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Agression-6 y.o. Maltese...Giving up :(

Kateryna
March 24th, 2010, 05:30 PM
Hi,

I don't know what to do anymore. I got my Maltese 6 years ago when my mother passed away. I used him as a security blanket. Then I got married. Now we had twins (8 months old).

My dog:

- Never ever let anyone come inside my house because he attacks (I lost half of my friends because if this)
- Bites my husband by his toes; territorial with him (ex. will not let him go to the couch; will not move away and stands his ground)
- Marks my house
- Barks at and attempts to fight with any dog the we pass during walks (I always have to change sidewalks)
- Aggressive towards passing people during walks. Bit my neighbors fingers.
- Aggressive and predatory towards my crawling twins; has a "hyena" behavior of obsessing and walking in circles if I am holding babies on the floor.
- Bites and growls at me if I attempt to clean or brush him
- Has to be sedated for grooming

He is currently separated by baby gates. Only allowed in kitchen, breakfast area and family room.
My twins have to be separated playing in the family room. This is not a life for a dog. Also bad fir my babies who don't have access to my whole house and this cannot continue for long since they will be walking soon and I cannot keep them segregated.

I already spent over $1,000 on various trainers. My sister tried adopting him and he bit her son.

Please tell me what you think (I would appreciate brutal honesty!), I am heartbroken because I love him so much but this cannot continue. I feel trapped. No one can come to my house and I never have guests. I know it's my fault and I feel terrible but I hope this can be fixed somehow or maybe it is too late at 6 years old...

Is he hopeless?

Winston
March 24th, 2010, 06:33 PM
Wow I am so sorry you feel like giving up. I just have to say forst off and for most people will be honest here and perhaps you may or may not like what various people think. Having said that please have open mind and consider everything before you make any decsions.

You have brought up some points that cannot be dealt with over night and there are many. I have some questions for you.

What did the trainers say about the situation?

What did they reccomend you to do?

Has this always been the way your dog has behaved? when did it change?

Does your dog get exercise other than the area you have him seperated in?

How is your dog around other dogs?

What situation caused your dog to bite? how was it dealt with?

Are you the Alpha in the house? How do you discipline the dog when he is misbehaving?

Do you think your dog respects you?

I could probably ask you quite a few more questions but lets start there!

I hope that myself and the rest of the members here can help you out as there are some wonderful here with a ton of knowledge!

Cheers

Cindy

Kateryna
March 24th, 2010, 07:23 PM
Hi Cindy,

Thank you so much for your response.

You and everyone else reading: Please be as honest as you can. I don't want you sugar-coating and I can handle different views, that's why I am asking for help. I already know I am the only one to blame for this.

You have brought up some points that cannot be dealt with over night and there are many. I have some questions for you.

What did the trainers say about the situation?
We were kicked out of "group" training and deemed "hopeless" since Tinker (my dog) would not stop barking even when sprayed with water by trainer. This was when he was only 2. I also tried Bark Busters and they said he is trainable, but after 2-3 months of following their routine, it does not work.

What did they recommend you to do?
Separate myself from him; Use laundry room as a crate and leave him there when I am not around. Say loud "Baaaahhhh" noise to correct him. Some said to spray water. Some said to use quick nudge on the back.


Has this always been the way your dog has behaved? When did it change?
He was ok as a puppy when I got him in October I tried to socialize him. He almost got bitten by a dog off the leash. Then winter came and he pretty much stayed at home with my grieving father until May so 7 months. I did not walk him either because he was super tiny and there was a lot of snow.

Once he was 1 year old, he started barking at people coming to my house or stranger touching him.

It got really bad now because I have two infants and can't spend any time with him. He marks everything. Barks. Tries to attack my babies through the gate.


Does your dog get exercise other than the area you have him separated in?

During summer (May-October) he gets walked about 3-4 times a week. During winter, he used to play in the basement (we have huge running area) and I would run & play fetch there with him to a point that he was so tired he could not catch his breath and would go lie down.


How is your dog around other dogs?
Cannot come even close to them. He initiates a fight, barks and tries to bite. I am scared so I never even try anymore.


What situation caused your dog to bite? How was it dealt with?
Not sure really. He was never abused or dealt with harshly. On the contrary, he used to be the king of the house and was very dominant. He will bite if he is close to anyone but me. He bit me a couple of times when I tried to pull him on a leash away from a stranger. He seems "psychotic" at times, like he is possessed.


Are you the Alpha in the house? How do you discipline the dog when he is misbehaving?
I tried to be "Alpha" but I am not sure I am one. He used to get corrected by firm "NO". He usually could not care less for it. Later I started doing the "Alpha" thing recommended by Bark Busters and did loud "Baaah" and a small pillow throw on the floor near him (not at him) as to imitate dog snap.
When on the leash, I tried holing him close, but he pulls and pulls and even with persistence and many walks, he still pulls. If I try to say no, or pull him back, it's as if he is in another universe where I don't exist.

Do you think your dog respects you?
I really don't know. He does always come if I call, with a tail crunched under which in my understanding is a sign of submission. He also extends his paw (which is so adorable) as if to say "I give up" when called. He can go pee on command.

babymomma
March 24th, 2010, 07:44 PM
I would suggest finding a behaviourist that uses Positive reinforcement.

Stay as far away from barkbusters as possible. They really have no Idea what they are doing. They use terrible "techniques" and try to supress the issues instead of actually dealing with them.

I would like to send you a personal message but you need more posts before I can do that.


OMG, they seriously recommended you throw a pillow at him :wall: (No fault of your own. I just seriously despise barkbusters)

luckypenny
March 24th, 2010, 07:45 PM
I would suggest finding a behaviourist that uses Positive reinforcement.

My thoughts exactly.

Kateryna, have you ever had anyone teach you to teach your dog what to do rather than what not to do? I think that's why the training you've attempted didn't work, if anything, it may have made the issues worse. It's my belief that you're not supposed to scare your dog into doing, or not doing, something. You have to teach it calmly and with respect. Think about how you teach your children something new...I bet you're gentle and let them know when you're pleased...which will improve the chances of them repeating the behaviors. As they grow up, if someone huge looms over them threateningly, punishes them, and forces them to do something they haven't been taught how to, you can bet some serious issues are going to arise. The same concept can be applied to dogs and any animals.

Would you be willing to try a different, more gentler approach to training? Would your husband be on board? I can promise that it won't work overnight but, I can also promise that you'll see some positive results as long as you make the best effort and are consistent, patient, and realistic in your expectations. You may never have the "perfect" dog, but you can adjust your lives painlessly, in turn, sparing your dog's life and ensuring your children's safety.

I don't recommend classes. It will force your dog into an overwhelming environment that he is not ready for. You need an experienced behaviorist specializing in aggression that can teach you both the theoretical and practical elements for you and your dog to communicate appropriately with each other.

