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Starting to really resent my dog

393 replies

StopBloodyBarking · 31/12/2022 11:21

4 years ago (before anyone had heard of Covid so not a lockdown puppy) I bought a puppy. It was a breed I’d always wanted and she was perfect. I did everything by the book, training classes, socialisation classes etc - she excelled in all her classes and she really was perfect.

Then she hit 6 months old and changed. She became dog reactive - no idea why as I’d socialised her so much (in hindsight, too much). I worked on that but she became dog aggressive - then people aggressive. She hates men and kids. This means I can’t have my grandchildren over as it’s just not safe. Infact we can’t have anyone over, nobody visits anymore. All walks with her are stressful so we stick to the same route everytime and I try and walk her at times when the kids are at school so we’re less likely to see any. We can’t go anywhere as we’re so restricted with where she can go. I got a dog so I could take it to the beach, to the woods, to the park etc etc … I can’t take her anywhere. I’ve just braved a quiet beach with her and she screamed the place down before lunging and barking at anyone we came across, it was so embarrassing and after 10 minutes I gave up and came home.

I feel like a prisoner with her, every day is stressful and exhausting. I’m at the point now where i no longer want to walk her. But she’s so full of energy she needs it. I can’t rehome her as she’s aggressive. I’m stuck. I’ve had two behaviourists and 4 trainers. No difference. I’ve been told it’s all about “managing” her behaviour.

Sounds awful but I’ve started to fantasise about the time she’s no longer here :-( and I feel so guilty saying that as she adores me and I love her but I can’t do this for another 10 or so years. I’m really resenting how much time I’m missing out on with my grandkids because of her. All the places we can’t go, the days she’s ruined …. Just needed a rant really. So fed up.

The constant barking is driving me insane. She’s constantly “on guard”. I’m so tired of it.

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

641 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Waggytails63 · 02/01/2023 13:36

You're not alone, everything you've said are feelings I've had about my dog, don't feel guilty it's a really difficult situation and it doesn't mean that you don't love and care for her. I tried trainers & behaviourists and wasted my money and time, in my experience none of them really understood the meaning of real dog anxiety and the limitations this causes to behavioural change. But you may think that it's worth another try, perhaps a residential training course which you leave her in the care of the trainer may help to get a better result to managing her anxiety. Can you make any other changes to your routines to be able to cope with the situation and get some control back. Can she stay home on her own for you to go out and visit your family and friends or to do something you enjoy? As you already know it's a relationship between you and her, dogs are living beings with their own self determination, there's no forcing of expectations in the same way as cannot be done in a relationship with another human. As in all relationships it will change over time, so being open to those changes is key to maintaining your bond. I hope it works out for you both. 😊

Rescuedogmom · 09/01/2023 05:09

I have three rescues, all of them reactive. One has extreme anxiety that caused many fights, emergency vet visits and tears on my part. Now I have her on Reconcile. It’s an anti anxiety med for dogs. This has been a game changer for us. It keeps her from going over threshold too quickly so I can redirect her. I still have to watch out for her triggers but she is a lot better. If you haven’t tried medication please do. Even if you decide not to keep her it could help her at her new home. Also any training should be positive reinforcement only. No shock, prong or choke type devices. Patricia McConnell Phd has excellent reading material that may help.

Endlesssummer2022 · 09/01/2023 05:47

I’d consider PTS. No dog is worth this amount of stress. It also sounds like the dog has a very unhappy life.

Also, please ignore the poster who’s asked to take on the dog. They could be a drug dealer looking for an attack dog for all you know. Even if they’re genuine, it screams a future ‘child killed by neighbours dog’ headline as they sound utterly clueless.

piccolafiamma75 · 16/01/2023 18:28

PLEASE contact me, I am an italian veterinary behaviourist and I am willing to help you for free via online meetings!

nuhare · 16/01/2023 19:01

The breed has nothing to do‼️‼️‼️ The breed doesn't doom a dog's character.‼️‼️

Have you taken your dog to an experienced vet able to do some tests on her to try to find out if something is wrong? Hormones tests❓ thyroid ❓is she suffering from a disease that may trigger her aggressive behaviour ❓

If nothing comes out n there r no physical or mental causes, I suggest you to find a v v good n much experienced dogs behaviourist that can help you. You can ask to kennels where they often have dogs with behaviour problems.

Don't give up on her 🙏🙏🙏- she wouldn't 🐾 💜🐾

Starting to really resent my dog
AnotherRandomMale · 16/01/2023 20:02

Some individual people aren't suited to owning some individual dogs. It isn't anyone's fault, you have clearly tried your level best.

