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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 19388
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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The question I have is regarding a 1 year old german short

Customer Question

The question I have is regarding a 1 year old german short hair pointer mix (looper), a 8 week old german short hair pointer (baloo) and a visiting 6 month old german Shepard (smoke). Looper was the perfect pup a week ago, listened to every command, got along with all dogs and was so obedient didn't even need a leash. He is also unfixed for now. Well the issue arose when we began babysitting smoke and added a new puppy to the family on the same day (22 dec 15). Well for some reason once these 2 showed up he doesn't listen well in the form of not coming back to the house when called and bauxite ignoring me and my wife when called inside the house. He is also showing alot of aggression towards baloo but plays rough with smoke. I'm thinking the aggression can stem from jealousy because smoke will play with looper then stop and play with baloo also because he's a new puppy requires more attention from me and my wife. We really need to figure out how to fix these issues because both of our dogs are the love if our lives and aren't going anywhere but the constant issues recently have become unbearable and aggrevating and are making life with them difficult because he was so god and now such a sudden change. Any help or tips would be greatly appreciated thanks in advance.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

Had Looper and Smoke met prior to this?

Is he being aggressive toward Smoke?

Is smoke neutered?

How about the pup?

Are they female or male (smoke and baloo)?

What obedience training have they each had. I know the little one probably has none.

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 1 year ago.

I was hoping to get some responses back to my request for more information so I would have a better idea of what is going on, but I also want you to have an answer as well.

Let me start with explaining what is probably going on. First off, Looper would be the alpha dog of the house. Had you just brought in the puppy Baloo, then Looper probably would have played more with him but still have growled at the pup and nipped at the pup as well since it is the adult's job to teach the puppy manners. Puppies are allowed a lot of leeway with their mothers and even fathers, but once they are around other adult dogs and start maturing, those adults will let the pups know when their behavior is unacceptable. They do that by growling and if that is ignored (which is often the case with pups), they get a reprimand.

However, you brought two dogs into the house. One was an adult and one a puppy. As a result, Looper feels like he has to show both dogs he is the boss so he doesn't have the luxury of playing with the pup or the other adult might feel he is not a strong leader. Smoke doesn't have that same stress because he is a visitor. If Smoke was to stay for an extended period of time, you would start to see more dominance and aggression between Smoke and the other dogs.

Now Looper is also maturing into an adult and with that does come isses with dominance and a dog will start to test their boundaries not only with other dogs but with their human owners as well. They will start not listening as well and even try and reprimand a human if the human tries to get them to do something they don't want to do.

What I suggest is starting back with formal daily training sessions. The following site is helpful in helping owners train their dog. Be sure and click on the link to the page on obedience at the bottom. and links on subsequent pages leading to detailed instructions. I know you have him trained but extra training is needed and alternate methods are usually always welcome.

http://www.schutzhund-training.com/training_theory.html

Training works best if you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below.

http://www.pets.ca/articles/article-dog_nilf.htm

http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/dogs/tips/training_nothing_in_life_is_free.html

I would apply this to all the dogs. Pups learn quickest when they are very young. Likely things will calm down as soon as Smoke returns home since Looper won't feel the same overwhelming need to establish his place as the top dog. Pups automatically see the adult dog as the boss.

In the meantime. start the obedience training. Additional training can also help. Both adult 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.

An understanding of dog body language might help as well. Here are some sites on body language.

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

If you want to supply me with more information, I will see if that changes the scope of my answer.

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