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my old girl, and boyfriends puppy help!

March 23rd, 2010, 11:28 AM
hey guys!

i havent been on in awhile - been very preoccupied trying desperately to get my 11yr old kiila to get along with my boyfriends 6mos old chewie.
we are in need of suggestions!

here's a lil history:

- kiila is 11yrs old
- kiila is rather dominant, a lil snarky, but not a mean dog.
- chewie is 6mos old
- chewie is full of crazy, hyper puppiness.
- they get along great on walks.
- chewie likes to jump on kiila to play, but kiila will have no part of it (which i dont expect her to)....problem is, rather than nipping or growling, she goes right for the juggluar....and problem is, chewie is not phased by this at all.

- we have tried keeping kiila on a leash at first, so she cant lash out, but then she feels trapped and has nowhere to go - so bad idea.
- we have tried keeping chewie on a leash, so kiila can come see her when she wants at her own pace, but its hard to keep a puppy still.
- we got a muzzle for kiila so chewie can check her out, without worrying about kiila biting her, however, i fear that will teach chewie that there are no consequences for jumping on top of kiila and nipping her (and frankly, its not fair)
- we have tried time outs for one or both of them - seperating them with a baby gate.

- since the walks go well, everytime they see each other, we take them for a good hike before letting them hang out inside....kiila gets exhausted from it, chewie does too, but she is a persistent lil thing! haha

i do understand that kiila is a dominant dog, and has no patience for puppies jumping on her, nor do i expect to break her out of that. i just wish chewie would learn that that behaviour is a no-no, and stop when kiila snarls, bites, etc. since it doesnt seem to affect chewie whatsoever, i am afraid that kiila will end up hurting her as a simple growl, snarl, snap doesnt seem to work.

oh, and we are being persistent...we dont live together, but see each other virtually everyday. we would love to take them camping, etc, and are talking about moving in together - but cant due to the poochies.

any tips??

many thanks in advance!!

March 23rd, 2010, 11:58 AM
- we got a muzzle for kiila so chewie can check her out, without worrying about kiila biting her, however, i fear that will teach chewie that there are no consequences for jumping on top of kiila and nipping her (and frankly, its not fair)

That's true. You really shouldn't muzzle a dog unless they're actually causing injury.

Your dog is just teaching the puppy how she should behave. If the puppy is not phased by it I would feel that she's not hurting her, just reprimanding her.

You say she goes for the jugular, but I think you may be mistaking this as more aggressive than it is. It's common for an adult dog to go for the bottom of the neck to make a puppy submit. They generally aren't biting as hard as you think, and if the puppy isn't yelping in pain it's a normal amount of pressure.

I've actually seen my adult dog grab my 8 month old puppy (who is 85 lbs, compared to Walnut's 55) by the neck and pretty much throw her to the ground. The puppy doesn't have an issue with it and simply lays on her back and submits. I've seen Walnut do this with other puppies too and have never seen her cause an injury. It's pretty normal behavior with an older dog teaching a puppy proper behavior. It's also a way for the older dog to assert dominance over the younger dog and this should NOT be discouraged because you can actually cause aggression where there was none before (this is especially true if you try to muzzle). It's better not to interfere in this kind of interaction between an older and younger dog unless there is actual injury being caused.

March 23rd, 2010, 12:04 PM
And also, the older dog should never be punished for doing this when the younger dog is causing problems. If anything the younger dog should be pulled off and their behavior should be redirected to something else. You can try giving them kind of a time out in their own area for a few minutes so they can calm down. DO NOT, however, put the older dog in a time out for behaving naturally. That's another thing can cause heightened aggression because she'll feel she's being punished and you're allowing the younger dog to pick on her then punishing her further.

March 23rd, 2010, 03:52 PM
Can you keep the puppy on a leash to re-direct or correct her when she's bothering the older dog? I wouldn't be correcting the older dog for getting after the little one. Puppy needs to learn the limits and what is/what's not acceptable behaviour.

I adopted my playful 70 lb retriever x when my parent's elderly 15 yr old border collie Jake was still around. Ranger would try to initiate play time or accidentally run over Jake when playing outside. Everytime he went over to Jake in a non-calm fashion, I corrected him. Whenever he tried to get in Jake's face and try to play, I told him "leave him alone" and Ranger soon picked up that Jake was "off limits" unless he was calm.

I never ever got after Jake for reprimanding Ranger. One time Ranger was zooming around the yard and did a "fly by" where he'd nip at Jake then continue on. Jake snapped at him and came away with a mouthful of Ranger fur and Ranger hadn't even felt it so I backed up Jake by correcting Ranger. It took awhile, but he did learn to leave him alone.

March 24th, 2010, 11:15 AM
If the smaller dog lays on its back that means it submits?

Is that a good thing then?

There a huge dog in my building that is obsessed with my 9lb puppy, the big dog is friendly enough but doesnt know its own strength sometimes and Casey will stop jumping up at it and lie on her back but also kind of flap her paws around.

I thought she was playing but maybe she is submitting?

also sometimes when the big dog is there she will sit on my foot, is that cos she feels safer with me there?

March 24th, 2010, 02:40 PM
Exposing the belly is a submissive posture. Maybe your pup is just too keyed up to lie still while on her back? And I would guess that sitting on your foot is reassuring to her, that she feels that you'll protect her.

In the case of the elderly dog and the pup, I would not let the pup harrass the older dog. Especially if the reprimands from the older dog are not working.

March 24th, 2010, 10:25 PM
This may sound bad, but have you ever let her bite the pup? How else will this demon puppy learn that he needs manners.

I'm not saying let her maul him or anything, just stand by and let him annoy her and she'll let the pup know whats too much. And I'd do this soon while it's still a puppy and doesn't want to "challenge" her for alpha.

Luna had the same thing when she was 4 months old, she bugged and bugged this poor spaniel springer and he bit her after a warning. Believe me she didn't bug him ever again and still doesn't.:thumbs up

March 26th, 2010, 10:34 PM
thanks for the tips guys!
sorry it took me a bit to respond - the day i posted my question, my computer crapped out on me :(
they did have one argument where kiila was snapping at her, and scraped chewie's gums, making her bleed a little. chewie is fine! but she did back off and leave kiila alone for the rest of our walk.
we are really working on chewie learning more basic commands (ie/ sit/stay, lay down, etc) - perhaps this will also help in redirecting her unwanted behaviour with kiila.

i do get that kiila is just teaching her how to behave, it just is hard to watch as chewie does just want to play - so at a glance, it appears kiila is being a snarky lil brat...and the noise and sounds of 2 doggies arguing does upset me.

we will keep working on them and redirecting the puppys behaviour - in hopes that if they cannot be best buds, they will atleast tolerate each other!

thanks again!!! :D