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Joeys not nice to other dogs

August 16th, 2005, 02:39 PM
Our dog Joey is becoming more a part of our family everyday. He listens to commands from myself, kids and hubbie,the growling issue has gotten much better, and will be starting obedience soon.

One thing though Joey is not good with other dogs, he tries to challenge every dog he sees male or female no matter what size, or breed. :eek: So far Joey has always been on a leash with us as we want him to have more training before letting him off. I know dogs tend to be more aggressive when on a leash, or so I have heard.

Joey lived with 8 other dogs before, and didn't like the male dogs in the house, but apparently had no problem with female dogs.

Now he is the only dog. Is he protecting us when he is challenging other dogs? Is it possible this is his opportunity to be alpha dog where maybe he wasnt before.

What should I do when Joey challenges another dog, I tell him no and keep walking, but not sure if it is actually getting through to him? :

August 16th, 2005, 06:51 PM
Wasn't Joey intact for a long tme when he was living with those other males? He has only been neutered for a short time now? Correct me if I am wrong.
He has learned to be this way with males - you have to teach him to have manners. Yes, some dogs can be worse on leash - they feel restricted, feel your nervous energy in the leash and a tight leash transforms their body language. But teaching him good manners on a loose leash is the first step. When you work on having a balanced relationship you become more important than the other dogs. He might want to tossle with them but your wrods have more power and influence than his internal drive. He doesn't have to like the other dogs but he does have to have good manners.
Make sure his 'leave it' command is very good and then use that when he is being tempted. But you need to start on the leash to ensure that your word has power. The other dogs are college level for him and he may not be ready for that yet.
Telling him 'no' and still walking on doesn't teach him a thing. You have to recreate the problem (again and again) and correct his bad choices and then reward him when he makes a good one.

August 16th, 2005, 07:10 PM
If it is not one thing it is another,eh. Well I am sure glad you have him and are willing to do the work he requires.
You can start off by setting him up into a sit stay while the other dogs pass by. When they are by you can release, praise and carry on. When you feel comfortable set him up into a sit before you go in for the greet, only allow a 2-3 second greet and then instruct him to "lets go". If he doesn't behave, he doesn't greet and if you notice that the dog you are about to greet doesn't look like it is going to be a good and positive experience, pass right by and use your leave it. The better he gets the longer the greetings may be. Make sure he never gets tangled with another dog on leash and whatever you do never jerk the leash during a greetiing. If you think it is going to turn bad, turn and walk away but don't pull him back towards you. The reason for the very quick greeting is to help control the signals given by each. A dog coming up off their front legs may signal to the other "so do you want to fight". Also don't avoid the other dogs. If you don't want to greet just pass by.

August 16th, 2005, 07:34 PM
Joey was neutured in Nov 2004, I just checked his records. Not sure if this makes a difference but he was never used for breeding. So he was about 4.5 when he was fixed. He just turned 6 in July.

Also he is like this with all dogs, he tried to fight with the female dog (fixed) down the street. :rolleyes: (Sigh) I thought he could have had a friend.

What is the best way to teach the leave it command?

thanks again for responding. :)

August 16th, 2005, 07:44 PM
I teach the beginning steps with a leave it for a food item or loved toy. I will PM you with the details on how to start this. You can use a leave it for anything you don't want your dog to have, including other dogs, squirls, etc. Once you begin the first steps he will start to understand that a leave it not to be touched. Off topic but related, Don't use leave it for something they already have in their mouth, that's give. Keep each cue very clear. As you are walking by tell him to leave it(firm voice) and then immediately re-direct his attention, lets go(positive tone(higher pitch) and then praise.

Dag Sabot
August 17th, 2005, 01:08 PM
can you pm me with the instructions also? My dog isnt aggressive with other dogs, just wild animals and cats.

August 17th, 2005, 02:42 PM
I know StaceyB is PMing everyone but incase someone else is looking for help I am going to give you our version of the 'leave it' command. When you are teaching this use it frequently in the house so that you both start improving your skills and relationship. He needs to think that all things belong to you - other animals, cats, food etc.

