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Old 05-08-2010, 04:31 PM   #21
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If talking to the owner and throwing him (the dog, not the owner) treats doesn't work, then I'd try using one of these:
Ultrasonic Dog Chaser - Repellent for dogs!

At least it doesn't leave any traces. If the mutt comes home drenched and dies of pneumonia, you might get sued or have a very angry neighbour.

Just one problem, the product description says "works on cats too"! So if you have cats, you may need to be careful.
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Old 05-08-2010, 04:32 PM   #22
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Dog treats, pepper spray, talking to the owners - - - - hasn't anyone thought of putting up a fence? You wouldn't have to fence the whole 3-5 acre property if that is too expensive, but just fence the part around the house and garden. That ought to take care of the problem.
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Old 05-08-2010, 04:53 PM   #23
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hasn't anyone thought of putting up a fence?

With all due respect, there is something wrong with the line of thinking that one should have to pay for and have a fence installed to peacefully enjoy their own property.
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Old 05-08-2010, 05:10 PM   #24
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Do most of the posters here live in urban areas or in east or west coast states? I'm curious as to the belief, right or wrong, that spraying a dog with any substance would constitute a criminal act, or be morally wrong.

Having lived in "fly-over country" I can tell you, right or wrong, most of the remedies proposed in this thread are pretty mild compared to the response most rural folks in said "fly-over country" would subject a tresspassing dog to that indicated even the slightest sign of hostility.

In Maryland, its pretty serious to shoot someones dog on your property :
Maryland: Williamsport man who shot dogs found guilty of animal mutilation

Not that I'm saying it's what we would have done while living in the midwest.
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Old 05-08-2010, 05:59 PM   #25
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In Maryland, its pretty serious to shoot someones dog on your property :
Maryland: Williamsport man who shot dogs found guilty of animal mutilation
More evidence of the decline and fall of sanity among residents of advanced nations, particularly this crazy one.

Where I live I have never seen a dog not on a leash with its owner, and I am very glad of this. Dogs belong under absolute control, not "I hope I can hold him" or "sometimes he gets out control".
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:07 PM   #26
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It is true that most dog problems are the result of an irresponsible owner but blaming the victim for "aggravating a fearful dog" or the kitten for running is a little silly.
+1

Repeated visits from a dog displaying threatening behavior is a situation needing to be dealt with. Remember, OP is not encountering this issue while out and about on public property. The dog is repeatedly coming onto her property, seeking her out and scaring her with aggressive behavior. That's way, way over the line.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:21 PM   #27
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Many years ago, when I was in college, I went home to visit my folks for a long weekend. Our old family dog, a beagle mix (probably 13-14 years old at that time) was sleeping in the sun in the front yard (probably 150' from the street) when a new neighbor came by walking a huge (150#+ Great Dane/Pitball mix -now there is a really bad idea...) that saw our dog, went berserk, dragged her across our yard (she probably weighed all of 110 lbs...) and nearly decapitated our poor old mutt before he was even fully awake. I came running out, and had to kick her dog as hard as I could four or five times (finally in the throat, when te turned toward me-lucklily I was wearing heavy hiking boots) ) to get him off our dog. Her response, as she dragged him away, snarling and barking..." gee, he hasn't done that in a while..." Our dog had to be put down, the damage was too extensive. She refused to pay the vet bills, because "dogs fight all the time"

A few weeks later a hamburger bomb went over a fence. I was 200 miles away, back in school.

"Gee, he'll never do that again."

Problem solved.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:49 PM   #28
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Many years ago, when I was in college, I went home to visit my folks for a long weekend. Our old family dog, a beagle mix (probably 13-14 years old at that time) was sleeping in the sun in the front yard (probably 150' from the street) when a new neighbor came by walking a huge (150#+ Great Dane/Pitball mix -now there is a really bad idea...) that saw our dog, went berserk, dragged her across our yard (she probably weighed all of 110 lbs...) and nearly decapitated our poor old mutt before he was even fully awake. I came running out, and had to kick her dog as hard as I could four or five times (finally in the throat, when te turned toward me-lucklily I was wearing heavy hiking boots) ) to get him off our dog. Her response, as she dragged him away, snarling and barking..." gee, he hasn't done that in a while..." Our dog had to be put down, the damage was too extensive. She refused to pay the vet bills, because "dogs fight all the time"

A few weeks later a hamburger bomb went over a fence. I was 200 miles away, back in school.

