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Olde English Bulldogge Puppy Getting Aggressive on Walks

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Barking Dogs, Apr 8, 2021.


  1. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    My 6 month old Olde English Bulldogge has been getting increasingly aggressive whilst out out walks.

    It mostly manifests itself as barking but if he's off his lead in a field, he will start tearing around snapping at the grass and then trying to nip my ankles. I don't know if this is his herding instinct? It's definitely much worse when he's in a field or open area - if we are on a path he generally trots along happily at my feet & it all seems completely out of character as he's good natured and reasonably obedient at home.

    Things I have tried with limited success are:

    1) Put him on a tight lead every time he starts off and let him off again after 100 steps. This works eventually but it's always back to square one on the next walk and I have to go through it all again.

    2) Stop dead for a few minutes, ignore him, turn my back on him. This shuts him up too but he soon starts again once I start walking though eventually he does stop.

    I don't know if this is herding instinct but I've read various posts on other sites about rewarding him when he's good and I'm doing all those things too but this isn't getting any better and he'll soon be a big dog with powerful jaws so I'm somewhat worried!
     
  2. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    Are you just simply walking him, or are you engaging with him?

    By that i mean are you playing with him, actively training him, encouraging him to investigate and sniff things.

    It could be that he finds that you are doing rather boring, and is simply making his own fun.
     
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  3. Jason25

    Jason25 PetForums VIP

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    I doubt it's aggression, sounds more like a youngster having mad zoomies and getting a bit over the top lol.
     
  4. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    His body language and the look on his face is certainly not playful that's for sure!
     
  5. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    I am but there's only so much you can do walking through the middle of an open field! I throw sticks for him & he shows some interest until he gets bored and goes mad again. I find it odd that he only does this in an open space, if we're going along a footpath he's as good as gold.
     
  6. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    I would certainly stop throwing sticks, they are dangerous. Not all dogs enjoy a game of fetch either. Bull breeds tend to love a game of tug though and you can use this as a reward.

    There are loads of things you can do. Sounds like your dog wants more interaction and direction. Take a tuggy toy, hide some treats, practice sitting, down, wait etc. Actively train him.

    Engage with him, otherwise he will do exactly what he is doing - try to get your attention. He's not being aggressive, he probably just wants something to do.
     
  7. Jason25

    Jason25 PetForums VIP

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    It's hard to say without seeing it for ourselves, but at a guess I would say it's zoomies getting out of control.
    Have a look at zoomies (frenetic random activity periods) on google. Uusually involves running about like a crazed beast, attacking toys (in this case, you lol) barking etc. But if you do think it's aggression it might be best to speak to a behaviourist because I don't think you should be seeing aggression in such a young dog.

    When mine was that age it would jump and nip me when having them, but soon grew out of it lol.
     
  8. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    I've not taken his tuggy toy out, I'll give that a go later.
     
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  9. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    Not heard of that but will check it out, thanks. If it's the case then hopefully he'll grow out of it!
     
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  10. Jason25

    Jason25 PetForums VIP

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    It could be that or like @Nonnie was saying, he might just be bored and making his own fun, trying to get you to engage. Try giving him the tug toy when he's nipping at your ankles. Good luck they are a pain at that age lol
     
  11. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    My dog (bull breed) used to do something very similar, and still does if he gets over excited or finds the environment boring, and he's 6 now.

    Some breeds and individuals need more than to simply be walked and allowed to mooch about. They need a higher level of human interaction otherwise they find ways to entertain themselves. This usually involves them doing things we dont want them to do.

    Making yourself really exciting and the provider of all things fun can help with recall too.

    Id suggest having a toy that is used on walks only. Makes it a more valued and rewarding item.
     
  12. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums VIP

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    Given that there’s no herding breed in the Bulldogge, it wouldn’t seem likely to be herding instinct. I’m going with the others thinking: young dog zombies; possibly a bit bored, so making his own fun. Tug toy is good, or you could get him sniffing for treats - scatter a few around and get him to sniff them out. On that subject, do let him sniff as he walks - think of the ‘walk’ as ‘taking the dog for a sniff’. It’s really important that dogs get to read their environment - with their noses. Sniffing is really good for dogs and can help calm them as well.
    Finally, I do ABSOLUTELY agree the line on not throwing sticks - the dog of a friend of mine ran onto a stick and impaled itself. Moreover, splinters can get stuck in gums, causing abscesses; or - worse - in the throat or even the stomach.
    Hope that helps. :)
     
  13. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    What’s he like with other dogs?

    It’s possible it could be a release of anxiety and adrenaline after an interaction if he gets overwhelmed at all.
     
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  14. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    Yes, that's what I thought. It was just the way he seems to circle me when he does it and it also only happens in an open space like a field that made me think of this.

    I'd never given throwing sticks a second thought to be honest - I've taken it on board now, thanks
     
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  15. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    He's fine on the occasions he meets other dogs. The place where this happens is near where I live in the middle of nowhere & he never meets another dog there, though.
     
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  16. Nonnie

    Nonnie PetForums VIP

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    The open field could simply be too boring for him. My dog is the same - a field is really the only place where he will happily play and interact with me, as there is absolutely nothing else there to hold his attention. Woods/forests etc and he is tracking scents and hunting constantly.
     
  17. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    So I bought him a ball on a rope and he goes absolutely mad.

    The game seem to be that I throw it as far as I can and we both race to get to it first & if he does, I have to try and catch him and get it back off him then rinse and repeat.

    It's going to give me a heart attack!

    Thanks for the advice.
     
  18. Ian246

    Ian246 PetForums VIP

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    I hate to spoil the fun, but don’t overdo it. His bones are not matured yet and chasing balls (and what have you ) with sudden changes of direction is not so good for those young bones. And for your heart! :)
    You can Google ‘puppy growth plates’ if you want to know more.
     
  19. Barking Dogs

    Barking Dogs PetForums Newbie

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    Yes, he's been getting about 30 minutes a day but with all this running around I guess he's covering more distance. Maybe I'll hold off the throwing and chasing and just have him tug
     
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