Get him to "leave it" with all of his favorite toys, treats, etc. This tells him to back away from the very thing he might be interested in - before it becomes a 'drop it' issue. Start with objects/food that he might want and put it in the middle of the floor and then move on to dropping things intentionally on the floor in front of him. Have him on the leash to ensure success. Tell him to 'leave it' in a firm tone and if he goes for it step towards the object with a stomp (throwing energy at the object and towards him - to get him to back off), and/or a correction on the leash as you say 'leave it' again. Pretend in your mind that the object is a baby bird and he absolutely can't have it. Use whatever energy that evokes in your voice and body language to get him to leave it alone. Then, while he is still on the leash, place the object between you and call him to come. He should put his own imaginary circle around the object as he comes to you. Now he is respecting your word and understanding that everything is not his to grab, but you call the shots and he needs to respect you.
Catching him before he rushes to something can make a huge difference. It's easier to stop him before he makes his move than to have to stop him in mid-stride. This gives you a greater vocabulary to use with him as well. Which gives you the chance to 'talk' him through his choices. Be sure to praise him when he makes the good choices - so he is clear when he has done the right thing.

August 17th, 2005, 05:51 PM
Thankyou we have done a little training sessions already. I bought him a kong today and I tried with that first. As soon as I told him to leave it, and gave him a correction on the leash he just sat there staring at me, and wouldn't go near it. Even when I told him to take it. I am going to try it with other things as well.

I was just wondering how long should these training sessions be? Can I do shorter training sessions throught out the day or is one longer sessions preferrable.

My other question. Joey starts obedience training in a few weeks, is it okay to combine different types of training or will this just be confusing to Joey.

Can we give Joey treats on occasion when we train him, but not all the time?


August 17th, 2005, 06:23 PM
Sounds like you got off to a great start. It's always so cool when you call him through the object and he voluntarily walks a big circle around it.
Better to break things up throughout the day - don't overwhelm him with too much at once. Keep things interesting, do lots of different commands and keep it fun while being clear about your expectations. It's really who you are with him all of the time that makes the difference. Be a good leader 24/7 and you shouldn't have many issues.
There are so many different opinions on training - do what makes sense to you and is fair to the dog.
We prefer to not treat train a dog. I don't want you to be my friend be cause I give you $5 every 2 minutes. What happens when I run out of $ or the guy next to me offers you $20. Relationship is about love, trust and respect not force or bribery. HOWEVER...give your dog a treat for just being your buddy, maybe ask him to do something for it, but don't make it such a common occurrence that he is always looking for the treat. You should be the reward, your soft voice and warm touch.

August 17th, 2005, 06:26 PM
This thread is very interesting to me and has prompted me to write my first post since I have had my dog, Snoopy, at home. She is a rescue I got at 4mns old. It's now 1 year later. (I have been a regular lurker for the year!!) The only behaviour I can't stop is the on leash aggression. She is great off leash, fine with the dog walker she is with daily. I have been taking her out every morning with cheese and lots of enthusiasm. She knows sit, leave it, no barking, but to no avail. I put her in a sit when I see a dog, I move her out of the line of fire if I can. She does all that and then behaves like she wants to eat the other dog. She will inevitably lunge at the dog. I think if I let go of the leash she would be fine but I want her to behave not get her own way!! Any suggestions would be great. Is this hijacking the original thread. It seems like the same topic... but will take direction if I should move it

doggy lover
August 17th, 2005, 06:35 PM
Leave it is the best command that you can teach your dog it works for everything. I use it on Tucker to stop him herding my cats, squrrels, to leaving food and toys. I also use it walking him if other dogs are aggressive to him, he is a lover so I don't have the problem you are. It also works on running children, Tucker thinks he can chase, so its useful all round.

August 17th, 2005, 06:54 PM
Thanks, Doggylover, she does know leave it. It works for everything but other dogs. It even worked the other day when she found a delicious chicken wing on the street.