If you decide to commit to this, we can help you find someone able to work with you.

babymomma
March 24th, 2010, 07:51 PM
I think you should work on NILIF training (nothing in life is free)

And try ambilical training. (Dog is tied to you're waste and has to go where you go at all times and it helps you keep on eye on him)...

ALSO, if you can get your hands on a copy of the book "click to calm".. that would be a HUGE help.

BusterBoo
March 24th, 2010, 07:56 PM
:sorry: can't add anything to what has already been suggested, but hope you can find some help for you and your furbabe :(

Don't give up please...

LavenderRott
March 24th, 2010, 08:05 PM
On the contrary, he used to be the king of the house and was very dominant.

You hit the nail right on the head!! As a pup, he was allowed to be the boss since nobody else wanted the job. The problem with that is, besides all of the problems that you are having now, is that your dog doesn't know HOW to be the boss. So, he barks at things that stress him out and snaps at people who push him too far.

Yes. You need to find a behaviourist who uses positive reinforcement.

In the meantime, Nothing In Life Is Free is a good place to start. There are also a few other things you need to do.

This dog stays on the floor. Sitting on your lap and being on the furniture are priviledges that must be earned. Until the snapping and biting stop, he hasn't earned it.

EVERYONE in your household has to be on the same page with anything you do. It will do you no good at all to work with this dog during the day only to have your husband (or whoever) come home, give the dog treats, let him on the furniture, etc.

This dog has a bite history. There is absolutely no way around that fact and to ignore it is irresponsible. While I know that a majority of people here will disagree with me, the fact of the matter is that if you rehome this dog and it bites someone - you can be held liable. If you can not work this out - with professional help - then you need to put this dog to sleep.

babymomma
March 24th, 2010, 09:00 PM
While I know that a majority of people here will disagree with me, the fact of the matter is that if you rehome this dog and it bites someone - you can be held liable. If you can not work this out - with professional help - then you need to put this dog to sleep.

I agree 100% with you LR..

Stinkycat
March 24th, 2010, 10:42 PM
I think what you need to do is, show him he is a DOG not a human, he has no special privileges - No couch or anything that is spoiling him. YOU are alpha, if he is somewhere, you go over there and take his spot by physically walking through him (may want to wear shoes).

Walking - Try the umbilical method - running left -right-back -forth quickly so that HE has to look to YOU to see where you're going, he has to follow. Do not let him walk infront of you, this is a privilege he has to earn.

When he's being aggressive with dogs, hold him close to you and make your hand into a "claw" and touch him on his side by his shoulder blade and give a little pinch (this is to imitate a alpha dog biting him, saying "I don't like what you're doing, stop it). Once he looks at you, tell him to sit or place him into a sit position, if he starts to become aggressive again, do this again. If it doesn't work after a couple tries, take the other dog and your dog in separate hands and keep them on short leash and walk them together, one on one side the other on the other side so they can't touch each other and can't sniff each other, walking is very natural for dogs and when they walk thats all they think of is going forward, they don't think of who's beside them.

Try Cesar Millan - his methods are amazing and work GREAT on my dog and alot of dogs I know. Plus if you think about it, his method makes the most sense and its not violent.

Marcha
March 25th, 2010, 12:25 AM
It must be such a powerless and helpless feeling if your home, your routine, your time with you children is so overshadowed by your dog's behaviour. I had two babies in two years, and that was hard enough. The sleep deprivation, the adjustment to having two such tiny beings depend on me, being touched out, stretched to the max. Having twins that are just learning to roll and crawl and chat and eat, and then having these problems... I just wish I could give you a hug. And a break.

I really hope you find a solution that works for you.

LavenderRott
March 25th, 2010, 05:24 AM
When he's being aggressive with dogs, hold him close to you and make your hand into a "claw" and touch him on his side by his shoulder blade and give a little pinch (this is to imitate a alpha dog biting him, saying "I don't like what you're doing, stop it). Once he looks at you, tell him to sit or place him into a sit position, if he starts to become aggressive again, do this again. If it doesn't work after a couple tries, take the other dog and your dog in separate hands and keep them on short leash and walk them together, one on one side the other on the other side so they can't touch each other and can't sniff each other, walking is very natural for dogs and when they walk thats all they think of is going forward, they don't think of who's beside them.

Try Cesar Millan - his methods are amazing and work GREAT on my dog and alot of dogs I know. Plus if you think about it, his method makes the most sense and its not violent.

The LAST thing you want to do with this dog when he is aggressing is to hold him close to you and pinch him. I would be absolutely stunned if doing this didn't get you bit and bit hard! Answering aggression with aggression causes more aggression. And you certainly don't want to try to walk your dog WITH another dog while he is aggressing. I wouldn't be introducing this dog to any new dogs at all until you start to get a handle on his aggression issues.

As for Cesar - to each his own but I haven't seen him suggest a single thing that I would ever use on my dogs.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 05:35 AM
to the OP,,you have gotten some excellent advise from the others. I will suggest if you or your spouse are concerned about being bitten while working with the dog, use a tennis racket or something to hold infront of your legs as a sheild. One thing i'm surprised no one has asked " is the dog neutered". As for Cesar,,i just have this to say " of course no one on here would need to use him,,he doesn't deal with well balanced , properly trained dogs, would be kinda redundant wouldn't it." Take from each trainer what you can use and throw the rest away. On that note i will pm Bailey and see if she can help.

babymomma
March 25th, 2010, 08:13 AM
I think what you need to do is, show him he is a DOG not a human, he has no special privileges - No couch or anything that is spoiling him. YOU are alpha, if he is somewhere, you go over there and take his spot by physically walking through him (may want to wear shoes).

Walking - Try the umbilical method - running left -right-back -forth quickly so that HE has to look to YOU to see where you're going, he has to follow. Do not let him walk infront of you, this is a privilege he has to earn.

When he's being aggressive with dogs, hold him close to you and make your hand into a "claw" and touch him on his side by his shoulder blade and give a little pinch (this is to imitate a alpha dog biting him, saying "I don't like what you're doing, stop it). Once he looks at you, tell him to sit or place him into a sit position, if he starts to become aggressive again, do this again. If it doesn't work after a couple tries, take the other dog and your dog in separate hands and keep them on short leash and walk them together, one on one side the other on the other side so they can't touch each other and can't sniff each other, walking is very natural for dogs and when they walk thats all they think of is going forward, they don't think of who's beside them.

Try Cesar Millan - his methods are amazing and work GREAT on my dog and alot of dogs I know. Plus if you think about it, his method makes the most sense and its not violent.

I would just like to point out one thing. You have worked with trainers that wanted you to use these types of mehtods and where exactly has that gotten you?

If anything it has made him worse. Please dont try to suppress these issues with these methods. Chances are you're dog with either get worse or will shutdown. You may get short term results but its not whats best for him.m

I tried these types of things with my yorkie when she was reactive/agressive. It worked..Not for long though. It wasnt long before she just started up again only when she did it was 10 times worse then she ever was. :shrug: Probably from the pent up frustration from using cesar millan methods.

