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Old 09-22-2017, 08:14 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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Okay, we've had Friederik for four weeks today. He is 100% housebroken, at least at our house and has settled into life with my husband and me very well. There is absolutely nothing he loves more than going on walks (always on leash), and he gets SOOOO excited when he sees another dog. I've been noticing that when approached by a larger dog, he reacts just as I would like him to, but for some reason, he often tries to bully smaller dogs. By that I mean that he barks and sometimes lunges at them at tries to nip them. Plus, he's worse when he's on a leash than when he is off it, but I don't want to let him off leash until I know I can trust him not to be a bully. When we left him for three days with my sister, he did great with all of her dogs, all of whom are much larger than he is. Does anyone have any experience with this kind of thing?
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Old 09-22-2017, 10:10 PM
 
Location: Northeastern U.S.
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How old is Friederik; and what kind/breed of dog is he? If he's a puppy, the barking and lunging and trying to nip might be part of an urge to play rough. If he's a mature dog, I would get him some training, in group obedience classes or a private trainer. Dogs can often be more aggressive on-leash than off-leash.
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Old 09-23-2017, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Regina14 View Post
How old is Friederik; and what kind/breed of dog is he? If he's a puppy, the barking and lunging and trying to nip might be part of an urge to play rough. If he's a mature dog, I would get him some training, in group obedience classes or a private trainer. Dogs can often be more aggressive on-leash than off-leash.
He's a Keeshond-Pomeranian mix, probably about 3 to 4 years old. He generally does very well off-leash, but I hesitate to take him off leash around other dogs until I know for sure that he won't bully the smaller ones.

I just barely started an obedience class with him. It's for adult dogs. I was really looking forward to having him be able to socialize off leash in a controlled setting. But guess what? We were the only ones who showed up! Now I guess we're in a private lesson, even though we paid for a group lesson. I guess that could have its benefits, but not where socialization is concerned.
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Old 09-23-2017, 10:34 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
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Bring up the issue with your trainer. After a couple of lessons, as she gets to know your dog, she will have some suggestions. She most certainly has dogs of her own and might be willing to do some socialization. You Need To GET YOUR Dog Fully Under Control first.
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Old 09-23-2017, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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Originally Posted by oregonwoodsmoke View Post
Bring up the issue with your trainer. After a couple of lessons, as she gets to know your dog, she will have some suggestions. She most certainly has dogs of her own and might be willing to do some socialization. You Need To GET YOUR Dog Fully Under Control first.
Yes, we'll be talking at length to her on Tuesday. I hope she can give us some good suggestions. I wish I were getting more input on this thread.

Have any of you had a dog that was aggressive on leash, but as friendly as can be off leash?
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Old 09-23-2017, 07:51 PM
 
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Dogs can feel insecure on leash. I remember at the dog park when I used to go people in our group would explain this to people with dogs on leashes. But in your case, I don't know why he would be insecure about smaller dogs.

Maybe you need to do what I have to with mine for now. She reacts badly to any dog that is not a bestie, especially large ones, so the moment she starts a reaction I shhhhhhhhh her and have her sit, pay attention to me, and get praised for ignoring the 'offending' dog.

It's always best that our dogs pay attention to US than other dogs anyway, but especially if they are reacting badly.

We want our dogs to be socialized, but the #1 thing is obedient and fully under our control. Ceasar just does a 'correction' (bit of a leash pull) to reactive dogs. He walks them all over and teaches the dog to pay attention to him/the walk, and no one else.

I am not following all of the methods of anyone, but his methods are always in the back of my mind from when I used to watch his shows, and I at least do the concept often, even if modified.
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Old 09-23-2017, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
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Originally Posted by jencam View Post
Dogs can feel insecure on leash. I remember at the dog park when I used to go people in our group would explain this to people with dogs on leashes.
It's strange, I know. Off leash, we haven't had any problems. I guess he just feels that he's more in control when not restrained. When he's on leash, it's like he feels like he has to be on the defensive since he knows he doesn't have the upper hand (or paw, as the case may be ).

Quote:
But in your case, I don't know why he would be insecure about smaller dogs.
The only thing I can think is that it might be the same as with people. Sometimes I think everybody has to bully somebody, and the lower on the totem pole people conceive themselves to be, they'll look for someone even lower. Maybe Friederik knows he wouldn't be much of a match against a larger dog, but that he could easily take on a smaller one. Who knows?

Quote:
Maybe you need to do what I have to with mine for now. She reacts badly to any dog that is not a bestie, especially large ones, so the moment she starts a reaction I shhhhhhhhh her and have her sit, pay attention to me, and get praised for ignoring the 'offending' dog.

It's always best that our dogs pay attention to US than other dogs anyway, but especially if they are reacting badly.

We want our dogs to be socialized, but the #1 thing is obedient and fully under our control. Ceasar just does a 'correction' (bit of a leash pull) to reactive dogs. He walks them all over and teaches the dog to pay attention to him/the walk, and no one else.

I am not following all of the methods of anyone, but his methods are always in the back of my mind from when I used to watch his shows, and I at least do the concept often, even if modified.
I've read that suggestion before, and am going to start trying it as soon as the opportunity presents itself. Thank you!
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Old 09-24-2017, 06:33 AM
 
1,567 posts, read 800,488 times
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Yes to the distraction solution - get the dog to refocus when the offending behavior starts. Preferably just BEFORE the behavior starts, but just after should work in the long run.

I've heard of dogs being defensive when on leash, but haven't had a dog do that in a long time. Being aggressive towards smaller dogs - like you say - sometimes "lower on the totem pole" explains that. Depending on your dog, this COULD be a herding response - an expression of the desire to control other animals. And perhaps that instinct expresses itself when on leash through some early learning experience. The reason I mention this is because if it is some inappropriate instinct expression, you may have better luck if you find an appropriate way for the dog to express it. Just food for thought.

I also agree that getting the trainer's input could be very helpful. Experienced opinion, all that.
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Old 09-24-2017, 06:43 AM
 
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Maybe the small dogs your are meeting are either rude, and talking smack to him, or it is leash reactivity. He sounds to me like he loses any issues with time, patience and understanding.

Any chance of him playing in a yard with nice, small dogs in the neighborhood? It sounds to me like there won't be an issue once he gets to play with dogs.

My little one can be a yapping fool, but it is a different sound when he wants to play, than it was when he was young and unsure. At that point he would get quiet when he approached because he is not dominant or rude. I made sure all his meet and greets were safe when he was young (kind of like you are doing). Now he doesn't bark (yap) to meet another dog, well from afar he might say Hey!

It sounds to me like they might be overwhelming to him, or just rude. All of the above, or he might feel the need to protect you. It doesn't sound to me like he is a bully, just unsure of things. Be on the lookout for a nice, small dog he can play with. Or maybe the girl dog you are looking for could be small, or smaller?
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Old 09-24-2017, 08:03 AM
 
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Small dogs can be real a-holes. He might have had a bad experience before with them. I've never hear of well-adjusted dogs needing someone to pick on or bully. I'd guess some little yappers bothered him in the past! Maybe even attacked him. I had a large dog and two where I live JUMPED on her FACE!

Best case he gets over it totally and eventually will be friendly with them. Worst case, he learns to pay attention to Mama and ignore them :-)
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