August 17th, 2005, 09:45 PM
I just emailed the leave it command to my hubby. I am hoping he will work with Joey a bit during the day while I am at work.

Andreakaye welcome and I hope this thread helps you as much as it does me.
Snoopy is very cute by the way. :)

August 17th, 2005, 10:43 PM
The 'leave it' with other dogs is college level for your dog. Either he is not respecting your word enough or you haven't worked him through highschool level successfully and he's not ready for college. "leave it" requires him to have self control and to be able to choose his behavior. Don't give up - keep working on it with all kinds of distractions. But if he can't handle it with dogs then back away from the dogs to a distance he can manage and then as you are successful gradually work your way towards other dogs and help him learn some self control.

August 17th, 2005, 11:01 PM
Has your dog behaved this way with the dog walker or just you?

August 18th, 2005, 07:24 AM
He behaves this way with both my hubby and me. I walked him yesterday and there were several dogs on our walk which he actually ignored but they all were out of sight so maybe he just didnt notice them. Honestly I think my hubby is more tense in the situation and Joey senses it. So I have told him to try and be more relaxed if possible.

If he is face to face with a dog walking by, his first inclination is to sniff then attack. :(

Thanks we will keep working on it.

August 18th, 2005, 08:39 AM
Sorry tp add confusion to Joey's dilemma. To answer Staceyb's question . The dogwalker has her off leash and she is fine (on leash )in the car and when with his pack.} She is also well socialized and has good doggie relationships with friends' dogs, off leash park dogs and dogs she has met before when on leash. She is a confident dog and I have worked really hard with the NILF and she is very responsive. She has been a bit snarky at times off leash when she has a stick or a ball but it is more of a leave me be snarl than an "i want to eat you " communication as she does at random dogs.The dog walker has never seen her be aggressive although i beleive she could be as she is spirited and clever and does not back down easily. She is Ok these days are if the dog is across the street. But i can't seem to get her to focus completely on me when she is on leash ahd in the community. I wondered if just letting her approach dogs on the flexi leash might reduce the power struggle but i am concerned that the other dog may react. Once at the end of our walk at the park she was on leash and did her Godzilla impersonation. I let go of the leash, she flew towards the dog, had a huge shock to be there and backed off right away. I obviously can't do that on Yonge Street in Toronto!!

August 18th, 2005, 08:59 AM
No Younge St wouldn't be a good place. Has she taken classes. If not you may want to consider this. Do you think you get nervous when you see another dog approaching? She will read your nervous body language both visually and chemically. I would also suggest each time there is another dog near by to place her to the side as you have been doing and get her to do a few cues for you, this may not be as easy as it sounds but don't give up. When you do this you take both yours and your dogs interest off the dog and onto something else, calming both of you down. When she is back in control carry on your walk. The leave it is great but she needs to learn what it is first.

August 18th, 2005, 09:15 AM
Thanks I'll keep trying...we have been to classes and I have had a one to one trainer(i liked that more) I'll let you know how I progress. Good luck with Joey ,JECMommy.

I am determined and will lick (parden the pun) this yet

August 18th, 2005, 09:28 AM
Joey's mom - If he can't be good then he doesn't even get to sniff. And there is a difference between him sniffing the air and lunging versus being allowed to sniff the dog and attacking. So for now he just has to walk by, you say 'leave it' and he shouldn't even look at the other dog. Then as you progress and get successful you can start having him sit while other dogs walk by, then have the other dog sit while he walks by. Then have them walk by each other, but still say 'leave it'. Then walk by and have them sit next to each other but not so close as to sniff or lunge.
The point is you have to remain in control and with these drills you are practicing your skills and he is learning to listen to you. As both of your skills improve then you can start thinking about doing brief greetings - I am talking 2 seconds and then keep walking - not long enough for them to start posturing, but short enough to have a positive experience and for you to stay in control. Then you increase the time as he/you are successful.

August 18th, 2005, 09:48 AM
Just wanted to say that it's great how hard you and the family are working on some of Joey's issues. Don't give up or get discouraged, you're on the right track. :thumbs up

August 18th, 2005, 12:21 PM
This is an interesting topic ...

