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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19828
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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Hi I have a four year old ***** ***** cross and a year old

Resolved Question:

Hi I have a four year old ***** ***** cross and a year old collie both female. They got on great till last month when they both went into season then the ***** ***** started fighting with the collie. I've kept them separated but now that they are no longer in season I'm still having problems the collie is acting scared and won't make any kind of eye contact but growels whenever the ***** ***** goes near her which provokes and causes another fight. My partner says if we can't get it sorted we have to give one of them up and even the thought of that breaks my heart and I'd like to try all other options first.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 3 years ago.
Hi JaCustomer,
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My name is Jane. I have been working professionally with animals especially dogs in both health and behavioral issues for over 18 years. I have over 14,000 satisfied customers. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.
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Did you get the ***** ***** first?
Are you open to spaying one of them?
What obedience training have they had?
Bonnie is the Jack Russel?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi yes bonnie is the ***** ***** we got her first I am very open to getting them both spayed if this will help. Neither of them has had any obedience training

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 3 years ago.
Jacqueline,
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Thanks for the additional information. Let me go over pack behavior. Packs have a male alpha and a female alpha. Usually the male is higher than the female but not always. Unfixed animals are higher in the pack than fixed animals as they can reproduce.
When a dog is a puppy (under a year of age or so) any older dog in the house is the alpha dog. When a new dog is brought into a household there may not be immediate fighting as the new dog may just think they are visiting initially, but once they realize that they are there to stay, the fighting may start. With younger dogs, the older dog establishes her rank over the other dogs with minimal or no fighting involved. However, the collie is bigger and stronger and is maturing which makes her a better choice for alpha even if she isn't trying to display dominance. However, she may feel she is a better choice of alpha. You indicate that it seems to be bonnie that is initiating the aggression.
An older dog will usually not just submit without some sort of altercation and this can be an ongoing issue. Even if Blue is not disrespecting Bonnie, Bonnie may still reprimand her just because she needs to intimidate her to keep her as the submissive female.
If you want to keep Bonnie as the alpha, spaying Blue should move her naturally to a lower ranking position and help avoid the fights. Bonnie should stop her reprimands and then Blue won't have to defend herself.
Additional training can also help. Both dogs should be leashed and if one dog even looks at the other dog, a correction should be done. Any sign of aggression including a prolonged look, hair raised on the shoulders, a growl or even a stiff legged walk, should be corrected. A correction is a quick tug of the leash and a firm low toned "NO". Once you have done this couple of times, you should notice the dogs ignoring each other. When that happens, you will want to reward them for the desired behavior. Again, use tasty treats like the hot dog slices. This teaches the dogs that you WILL not tolerate fighting in YOUR pack.
Learn dog body language and that will also help you determine which one is the one acting dominant and aggressive.
http://www.apdt.com/petowners/park/body-language/
http://www.pawsacrossamerica.com/interpret.html
http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/virtual-pet-behaviorist/dog-behavior/canine-body-language
This should take care of the situation pretty quickly. I hope this information is helpful to you and you are satisfied with my response. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have .
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