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Dogs jostling for position - any experience/advice

(14 Posts)
grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 08:52:50

How does it normally resolve itself? How long does it normally last? Does the smaller dog always lose out in regards to toys, treats etc?

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 10:14:40

It depends on the character of the dogs - size is no indication. Dogs will naturally be dominant, submissive or sub-dominant, and an experienced person can tell by the dog's body language which it is.

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 10:21:17

What signs should I be looking for bella?

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 10:23:20

It's all to do with how they hold their head, ears, tail - everything. Bruce Fogle does a fab book called If Your Dog Could Talk, which helps set it out.

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 10:27:20

I'll have to have a look for that in the libary. I think my beagle is naturally dominant and refuses to be submissive to the GSD which is what causing all the problems I think.

Things seem to have changed today. My beagle has gone from being chased and relucant to leave her bed to barking at the GSD and chasing her.

I'm not sure if this is progress

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 10:35:48

That's fine, actually - smaller dogs usually like to be in charge! grin

There is no problem whatsoever with one dog being dominant over the other - problems only really arise if both want to be dominant. Once a pecking order is established they will be happy with that - never try to intervene or you will cause a great deal of trouble.

The GSD is more likely to allow your beagle to be dominant because the GSD is younger and it is not her patch. if your beagle is naturally dominant (greets other dogs with head and tail up, making eye contact) then that's fine. Never reprimand her - you risk making her fearful and then she will fight. Other non-domniant dogs will greet your beagle with head down, tail up (or between their legs if they are scared) and not making eye contact.

As I said, it is very hard to say without seeing them but it does sound promising.

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 10:39:43

So I'll just let them get on with it and cross my fingers. Thanks bella smile

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 10:41:17

Good luck - as long as the GSD doesn't fight back, which from what you are saying she isn't, they will resolve this by themselves.

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 10:48:29

So I'll just let them get on with it and cross my fingers. Thanks bella smile

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 10:52:35

Sorry double posted by mistake.

The GSD is still trying to be domiant though. She wont share the bed, any bones that are laying out the back or even the water bowl (I've put down two bowls now)

Does this sound like a problem then?

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 12:17:03

Firstly, don't make them share a bed. They need separate ones.

As I said, hard to say without seeing but if the GSD is just 'trying it on' as pups do, then the worst that will happen is your beagle will growl and/or nip her to tell her she is overstepping the mark.

If the GSD isn't being aggressive and standing her ground, it's fine. She may just be testing the boundaries iyswim.

grubbywitch Thu 09-Jul-09 14:49:56

My dog is still using her bed, shes not allowed anywhere near the other bed - the GSD chases her away.

I've got my fingers crossed.

Thanks Bella smile

bella21 Thu 09-Jul-09 16:28:21

Oh I see blush - totally misunderstood re beds.

Yes, let them each have their own area they can retreat to.

Keeping it crossed for you too grin

Bella21 Mon 13-Jul-09 13:54:36

How's it going, grubby?

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