"Gee, he'll never do that again."

Problem solved.
Extreme solution WS. I really can't say this is the best way to handle something like this but think my Tommy kitten might have been happy to have you around when he was attacked so many years ago.

This thread has been very informative. As you may know, I volunteer at an animal shelter. My work focuses on fundraising and fostering kittens and cats that need some TLC and treatment for minor health problems before adoption. Therfore, I have to confess my ignorance regarding the issue of aggressive dogs. I just haven't dealt with this problem.

Even so, I'm around the shelter enough to see many of the issues with dogs in our community. I agree the problem can usually be traced the the human owner. I also think public safety should be the primary concern.

I know of "no kill" groups who take in dogs with aggression issues. In my heart of hearts, I wonder if the is best for the dogs and the community. What kind of life does a dog like this have? Living in a cage for a long time is not a happy life. What happens if these dogs are adopted? I hate to think about how this could damage the chances for other animals to find homes. It just sends a bad message out about adopting animals from shelters and may diminish the chances for deserving cats, dogs, and other critters to find homes. Even more, I hate to think of someone being injured or killed because an aggressive dog was adopted.

I know there are many animal lovers on this board. I'm one of them for sure. My beloved kitty who has been so ill is clearly coming to the end of his life. He had a seizure today, which he recovered from, but he's no longer eating or drinking. I am beside myself about him. I've made a tenative appointment with my trusted vet for Monday because I think he may need to be released from his life. He's OK right now but I'm an absolute basket case. I love him so much.
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Old 05-08-2010, 08:04 PM   #29
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I'm so sorry about your kitty, Purron.
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Old 05-08-2010, 08:16 PM   #30
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Purron..........

We had our last cat, Paddy O'Kitty, put down a few years ago. She was old and sick. We had rescued her from starvation outside, an abandoned indoor cat, and she led a happy few years being pampered with us. Still, it was tough, very tough. But, compared to our previous cat, where we allowed vets to do exploratory surgery and heroic efforts to save him, we felt having her put down turned out to be by far the best decision and we've never regretted it.

Time passes and we have to say goodbye to our kitties. It's in the cards from the beginning. Make it go as smoothly as possible.

Our deepest sympathies.
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Old 05-08-2010, 10:58 PM   #31
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It is true that most dog problems are the result of an irresponsible owner but blaming the victim for "aggravating a fearful dog" or the kitten for running is a little silly.
Sheesh! It's about understanding why the animal behaves viciously and how to prevent an attack. Not blaming the victim!

Fact is that our favorite pets are predators yet far too many people fail to understand their most basic drives or recognize the signals they give when they are fearful and/or ready to attack. if a dog is threatening, knowing the signals and how to diffuse it can prevent an attack. Preventing an attack is the best for both animal and human. This dog sounds threatening but handled right probably can be deterred from its aggression.

I would call animal control if the "visits" persist.
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Old 05-09-2010, 09:29 AM   #32
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Sheesh! It's about understanding why the animal behaves viciously and how to prevent an attack. Not blaming the victim! .................
I'd argue that the responsibility is not on the victim to learn how to make the animal happy. No one should have to take a course in animal psychology to weed their tulip bed in safety.

My neighbor lets his dogs run freely and for a long time they stayed close to his house (2 acre lots here). Over time they started to "guard" a larger and larger area until eventually they decided they "owned" the road in front of his house. When I walked my dog down the road on a leash, they started to confront me from passing. I told the neighbor that this was totally unacceptable and that I refused to ask a dog for permission to walk down a public street. Fortunately, he was responsible and did something, as they now stay closer to the house. If he had failed to act, I would have.