Two options:

  1. Breed specific rehome - I'm a former Rottweiler owner & adore them. I'm experienced handling them and I "get" them, but there are some dogs not even people like me could live with. As such I support a breed specific "no kill" shelter who keep dogs unsuitable for foster/rehome indefinitely. I suspect there would be a similar thing for GSDs?

  1. Residential rehabilitation. There are some dog training companies who offer this and so some amazing work.
Reddog01 · 17/01/2023 22:23


i know a dog trainer who can help. Can you contact me direct ? Not sure what the rules are but how do we direct message? Would love to help. Samantha

catwhite1 · 18/01/2023 05:32

There are lots of tv programs, books, self help videos on you tube. I’m sure your dog is treatable. Dogs are quick learners, they pick up on your fear and anxiety and need lots of rewarding when quiet and non reactive. Also a firm no, (no shouting or hitting) plus ignoring and no fussing when messing about. But definitely lots of positive encouragement and reinforcement when stay calm. Good luck and I hope you get the help you need.

catwhite1 · 18/01/2023 05:53

You are telling her to put her dog to sleep without her even trying or a seeing a vet or seeking help first!. The dog may have an underlying health condition that may be easily treatable or some other treatable behavioural issue. It’s shocked me how so many people who are supposedly dog lovers will so easily kill a dog and I find this infuriating and so ignorant. You wouldn’t kill a child if it’s naughty or unruly. Yes dogs can attack a human all of a sudden but that’s usually down to how it’s been treated. Every dog is different depending on size and breed but they need lots of love, plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. Maybe the dog is frustrated as not getting enough exercise or not being let off the lead. Either way I hope the dog and the owner get the help they need.

Burnamer · 20/01/2023 07:00

@catwhite1 you really seem ignorant to the issues that some dogs have. Not everything can be fixed with a self help book and some (frankly outdated and misleading) dog obedience show.
@Reddog01 depending on the issues, a residential trainer may well make things worse. If the dog is anxious, being uprooted from all it knows will lead to further problems.

OP I know your original post was a while ago but I hope you’re ok. I have a difficult dog too so I get it.

Burnamer · 20/01/2023 07:01

Sorry, the above was to @AnotherRandomMale not @Reddog01

catwhite1 · 20/01/2023 10:16

You are clearly ignorant not to see that it was merely just a suggestion, as clearly I’ve never met the dog, just as neither have you, and so therefore who really knows what could work! I was aiming to offer some help and support and alternatives to the PTS suggestions that so many seem to have. Maybe your dog has issues from learning to be rude and aggressive from its owner!!

WisherWood · 20/01/2023 15:10

You are telling her to put her dog to sleep without her even trying or a seeing a vet or seeking help first!.

The post has been going on for weeks. The OP says she has had trainers, several of them. They were quite probably the wrong trainers, but she has had help. And many, many people on the hundreds of posts here have said to consult a vet - but an understanding one, not the one she last went to.

Burnamer · 20/01/2023 18:04

@catwhite1 the thing that annoyed me
most about your post was that you assumed my dog is rude and aggressive. He (not “it”) is fearful and anxious after mistreated and abused in his early life. Other than fear (which makes him really difficult to handle) he is delightful.

AnotherRandomMale · 22/01/2023 11:13

Burnamer · 20/01/2023 07:01

Sorry, the above was to @AnotherRandomMale not @Reddog01

I disagree with the idea that removing an insecure dog from the environment they are insecure in is a bad idea. There can be a vicious circle - the dog displaying nervous/aggressive behaviour makes the owner understandably nervous handling the dog in public, which feeds the nervous aggression.

MatR · 25/08/2023 16:06

@StopBloodyBarking I can understand you! I m from Italy and I have almost the same problem with my 4 years old german shepherd.
We tried 3 different dog trainers and a comportment specialist but without success.
Now my dog takes "Fluoxetina" one a day that is a sedative but we have to be more careful and "on guard" with him because sometime become aggressive for no reason.
I m very interested to know your updates and what you decide to do.

Carouselfish · 26/08/2023 08:23

With the latest update about the breeder I think your only options are police/military or pts. And I never say pts. She could be very very inbred and therefore not sane. Dogs can have mental illnesses and with inbreeding it wouldn't be a surprise. Plus/or the breeder was breeding for aggression so she could be doubly genetically screwed.

It is very sad OP, but, with the upbringing you describe she shouldn't be like this. Suggesting it is coming from within.

Thomasina79 · 26/08/2023 08:43

When I was a teenager, a long time ago! My parents had a dog which became more and more aggressive. We had to put it in another room if anyone came round. In the end he badly bit my friend, she had dozens of stitches in her arm and was very shocked. My dad took the decision To have the dog put to sleep, defying my mum who was sentimental about the creature. It was the only thing to do and the rest of us were so relieved!

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