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Dog is very territorial to other dogs only on his week day regular walk

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by GinaP, Jan 31, 2020.


  1. GinaP

    GinaP PetForums Newbie

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    as the title says one of my dogs is very territorial and can be quite aggressive (he does have quite a lot of anxiety in general so I do think it’s anxious aggression not full on aggression) just on his regular week day walk- it’s a lovely couple of miles walk right by my house so quick and easy to do before work. On a weekend or day off we take them elsewhere on a long and different walk to keep it interesting and on them he is meek and well mannered! Why is he so territorial about his block and can I do anything about it? We meet maybe 1 or 2 dogs each time we walk the usual one so it’s not a massive problem but can be an issue if I don’t get to him on time there hasn’t been any injuries yet but just a lot of noise. Some dogs he is okay with (mostly females) and yes he has been neutered
     
  2. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums Senior

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    I don’t know what you mean by “get him on”. Do you mean “on the lead”? If so, you really need to keep him on the lead, especially in built up areas. It’s unfair in other dog owners if he’s going for their dogs. Also, what if he runs across the road when he sees one and is involved in an accident?

    What do you do, when he’s reacting to these other dogs? (Or before he reacts to them, but when you see them?)
     
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  3. Calvine

    Calvine PetForums VIP

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    @Ian246:

    OP said
    ''if I don’t get to him on time'' - but yes, I am guessing the dogs are not on a lead from the way it reads.
     
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  4. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    Keep him on lead and away from other dogs.
     
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  5. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums Senior

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    Whoops! I must be going blind (or I rushed reading it - fatal error). Apologies.
     
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  6. GinaP

    GinaP PetForums Newbie

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    It’s not a built up area it’s in the countryside and he goes on the lead by roads
    Well if I can get him on the lead I have him on it and either stop and try and distract him with a treat (which he’s not interested in) or walk past saying “come on let’s go” in a really perky voice. and usually when on a lead and kept a distance away he doesn’t do much maybe bark but I think he just is anxious and then gets worked up when off lead with the other dogs because he’s okay to start with then they go to move either to play or run off and that’s when he goes funny... if it was a full issue of him being naughty and has to be kept on a lead at all times then he wouldn’t be lovely everywhere else! Elsewhere he is so well mannered more well mannered than my other dog who can be quite bolshy and pushy but nice
     
  7. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums Senior

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    Right. I'm not sure I'm completely understanding all the nuances, but I'm wondering if he's not actually OK. Dog body language is very subtle and we often miss the signs that a dog is anxious. So, it could be that he is showing signs he's not too happy and, as the other dogs get closer it really does become too much for him and he reacts. Alternatively, he doesn't give any signs, but when the dogs get close to him / around him, he just finds it too much.
    What you're doing is fine, but the answer, really, is to keep him away from the other dogs. Otherwise, he's just liable to get more stressed by the whole experience. Some dogs are just more anxious around other dogs.
     
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  8. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    I wonder if he’s anxious in this particular area because he associates it with certain dogs that he has had run ins with in the past?

    If he’s off lead then you need to have enough control to get him back on a lead quickly.

    If you can’t, then by law he’s not under control, so don’t let him off in this area as you know how he will react and you can then take him in another direction and avoid negative interactions.

    The more negative experiences he has in that area, the worse he’ll get.

    Conversely, if you “protect” him from these encounters he might gradually learn to relax in that area and behave as he does elsewhere.
     
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  9. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums Senior

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    This is an extremely good thought, in my view.
    My Sprocker is like this in the centre of our village where lives a fairly unpleasant Border Terrier. The first intro was this thing coming through the owner’s open window like a heat seeking missile at us. Since then, he’s been EXTREMELY anxious going past that part if the village (it’s largely unavoidable) and also seems to dislike ANY Border Terrier he meets.
     
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  10. havoc

    havoc PetForums VIP

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    'Fraid I agree with this but probably not for the reasons you think. I too have a dog reactive dog, what's more he's a GSD so I'm well aware we'll be blamed no matter what happens. For reasons other than that reactivity I took to keeping him on the lead and we both grew in confidence. I was more relaxed because I wasn't constantly keeping watch and in return he could relax. I use a 10ft lead so on normal walks it still stayed loose even though he would be meandering, sniffing all the good stuff etc. To make sure he got some real serious exercise I hired a field twice a week so I could chuck a ball without checking the horizon first. Nowadays he's fine, I know his recall is good and all that time spent in close proximity with him on the lead has built a real trust between us.

    Lead walking is seen as second best and I really don't think that's the case. I honestly believe it can relieve a nervous dog of the 'responsibilty' to react.
     
    #10 havoc, Feb 3, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2020
    Beth78 and Lurcherlad like this.
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