Help in interpreting my dogs aggression please

(9 Posts)
thwinka Fri 08-Feb-13 15:11:24

Hi, I have a lovely one year old dog but he suffers from fear aggression. Was quite severe at one point but he is alot better now(depending on the size of the dog) Anyway, he has been doing great just lately,has been running around the beach,mixing very cautiously with other dogs,but you could tell that his confidence with other dogs was coming on in leaps and bounds and that he actually wanted to start and involve him self with other dogs play.

The last few days though, four dogs have wandered up to him,sniffed him(all has been well up to this point) and then rolled straight over onto their backs in that submissive roll that some do? Within seconds of each dog doing this my dog has lunged at them,snarling and barking etcblush He isn't biting, but is getting very nasty and making alot of noise. Why would he do this?
No dog has ever rolled over when near my dog in that submissive thing they do, yet four have done it in a matter of days and he is reacting to it very aggressively?
Any advice/ideas very welcome before I have to call the behaviourist in againblush

samandkat Fri 08-Feb-13 20:57:33

Stay calm all your dog is doing is dominating the other dogs its nothing to worry about just keep your dog in check its just normal dog behaviour try looking up on dominant dogs hope this helps

D0oinMeCleanin Sat 09-Feb-13 01:33:47

This is not normal dog behavior. At all. Calming signals and submissive behaviors should be reciprocated.

You need professional advice from an APDT or APBC registered trainer.

ballybee Sat 09-Feb-13 13:54:14

Agreed, get a good behaviourist in now, this doesn't sound normal or good.

Also, don't take any advice with viewing him as a dominant dog...dominance theory has been disproven and was always used as an excuse for other behavioural issues.

thwinka Sat 09-Feb-13 14:43:14

Thanks for the replies. No he's not a domineering dog,he's actually a very nervous/fearful personality dog but he reacts with aggression if out of his comfort zone. I've just not seen this before.Dogs have never rolled over submissively to him,and the fact that he is turning nasty when they do is making me very uncomfortable and concerned.
Just wondered if anyone had any experience of this themselves?
I have contacted his old behaviourist, just waiting for her to call back so I guess its back to the drawing board againsad

My dog is fear aggressive and will jump and make a lot of noise at a rapidly approaching dog. Is he connecting with the submitting dog? Or is he just telling it to eff off? When the other dog moves away, does your dog follow it? My dog ignores other dogs as long as they ignore him, but I think he would 'see off' even a submitting dog if it was right in his face. He doesn't want them to submit, he doesn't want to be friends. He just wants to be left alone. We do see one dog (a black neutered male) who is more fearful than my dog. My dog always reacts around him. The behaviourist seemed to think that the other dog was giving off nervous energy, which was increasing my dog's anxiety and causing him to feel that he had to react before he got munched.

thwinka Sat 09-Feb-13 16:42:30

No,he doesn't connect,but gets right in its face snarlingblush He is basically telling it to 'eff off'. But he can be so unpredictable. He is usually ok with the smaller dogs,even when they run over. Sometimes he will play,other times he looks a bit stressy,gives a sniff and then walks on.
Large dogs he has major issues with,especially Labradors. He will walk past them ok so long as they pay him no attention, but if one comes bounding over then I have to reign him in very quickly otherwise he goes mental.
But these dogs were quite small. Dogs that he usually wouldn't be bothered about and would have a bit of a chase around with?? My dog did attempt to lunge after them(if that makes sense) but I don't know whether he would have followed it as by this stage I have had hold of his harness with a very firm grip pulling him awayblush
I just feel so gutted that he is regressing like this.

My dog loathes labs. Hmm. Not sure about the lunging etc. It might be worth having a chat with a behaviourist and getting their opinion. I do understand your frustration, though. If you look down the page you'll see the BD Club thread, where we are all struggling with reactive dogs <wry smile>

My dog is fear aggressive and she will always attack a submissive dog. I think its a case of them knowing its a dog they can 'beat' and it makes them feel more in control. My dog will never attempt to attack a dominant dog (unless it's trying to kill her!) but its very distressing when she always picks on puppies or dogs that are obviously no threat whatsoever.

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