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aggressive bullmastiff puppy

July 7th, 2008, 06:57 PM
Hello, I was wondering if anyone can help me.. I have a 4.5 month old bullmastiff puppy (55lbs). He is showing dominance agression towards myself and everyone else that disturbs him while he is laying down. If you pet him down or kiss him while he's tired he growls. And if you keep doing it, he will bite. Once we were driving in the truck and I pet him down and he growled.. I tried to pretend like nothing happened and leaned over to give him a kiss, and he lunged at me and tried to bite my face.... I was in shock. I'm just worried about this b/c he's going to be 150lbs fully grown and I really don't want him to be like this then.. Does anyone know what I can do to solve this problem? I read so much stuff but nothing very helpful.... :(....he's not in pain or anything like that b/c he only does it when he's tired...he's perfect any other time of the day.

July 7th, 2008, 07:27 PM
That sounds pretty serious, I would get the little bugger in to a good trainer ASAP. It's not something you want to put off doing because it will only get worse with time and then you will have a big (literally) problem, like you said.
Sorry I dont have any actual training advice. He only does this when he's sleeping or trying to? Maybe he just does not like being touched when sleeping. Something also could have happened to him as a young(er) pup, before you got him while he was sleeping, like maybe he got stepped on or something.

July 7th, 2008, 07:28 PM
I don't have any experience with Mastiff's but I would advise you to seek the help of a professional trainer or behaviorist immediately. You can also contact the breeder for advice and let her/him know what the puppy is doing. The breeder may be able to recommend someone who can help you.

July 7th, 2008, 07:28 PM
Welcome aboard! glad you have asked for help now! Doesnt matter if your beautiful boy is tired or not he needs to respect you regardless. May I suggest you seek out some obediance training to start with...It was the best money I ever spent and I did have a very dominant dog. When your pup does this he is sending you the message that he is the boss and leader of the pack! which at 150 lbs eventually he needs to know right now he is not!

There are also some behaviourist type people that can assist you with some techniques on showing your doggy who is the leader!

I am sure there are many here that will come along with some more advise so you came to the right place!!!

Good luck..would love to see some pics of your boy!


July 7th, 2008, 10:10 PM
You need to get to a behaviourist.he is growling wanting your out of his space.and using his teeth to get you to back off.he his learning that biting will get you to back off and when someone doesn't back off like a child they are going to get a good bite and it won't be need to get it stopped now.

Dog Dancer
July 11th, 2008, 02:20 PM
You really need to get your dog to a behaviorist and into some serious obedience training. No it's not to early to start training. But make sure you research your training school. Positive reinforcement only. You should be allowed to sit in and watch a class in progress before committing to start one, it will tell you a lot. For a behaviorist you can contact your vet and they should be able to give you some contacts. Do not wait! This behavior needs to be stopped immediately or you could end up with some serious legal issues in your lap at a later date! This is not the type of thing you should try to fix over the internet.

July 11th, 2008, 03:17 PM
That is not dominance aggression - it is "I am tired, leave me alone!" If he growls at you - don't up the ante by pushing him so that he feels he needs to use his teeth to get his point across.

First off - stay out of his "personal space" when he is tired. Not all dogs, especially of the working breeds, appreciate hugs and kisses or invasions of their space. This isn't bad, per se, if you can control it. If you have children, or there are children in the home frequently, then yes - it should be dealt with.


Next time he is napping - walk by him, say his name and drop a piece of hot dog next to his snout. If you continue to do this, then he will learn to associate wonderful things with being awakened from his nap and the growling and snapping should stop. But this must be something that is done consistantly and shouldn't be used as incentive so that you can give him hugs and kisses. And ANYTIME you need to wake him up from a nap - do it by calling his name, not touching him.

July 11th, 2008, 04:02 PM
That is not dominance aggression - it is "I am tired, leave me alone!"

I had been thinking it sounded like this....but was scared to post it because I thought I was wrong. Since a member I really respect is thinking along the same lines I have to say I second her opinion. It just makes sense, same as if a human was startled awake by an unexpected touch. Not pleasant.

That's not to say that training isn't a good idea though....I'd still go ahead with that too! :thumbs up