So my point is that people have a right to live their lives in safety and peace and if dogs threaten them, the rights of the people trump the dog's feelings every time. I agree it is useful to be able to read a dog's intent, but not an obligation of the innocent.
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Old 05-09-2010, 10:26 AM   #33
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I'd argue that the responsibility is not on the victim to learn how to make the animal happy. No one should have to take a course in animal psychology to weed their tulip bed in safety.
I like dogs and I often like to see if I can modify their behavior even if it is the neighbor's dog. Sometimes it is easier to modify the dog's behavior than the neighbor's behavior. That is why I suggested trying the positive tack first of tossing treats. It isn't a question of who is obligated to do what. It is a question of what works best in the situation and for the particular people, particular dogs, and particular neighborhood.
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Old 05-09-2010, 10:41 AM   #34
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I like dogs and I often like to see if I can modify their behavior even if it is the neighbor's dog. Sometimes it is easier to modify the dog's behavior than the neighbor's behavior. That is why I suggested trying the positive tack first of tossing treats. It isn't a question of who is obligated to do what. It is a question of what works best in the situation and for the particular people, particular dogs, and particular neighborhood.
I guess I have a bad attitude, but giving aggressive dogs treats to leave me alone seems like giving punks $10 a week not to vandalize my car. That said, each to their own.
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Old 05-09-2010, 12:04 PM   #35
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There is no doubt in my mind that this dog is sizing you up for an attack. I own dogs, I love dogs, but I am definitely in sync with recommending either a long stick (to defend yourself) within easy grabbing reach and/or pepper spray.
Definitely notify the animal control officer and local police BEFORE this progresses.
Many moons ago, I had a similar problem with a large black dog three houses away. I knew the owner, and told her about her dog stalking me in my yard. She insisted that it would not attack me. So I told her I would use any and all means to deter the dog from entering my property (pre-fence days). The dog was no longer allowed to run loose.
I put up a full perimeter fence shortly thereafter. This solution was something that I had full control over.
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Old 05-09-2010, 07:35 PM   #36
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Thanks for all the thoughts and advice. Happily, I was off work this week and in the garden every day, and was left in peace. I kept hoping the dog had died, but I drove past it in the street today

I often use treats when meeting dogs or cats, but I don't want to encourage this smelly beast. I've tried the sideways approach and looking at the dog with my head cocked to one side (which disarms many dogs) but these haven't worked. Since the dog is not in my yard every day or even every week, my best defense, I think, is the yard tools I always have with me. He went away once when I waved a rake at him, though he made sure to lift his leg on trees and bushes along the line of retreat.

I know animals operate on instinct, but they also reflect their upbringing, and this one reflects a crummy one. For this reason, I don't think talking to the owner will have positive results, though I suppose I must try. The dog owner has no incentive to get along with me. The property owner doesn't live in this country. County Animal Control told me to put a live-trap in my yard to try to trap the dog; then I could bring it to the pound and the owner would have to claim it. Sounds like a lot of trouble for no results! They also offered to visit the owner to say that a neighbor made an off-leash complaint, but made it clear that they would reveal who made the complaint.

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Old 05-09-2010, 10:36 PM   #37
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This does not really offer any help to the situation but is interesting.

I have had a new neighbor for the past sixteen months and they moved in with four dogs. Three of these dogs almost immediately started to visit me and other people nearby. I chased them off a couple of times then went to visit my new neighbor and explained that I had chickens running loose and would appreciate it if they would keep their dogs at home. These people did not seem to get the idea that their friendly dogs could be a bother to anyone but they kept them at home for four or five months, then I arrived home one day to find one of their dogs on top of a chicken run. I flipped and since I was driving a 4WD chased that dog for a while until it went into bush that I could not follow through. It was pretty tired by then and stayed away for several more months.

Then while I was away I got a call from another neighbor who said there were dogs chasing my chickens. I went home but saw only a glimpse of two dogs and neither clearly but one of the two went toward my neighbor who has the four dogs The other went to a bush on the next road. Later I found they had injured one Rooster who probably fought back. We all live on 100 acres so are quite far apart.

