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  • I need help

    The pup who is now 7 months old was showing food agression, well, I kicked that in the butt, but now he is growling at my 4 yr old when she comes close and he is eating. He is a very dominant dog. I do not allow him to domenate me, but how do I teach him that he can't dominate my kid?
    If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!

  • #2
    Take him to a professional immediately. I am sure lots of us here have lots of good suggestions but when it comes down to it you need to have your dog evaluated IN PERSON by a professional who can read and interpret it. The reason I say immediately is because you described him as a very dominant dog, growling at a 4 yr old.

    A professional can probably pull him into line for you before it gets to be to late.

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    • #3
      Put him in a kennel when you feed him. This will create the "my space, your space" system. This will help discourage the pup from becoming possessive of things outside his space.

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      • #4
        Is he neutered ?

        This may help some, but I had my daughter hand feed my dogs all of them. Pre measure the dogs food, and then have the dog sit, give him a handfull of food, when he is done with it, he must sit and wait for her to feed more, and so on. Do this for a few weeks, and he will know that anytime she comes to the bowl, it is a good thing, also she is providing the food. I would be very careful, what if she has food he wants? I love my dogs, but my kids come first. Good luck I know that you must be very upset, I hope things work out!

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Gracy Rose View Post
          Put him in a kennel when you feed him. This will create the "my space, your space" system. This will help discourage the pup from becoming possessive of things outside his space.
          That will not work. What if he has a bone or a toy outside the crate and becomes possesive of that. I just got a hold of a guy that I used to train field trial dogs with. He gave me a great idea. I use an electronic collar on the dog and he told me to force the "down" with it, so that even if the dog is running in the yard and I say "down" he will go down. When I get it well established in a few days I can then teach my daughter to tell him down and I can re enforce it with the collar. That will teach him that she is also in charge. He also said to make the dog sit and everyone but him gets to touch and feel the food before him. That way he sees that it belongs to us and not him we are giving it to him. I will give this a good try.
          If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!

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          • #6
            This is not a good sign. If it were me, because I have not tolerance of aggression at all, I would place him in a home with no kids...but thats me, anyway, if you choose to keep him, do not trust him alone in the same room with your child. They have been known to inflict damage , as Im sure you know. Get him neutered and in training asap. This may not change his alpha nature, but it will help him keep himself under control. good luck!!

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            • #7
              I had no idea you had a new dog. I would be very nervous with that dog, but I hope the plan you mentioned works.

              Tammy in Utah
              Groomers Helper Affiliate

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              • #8
                NILIF

                First off i would like to say you really should consult with a professional dog trainer who DEALS with cases like this and can work with both YOU and the dog at the same time (none of this well ill fix him for you and send you home with a brand new dog without providing any extra courses to help you and the dog work together). THEN id try this....
                i would try the NILIF (nothing in life is free) system. you can look it up online in a search engine and find out about it. basically how it works is like this.
                food is yours. and yours only. he is lucky to even LOOK at that food and YOU decide WHEN,HOW MUCH, AND WHERE to feed it. i wouldnt feed in a crate as that just reinforces that what is in HIS crate is HIS. what if he got a bone or stole something that you absolutely needed to get out of his mouth? and he runs into his crate? therefore now he's on HIS terroitory and now you have to deal with getting a large dog out of a crate, that is growling at you with something in his mouth he shouldnt have in the first place. basically...toys,treats,bones,anything that is his...pick it up off the floor. he gets it ONLY when you offer it to him. games start and end when YOU choose. rawhides,raw bones,toys get offered and taken away when YOU choose. he must sit,down,stay,do a trick...whatever before he gets ANYTHING. he must sit for petting, a treat, before being fed, before going outside, before going out for a walk, and AFTER coming in for a walk...ie sitting while you take the leash off, and sitting and letting YOU go first through the door, sitting before being let inside. ive lived with a dominant dog....and its not pretty. none of us were 4 yrs old...but he was a 75 lb amstaff/shepherd mix. and when he got nasty he got NASTY. sadly we didnt find out about the NILIF until after we had him pts...but my dog now...he dosnt sit for food BUT hes not food aggressive. if i want whats in his mouth he MUST give it to me. maybe not very willingly...but its MINE and I want it NOW and IM going to pull it out of your mouth if you want me to or not and you BETTER not even THINK about growling or even biting me. but he must sit for his leash and collar being put on, sit for love, do a trick for treats, and sometimes sit before going outside AND sit before being let back in. he also knows alot better than to dare pull me on a walk...he gets corrected very quickly usually with an AH AH or a quick jerk on the leash with the choker chain...usually gets his attention and refocus's him on what hes to be doing.
                Hound

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                • #9
                  The "Nothing in life is free" program is great. I used it with my jack. I still say you truly need to consult a professional though and not a field dog trainer. No offense to your friend. When I say that I mean someone who deals daily with dogs with these behavioral issues.

