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My dog gowled at me!

February 24th, 2004, 08:39 PM
I have a 6 year old beagle who I have had from birth that growled at me tonight and showed me his teeth! My friend came over after she got out of work form Friendlies. She had an ice cream cone in her hand when she came into my apt. My dog started begging and wouldnt leave her alone when she walked in my room. I told him to go lay down and he didnt. I had to tell him repeetedly to go lay down and he ended up laying down as close to her as he could. I kept telling him over and over and and wouldnt obay. Finaly I walked over to him and in a calm voice told him to lay down. That was when he snarled at me and showed me his teeth! He then put his head down and kept growling at me. I walked him out of the room told him he was a bad dog and closed the door so that he was not around me or her. Is this going to get worse? Is he trying to dominate me? How do I fix this? Can I fix this? Is he dangerous? He has a history of doing this to others he doesnt know when the give him orders. I don't know what to do.

February 24th, 2004, 08:54 PM
Yep, quite fixable! :) I have a Rottweiler who came to me fully adult, intact & with pretty major attitude. He's quite the gentleman now. Old dogs can certainly learn new tricks, every adopted dog in the country has done so.

He's not trying to dominate you, really. But he is ignoring & disrespecting you because you've taught him to do so. How? By telling him "over and over" to do something; then not even enforcing it. So - really to be fair to your dog, he is doing EXACTLY what you have taught him to do. Good dog! :)

How to fix - well really just getting into the habit of training & firmly & fairly enforcing rules. Obedience classes are a great way to start - and you'll often find older dogs there for "tune ups."

Read this too:
Remember, "NILIF" isn't a magic cure & it's about as much attitude as what you do. Excellent place to start, though.

What to do when your dog disobeys the first time you tell him to do something?
Don't tell him a second time.
Snap on a leash or with a hand on his collar firmly make him do what you're asking. No praise, just be matter of fact about it. If you know in advance making him lie down will be a physical struggle (you don't want to get into this, it's not effective), tell him to do something you can make him do without a fight - come, sit, shake, fetch, whatever. You can ask him to do something out of context & fun because what you really want him to do is pay attention & not ignore you.

You go up to him and he growls(or growls at someone else?) On goes the leash & off we go around the room on a leash. If he doesn't know a formal heel, just make him march snappily back & forth doing U-turns until he quits acting pissy.

Well that's sort of my condensed version - basically yes, very fixable. Yes, it will get worse. This behaviour is quite common in dogs who haven't been firmly & fairly trained.
Oh - and if he's not neutered, do that too. May help, won't hurt. :)

February 24th, 2004, 09:07 PM
If I tell him to go lay down and he doesn't the first time and then I get up and tell him, in a steen voice to lay down he will do the same thing which will more then likely progress into snarling, barking, possibly a bit. Hitting him is unaccaptable as it will only encourage him to respond in the same way. If I lean over and grab his collar and walk him out of he room my gut tells me that he might bit. What do I do for that? Obedience school might help but my dog never comes in contact with other dogs and usually flips out around other dogs. So now what?

February 24th, 2004, 09:25 PM
If you think he might bite, use a can even just leave a lightweight leash trailing from his collar around the house. That way you can keep his head away...and you're totally right about not hitting or using force, it's about the worst thing you can do with a dog who's already threatening to escalate.

If you get into regular training/NILIF you will gain a lot of confidence & he will gain respect & biting simply won't be an issue. Growling is actually good - he's warning you he might bite, instead of simply lunging. I'd much rather deal with a dog who growls & bares teeth rather than one who doesn't give fair warning! (Most dogs are actually very fair & direct in how they communicate.)

BUT - there are tons of dogs who are horrible around other dogs, and tons of good trainers who will work with dog/aggressive dogs. You can check here for good trainers (there's plenty of bad ones too.)

I really encourage you to find a trainer, someone good can give you a ton of advice & management strategies in one or two sessions. There's a number of excellent books on dealing with this sort of thing - it's not uncommon - go to a bookstore & browse, or check someplace like, you can browse their titles. But someone hands-on who can see you & your dog together is the best route!

February 24th, 2004, 09:32 PM
Carina gave great advise.

Has been this way before?

Also,you say he acts like this when someone else gives him "orders"....Personally I like to call them commands.:D

So I take it he has never been to obedience classes?

Also,you say he has never come in contact with other dogs.Can I ask why not?

Socializing is the most important things that should be done when you first get a pup.The second is learning basic commands.

February 24th, 2004, 10:01 PM
Clancy has come in contact with other dogs in his life but not often as there are not many in my appartment building. The two that are here are VERY unfriendly and I dont trust them around me little alone him. Also, I dont know the neighbors all that well as they are a bit odd and I keep my distance. Clancy has never been to any classes before and I did much of the work by myself. For the most part he is a very good dog but he is pushing the limits right now.

Thanks for the link to the dog trainers! It was a huge help as I found three in my area right away. I am going to give one a call as soon as I get up tomorrow as this is something that I feel can not wait.

As for Clancy, he is in his bed and has been responding to me on all of my first commands, so far. I feel bad becasue he wants it to be over and I am unsure how long I should disaplin him. How long is too long? How long is too short?

