Inherited Mutt(7 Posts)
We inherited a dog at the beginning of the year. A 10 year old Jack Russell cross, who had never been socialised with other dogs, he is aggressive to dogs ok with humans. He is impacting on our life in lots of ways. We have spent money on training, but there has been little or no change. Walking him is a nightmare. Indoors, he is great. Any advice?
Can I ask why walking him is so bad? Is it because of seeing other dogs? Assuming that is the case then two things occur:
- is there somewhere you can go where there aren't or are less likely to be other dogs - thinking that your local park is probably very busy with them which would be stressful for him
- at his age how much exercise does he need? And are you sure he's not in any pain - arthritis or something - that could also make him unhappy when he is out and about
Otherwise and I'm afraid it's not great news but it's my experience with rescue dogs, you just have to go through it. Little steps to get him settled and build up the trust with you.
Good luck, you've done a great thing rescuing him and trying to get him happy, I hope it all works out for you!
Our jrt hated other dogs, apart from a few (just two!) doggie friends. He was dog aggressive, but lovely with people, especially children. The solution was to keep him away from strange dogs. This meant scanning the horizon when you were out, walking off the lead in isolated areas only, and putting him on the lead if other dogs were spotted. It worked for us. I couldn't change him, so I just worked round it. It does help that we live in a quiet rural area where I can walk for miles and not see a soul. He was perfectly happy with this. He was a brilliant ratter and rabbiter, and was quite the sharpest dog I have ever had, with a very short fuse. It depends on your circumstances. If you have to walk in heavily dog populated areas, I can see it would be a real problem. Have you considered a muzzle if training hasn't worked?
Keep him on the lead.
There is no easy answer to this that I've found unfortunately.
We had a JRT who just didn't like other dogs at all. Never did. We tried various classes and socialising but none worked and one we were actually expelled from! We just accepted that she couldn't be let off the lead. What's he doing that makes walks so bad?
When you're out walking take some favourite treats to distract and reward when passing a dog but you're probably not going to be able to make majors changes at this stage.
PestDog is a JRT cross. When I first started walking him (he's a friend's dog, but I look after him quite a bit), he was an ARSE on the lead. Pulling constantly and snapping / growling / lunging at certain other dogs (and generally looking quite vicious TBH). Not especially fun to walk, but like yours he was great indoors and with humans.
After a few weeks of training and more walks (at least an hour, sometimes two per day), he is far better, including with other dogs, to the point where he can be let off the lead. I patted myself on the back and told myself it was mainly the training that was making the difference. Then there were two consecutive days when he only got short walks due to other commitments and he turned into an arse again - at which point I realised that the exercise was the main thing making the difference! More walks (to the point he mainly wants to sleep when he gets home) and he's a really nice dog.
Yours is older so won't need quite so much exercise to tire him out, but do try and put some more time into walking him - it's a pain now but hopefully getting some more exercise will help. He's older so whether or not he'll ever be good with other dogs is questionable (a muzzle is 100% a responsible choice btw) but it's worth trying extra walkies.
Thanks for the responses. Its reassuring we’re not alone! Muffin was rarely given much outside experience, big house and garden to guard, yes, great with family but not good with strangers toddlers, and any strangers dogs.
We use a muzzle now, as most other dog walkers in the area don’t bother with a lead and tend to be preoccupied with their phones to care what their dog is doing! Muffin would cause serious injuries to any approaching mutt.
We travel a lot by train, it causes stress being so wary of other dogs. He is impacting negatively on our lives so was hoping we could find some progress to hanging his behaviour.
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