                  Btw be very careful with that shock collar. I am not "against" shock collars. They can be a valuable tool but they have to be used with exact precision and at a minimum. I am worried you may make the dog worse Think about it this way. You are causing discomfort to an already dominant animal. Not a great combination.

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                  • #10
                    Caution

                    What breed of dog?? I agree that you should get some professional help. And never trust him alone with the little child not even for a second. If the child is able with your supervision you might try teaching her how to feed the dog. Have her make the dog wait for her to give him his food then he will learn that she is there to give and not to take. Make the dog sit and wait while she puts his food down and also teach her to never go near the dog while he is eating. I would also reccomend supervised play time only meaning no toys on the floor or available to him unless an adult is present. I still think that the best way is to teach your child to interact with the dog properly and I dont feel she is to young she is able to learn. This way the dog will learn that she is in charge not him. Good luck to you

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                    • #11
                      Well I for one would get him neutered for starters.It is also unsafe for your child to be alone with him in the same room.I know easy to say but not so easy with a four year old! Are you willing to invest the energy and have the time to spend to try and turn this around?Bad habbits are forming and this guy sounds like he wants to play hard ball.He might not be trying to be dominate with you now,but he will try soon I am sure of it.You need some proffessonal help and the clock is ticking.I am sorry to say if it were me and my childs saftey were at risk I would find a home better suited for him.Good luck w/what ever you decide to do.

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                      • #12
                        He is nuetered. We got that done about 5 weeks ago. I am profecient with the electronic collar. I have trained many of hunting and field trial dogs. I just had no clue how to establish my kids dominance. I established mine a long time ago. I have also started making him sit and wait for his food while me and my family all handle it before he gets it. I wish I was more of a morning person so I could get up early and get him out for some exercise before breakfast. But, I also can't leave the house early. My hubby works 2nd shift and is sleeping and I don't dare wake my kid up. lol Thanks for all the suggestion. Keep them coming. I like to take it all in and find what works. Not all things work for each different dog.
                        If your dog is fat, you are not getting enough exercise!

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                        • #13
                          I seen an episode of the dog whisperer with that situation. I'm a little fuzzy on what happened. I know it involved the leash pulling method he usually uses and taking the food away from him and when he acted aggressive he would pull on the leash. The always say not to attempt what Ceasar did. I'm surprised you didn't see it. I know your a fan like me.

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                          • #14
                            I agree with Jadenlea only because a young child is involved. I would go right to a professional trainer with specific experience in agression issues because they escalate rather quickly and sometimes without warning and most dogs that are food agressive (like my dog but only with other dogs not people) often perceive other things in thier household and the world as theirs to be protected.

                            There are times when my dog will perceive sticks, toys and other things outside as his when playing with neighborhood dogs and curl his lip and I immediately make him drop whatever it is and all play is ceased for that session. You just never know he might perceive a lot of different things in your house/area as his and act out towards your daughter.

                            Maybe they will suggest starting with just feeding him a little at a time and when the bowl is empty to have you/your daughter pick up the bowl and add more food so he sees it as a positive thing (depending on how safe that task would be for her).

                            Either way professional trainers are way more in tune with picking up some warning signals and behaviors way before we would ever pick up on them.

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                            • #15
                              If he is just showing the aggression towards your child it seems like he accepts you as "pack leader" but has put himself above your child. I know you said you all handle his food before he gets it but do you eat before he does? I would let him sit in a crate or outside the door or whatever works so he can see your daughter eating her dinner before his dinner is given to him. It sounds like he has effectively assigned himself a spot in your family above your daughter. Also if you are sitting around make sure he has to remain on the floor while your daughter is on the couch or bed. Anywhere you go with him make sure your daughter goes first, like thru a door or into the car. Yeah, I'm another Cesar fan. Could she hold his leash (with your help) on a walk?

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