February 24th, 2004, 10:13 PM
What a sweetie.My daughter loves beagles.

What do you mean "he wants it to be over" and "how long do I disaplin him"

If you are talking about a time out,15 mins is good.

February 24th, 2004, 10:15 PM
So 15min for snarling and showing teeth? I was thinking at least an hour. Is that over kill?

February 24th, 2004, 10:19 PM
Your talking about a time out when he does this?

Yes 15 mins is fine.

I wouldn't go far as an hour.

But please contact a trainer.

February 24th, 2004, 10:21 PM
I was about an hour and I called him in from his bed. And yes I ment and time out in his bed. This is what he "wanted to be over" as he is a very social little guy. I plan on calling the trainer tomorrow. Thanks though. You two have been a big help.

February 24th, 2004, 10:27 PM
Your welcome.:)

Just hang in there.The trainer will be very helpful.

Please keep us posted.


February 24th, 2004, 10:30 PM
One more thing.An hour is to long.He will forget what he did wrong.

Also,when he does growl and bare his teeth,say "no" to him.As soon as he stops,praise him.Give that a try.

February 24th, 2004, 10:32 PM
Remember, the little guy doesn't think like you do, or even my six year old. While a time out might work on my son, a dog has no idea what the heck time out is.

Carina is right and a trainer should be able to help you a lot. Remember that all trainers are not equal however and find the one you are comfortable with. I would avoid trainers that want to physically hit your dog or use a shock collar.

Lucky Rescue
February 24th, 2004, 11:00 PM
Wonderful advice you have gotten here already. Just wanted to add that my last dog was much like yours, only he was 80 lbs so we had to do something!

I never told him anything "over and over". That would encourage him to ignore me.

Don't know if anyone gave you this link, but I just know you will recognize your dog and situation in this.
Alpha Boot Camp (

February 24th, 2004, 11:50 PM
How in the world did I not see this? My dog is an Alpha and has been since birth! I picked him out of the litter because he ran the other way to get away from his mother when the rest of the litter ran to their mother! I once had a problem with him sneaking on to my bed so now I close the door to my room, I do have a problem with him sneaking on to the couch so now I put things on the couch so he canít sit on it, he has progressively pushes the limits with commands, he is always pulling to the point of choking himself on the leash (not to mention he use to bit it when he was much younger), and lastly he does greet me with his head held high and his ears perked up. I thought that all this type of a greeting meant was that he was happy to see me as he often does this when he is happy. Looks like doggie boot camp for Clancy! I will have to get my roommate on the same page as well. Thank you everyone for all the input. I hope I can curve this behavior before it gets bad, as I do love my dog very much. Here are Clancy's stats! 45lbs, nearly 18'' tall, and 100% pure breed with a very long family line AKC documented. I wanted to breed him but he is too tall even though his phisic is perfect. I guess no one like big beagles but me. :( Well, thats all from CT! I am going to bed. Night all.

February 25th, 2004, 12:03 AM
How does everyone feel about crates? I got rid of Clancys when he was a year old and moved him up to a cooshie bed that I picked up a pet co. I can really use it as a place to put him as he can get up and come out anytime he wants. Some of the readings recommend this for Alpha dogs.

February 25th, 2004, 12:05 AM
Glad to see all others gave you great advise :) I knew they would!

One other thing I'd like to add is just remember to praise him when he does respond to you. That is an important tool in training.

Remember you've let him get away with 6 years of maybe borderline or bad behaviour so him doing a turn around so fast may cause problems in your household. Don't expect too too much of him at once and don't force all training on him right away. It may just be overload for him and it could do more damage then good.

I personally don't think there is a need for you to get a crate. You haven't used one thus far. Is he destructive in the house? A crate at 6 yrs would be very stressful. BUT if you want to get something like that for him and keep the door OPEN instead of closed he might like the privacy. Up to you. It seems if things go well you don't need one in my opinion.

He's a great looking dog!

February 25th, 2004, 12:08 AM
Clancy is a cuttie. Here is another pic of him in the tub. He use to hate baths but now he loves them. Dont know how or why but one day he just decided that he loved the water. :)

February 25th, 2004, 05:41 AM
I have a crate in my house, on loan for Carina. My beagle mix has resource guarding issues and the crate if for her when she gets a bone. They can't hurt! You could put Clancy in it at meal time.

February 25th, 2004, 07:36 AM
I am sooooooo glad you didn't breed him.Breeding should be left up to responsible breeders who show and better the breed.

Your dog has no titles right?Or a champion show dog.So why bother.:)

Has he been neutered?

As for my opinion on crating.I can't answer that.I never crated any of my dogs.Not even the 2 I have now.I did all the training on my own.But that's because I have trained my other dogs and knew what I was doing.They are very well trained and obedient.They picked up on every command.Which were one word commands.They sleep with us,lay on the couch with us.Which does get a bit tight.BUT they also know when it's ok to do this.It's all about proper training.If they are not properly trained and socialized,then that's where the problem starts.

But I do have to agree with Luba.unless he is distructive,I don't find the need to crate him.

