Dog with anger management issues

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Chyuu, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. Chyuu

    Chyuu PetForums Junior

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    Hello everyone. I'm not sure if anger management is the right term for how my dog is acting, but it is the closest thing I can think of.

    So, we adopted a sheltie a few years ago named Pongo. Pongo was rescued from a puppy mill in Missouri. He was never very social and has made great lengths, but still isn't your average dog.

    One issue we have with him is if he gets very upset, he seems to go into a mini rage fit. For example, if we accidently trip over him or step on him, a normal dog would just yelp, while Pongo will start attacking your feet and growling, until you make him sit, then he calms down.

    If you leave the house through the kitchen door when he wants to go outside to do his business, he will literally start biting and jumping on the door, literally pulling the curtains down from the door's window.

    He doesn't like when we carry laundry, and when my boyfriend brings it upstairs, Pongo will start ripping at the legs of his pants.

    And finally, when our new puppy bothers our other dog, she just snarls at her or ignores her. Pongo will occasionally start snapping at her and chasing her. He will only do this during play time if he feels like she took his toy.


    I was wondering if anyone had any tips on what to do with him. When he goes into his little rage fits, all you have to do is make him sit, and he will calm down. I was wondering if maybe this had something to do with his upbringing and could never be brought out of him?
    He does not like his snout, legs, or paws touched, because the rescue told his at the mill, he was probably picked up by these parts. Although he has come far, he still freaks out when touched there. That's why I'm wondering if his anger issues can ever be worked out.

    Thanks for all your help!
     
  2. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

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    Why have you waited a few years to tackle this problem? What has changed?

    Sounds like lack of impulse control to me and your dog has never been taught how to deal with frustration
     
  3. ouesi

    ouesi PetForums VIP

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    I agree, sounds like impulse control issues, and handling issues that are relatively easy to work on.

    There are several good trainers in your area. Look for a good clicker trainer who can show you how to desensitize Pongo to handling and teach him impulse control games.
    Rachel Friedman at A Better Pet looks like a good place to start, if she's not convenient to you, she can definitely recommend a trainer closer to you.

    Kikopup also has some good videos on handling exercises:
    Handling Shyness- Clicker Dog Training - YouTube
     
  4. Chyuu

    Chyuu PetForums Junior

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    Well the issue wasn't actually that bad until my boyfriend and I moved back in because we are now finishing college. He usually doesn't freak out, it only happens every once in a while, but he is definitely not a fan of my boyfriend (or my dad, he always gets mad when my dad kisses my mom :)) Pongo is not a fan of males so I am pretty sure he is agitated with a new male living here, and now a new puppy.

    And thank you very much for the information and the trainer information. I honestly never really understood his problem and just figured we could work it out with him. We only figured out how to calm him down not stop the issue. I will talk to my parents tonight about a trainer. Thanks again for all your help!
     
  5. ClaireandDaisy

    ClaireandDaisy PetForums VIP

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    When you say `our` dog... do you mean he has been living with your parents or he`s been with you?
    Either way his world has suddenly changed by the sound of it, and he is extremely stressed. Especially since you mention you have a `new puppy`? And who owns the `other dog`?
    Could you clarify the situation and perhaps people can understand the problem.
     
  6. Chyuu

    Chyuu PetForums Junior

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    Sorry. All of the dogs are owned by my parents. I was in high school when my parents got him but it was my senior year. Every year, for three years, I was gone for about 7 months away at college. I came back for breaks and summer, though. The dog likes me, as much as he can actually like a person. The dog is OK with my boyfriend, he just does not like being approach or picked up by my boyfriend.
    The new puppy, a little less than one year old, was brought home by my parents. He actually sleeps with the new puppy now and no longer snaps at her when they play. From what I have observed today, my dogs are getting more accustomed to the new dog.
     

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