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dog fight

mary roberts
January 25th, 2004, 10:01 AM
I have 2 dogs (Barkley male 9yrs german shep,lab mix -Angel female 1 1.5 yrs old pit bull). Angel is very payfull. Barkley likes to show who is boss. They have faught before, Angel always gave up then everything was over. But not yesterday! There was a lot going on in my backyard (chainsaw was going other dogs barking) and I think that is was might have triggered it (Barkley always barks and runs around when the lawnmower or some loud yard tool is on) Well, I dont know who started, but a fight broke out. This time is was different. Angel did not back down. Then I saw blood. My son helped me to pull them apart. We separated them for about 4 hours. Barkley seemed to be OK, but Angel's ear and leg had small puncture wunds. When they got back together, Barkely licked her wounds. Angel's body was shaking. The door bell rang. The both usually run towards the door. Which they also did this time, but Angel jumped on Barkley this time and the fight was on again. Luckely my son was still there and we got them apart again. They are still separated. I bought some pepper spray. My son is usually not here and I know that I will not be able to pull both apart from each other. I have never used pepper spray before, so have no idea if it will even work or if I should even use it. Angel spent the night inside and Barkley outside. I dont have any other means to separate them. What should I do. Should I buy a muzzle. Did you have a situation like that and can give me some ideas.

Lucky Rescue
January 25th, 2004, 10:37 AM
This certainly is not unusal when one of the dogs is a pit bull. If you have no means to keep them separate, you should NOT have gotten a pit bull. You didn't know pit bulls are dog aggressive?

What you are seeing here is classic behavior. Your pit bull is starting to become dog aggressive, and the next fight may be the last one for Barkley. Angel is quite capable of killing him.

Pit bulls should NEVER be left alone with other dogs, even for 5 minutes.

Since you were not prepared for what could happen, you may now feel you should try and rehome one of the dogs. This is not going to be easy, as pit bulls are very difficult to rehome responsibly, and the odds of getting a home for a 9 yr old Shep mix are very very low. BUT, if the perfect home for Angel comes along (someone who understands the breed) you should rehome her.

Muzzles and pepper spray are not really options, unless you want both dogs muzzled 24/7, and pepper spray is both dangerous and inhumane to use on your own dogs on a regular basis.

Most people who have more than one dog, and if one is a pit bull, must use the rotation method - one dog in, one dog out, one dog in crate, other dog in crate. I know many people who do this and feel it's just part of responsibly owning pit bulls. This is your ONLY option, but even this way, accidents happen and you could still have a lethal fight on your hands.

You took a pit bull in, so you must do whatever it takes to keep both dogs safe.

January 25th, 2004, 10:59 AM
LR has a very good point.

I have 3 dogs. Pit bull, Pit bull mix, and german shepard. All males.

I didn't know what could happen by leaving them together, b/c petie (pb) is lost w/o ruger(gsd).

After talking to LR and other pittie owners, I realized that when I do go somewhere it is very important to separate the dogs. You can't have 2 breeds like that together unsupervised.

I'm a stay at home mom, so I'm home w/my dogs and kids all the time.

I can keep an eye on them at all times, don't get me wrong they do get along greatly fine.

But there is also that chance that one day they might fight.

Thor our pbm is loose in the house when we leave, and Petie and Ruger get rotated as to which one goes into the crate and which one gets to stay in the room w/the door shut.

Thor has run of the house when we're gone.

You need to be very very careful about leaving those 2 together.

I wouldn't suggest using the pepper spray, think of it this way. If that was you would you like your owner spraying you in the eyes w/the pepper spray. No, it burns their eyes and hurt them too. I understand that your son isn't always there, but maybe you should keep them separated so you don't have a tragedy and a nightmare at your house.

I don't suggest the muzzle either, what kind of life is that to have a muzzle on 24/7?

I don't mean to be harsh but I do agree w/LR, and like I said I have 3 male dogs. You need to take every pre-caution necessary, if not your risking losing one of your beloved pets.

January 25th, 2004, 06:52 PM
Another agreement here.