As for the time out,heck my guys new what it was.And they did have a few time outs.Even Casper my kitten knows why he gets his time outs.LOL

February 25th, 2004, 11:09 AM
So far so good. He has been responding well all day and has listened to about 90% of my commands. The 10% that throws him comes when food is involved and visitors are around him. Lets hope I can squeeze out the 10%.

February 25th, 2004, 11:39 AM
If he can't help but be a little pest when there are visitors and food, put him in his crate. That way he won't be tempted to ignore you.

February 25th, 2004, 11:51 AM
He doesn't have a crate, he has a nice cooshie dog bed which has no door. I don't expect him to be 100% but I do expect him to listen to me and not ignor my commands. If he doesn't, it could become dangerous arond people esspecially small, children. He may not want to hurt anyone but if he doesnt listen this could be setting the stage for problems.

February 25th, 2004, 12:12 PM
smitty,is he neutered?

February 25th, 2004, 12:14 PM
That is coming in the spring. And, I alreay know the blah blah about getting it done earlier. The money wasnt there and it will be in the spring.

February 25th, 2004, 12:32 PM
Well then I don't have to tell you then that his behaviour has alot to do with not being neutered.And getting him fixed at this age is not going to fix it 100%.

Did you call the trainer?I know you are trying to correct him on your own.

February 25th, 2004, 01:24 PM
March 17 is the big day.

February 25th, 2004, 02:01 PM
2 days after my daughters birthday....LOL

And on St.Patrics day.LOL

February 25th, 2004, 02:12 PM
Guess I will always remember that day! Green beer and a little snip snip for Clancy. :P

Lucky Rescue
February 25th, 2004, 02:18 PM
Neutering at this age isn't going to do much to change his behavior, but it can't hurt.

Neutering at a young age certainly didn't change my dominant dog's behavior, but at least you can be sure there will be no accidental litters!

February 25th, 2004, 04:14 PM
Today when I walking Clancy he tried to bite his leash becuse he didnt line being told to heal. This is a bad thing I know, so I do I break him of it?

February 25th, 2004, 05:46 PM
Myself I'm wondering why neuter at that age?

Is it going to make any significant difference?? I doubt it !

Do some research on the net about neutering older dogs.

If it were me, unless there were specific health issues involved I wouldn't do it. Why stress the dog?

HOWEVER one can argue that your dog can 'accidentally' get another dog pregnant and that is probably the biggest concern.

I hope I dont' get jumped on for that but, as a responsible owner myself if my dog was 6yrs old and under my supervision and care....I wouldn't neuter I don't think...unless the dog was a serious humper LMFHO!!

Lucky Rescue
February 25th, 2004, 05:49 PM
Look at it this way: if you had a child and allowed to get away with murder and run riot over you for 6 years, it may be hard to get him to accept authority.

If you follow the suggestions in the Alpha Dog article I gave you, and be VERY strict about it, Clancy will eventually get the idea that the party is over and YOU are in charge from now on. This is not going to happen overnight.

I also suggest you take Clancy to obedience school. Find a trainer whose methods you like and sign up.

None of this is Clancy's fault, but he needs a can of whoop ass opened on him.:D

February 25th, 2004, 06:04 PM
The risk of cancer will be reduced when they are removed. I got that from the vet so yes there are bennies. And there is also a chance that his personality will be turned down a bit. With the guarantee of better health and a chance of a personality adjustment due to the lack of testosterone I think I will move forward on the issue.

February 25th, 2004, 08:33 PM
Originally posted by LuckyRescue

None of this is Clancy's fault, but he needs a can of whoop ass opened on him.:D

HAHA! True. :D

I'm a little bit with Luba on this one...I probably won't neuter my next Rottweiler until he gets rather vet has told me (and I've also read) that testicular cancers tend to come very late in life. And there is some evidence that waiting to neuter a large dog until later in life may be better for their joints...something to do with testosterone & muscle mass. I don't have a cite for that so I might be way off base.

But really, there's no reason NOT to do it here - it may or may not calm down some of his behaviour - attitude adjustment will do that most definitely!

BTW, he is a really handsome Beagle!

February 26th, 2004, 12:33 PM
:) I will tell Clancy you said that he was a cuttie.

February 26th, 2004, 01:34 PM
smitty,this link will help you teach Clancy the "heel" command.

Hope it helps:)

February 26th, 2004, 01:35 PM
Remember though,ALWAYS praise when he listens.:D

February 26th, 2004, 10:15 PM
Originally posted by smitty2395
I once had a problem with him sneaking on to my bed so now I close the door to my room, I do have a problem with him sneaking on to the couch so now I put things on the couch so he can?t sit on it, he has progressively pushes the limits with commands


Honey (1yr old female pointer) "sneaks" onto the bed IMMEDIATELY, even before I get in... Chocolate (3 yr old male pointer) gets into the bed even after I'm asleep & leaves 50% of the time before I wake up....

(I know this bc when my bf gets to bed, he tries to pull them off :rolleyes: ... he's 6'5 so ya, he does need HIS bed more than the dogs... lol)