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Hi all. We have six dogs which includes our Basset, an American Bulldog, and 4 mixed breed. The mix breeds include a mom, 2 of her sons, and her boyfriend. At first, our Basset would fight with the mom, so we separated them both, but recently, Abby, our Basset seems to want to fight everyone else. She would get so upset, growl, and attack. The other night, I was wiping her face, one of the boys who she is really close to (they play, sleet, etc. together), came by her and she barked and attacked him. He doesn't fight back with her but lets her have her moment. I felt bad because she was biting on him and of course he defended himself. My husband broke up the fight and slammed the hamper down onto the floor which scared Abby and got her to stop growling. Tonight, when she was on the bed in the living room, our American Bulldog got closed to the bed and she did her usual growl. We told her "no Abby, be nice," and she would stop. But then she would keep on. My husband went up to her to put her face down and she growl and barked at him. We punished her by putting her in her room (laundry room) and closed the door which we normally don't do. Everytime she plays with the other dogs outside and gets hurt in some kind of way, she would growl bark and attack the other dogs. She is not loose but is on a long chain which she is very used to. She has not been like this all the time. I'm not sure what to do? I haven't talked to the Vet, yet, and not sure why she is being like this. She has not always been like this. She has always been an inside dog and gets a lot of freedom. We say we've just spoiled her, but when she starts trying to attack us, it's just not right. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
 

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Everytime she plays with the other dogs outside and gets hurt in some kind of way, she would growl bark and attack the other dogs. She is not loose but is on a long chain which she is very used to
First and formost you need a professional consultation with someone specializing in animal behavior short of that little will help because of 1. limited objectivity in observing the situation as it relates to all the dogs.

2. no first hand observation of dogs and human interations


I will make the following comment however.
She growls, barks and attacks other dogs when she get hurts. Well what do you expect her to do. take it. She is behaving appropriately the dogs causing the problem is not her see:
HE JUST WANTS TO SAY "HI!
Aggression or appropriate response to rudeness? Far too many dogs suffer because handlers & trainers don't know the difference between the two.

"She is not loose but is on a long chain"
statitistic are on the order of 70%+ of all fatal dog bite occur when a dog is chained or spend a considerable amount of time chained.
Chain is a restraint that does not allow for propper and appropriate response to fear. The ol' flight or fight response. A chain does not allow a flight response so the dog learns fight is the only response it has. When the dog is outside with the others and getting hurt she has no alternative. That lack of alternative outside is likely to manifest itself inside where alternatives exists by using the one that is effect outside.

When it comes to dogs fights or anay fights it takes two to tango. Punishing one the "so called intesigator" is wrong Because it is not likely you know with certainty which one that was. A fight is the result of esculating displays and treatning acts. Is it the dog that growled the one that instigated, or perhaps the one who gave eye too long, or curled his lip.

Even if you are consistent an punish for a specific act you run into other problem. Punish growing effectively and the dog no longer growls. That does not change the emotional state of the dog. The dog is just likely to skip growing and proceed imeadiately to snaping and biting. Even more insidious is the fact that other dogs know the consequinces of growling and goad each other.

Some resources

agbeh · Aggressive Behaviors in Dogs Yahoo Group
"Here in the Aggressive Behaviors in Dogs group, experienced dog trainers (approximately 380 from around the world) discuss with pet dog owners how to modify the behavior of dogs which sometimes exhibit aggressive behaviors toward dogs and/or toward people. Oftentimes aggressive behaviors arise from dogs' fears or anxieties. Harsh training and physical punishments may make the problems worse. Trainers give information about using behavior modification methods as well as suggestions for safe home management and on using positive-reinforcement methods for teaching new skills. Only "dog-friendly" recommendations are permitted. No punishment-based methods are advocated here. "

Directory of Certified Applied Animal Behaviorists

Association of Companion Animal Behavior Counselors Member Directory

American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior (AVSAB)Member Locator

PETFAXremote consulting service for the Tufts Behavior Clinic[/url]


Of course all this assume a non-medical cause of the behavior such as an injury or ilness causing pain or one that can affect behavior like Hypothyroidism
Thyroid Dysfunction as a Cause of Aggression in Dogs and Cats

Medical Causes of Aggression In Dogs

[ February 12, 2006, 01:15 PM: Message edited by: Mikey T ]
 

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With six dogs, you have a dog pack.

Furthermore, from the sounds of it, at least two of the dogs are intact, meaning they're not spayed or neutered.

In addition, sounds like you "had" to chain one out, which tells me there's been a problem for a long time.

Whenever I see a dog chained, I know someone decided it was easier to chain them up than take care of the real problem.

Dog pack --- breeding --- not neutering or spaying --- chaining out: hate to say it, but this sounds like the problems have been brewing for a long time, and you have simply created the perfect recipe for aggressive behavior.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thank you for the advice and the websites, Mikey T. That was the whole reason I sent this message because we knew that there was a problem and needed help fixing it, so we could keep our family of pets together.

Biscuit and Aruuuu, I think every dog owner knows if their dogs are neutered or spayed, I mean who would not know that about their OWN pet? I'm sure that's your way of telling me that I deserved this from my pet, but I'm not going to feel bad anymore because of your hurtful reply, even though you don't really know the whole situation. Though my husband and I did not plan to have dogs or any pet, we had enough compassion to take in all these stray dogs roaming around rural areas when we one is pregnant with 14 puppies and starving, one with a broken leg and thrown into the ditch to suffer and die, one who stayed locked up in a 3x5 cage and/or chained on a 3 foot leash to a tree when he is over 100 pounds (the American Bulldog), and lastly, our Basset Hound, who the hunters were buying so they could let them loose in the woods to fend for themselves. We've seen many hunting Bassets with nails so long they've curled up and you could see their every bones, and their ears and skin are so scarred, that it's infected. We couldn't save all the Bassets but made a choice to add her to our family so she would not turn out to be like the ones we'd see wondering in the woods. Our Basset loves to be outside with the rest of the dogs, but I've read and been told not to let her loose and I would not want her to be loose in our neck of the woods. We feel blessed that all these dogs have come into our lives and even though we did not budget for all their vet expenses, food, bedding, toys, etc.,we have given them more love and necessities than others we've seen. Please save these comments for those who really abuse dogs because there are so many! We can't save them all, but we've saved a total of 8 including finding great homes for the other 12 puppies that our mama dog had. All this was never our intention, but maybe it was our purpose.

Thank you CyberHound, but I think I'll take my concerns somewhere else where I would not be judged by those who do not know me and my family.
 

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It is just as important for people doing rescue work to be responsible as it is for people who only have one or two dogs.

In fact, it might be even more important.

Otherwise, what differentiates someone from a collector? And collectors, as we all know, do not take care of their animals.

If you're going to do this kind of work, I strongly strongly advise you to make contact with your local and regional rescue organizations. You may be in the woods, but I can guarantee you there are many reputable rescue organizations relatively close to you.
 
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