Due to some unforeseen circumstance I woulnd up with two male Rottweilers who cannot be anywhere near each other. We keep either one locked door between them at ALL times, or two closed doors. We rotate them constantly, and both work hard to give each dog seperate attention, training & love. If one is outside & one inside, they cannot have access to windows because they WILL go through the glass at each other. We never let either dog in/out or anything without having visual confirmation of exactly where each dog is. Only one can sleep in the bedroom with us, which means one gets "excluded." The mere sight or sound of the other sends them into a rage. We have signs by each door..."Dutch in, Cooper out" etc. When Mick's kids, or any visitor spends time here we really have to keep one or the other isolated for fear of someone opening the wrong door. If we go on vacation or a trip, one must be house-sat or boarded so the other can go. Are you getting the picture? This is a VERY stressful way to live. And we live it 24/7.*

I have pepper spray in case of a fight (might not be nice for the dogs, but better than one getting its throat torn out.) We have had a couple of fights, but were able to throw a heavy blanket over them until one or the other lost breath & let go & we could drag them apart. This is very dangerous & difficult with two furious 100lb dogs. Both have been through plenty of ob training, and behaviourists specializing in such situations consulted. Muzzles will make matters worse, not better BTW. Bad idea. Luckily this behaviour hasn't generalised to all dogs; it's just each other they hate.
Did I mention this is very stressful!? And I understand females are MUCH more vicious. They will fight to seriously kill, whereas males are more about making a point. Perhaps this is why neither dog has been really injured, in our case.

Rehoming is the best option, though it will be difficult on several levels.

*Why haven't we rehomed one of ours? Cooper is my heart dog and will never go anywhere else unless something happens to me. This is not negotiable. Dutch is a really dominant, high drive dog who needs a home with no male dogs, no small children, & a real experienced owner. Dutch intimidates most people even when he's just sitting quietly! He can be awesome, and is snuggly and sweet with Mick's 12 year old son. I tried for seven months to find a perfect home for him through Rottweiler Rescue, but people want sweet Rotties, mostly. The people who specifically want an intimidating one are generally people who are NOT getting any dog of mine!! And Mick adores him, we've gotten into a routine, and just live it now.
Sorry this got long, it's something we live with every single day, so I really be clear about how difficult it is. Had we had children living in the house, there is no way Dutch would still be here.
Anyone wanna really intimidating yet sweet & incredibly smart Rottweiler? :p

Lucky Rescue
January 25th, 2004, 08:59 PM
Wow, Carina! This is why I have only ONE dog - I am not willing or prepared to live this way, although I know many who do.

I don't know if the original poster is still reading, but in case she is, I'll elaborate.

As you stated, obedience training and behaviorists cannot change this aggression. With pit bulls, you often CAN teach them they are not allowed to fight when you are looking at them, but I wouldn't want to chance it. But anyone who thinks "It's all in how you raise them" is in for a shocking wake up call - if not today, then tomorrow when their pit bull puppy who loves other dogs suddenly kills one.

I know of more than one person whose dogs have been killed literally under their noses, and these are people very experienced with pit bulls. With pit bulls, bitch fights are more easily sparked, males are slower to arouse but do much more damage once they engage. Often, particularly with gamebred dogs, there are no warning signs - pit bulls love to fight, and often wag their tails in excitement prior to attacking.

They are often particularly aggressive to dogs bigger than they are, which is the case with the original poster's dogs. Conversely, they can be very tolerant of small dogs and any dog they do not see as a worthwhile opponent.

The thing with pit bulls is that they do not fight like other dogs, and do NOT acknowledge or recognize signs of submission in the other dog, and will keep going to the death.

Breaking up a fight between two pit bulls is not dangerous to the person, if the dog has the proper temperament, but it does require a breaking stick - there is really no other way, and every owner should have one.

I WISH the dog aggression would be bred out of pit bulls, but until it is, people must educate themselves and stop taking stupid chances. We don't need any more headlines screaming "PIT BULL MAULS FAMILY PET.":(

I don't care how well trained, well socialized or how sweet and friendly your pit bull is - do not leave it alone with any dog and do NOT take it to dog parks. Yeah, he'll "be fine" with the other dogs, until he isn't and then it is TOO LATE.:(

As for your Rottie, I'm sure someone who loves, understands and can handle the breed would want your big guy.:)

January 25th, 2004, 11:46 PM

All I can say is WOW!!!

You have a lot of work there daily with those two.

What do you feel is going to be the end result in this situation. You certainly can't go on like this can you?