(there is a reason there is a Disclaimer before each episode of CM, "Do not try these techniques at home " )

fosterpat
March 25th, 2010, 08:42 AM
As a foster to many dogs (over a 100) in the past years and a mother of 3 children myself. I will have to agree with Lavenderrott. If you cannot find a proper trainer or do not have enough time to work with your dog. Then he cannot possibly stay in your home. By the sounds of it he is very unpredictable and young children are also. If he was just a visiting dog, then yes, it would be possible to keep everyone seperate and work with him. But right now, with 2 young, soon to be toddlers. I cannot see how you will be able to manage it.
Even though he is small dog, he could probably do serious harm to one of your children.
I know it's not a popular decision and perhaps others have different views, as i am only speaking through my own personal experience. Lots of luck to you on whatever decision you decide to make.

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 09:11 AM
Thank you all so so much for all your replies and kind words. Thank you, thank you.

Someone asked before, yes, my dog is neutered.

I just ordered two books: "Complete Idiots Guide To Positive Dog Training" & "Click To Calm: Healing The Aggressive Dog"

Than you for your suggestions, I will try this.

Currently he is not allowed on any couches.

I feel so trapped and lost. My life at home is not happy because of the situation with my dog. I have absolutely no family here so I had an opportunity to hire help with my twins, but I could not contain my dog who would attack. I am also unable to have other moms come to my house for play-dates.

It's not a good life for us, and not good life for my dog. I feel terrible for separating him, and when I am with my babies, I am tormented by the fact that he is locked away. He is just existing, not living and this is wrong.

My kids are not allowed in certain parts of the house because of my dog and I don't know if this can continue any longer as I cannot segregate my kids because of the dog. They will be walking soon, and then what?

All I want to do is cry because I have to make a choice between my dog and safety of my babies. I would never give him up, as I don't think he will be rehabilitated. I am thinking about euthanasia but I cannot even imagine doing it. Trapped.

If you don't feel comfortable sharing your views in a post, please send me a personal message with your point of view. I would really really appreciate this. You can also e-mail me at [personal email removed].

Have you heard of AlphaPaws company? Do you think they are worth trying? They have "Board & Train" programms for 15 days that deals with agression.

http://www.alphapaws.com/default.aspx

Do you think it's ok to hire someone to walk my dog or would that be bad for his training?

Again, thank you so much...:(

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 09:13 AM
It must be such a powerless and helpless feeling if your home, your routine, your time with you children is so overshadowed by your dog's behaviour. I had two babies in two years, and that was hard enough. The sleep deprivation, the adjustment to having two such tiny beings depend on me, being touched out, stretched to the max. Having twins that are just learning to roll and crawl and chat and eat, and then having these problems... I just wish I could give you a hug. And a break.

I really hope you find a solution that works for you.

Thanks you so much...It is very much "powerless and helpless" atmosphere in my home right now

babymomma
March 25th, 2010, 09:15 AM
If he wouldnt react badley to a dog walker i would suggest it. I gaurantee alot of his frustration comes from not enough physical or mental stimulation..
Maybe put a muzzle on him before the DW comes but make sure they know about his issues and fon out if they are experiacned enough to handle him .

Good luck.

ETA, I dont think its a trainer your dog needs. He needs a Behavourist.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 10:54 AM
Yeesh.

Until recently I probably would have been a wealth of advice...but as luck would have it, I was faced with a small dog that had some major issues. I tried everything possible (ie - blood work, tests, consulted a trainer, herbal therapy (which I do did not believe in) you name it, I did it. Every training method imaginable (except clicker training as useless when a piece of fresh roast would not even shake him out of a frenzy). I ended up consulting with another rescue that specialize in dogs with issues. I felt totally defeated, embarassed and questioned myself and my interpretations of the behaviour and/or temperment. I sucked up the pride and asked for another to help. The rescue contacted me and after a few days...the 'behaviour' raised it's ugly head...and it was confirmed behaviour.

To see is to believe. We can dissect this all we want but the true saviour in all this will be a professional to access your dog.

I was given different tips and ideas without this dog being physically seen, and I do believe that I was totally being underestimated in my own assessment, thought to be crazy, and ultimately totally lost hope in myself and the dog. I was vindicated as the rescue saw what I saw but they are much more savvy in helping this dog overcome his foul behaviour...though it will take months to rectify the damage done.

Please make some calls to try and reach a behaviouralist that is recommended by other professionals (vets etc) or even members here that have direct contact with the best. This will help you tremendously to help the dog or make the right decision.

I hope that LuckyPenny is following this thread as she is the BEST person to assist you in finding that right person. I would follow her lead.

Sorry I cannot provide any miracle guideance, but up until now I thought that I could fix anything...I finally met one I could not...but someone else could.

Dog Dancer
March 25th, 2010, 10:57 AM
Wow you sure have your hands full and I feel for you. If you are willing to tackle all of these issues then more power to you, but my honest opinion is that you are probably in overload. I can well imagine it would be a gut wrenching thing to do, but I think you may all benefit from rehoming the dog if you could find a rescue group maybe who could work with him. I don't think the dog is beyond help by any means, but I just don't see how you can take all of this on with the two babies right now. Again, bravo to you if you can, you're a better woman than I am. I don't doubt your wish to try to right the situation, just your ability given the circumstances. You've gotten some great advice here and I sure do wish you the best of luck with it all. That said, if you feel it's best to part ways with the dog please ask for assistance on the board here on how best to do this. Please do not post an ad in the paper to give him away or sell him. I wish I could offer you some advice, just do what you know is right. Also, you mention a boarding/training situation - don't go there. The true value in training is what the human learns in how to deal with their pets, not what the pets learn. I tried that once with one of my dogs when I had to go out of town so I boarded him at a training facility, I would never do it again.

Good luck to you and :grouphug:

babymomma
March 25th, 2010, 11:08 AM
I wouldnt gve him to rescue. I would rather he be PTS in loving arms then with strangers. I think it would be irresponsible to rehome him. Thats jmo of course.

Dog Dancer
March 25th, 2010, 11:12 AM
Babymomma I agree PTS may be best, but it would be a very very hard decision. BenMax had success with having a rescue work with her aggressive beastie and perhaps with the right help from the right rescue this dog could be saved. Just throwing it out there as an option as well, but strongly suggest she get input from BenMax or Luckypenny for this.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 11:15 AM
I wouldnt gve him to rescue. I would rather he be PTS in loving arms then with strangers. I think it would be irresponsible to rehome him. Thats jmo of course.

If you self doubt your own abilities Babymomma and you want to exhaust all your options, then I don't see why you wouldn't try. You can always always arrange with a rescue that if there is nothing to be done, that you can take back the dog or be present when the dog passes over the bridge.

