((Hugs)) to you, I hope you feel better soon.

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