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Old 03-26-2010, 04:26 PM
 
Location: Woodland Park, CO
7,756 posts, read 13,270,720 times
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Our 18 month old Bordeaux (French Mastiff) is increasingly growing into his role as guardian/patroller of the homestead, which is really cool. But today when we arrived home, a crew (of Hispanics, if that matters) was working on the home next door.

As we exited the SUV, he immediately faced the perceived threat with a guttural growl and charged to the edge of our property (which was pretty close to them). He meant business, and everyone knew it.

My question is when do you stop appreciating his instinctive behavior and start discouraging it?
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Old 03-26-2010, 06:08 PM
 
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I would be talking with some folks who know and handle these types of dogs. I would sure not have a big molosser type dog if I was not a strong handler.
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Old 03-27-2010, 08:12 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by little elmer View Post
My question is when do you stop appreciating his instinctive behavior and start discouraging it?
Ditto on the previous post. You can appreciate his instinctive protective nature always, but you'd better train him.

That goes for any dog, no matter how big or small. If he immediately became aggressive and charged the fence, and you were not able to handle him, you've got some serious training to do.

Please contact a professional trainer who's worked - and successfully trained - these dogs. IMHO ~
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Old 03-27-2010, 10:32 AM
 
Location: east of my daughter-north of my son
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Both my dogs, my terrier mix (in his younger days) and the Harrier I inherited from my Dad are very protective of our house. Ben now is 20 so he could care less but when he was younger he went nuts at the doorbell and if he could see people out the window. He was a stray and we couldn't get him to listen to us. It was like he was in a "zone". Same thing now with Charlie. My husband has worked with him but we have only had him a year and he is now 9. So retraining has been difficult. The good news is nobody messes with our home. The bad news is we can't control the barking and growling.

So I agree it's best to get some kind of training going where he will listen to you. Nothing wrong with protecting but he has to learn to listen to you.

I will say Charlie is okay when we walk him but my husband has worked with him on heeling and listening outside. Ben would just yap at everyone. Neither dog has ever gone after anyone. But you just never know. Put them back in the house and big difference. Time to protect the family.

Good luck.
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Old 03-27-2010, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Woodland Park, CO
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Thanks for the replies.

I should note that he wasn't as out-of-control as the incident sounded - he maintained a controlled form as if to say "that far and no more" - kind of a warning. They weren't our neighbors (which he knows), so it was appropriate.

I was thinking hypothetically if one could get too aggressive, and I do agree that I should (and will) teach him barriers.
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Old 03-27-2010, 07:22 PM
 
Location: east of my daughter-north of my son
1,928 posts, read 3,480,613 times
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He sounds like a good guard dog. Taking care of the family and house.

I thought about your post today when my Charlie was going nuts at the front window. My husband was out in front talking to a neighbor and Charlie barked the whole time. I was in the kitchen trimming my terrier for the warmer weather and kept calling Charlie. But he thought dad was in trouble so he kept at it until my husband came in. As annoying as it was, it's nice to know he's watching out for us.
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Old 03-28-2010, 04:14 AM
 
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I keep worrying about this because of the sheer power large mastiff type dogs do have and the genetic potential for serious agression. They were true guard and war dogs.

Not small and agile enough nor the prey drive for police apprehension as they are all about guarding their turf not off their turf........and with very crushing jaws. These dogs can be very serious so please, make sure you are 100%!! My friend's ex-boyfriend's Boerbel was oblivious to TWO ecollars strapped on its neck. The dog really did not mature until around 3 and the difference between 3 and 18 months was night and day. The dog became very scary indeed. [and I am comfortable around dogs used in police work].
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Old 03-28-2010, 07:39 AM
 
5,715 posts, read 14,560,900 times
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Default Please don't encourage this "protective" behavior!

Quote:
Originally Posted by little elmer View Post
Thanks for the replies.

I should note that he wasn't as out-of-control as the incident sounded - he maintained a controlled form as if to say "that far and no more" - kind of a warning. They weren't our neighbors (which he knows), so it was appropriate.

I was thinking hypothetically if one could get too aggressive, and I do agree that I should (and will) teach him barriers.
Any dog that is allowed to can become aggressive. The larger the dog, the worse the outcome.

If your dog is becoming aggressive enough that you are concerned, you should trust your instincts.

You've mentioned Cesar Milan in other posts. You already KNOW what he would say about a dog that is exerting dominance.
You, however, are not Cesar and I would not recommend that you try training your dog by his methods.

I would never want the liability of having a "guard dog" on my property. I don't know what the dog ordinances are in your particular city in Texas but I do know that some areas of Texas has BSL and some other tough dog laws. Have you researched what happens to homeowners and to dogs in your state when and if there ever is an "incident"?

Having a breed such as yours on your property is enough of a deterrent. Many people are frightened of them due to their size and strength. With training, these dogs can be great family dogs and can be like big teddy bears. Left to their own devices, they can be time bombs. It is your responsibility to train your dog.

You should listen to grannynancy. She has a lot of experience training dogs. She actually works with large, powerful, dog breeds in Police work.

A breed such as yours is not a breed to "experiment" with. They are not for novice owners.

Please, you and your dog need to enroll in obedience training ASAP.

Last edited by World Citizen; 03-28-2010 at 09:04 AM..
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Old 03-28-2010, 09:57 AM
 
3,630 posts, read 14,053,163 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by World Citizen View Post
You should listen to grannynancy. She has a lot of experience training dogs. She actually works with large, powerful, dog breeds in Police work.
.
Just to clarify - I am a volunteer member of a search and rescue team. We use the same dogs from the same lines but don't do bitework.
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