I am with a rescue..several actually and I needed the expertise of another...so I took that invitation and ran with it. This rescue is doing whatever they can to help him. No - he was not my dog, but for every animal that I take in I consider them as being mine..and I build a very strong attachement and I am dedicated to them until such time.

The recommendation for the little dog that I had was euthanasia. I was considering this as the only option but I consulted with SO many people and many rescues that I found out through this consultation, there was an option....and I took it. I am glad I did as this woman is able to help him while I could not.

Personally, I think that everyone has provided some excellent advise. It is a tough case.

dannyg1001
March 25th, 2010, 11:47 AM
What a horrible situation. i feel for you. In my opinion you have to make your children the priority here

LavenderRott
March 25th, 2010, 11:50 AM
Alpha dogs has a decent website but it caught my eye right away that they teach off leash work with an e-collar. While I don't discount the use of e-collars for some dogs and some behaviours - I don't believe that it is necessary for most dogs and certainly not for something as basic off leash work.

Think long and hard before sending your dog to someone to keep for training. I have heard many more horror stories of dogs being hurt, "lost" or killed then I have heard stories of good outcomes. Also take into consideration that by sending the dog away, you are immediately removing all of the dogs regular stressers. Anyone who deals with foster dogs will tell you that there is a honeymoon period where the dog seems pliant and willing but once they are comfortable in their surrounds they are more likely to show bad behaviours.

IMHO - if you are going to be able to get through this, you are going to need to find someone that will show YOU how to retrain this dog and "get the upper hand" so to speak. Someone else training it means that it listens to someone else.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 11:57 AM
Think long and hard before sending your dog to someone to keep for training. I have heard many more horror stories of dogs being hurt, "lost" or killed then I have heard stories of good outcomes. Also take into consideration that by sending the dog away, you are immediately removing all of the dogs regular stressers. Anyone who deals with foster dogs will tell you that there is a honeymoon period where the dog seems pliant and willing but once they are comfortable in their surrounds they are more likely to show bad behaviours.

IMHO - if you are going to be able to get through this, you are going to need to find someone that will show YOU how to retrain this dog and "get the upper hand" so to speak. Someone else training it means that it listens to someone else.

Very good point LavenderRott in regards to sending out to train. Personally, I would never do it myself based on the exact same reasons that you list. Another great point is that the dog will respond with the person doing the training...and old behaviours will arise again once the leash is passed and the person owning the dog who may not be 'equipped' to reinforce the training that was given.

Indeed - there is a honeymoon period. Usually it is 2 weeks and then little things start to creep up. For those that have dog experience, know how to deal with them and will correct accordingly should they arise.

I feel the despiration in this thread.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 12:22 PM
Babymomma I agree PTS may be best, but it would be a very very hard decision. BenMax had success with having a rescue work with her aggressive beastie and perhaps with the right help from the right rescue this dog could be saved. Just throwing it out there as an option as well, but strongly suggest she get input from BenMax or Luckypenny for this.

Like you Dog Dancer, I am curious as to what LuckyPenny has to say or add.

I value her opinion and suggestions.:thumbs up (I have actually learned alot from her..as stubborn as I am).

14+kitties
March 25th, 2010, 01:09 PM
LP would most certainly be my choice of people to listen to as well. She has had success with a lot of dogs in her voyage. :thumbs up She's a good egg!!

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:11 PM
Lp posted right at the beginning of the thread ladies..And i agree i'd rather listen to someone with a ton of experience than someone with little or none.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 01:14 PM
Lp posted right at the beginning of the thread ladies..And i agree i'd rather listen to someone with a ton of experience than someone with little or none.

Oh lordy she did!!! How did I miss that..and she offered to find help which I know she will.:thumbs up

14+kitties
March 25th, 2010, 01:18 PM
Lp posted right at the beginning of the thread ladies..And i agree i'd rather listen to someone with a ton of experience than someone with little or none.

Oh lordy she did!!! How did I miss that..and she offered to find help which I know she will.:thumbs up

I knew she posted. I was simply adding my support to her methods. :thumbs up And LR's as well.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:20 PM
I knew she posted. I was simply adding my support to her methods. :thumbs up And LR's as well.

lol, it was kinda benmax i was pointing that towards,,just didn't want to centre her out so everyone would know she's senile. And yup with Lp and LR posting i had enough sense to just agree with their experience.:thumbs up

14+kitties
March 25th, 2010, 01:23 PM
lol, it was kinda benmax i was pointing that towards,,just didn't want to centre her out so everyone would know she's senile. And yup with Lp and LR posting i had enough sense to just agree with their experience.:thumbs up


Ok dok. :D You said "ladies" so kinda thought I may have been included there somewhere. :p

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 01:25 PM
So I called my vet (Abbotsford Animal Hospital in Aurora) and made an appontment for this Saturday to see what my options are. The vet that we see is also a Behaviourist so I hope he can help me in making my choices. He will assess him.

I am not in a position to ever give my dog away or rehome him. I cannot do that. I don't want him to be with strangers. I tried with my sister who owns a dog who is exctremely well behaved. She walked him 3 times a day and tried positive reinforsement. In return my dog bit her 11 year old son because he tried to come close to him.

I am a true failure really. I passionately donate to various animal shelters and animal groups and write letters to government on behalf of animal rights activists and here I am contemplating euthanasia for my pet that I lost control over and gave up. I'm very ashamed.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:26 PM
you're not a failure,,you are in a bad position and you've done the right thing, you came to the forum to ask for help. Seriously get as much info as you can from LuckyPenny..Several of us have had some problem furkids so we really do understand where you're coming from.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 01:34 PM
So I called my vet (Abbotsford Animal Hospital in Aurora) and made an appontment for this Saturday to see what my options are. The vet that we see is also a Behaviourist so I hope he can help me in making my choices. He will assess him.

I am not in a position to ever give my dog away or rehome him. I cannot do that. I don't want him to be with strangers. I tried with my sister who owns a dog who is exctremely well behaved. She walked him 3 times a day and tried positive reinforsement. In return my dog bit her 11 year old son because he tried to come close to him.

I am a true failure really. I passionately donate to various animal shelters and animal groups and write letters to government on behalf of animal rights activists and here I am contemplating euthanasia for my pet that I lost control over and gave up. I'm very ashamed.

You are NOT a failure. You are trying your best. Listen - the decision as to what to do is yours to make. But - I would explore all options..I really would. I understand not wanting to let him go to strangers...but some of those strangers are not strange to know what to do to correct behaviours and also work with temperments.

No one is perfect. We all make mistakes. I feel strongly that not all dogs can be saved but I also believe (for me anyways) that I must try everything possible...and that includes going outside your comfort zone.