Matty doesn't know manners when dealing with other dogs, and some small kids, and I'm not sure how I can teach him.

When he sees another dog or kids while we're walking him, immediately he gets excited. When the other dog gets closer, he forgets all the other commands he's learned (like stay close, come, sit ... etc) and keeps pulling on the leash. Once the other dog's actually within his range, he'll jump at the other dog, put his paws in his face, and starts nipping the other dog.

I understand that's how he greets, but most dogs don't like it and either the other owner pulls his dog away, or the other dog runs away, or the other dog starts getting agressive with him.

Now, if we tell him to sit and stay before he starts getting excited about the other dogs, then he would actually stay put, and watch the other dog walk by without acting up. We'd reward him in that case, but that doesn't help him learn the proper way to greet.

If we tell him to sit-stay, and the other dog actually approaches him, then as soon as the other dog gets within shooting range he'll jump at the other dog and it starts all over again.

What drills can I do to teach him proper manner?

August 18th, 2005, 08:27 PM
We havent quite graduated to the walking by the other doggies nicely yet. I am still doing leave it with food objects and toys at home. He seems to respond and if I say leave it he will stare at me until I give him an object or treat (on occasion he can have).

Today he saw a cat while walking, he was oblivious to the leave it calls and started pulling like crazy. To get to the cat

We will continue to work on this issue. I am hoping to see and improvement by the time doggie school starts on the 29th of Aug.

We will continue to work on the leave it at home, and just walk by the other dogs for now and give the leave it command.

August 18th, 2005, 08:35 PM
You are doing great, keep working at it.

August 19th, 2005, 09:54 AM
If he is pulling like crazy - go in the opposite direction he is pulling towards. Try 5 steps back - still pulling? 5 more...etc until he is able to contain himself. Then wait patiently while he gathers his wits (hopefully takes a deep breath) and then take 1 step towards the distraction. For each step forward that he doesn't pull he can be rewarded by getting closer. For each step he cannot maintain control he goes backwards. You will go backwards more than forwards until he figures it out. Then you will notice yourself getting closer and closer - until he can walk right up to it and not go nuts.Then just let him sit there and enjoy all the looking and air sniffing he wants as long as he is showing good self control. If he is sitting calmly beside you, but starring at the cat - he is showing self control (choosing to be calm even thought he wants to go for the cat). A big step in the right direction.
He needs to learn it's not about what he wants to do - it is about what you want to do and what you will permit him to do.

August 19th, 2005, 09:41 PM
Thank ou Tenderfoot Can I incorporate the not pulling and the leave it at the same time. This eve (hadnt read your post yet) He was pulling like crazy to get to two dogs that were about 20ft away. I walked by saying leave it and stomping my foot the whole way...I am sure the owner thought I was nuts but thats okay. Then a lady tried to walk right up to me with her big dog, I told her I was teaching him to be good with other dogs. What a cute dog "yadda yadda" I kept walking casually but she kept coming towards me, I stomped my foot and said leave it. Then he turned and kept walking at that point I gave him praise. Not sure whether I should have or not at that point but he had forgotten about the dog at that point.

August 19th, 2005, 10:09 PM
It sounds as if that lady would have allowed her dog to invade his space setting him up for a bad greeting. You did the right thing.

August 20th, 2005, 07:24 AM
I tried the no pull technique this morning. Joey pulls when he sees birds, cats and other animals. Otherwise he walks right beside me on loose leash and sometimes he even falls behind and I have to call him to catch up. Joey used to hunt with his old owner who said that he didn't really like it, but to me he seems pretty interested in those birds.

This morning on our walk Joey saw some birds and started pulling like crazy I took 5 steps back and said leave it and waited until he was close to me. We then started walking again and he walked right next to me without pulling the rest of the way home.His ears were perked up the whole way home, because I knew he really wanted the bird!!

August 20th, 2005, 09:07 AM
That's great, just keep working on it.

