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Some Behavior Problems with my GWP..

 
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AliGal
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Joined: 19 Jan 2007
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 12:46 am    Post subject: Some Behavior Problems with my GWP.. Reply with quote

Hey all, this is my first post... so be kind Very Happy I'm currently the proud owner of a 3 year old, female, GWP... Tara. Okay, here's the deal.

Up until this summer, she really wasn't an dominant female. But we started working her out a lot.. and wouldn't you know... she's kind of turned into a bit of a bully. I take her to the dog park, where she likes to run after dogs and bark at them. In one or two occasions, she has gotten into scuffles with other dogs who try to show dominace over her. But what has really got me concerned is when I take her out on the leash, and she sees another dog, she goes ballistic. She barks and howls, but it's not menacing.. or mean.

I'm just looking for some advice/sounding boards. I don't see her as mean, I see her as a dominant female. But I know that when she barks at other dogs (and we all know that the GWP's have a booming bark) it scares other owners. She likes to chase smaller dogs (she's a hunting dog).. I guess what I'm just wondering.. Have any of you had similar problems, are they problems.. and do I just need to be more firm with her to calm her down? Please help?
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allourmuddys
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Joined: 30 Nov 2006
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 11:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My female is now 11 and pretty much ignores other dogs unless they come up to her and start showing signs of dominance - if they try to assert dominance, she will give them a warning growl. Her size usually helps back other female GWP's down, she weighs in at 70 pounds and is solid.

A couple of questions - When you walk her, are you making her heal next to your side? If not - Shocked - you should be! If she is walking off leash, does she come immediately when called and sit by your side? If she doesn't you'll need to get her under control. The barking and howling shouldn't be allowed, if she is walking with you, she should be concentrating on the walk.
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Jon
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you saying that this dog had regular contact/socialization with other dogs all along and has suddenly become dominant? because of being worked in the field?

Has anything happened to trigger this? It is not unheard of for dogs to ateempt this kind of behabiour as they get ldler 3-4 years of age. Howver, usually there have been signs all along of what was coming. Without seeing her "in action", it would be tough for anyone to help at a distance.

Suggest you find an experienced mentor in your area and get some help.
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AliGal
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 5:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When she is off leash, she listens quite well. She'll come when called, and doesn't like to wander too far away. The problems just seem to arise when she's on leash. When I have healed her to my side... she will sit and whine, and act very anxious.
As for her dominance... She had always like to wrestle around with other dogs. It never would escalate into something more than play wrestling. It's just been as of late.. I'm thinking that being attacked while at the dog park (she once had a pretty serious puncture wound from a dog biting her), and her age might have something to do with it.
I've grown up with GWP's, the first one - male, who was attached to my father, was dominant... but maybe because I was young I don't remember some of these behaviours. the second- also male, was the kindest most passive dog that I've ever encountered. Tara- well, she attached to me from the second we brought her home from the breeder.. maybe now I'm learning that it's going to take a kind strong will to match hers in order to get her in line. Laughing
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allourmuddys
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My lab has some of the same issues with being jumped - was beat up over several months when young <8 months - with smaller dogs there are no problems - our male Springer - 1/2 his size - The two of them play together and from the sounds of things you would think they were killing each other, but when you look, they are both laying on their backs barking and carrying on. We saw this attack behavior when we saw how he interacted with male dogs his size or bigger - he takes the "get them before they get you" approach. We found this out when we fostered a young male GWP. If the GWP showed any weakness, he would attack - we ended up keeping them totally isolated from each other until the GWP was adopted.

From checking and asking questions, one attack on your female shouldn't have instigated this type of behavior, but suppose it could Sad - We are working with our Lab to get this under control - hope you can too.
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katababa
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PostPosted: 01/21/07, 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When a dog has been attacked ( unprovoked) numerous times, there is the high likelyhood that it will become aggressive toward unknown dogs. it will attack first so that it will not get attacked. dogs will not attack other dogs in the same household for that reason. interdog aggression in the household is usually associated with dominance. i'd recommend reading the culture clash, checking out the suzanne clothier website at www.flyingdogpress.com, and Feeling Outnumbered? How to Manage and Enjoy Your Multi-Dog Household by patricia b McConnell.

With the female wire AliGal, wires play rough. When you see her engage in behaviour that you don't approve of, you remove her from the situation after you correct her, let her know that's unacceptable behavior. She enjoys playing with other dogs, if she doesn't behave, she doesn't play. reestablish yourself as the pack leader. make her work for everything; going for a walk, eating her dinner, getting petted, playing fetch. i would do a loose version of Nothing In Life is Free, also refered to as a nonconfrontational leadership program.

one last thing, feel free to contact your breeder; all good breeders are an amazing resource and a wealth of information and more than happy to help with one of their puppies!
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Jay-Mar's GWP's
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PostPosted: 01/22/07, 4:18 pm    Post subject: aggression on the leash Reply with quote

while your dog may be showing signs of dominance in some ways, this sounds much more like territorial aggression or barrier/leash aggrerssion then true dominace. There are many subcatagories of aggression and dogs can display many forms. You can even have a fear aggressive dog who has dominance issues.
A good training program is what you need, wheither it be with a private trainer or a group class. Your dog needs to understand that dogs are none of her buisness unless you give her permission to interact with them. That goes for not only the barking on the leash as well as chasing little dogs. UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOR reguardless of the breed. No hunitng should be dog aggressive, remember, they have been bred to work with other dogs. You should see that type of behavior in guard dogs or livestock dogs but not in hunting dogs.
A gentle leader or a halit will also give you more control over your dog when walking on a leash.
It controls the head which in turn gives you control over the dog.
Find a good trainer and work through this, it is an easy issue to fix, just have to put some time and effort into it
good luck
Nikki
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Leadhead
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PostPosted: 02/23/07, 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your dog may be possessive of you: she may not want other dog around you. You and her are a pack. I have three hard hunting GWP and the fore of us make up a pack and everything else in the world is game. My Vet removes me from the examination room so he can work on the dogs, they (the dogs) do not want the Vet near me. With me out of the way they (the Vet) have not problems with the dogs. Hope this helps.
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