Seriously consider whatever LuckyPenny comes up with. This girl has done so much for her dogs and her fosters - she goes above and beyond and is a wealth of information. Stand by until she comes back before you do anything.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:38 PM
here is a list from the animal behaviorist society near you..

www.animalbehavior.org/ABSAppliedBehavior/caab-directory

Frenchy
March 25th, 2010, 01:41 PM
Kateryna , weird request here but could you post 4 more times , it takes a certain amount of posts so we can PM (private message) you , LuckyPenny would like to send you infos by private message.

so just post anything .... 4 more posts. :)

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 01:45 PM
Kateryna , weird request here but could you post 4 more times , it takes a certain amount of posts so we can PM (private message) you , LuckyPenny would like to send you infos by private message.

so just post anything .... 4 more posts. :)

Go for it Kateryna...:thumbs up

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 01:57 PM
Thanks Aslan, I will look at that tonight.

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 01:57 PM
Thanks BenMax and Frenchy

Going to post now.

Dog Dancer
March 25th, 2010, 01:58 PM
Kateryna, you are so not a failure. Don't get down on yourself like that please. We've all been in your shoes. I do believe right now you are just overwhelmed.

LP will help with whatever she can, we all will. I also have a dog who at 7 years of age I seriously considered either PTS or giving her away. The only person I would have given her to was a behaviorist who was willing to take her. I couldn't fathom ever passing her off to somebody else. But you never know until you meet some of these rescue people if you would trust them with your furbaby. I would have given my girl to this one man. But nobody else. Explore all your options, and if you decide at the end that putting your pup to sleep is the best option then at least you will know that you did all you could. Seeing your vet is a good first step. You my dear have a very full plate as it is, and it's already been said, but at this point you must protect your twins first. Don't beat yourself up for this and don't berate yourself. Be strong, you know you are, you have twins for cryin out loud (no pun intended).

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 01:58 PM
3 more posts to go Kat...

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:59 PM
3 more posts to go Kat...

apparantly you suck at math too,,,2 from 4 is 2 honey..

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 01:59 PM
Again posting this to get an option of PMs

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 01:59 PM
Ok Frenchy, I think you can PM me now.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 01:59 PM
come on one more,,say something like benmax is senile...

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 02:00 PM
come on one more,,say something like benmax is senile...

You are so going to get it Aslan..:laughing:

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 02:01 PM
Aslan, LOL ;-) I think it should work now

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 02:02 PM
Aslan, LOL ;-) I think it should work now

I like you Kateryna!!!:):thumbs up

Frenchy
March 25th, 2010, 02:02 PM
Still can't :confused: does anyone know how many posts it takes to get pm ?

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 02:03 PM
You are so going to get it Aslan..:laughing:

you keep promising me that...atleast we got Kateryna to chuckle.

Love4himies
March 25th, 2010, 02:11 PM
I feel so bad for you because I know you truly love this dog. When you see your vet perhaps you can talk to him about some meds that may help keep him calm while you are trying to get his behaviour in check.

I am not an advocate for meds, but if the dog does go into a frenzy that is difficulty to get his attention out of, it may help a bit :shrug:.

Winston
March 25th, 2010, 02:13 PM
Hey guys just popping in to thank you all for stepping up to help Kateryna!!! I knew when I posted some questions last night that ALL OF YOU would be willing too help!!! I have been away all day and will not be on line again till later but I checked in for a second to see how things were coming along and WOW I am soooo happpy at all of the wonderful guidance and support you all have given/provided!!

Way to goo pets.ca members! Your all AWESOME!!!!!!! YOU ALL ROCK!!!!!!

Kateryna you came to the right place! :thumbs up

We are all here for you!!!

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 02:14 PM
Hey guys just popping in to thank you all for stepping up to help Kateryna!!! I knew when I posted some questions last night that ALL OF YOU would be willing too help!!! I have been away all day and will not be on line again till later but I checked in for a second to see how things were coming along and WOW I am soooo happpy at all of the wonderful guidance and support you all have given/provided!!

Way to goo pets.ca members! Your all AWESOME!!!!!!! YOU ALL ROCK!!!!!!

Kateryna you came to the right place! :thumbs up

We are all here for you!!!

But of course Winston.:thumbs up

breeze
March 25th, 2010, 02:19 PM
why doesn't someone pm Marko and see if he can't move things along for Kateryna to send and receive pm's.. just a thought :)

even though it is probably more fun this way..:):p

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 02:20 PM
marko isn't online,,i tried to stalk him on facebook but he's not there either.:(

Frenchy
March 25th, 2010, 02:22 PM
Way to goo pets.ca members! Your all AWESOME!!!!!!! YOU ALL ROCK!!!!!!



:frustrated: you're totally screwing up my reputation :cool:

:sorry: for the :offtopic:

:D

Winston
March 25th, 2010, 02:27 PM
Frenchy dont worry Kateryna will get a chance to know the real you!!! :laughing:

chow guys!!!

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 02:33 PM
All of you are truly amazing. You definately lfter my spirits with your help and encouragement. Thank you so much for that.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 02:41 PM
All of you are truly amazing. You definately lfter my spirits with your help and encouragement. Thank you so much for that.

It is clear that you are good people.:thumbs up. When someone is true blue..how could we not.

Choochi
March 25th, 2010, 03:35 PM
All of you are truly amazing. You definately lfter my spirits with your help and encouragement. Thank you so much for that.

Ok I skimmed quickly through all the posts..

Quite frankly YOU are the problem here. YOU need to change.

I had a client with a dog (also a maltese) that acted just like yours, a little uncontrollable terror. When ever he came over to my house, he was perfectly fine (less a few initial flare ups), but I set strict rules and know how to deal with problem dogs. The client tried trainers, and quite frankly simply did not follow their advice. She ended up deciding to rehome the dog, and the last I heard he is doing just fine in his new home.

The fact your sister has a well behaved dog, simply means he is a good dog, doesn't necessarily make her qualified to deal with a problem dog. There are dogs out there that will little training and guidance maker perfect pets, there are dogs who require a little more effort, and then there are dogs who require a lot more effort.

It's not necessarily your fault that you got "dealt" a difficult dog you were not experienced enough to handle (I'm assuming you got him from a pet store, or a byb, and not a reputable breeder who would have never sold you a pup like this if they knew you weren't experienced enough to handle him, and would have offered you support in changing his behaviours asap). Lot's of people buy a dog because it looks a certain way and then have no idea how to deal with the dog's character. It is however your fault that you did not resolve these issues earlier. To me that speaks volumes about your attitude towards the dog and his training, and that needs to change if you're hoping for any slim chance of adjustment in his attitude. At this point you will definitely need professional help from some one very experienced when dealing with aggression. Don't even consider sending your dog away for training because while his habits need to be changed it is far more important that YOU re-learn how to deal with this dog.