August 24th, 2005, 06:17 PM
I took Joey for a walk this morning and we past several distractions, an off leash border collie with his owner. Joey immediately started lunging towards the dog (the dog had no interest in Joey).

I walked backwards with Joey about ten steps and told him to leave it, then again ten steps and told him to leave it, he stood anxious but still until the dog past and we went on our way.

The second was a flock of birds that happened to land right on our path, again Joey lunged towards them and made a high pitched chirpping noise, again we walked backwards until Joey was no longer pulling and this time he was sitting anxiously.

Then we passed a pair of toy poodles, again Joey tried to pull me towards them we had to walk backwards, then Joey walked by them quite focused on them but not pulling, barking or growling.

Later we were all out running errands and I was waiting outside Magic cuts with Joey while the boys got their haircut. We were in a corner and Joey was sitting beside me. An elderly lady walked towards us with an elderly female bassett hound. She asked if Joey was good with other dogs, I told her we were working on it but right now hes not good with female and male dogs. She then walked right up to us with her dog. Unable to move or backup I told Joey to leave it. So that was not successful....she then walked by a second time but didnt come to close, I told Joey to leave it and he stood alert without growling or pulling and let the dog pass without incident....the dog walked by a third time and Joey completely ignored him.

doggy lover
August 24th, 2005, 08:45 PM
Its working, keep at it, always anticipate what is going to happen and always look ahead. I just love this command.

August 28th, 2005, 08:59 PM
Took Joey for his evening walk tonight. We need to cross a narrow bridge when we do there is only enough room for 1 person to go by. We were about to cross it when I saw a young women with a schnauser on the bridge watching the fish in the creek . She told me her dog was good with other dogs, I told her how we were working on it. She said for me to walk past them and said he will get used to it. Joey past the other dog they sniffed each other a bit then Joey kept walking no leave it command used this time and no growling either. :) I could have used the leave it command but it didnt seem neccessary I did give Joey lots of praise for being a good boy though.

Tommorow should be interesting 6 dogs inside a gym for dog obedience. :eek:

August 28th, 2005, 09:21 PM
Hurray!!!!! Sounds like you have got it. I have a private student right now who is aggressive towards people, kids, and a little iffie with dogs. It is so wonderful when I get a call with good news. He did the same yesterday, walked by with no reaction. Half of the work is done by the dog and half from the owner. Once you are not reactive/ nervous or scared. The dog begins to be less reactive.
Good luck in training class. It may be a little tougher but try not to get worked up. The calmer you are, the calmer he is. Keep your greetings to only a few seconds at a time. Don't allow him enough time to react. You can do several 3 second greetings with the same dog. Remember don't jerk him back if he looks like or becomes reactive. Turn around and walk back a few steps. If one of the dogs doesn't seem sound, don't greet that one.

August 28th, 2005, 09:37 PM
I admit I was a bit nervous as the dogs were in close quarters but Joey did great maybe he didnt feel my tension travel down the leash. Maybe I just need to trust him more now. ;)

September 8th, 2005, 10:38 PM
Joey is getting a lot better with this dog issue. He now just sniffs other dogs and even tries to talk to them in a high pitched chirping noise. Hard to explain it is actually cute. He even played with the neighbours cat, Joey was on a leash and the cat came up and layed down right in front of Joey on its back, Joey made his noise again and sniffed the cats belly. I think we are making some progress. :)

September 9th, 2005, 01:54 PM
Afternoon everyone..I sympatize with you all 'dog lunging at other dogs' type people. My Stella does this too. Tenderfoot emailed me information on the 'leave-it' command, and I have used it twice/three times a day on our walks. I have been to obedience, it didn't stop the lunging...however, what I did learn was the proper heel, and when doing this on our walks, the leave-it really works. We now walk by bikes (she lunged at bikes/motorcycles), cats, rabbits, squirrels, (I had no problem with people or kids), dogs in houses, fenced in yards, or in cars. Dogs on leash, it's still the learning lesson. Good luck everyone!! :thumbs up