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Dog aggresion

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by emilylouise9982, Apr 21, 2011.


  1. emilylouise9982

    emilylouise9982 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi. I am in desperate need of some advice. I have got an 18 month cocker spaniel. I have had her since she was a puppy and took her to dog training classes for a few months. Walking her was a pleasure. She was sociable with children,adults and other dogs.
    About 2/3 months ago we started to notice a change in her behaviour. Whilst out on a walk she was off of the lead and a dog came up and growled at her and she pinned it to the floor. I was so shocked as I had never seen this before and it was conpletely out of character. Since then she has started barking at children, been aggressive towards others dogs and does not stop barking(quite aggresively)at visitors who come into the house. There is a dog next door and if she knows he is out in the garden she will bark quite aggresively at the dog but her tail will still be wagging. If I go to stop her whilst she is doing this then she will go for me or my partner.
    Because of this, over the last few months we have been very aware of making sure that she knows who is boss due the "pack" mentality. She is also very good with commands so its not that she is not obidient. It is just so hard because 2 months ago she was the perfect dog whereas now I am starting to resent her. i cant think of anything we have done to make her the way she is. I have grown up with dogs and I know that they can be hard work at times but I am starting to question whetehr she will change?
    She has never bitten anybody but I wonder is that coming next. I really want to get things back to how they were and enjoy her rather than worrying what she's going to do next.
    Whats hard to understand is that with me and my family she is such a loving gentle dog and then out of nowhere she changes and thats what makes me nervous around her because she is unpredictable........please help.
     
  2. London Dogwalker

    London Dogwalker PetForums Senior

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    Is she speyed?
     
  3. Rottiefan

    Rottiefan PetForums VIP

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    First priority is to get her checked out by the vets ASAP. Sudden changes in behaviour, especially involving aggression, can be down to medical issues that you can't pick up on your own.

    Secondly, have a few sessions with a qualified APDT, APBC or COAPE who can analyse the behaviours and decide what's really going on. I know it may seem aggressive, but it could be many things- dog behaviour is incredibly dynamic.

    Lastly, forget about the pack mentality. Your OH and you don't need to assert positions in some mythical 'pack'. It really is an old, worn-thin theory and has no relevance to fixing behavioural problems. You need to work with a professional to build your dog's confidence in these situations that are obviously freaking her out.
     
  4. emilylouise9982

    emilylouise9982 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi.thanks for your reply.she is due to be speyed.could this make a difference?
    I will definately look at meeting with a specialist.I am desperate to sort the issue and quickly.where is the best place to find a specialist?
     
  5. SEVEN_PETS

    SEVEN_PETS PetForums VIP

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    did you get her from a good breeder and did you meet the parents? were they good tempered? unfortantely, cockers are a victim to their popularity success. Puppy farmers cash in on this breed and can breed puppies with questionable temperaments. Don't know if this is the case here, but it may be something to think about. a behaviourist is the way to go. :)
     
  6. rottiemum

    rottiemum PetForums VIP

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    Hi there - check the APBC website for a behaviourist in your area. We just had one come out yesterday for our 3 year old rescue rottie who was becoming aggressive on walks. He was fabulous! Can't recommend them enough. Of course, having the vet check her first is probably the best thing - in case it's medical! :)
     
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