You can't have people over? Is the dog putting a gun to their heads? Ofcourse you can have people over! Just put the damn dog away and don't let him rule the house hold! He should never even have the opportunity to try to bite some one. The people didn't stop coming over because of him, they stopped coming over because of you! Not many people want to deal with a person unwilling to control their dog. It speaks volumes about the lack of respect you have for those people and that you feel your dog's freedom some how trumps their safety and comfort. Why would I want to be friends with some one like that? If a stranger comes over, the dog goes into his crate. Otherwise the dog ALWAYS has a leash on him, even a muzzle (especially when around the children). He should never have the opportunity to bite your hubby's feet. He should have been stopped the second he takes a few steps towards his feet. Buy him a basket muzzle (not the tight nylon ones) so that he can wear it for long periods of time with out any effect other then preventing him to bite. If he's not good with a crate, you need to start crate training 101 as that will be a big management tool for you and will help you with training.

He sounds a lot to me like an insecure fear biter dog that over time has been allowed to think he rules the world and the only way he knows how to get any thing he wants is through intimidation and aggression. It's very common, and what you're describing sounds like a classic example. It's absolutely treatable, but it will take a lot of time and effort before you start seeing changes.

How is his obedience training? Again, that's going to be a massive tool for you in helping change him. He is definitely not a candidate for group classes, so don't even consider that either. If you can't even control him at home, how is he supposed to learn any thing in a class?

You definitely have your work cut out for you.. The books you got are ok ones, but I would also strongly recommend you read "The Culture Clash" by Jean Donaldson, it's written in a very easy and funny every day language and I think really helps non-dog people or people who lack that innate understanding of how to react to a dog. It will help you understand some of what is happening and hopefully you will be able to recognize what you are doing wrong and how the dog perceives your actions.

I think it would be a great shame to put this dog down, that would be failing him. I think it would be a far better option to rehome him into a home that is well aware of his issues and is also CAPABLE and experienced enough to deal with him and rehab him.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 03:44 PM
hmmm tho in some instances i do agree with what you're saying,,just wondering if you possibly could have been a little less abrasive about it.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 03:46 PM
Chooci - I just saw the 'YOU' and stopped reading from there. Sorry.

marko
March 25th, 2010, 03:52 PM
setting you up with PM access now kateryna - good luck. Marko

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 03:53 PM
thank you marko.:thumbs up

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 03:56 PM
Thank you for your honesty Choochi. You are right. I have failed this dog. I had a lot of personal issues when I got him and I did buy him at a pet store which I now now is terrible and it was an impulse buy.

I have tried many techniques and none work and to be honest, right now with having two infants and being alone at home from 6am to 6pm taking care of them, I am not sure how much time I will have to train him.

It is true that people can come to my house, but what do I do to him when for hours he will scream and cry from his crate, without giving up. Bark and scratch aggressively. Not many people will enjoy having company at home under such circumstances. So I stopped.

I don't know what to say really, except, thanks

LavenderRott
March 25th, 2010, 04:04 PM
Thank you for your honesty Choochi. You are right. I have failed this dog. I had a lot of personal issues when I got him and I did buy him at a pet store which I now now is terrible and it was an impulse buy.

I have tried many techniques and none work and to be honest, right now with having two infants and being alone at home from 6am to 6pm taking care of them, I am not sure how much time I will have to train him.

It is true that people can come to my house, but what do I do to him when for hours he will scream and cry from his crate, without giving up. Bark and scratch aggressively. Not many people will enjoy having company at home under such circumstances. So I stopped.

I don't know what to say really, except, thanks

Put the crate in the basement or in the garage (so long as it isn't freezing or too hot) when you have company and COMPLETELY ignore him! He gets to come out of the crate when he is quiet and only when he is quiet. If he is crate trained, you should only have to do this once or twice. If he is not, it may take a few more times.

breeze
March 25th, 2010, 04:07 PM
What is done is done, can we not guide, encourage, for the now and possibly the future?? choochi?? a little harsh don't you think??

Kateryna came here for help, and to me that's a start :thumbs up:thumbs up

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 04:10 PM
What is done is done, can we not guide, encourage, for the now and possibly the future?? choochi?? a little harsh don't you think??

Kateryna came here for help, and to me that's a start :thumbs up:thumbs up

Takes alot of guts to know where you went wrong, own up to it and want to address the problem.

But - also, knowing that this pup came from a petstore sheds alittle more light on the situation. As LuckyPenny stated in a thread about 'imprinting' the issue can be deeper and not necessarly the OP's fault in it's entirety.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 04:11 PM
Takes alot of guts to know where you went wrong, own up to it and want to address the problem.

But - also, knowing that this pup came from a petstore sheds alittle more light on the situation. As LuckyPenny stated in a thread about 'imprinting' the issue can be deeper and not necessarly the OP's fault in it's entirety.

well said Breeze:thumbs up

have to agree with you Benmax,,i would love to hear what Choochi would have to say about my Bishop.

breeze
March 25th, 2010, 04:13 PM
Takes alot of guts to know where you went wrong, own up to it and want to address the problem.

But - also, knowing that this pup came from a petstore sheds alittle more light on the situation. As LuckyPenny stated in a thread about 'imprinting' the issue can be deeper and not necessarly the OP's fault in it's entirety.

I agree, it does take a lot of courage..

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 04:15 PM
well said Breeze:thumbs up

have to agree with you Benmax,,i would love to hear what Choochi would have to say about my Bishop.

What I have learned from my experience is that not all dogs can be remedied. Like humans, the 'wiring' can be crossed.

I am truly hoping that this is not the case for this little guy, but only time will tell.

BTW - I have a maltese foster at my home now. LP and Frenchy saw this dog. He is also a piece of work BUT he will not bite. He complains alot with his snarling and growling...not something that is pleasant to hear....still working on it and it's been 1.5 months now.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 04:17 PM
I agree, it does take a lot of courage..

yup i definately bow down to the Op for coming here and asking for total honesty.

Kateryna
March 25th, 2010, 04:18 PM
I have some questions if you guys could please share with me:

What would you do when my dog:

Barks at the door or any outside noise?

Pulls on a leash continuously even after I persistently keep it at my level and not in front of me?

Attacks my infants through the baby gate?

Growls when being groomed by me?

Should it be in the crate all day long if my twins crawl everywhere and when they do he attacks them? I don't think it's fare to him to be crated all day.

I'm sorry but I obviously ticked off some people. I just wanted second opinion and experience shared rather than pointing fingers on who to blame as I already stated in my original post, that I know I am at fault here.

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 04:21 PM
kateryna you didn't piss anyone off so don't worry about it..There are so many differant training methods for a dog that pulls. Choochi's muzzle suggestion was an ok one, or you could try a prong collar..seriously tho wait for LP to pm you,,i think she is now, she really is one of the best to give you advice.

BenMax
March 25th, 2010, 04:23 PM
kateryna you didn't piss anyone off so don't worry about it..There are so many differant training methods for a dog that pulls. Choochi's muzzle suggestion was an ok one, or you could try a prong collar..seriously tho wait for LP to pm you,,i think she is now, she really is one of the best to give you advice.