The next day at the same time I watched a large black dog (120 pounds) come out of the bush, go towards my neighbors and one of their dogs joined him and ran across my property to the other side neighbors circle behind their barn and return close to my barn before splitting up and going their separate ways. I watched this happen for three days. The large dog would come and attract one or more of my neighbors dogs and they would go on a tour. I decided it was time to talk to my neighbor again. I was met with disbelief. I was more than a little irritated since my rooster had just died. This was a show bird. To make it short I played the reluctant guy who was going to hate to shoot a dog to protect his livestock.

Funny thing I have not seen any of the dogs loose on my property since.

I have however reached the conclusion that if I see the large dog near my barn it is not going home and if I see my neighbors dog in or on a run it also is not going home.

In this case bad owners are making bad dogs.

In another case last fall my friend tried to rescue a 175 pound short haired St Bernard. This dog loved people but was totally untrained and thought any moving creature other than people was food. We had a trainer come out to his farm and she as able to get the dog to listen by literally overpowering the dog. This lady KNEW what she was doing.

We did some training for a week or so then the dog decided it did not like the pig and cleared a five foot fence to get at the pig. The pig was able to get to a place where the dog couldn't and survived. A few days later a couple of chickens were not so lucky. then it was a sheep. We were getting worried thinking what if this dog decided it did not like someone and in consultation with the trainer sent the dog to a training facility that specializes in rescuing aggressive dogs. From there he would be put out for adoption. I still wonder if it would have been better to euthanize him.
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Old 05-10-2010, 01:35 AM   #38
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This does not really offer any help to the situation but is interesting. (snip)

In another case last fall my friend tried to rescue a 175 pound short haired St Bernard. This dog loved people but was totally untrained and thought any moving creature other than people was food. We had a trainer come out to his farm and she as able to get the dog to listen by literally overpowering the dog. This lady KNEW what she was doing.

We did some training for a week or so then the dog decided it did not like the pig and cleared a five foot fence to get at the pig. The pig was able to get to a place where the dog couldn't and survived. A few days later a couple of chickens were not so lucky. then it was a sheep. We were getting worried thinking what if this dog decided it did not like someone and in consultation with the trainer sent the dog to a training facility that specializes in rescuing aggressive dogs. From there he would be put out for adoption. I still wonder if it would have been better to euthanize him.
Yes, the dog should have been euthanized. Unless his new owners are professional dog handlers who know exactly how to deal with this dog in every situation, I think it's an awfully big risk to assume he will remain non-aggressive after leaving the "re-education camp", and even if they are, how can it possibly be guaranteed that they will be able to keep him the rest of his life?

I think it's totally inexcusable to release into general circulation a dog with a history of aggression, especially a big one like this. Maybe it's not the dog's fault he ended up the way he is. It could be poor choice of parents by his breeder or faulty upbringing. But however he got that way, the dog is a danger, and IMO that is a canine capital offense. What are they waiting for, the dog to maul or kill a human? He has already killed other animals.
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Old 05-10-2010, 09:09 AM   #39
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From the Humane Society of the United States:

Until Pigs Fly...

I had a hard time understanding the issue of aggressive dogs when I first started volunteering at the shelter. I'd worked with a private feline rescue group before. It's rare for a cat to be aggressive toward humans in a way that compromises public safety. A few times we received a cat that couldn't be socialized. In these cases we placed them as outdoor cats in farm settings. Farmers and horse people like having cats to control rodents and were happy to get one that had been fixed and vaccinated. Most of these cats went on to live a pretty good life.

The shelter I volunteer at now is not "no kill". By law, it must accept all animals turned in by residents of the community plus those animal control picks up as strays. The shelter can't pick and choose which it accepts like a private rescue group. It strives to have the lowest possible euthanazia rate while placing the first priority on the safety of people. I've learned that adopting out an aggressive dog could result in injury or death. Plus, the bad PR would hurt the chances of deserving animals to find homes. It's sad because most of these dogs ended up this way because of abuse or a lack of training.
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