I'm struggling to imagine just how hard of a life that is for all of you.


January 26th, 2004, 04:58 AM
We've had Dutch since spring '02, so three fights isn't bad! And really no damage was done. The first was shortly after Dutch came here; before we had The Routine. The second was last summer, we'd just gotten a new garage door and it malfunctioned & didn't close all the way. Mick was taking Dutch out to the car (Dutch can actually go to work with him) so I let Cooper out & he went under the door. The third was just a miscommunication and I opened a door thinking Mick had put Dutch out.

The first fight I was here alone & it was terrifying, they were in the living room. I tried the break stick thing to no avail, hitting them with oak dining room chairs didn't work (!); so I got the quilt off the bed & got it over them. They broke up & luckily Dutch got tangled so I had time to haul Coop outside. Turning a hose on them the second time had zero effect, BTW. We tried holding them up by the back legs but couldn't make it work because they're too big. The heavy quilt method is a good one.

How we got him - a friend called & told me of this chained Rottie who had been abandoned in a yard when the owners moved, :mad: in her neighborhood. Another neighbor was throwing food to him, but people were too scared to go in for him. Cheryl & brave & dog-savvy; she went over & started feeding, watering & playing with him but couldn't take him to her house (she'd just split from her husband & was staying with her parents temporarily.) Someone called Animal Control but in that county they euthanise most Rotties instantly. Cheryl called me in tears...what could I do?

So - I went & got him, taking Cooper. We followed all protocols Dutch instantly went for Cooper, instant hate. I'd called Rottweiler Rescue & could get him into a home presently but I had to neuter him first so I figured I'd do that right away & just keep them apart in the meantime. BUT. Turned out he was HW+ with a significant infestation, & couldn't be neutered until he was clear, 2-4 months. Did we want to get him euthanised, or did we want to treat him & THEN find him a home...well...he was on the Rott Rescue adoption list for seven months. I put up a sign at the vet, and at two training facilities I know. I "put the word out. " Very few responses, none suitable.
In the meantime we realised how great a dog he was & I worked hard to get him compliant. Mick is just besotted with him. He is incredibly smart, loyal, and affectionate. But he needs a strong hand to keep him in line, he really is dominant; and very aloof with strangers so he doesn't make a good impression until he decides to be friends. :) He pulls a cart or sled, retrieves like a champ & adores water; he'll dive off a fairly high dock at a local lake. He tires quickly because of his HW damage so he doesn't take hours to wear out. :)

So...we still have him!
That's Dutch's story. I've got some pics of him I'll give to Sandi so she can post them, he's a lovely boy.

Oh - on the Rottie community forums, there are several of us who are in similar situations. So I don't feel so alone, or like such a fool for getting into this! And..well hopefully we'll just keep making it work.

January 26th, 2004, 08:28 AM
OMG! I'm lucky!

I got the 3 one half dal and BC and well poor Goldy we aren't sure what she is.

The 2 younger ones respect Goldy as she is a senior now. (11 yrs) Motzi (4) and Lizzy (1) are always play fighting. The odd time there is a scrap. Liz has had her ear bitten. Or Motzi will body slam Liz. But all in all there isn't too much problems. I can't feed them all together...Liz is food agressive.

But Carina my heart goes out to you girl! You have a full time job with yours!

January 26th, 2004, 09:03 AM
I must also be lucky.

I have had Tron and Yukon together since they were 3 months old.Both males...Cousins:D

I have not had any problems with them.They are great together.Not one fight in 7 years..They rough around with each other.No biting.A bit of growling..But that's it.They have free rein of the house.They have been since they were 5 months.They eat side by side.They are not food aggressive.They really love each other.:D

Lucky Rescue
January 26th, 2004, 09:12 AM
Carina, here's something that should make you feel better - PITCREW RESCUE has 15 pit bulls!!!

Now don't you feel you've got it easy?:D

January 26th, 2004, 05:36 PM
Originally posted by LuckyRescue
Carina, here's something that should make you feel better - PITCREW RESCUE has 15 pit bulls!!!

Now don't you feel you've got it easy?:D

Yikes!! :eek:
I feel so much better now, thanks. :p

January 26th, 2004, 08:50 PM
Pitcrew Rescue does have her hands full!! But she is doing an excellent job w/all those dogs she rescued.:D