I may look like a brown noser here...:laughing:...but I agree with Aslan. LP will help.

babymomma
March 25th, 2010, 04:24 PM
Sending you a PM :)

breeze
March 25th, 2010, 04:24 PM
What I have learned from my experience is that not all dogs can be remedied. Like humans, the 'wiring' can be crossed.



this is true,

you have experience as does LP and Frenchy and Aslan and Hazel, LR and many many other,
with the right tools and the guidance and people to contact Kateryna can make her desecion based on the information given to her. and maybe there will be a light at the end of the tunnel, maybe not, but at least she will be prepared with the help you guys are giving her.

:thumbs up:thumbs up

aslan
March 25th, 2010, 04:25 PM
I may look like a brown noser here...:laughing:...but I agree with Aslan. LP will help.

geez would you stop following me around this is how rumors get started.

Kateryna unfortunately the pup was purchased at a very emotional time for you,,you couldn't take care of yourself let alone a puppy. The pup started to take on the lead in the house..umbilical training is going to be huge, not letting the dog alone with the kids of course....Lp will tell you.

LavenderRott
March 25th, 2010, 07:15 PM
I wouldn't put a prong collar on this dog either. With the kind of aggression she has described, I would be concerned about transference if any kind on negative enforcement is used.

LavenderRott
March 25th, 2010, 07:28 PM
I have some questions if you guys could please share with me:

What would you do when my dog:

Barks at the door or any outside noise?

Pulls on a leash continuously even after I persistently keep it at my level and not in front of me?

Attacks my infants through the baby gate?

Growls when being groomed by me?

Should it be in the crate all day long if my twins crawl everywhere and when they do he attacks them? I don't think it's fare to him to be crated all day.

I'm sorry but I obviously ticked off some people. I just wanted second opinion and experience shared rather than pointing fingers on who to blame as I already stated in my original post, that I know I am at fault here.

You need to stop and take a breathe. There isn't a soul here who hasn't made mistakes with their dogs and had moments of "what was I thinking". And we certainly have no reason to be mad at YOU.

Many people crate their dogs while they are away and the dog is fine. If you need to crate this dog while your twins are "loose" well, he will adjust. But the crate in an out of the way place while you sort everything out.

Choochi
March 26th, 2010, 08:43 AM
I'm sorry if some of you felt my comments were hurtful but I wasn't trying to attack the Op, just being brutally honest which incidentally is exactly what she asked for.

I'm not going to sugar coat the facts here when a dog's life is at stake, and quite frankly the op and her family are not doing all that great either. Being "nice" and avoiding the hard truth in this situation would only be a dis-service. The facts are that this is all her doing and changing her ways is going to be the key to resolving this. She needs to know it's not the dog's fault. I'm not going to blame this on the dog and say "oh it's ok, it's not your fault" because that would be lieing to her face in order to protect her feelings. I'm sorry but that is just wrong when once again, the dog's life is at stake and the situation is this serious.

Kateryna, I really do feel for what you're going through. If you can't even leave him in the crate, because he protests so much, plain and simple he isn't properly crate trained. You need good crate training as a foundation to help change his ways. There is a lot of good material out "there" about basic crate training. I would also recommend the DVD "Crate Games" with Susan Garret, those games could also help you establish a better relationship with your dog and start turning around some of his believes that he's the boss. Jut putting the crate away and out of sight while the dog isn't properly crate trained to begin won't necessarily resolve any thing. You may not be able to hear him, but in his mind you just might be creating an environment where he feels he just has to get that much louder to be heard. Could make things worse when the crate comes back inside the house. His crate needs to be a happy and safe place, and I think should be stationary for the initial periods of training. If we are dealing with an insecure dog turned tyrant, moving the crate around could give him reasons to be more insecure. You don't want to end up with a dog who is now happy to go in his crate but becomes protective of it.

I wouldn't recommend a prong collar for this dog without seeing what is happening. Especially with the fact he already has hierarchy issues, the prong could act to further frustrate him. While he will need stern leadership and possibly some corrections, I would prefer to use a more positive and guidance based training system on a dog like this. Especially if his issues have originated from insecurities and lack of socializing in his earlier life. He doesn't need more conflict, he's already created enough of that for himself.

BenMax
March 26th, 2010, 08:54 AM
I wouldn't put a prong collar on this dog either. With the kind of aggression she has described, I would be concerned about transference if any kind on negative enforcement is used.

Oh boy - I am going to sound like a brown noser big time...but I agree with you LavenderRott.

kandy
March 26th, 2010, 10:19 AM
You've gotten some good suggestions, and I'm sure you've gotten some pm's by now with more. One thing that was mentioned in a post was a suggestion about having someone walk your dog - personally I think this is not a good idea, unless it is the behaviorist who is walking him. If he attacks another dog while on the walk, you would still be liable - and the dog walker may inadvertently take him into a situation that increases the chances of that.

I'm glad that you are seeking the help of a behaviorist. I've seen lots of little dogs who have been allowed to rule the roost - I think that when they are puppies, we think it's funny when the tiny thing acts all gruff and tough, not realizing that we are reinforcing the behavior. My mom had a papillon at one time, and seriously we called him the Anti-Christ because he was such a holy terror. It wasn't the dogs fault, my mom let him get away with far too much as a cute little puppy, not realizing how that would translate into adult behaviors.

Chaser
March 26th, 2010, 10:50 AM
Just wanted to say good luck with everything :) I really commend you for recognizing the problem and asking for help. I also think it's great that you haven't downplayed the issue just because you have a small breed - far too many people do that and end up with very dangerous little dogs.

You're in good hands with users such as LP, LavenderRott, aslan, etc. Please don't be put off by any conflict that may develop in this thread or others re: training methods. There are many different approaches and it would be impossible for everyone to agree I think. Don't let yourself get pulled in too many different directions. Trust your gut and take the advice you feel most comfortable with and believe is best for your dog and your family.

Good luck!

BenMax
March 26th, 2010, 10:52 AM
Just wanted to say good luck with everything :) I really commend you for recognizing the problem and asking for help. I also think it's great that you haven't downplayed the issue just because you have a small breed - far too many people do that and end up with very dangerous little dogs.

You're in good hands with users such as LP, LavenderRott, aslan, etc. Please don't be put off by any conflict that may develop in this thread or others re: training methods. There are many different approaches and it would be impossible for everyone to agree I think. Don't let yourself get pulled in too many different directions. Trust your gut and take the advice you feel most comfortable with and believe is best for your dog and your family.

Good luck!

Very Very well said.:thumbs up

JennieV
March 26th, 2010, 10:53 AM
Kateryna, you got a lot of good points, and while some posters came across a little too harsh for my pallet, they also had a point or two that were very important.

I would like to suggest something... Try to change your overall behaviour. What I mean is take a note of how you carry yourself every day, are you behaving as a leader? Or are you submissive, depressed and sad? Even if you have to fake it - carry your head high, shoulders back, stand tall. No hunching. Don't be afraid to display strength, you have it, you just need to let it show. You should be calm, collected and ASSERTIVE. Not agressive, ASSERTIVE. You come first, you and your children.

When he pulls on the street, stop dead in your tracks, do not go on, until he is by your side. Eventually, he will come. it may take a little time nd patience, mostly patience. Do not get I had a little issue with Sparky and what I did is I trained him to sit when I stop. So I would just randomly stop and make him come next to me and sit his bum down. Only then we go on. Now, he knows. He watches me, as soon as I stop - that bum hits the pavement, cause he knows he wants to go on. :) He still pulls occasionally, so I pull back, and stop dead until he snaps out of it. Also, change direction rather suddenly, like walk the other way without warning. Or turn. He will learn to pay attention to YOU, as leader, rather than all around him.

Your entire attitude towards him should change. Practice the suggested NILIF, no treats, no play, no pets until he does something you asked him, it could be anything at all, but he has to learn that YOU direct him, not the other way around. When you feed him, same thing - no bowl until he sits for example.

Mostly, I am sending you lots of :goodvibes::goodvibes: and :grouphug::grouphug:, you CAN do this. It will be long and hard, there will be times you will feel that you're going nowhere, or there will be setbacks, but the alternative is just too painful, this is worth a try. At least, you will be able to say that you have tried it all if it comes down to the final decision. GOOD LUCK!!!!

FlamesGirl
March 26th, 2010, 03:28 PM
Lots of good ideas and great posts here. Good for you for trying to fix the problem, too. I'm going to suggest a lot more exercise for your dog. Running/playing in the basement isn't really "exercise" for a dog...it's just playtime. Every dog needs a balance of playtime AND exercise, and lots of problems start when people confuse the two and/or neglect one. Even a 20 min walk once or twice a day would be a great start. Dogs NEED to walk and get out the yard or mental issues can start.

Even if you're trying other ideas already posted, try to commit yourself to at least one/two walks a day. Walk briskly and keep your dog at your side; no pulling and no stopping to sniff the flowers either. Walk like you're late for an appointment to keep your dog focused on you. If he's forging ahead, walk a square/box shape by turning left at 90 degree angles. Change pace - walk heel-to-toe slow, then back to your brisk pace. Do 180 degree turns whenever you think your dog is focused on something that's NOT you and don't wait for him to follow. Pivot on your right foot and immediately start walking away, no hesitation.

If you ride a bike or rollerblade - take him with you! Make him walk/trot/run next to you for 20 minutes and get him away from the property. The great thing about going that fast is that dogs usually can't focus on anything to start being aggressive about. If he sees a dog that he thinks he's going to attack - by the time he's thought about it, you're already past the other dog.

Just because he's a little dog doesn't mean he can't "work" like a big dog. My amazing dog walker walks 10 dogs, including a little chi for, more than hour on hilly terrain. That dog keeps up to the big dogs, no problem. Buy a little doggie backpack for your maltese and let him carry it on your walks then gradually add weight in the saddlebags. Start feeding him from an A-maze-ball/buster cube or put his kibble in a kong with some pb/mashed banana/water and freeze it for a few hours THEN give it to him for breakfast/dinner. That way he starts to use his mind and the more a dog uses his mind, the more tired they are. The more tired a dog is from physical AND mental pursuits - the calmer they are. Sounds like his mental/physical stimulation needs aren't being met. It won't "cure" the aggression but it will help big time.

LynnI
March 26th, 2010, 09:32 PM
Hi,

I haven't read the entire thread, but may I suggest All About Dogs in Toronto.
Renee is a lovely person and she just opened a huge new indoor training facility. I know she has turned around some very aggressive dogs and dogs with issues. http://www.allaboutdogs.ca/

Good luck, btw she is a positive trainer and I would be stunned if you didn't get results. Agreed stay away from BarkBusters and CM methods, those methods are guaranteed to make your dog worse.

Lynn

Golden Girls
March 27th, 2010, 08:12 AM
So I called my vet (Abbotsford Animal Hospital in Aurora) and made an appontment for this Saturday to see what my options are. The vet that we see is also a Behaviourist so I hope he can help me in making my choices. He will assess himGood luck today :fingerscr

JennieV
March 31st, 2010, 12:14 PM
Kateryna, any update or news? :goodvibes:

Scijox
April 3rd, 2010, 10:41 PM
Hey,

Uh I'm not exactly a dog expert or entitled to give proper advice, however I really, sincerely feel for you. I hope everything works out!

Skyblue
April 6th, 2010, 07:48 AM
Kateryna, don't beat yourself up because of that. I hope everything works out for you. Good luck!

Brad1976
April 5th, 2011, 09:30 AM
Hi Kateryna,

There is definitely hope for your dog. I had a Golden Retreiver named Finnegan with similar issues except his trick was to steal the expensive remote or your brand new shoes and lunge at you if you went to get if off of him. He would even bite you if you were petting him. I actually had Barkbusters come to my home and the trainer was very helpful. It took almost 6months for us to feel at ease again around him but he is now a very well behaved dog. We understand that he is never going to be a party dog around other dogs and people as he really is not interested in their attention, but that was ok with us.

I read some other posts and see that Barkbusters does not get a lot of love on this forum. My wife and I had a really good experience with them and we never did anything physical to Finnegan. Not sure why people seem to think what we learnt from them will make the dog worse. The trainer Krystal must have come to see us over a dozen times to help us through this. Taking him to any sort of group class would have been a nightmare so in home was really the only option.

From everything you described in your post you will have a tough road ahead as you are going to have to do what others have already suggested and stop treating your dog like a person and more like a dog. Everyone in your family is also going to have to be very very consistent. We realized with our own guy that he was really very stressed all the time and his quality of life was not great. Having to worry about us, stangers and other dogs was too much for Finnegan.

Anyway there is a light at the end of the tunnel if you want to put in the effort. In the end it will be worth it. We really enjoy Finnegan now and less then a year ago we were contemplating giving him up.

Good Luck

Brad

14+kitties
April 5th, 2011, 10:10 AM
Welcome Brad1976 to Pets. This thread is almost to the day a year old. Kateryna has not been back on to let us know how the training went with her dog.

cell
April 5th, 2011, 03:29 PM
For the pulling issue, you could try a front attaching harness. Hali makes one, I am not sure if it comes in maltese size though. If the dog pulls pressure is applied to the front of the harness and pulls the body sideways. This avoids the "whiplash" effect of the head halter, and takes strain off the neck.

reanne
April 5th, 2011, 05:37 PM
I didn't read the entire thread, so I'm not sure if someone suggested this already, but you might want to try getting your dog more exercise, including more structured exercise (ie. leash walking/jogging instead of just the playing with a toy in the basement? Dogs need both structured and unstructured exercise. Leash work would do double duty of exercising your dog and enforcing your place as the alpha.
Good luck!
I see the above post talks about a pulling issue; when I first adopted Whistler he was a real puller. I got a Sporn halter and it worked great until he progressed through training to a flat collar.
I hope everything works out, and kudos to you for reaching out for help.