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Dog issue - need advice
Old 05-11-2012, 12:16 PM   #1
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Dog issue - need advice

We have had a chihuahua for 8 years (adult when rescued) and two black pugs for 5 years (puppy rescues - sisters). We added an aproximately 2 year old chihuahua rescue last Christmas, making 4 total (all females, all spayed). The older chi and one of the pugs have accepted the new dog with no problems. However, the other pug (Zoey) is extremely aggressive to the new chi (Pippy). She sniffs Pippy's butt often and aggressively, and will occasionally jump her, grabbing her with her teeth and overbearing her. At least a couple times/day. Pippy doesn't seem to be doing anything to instigate the aggressiveness.

At first we let tried to let them work it out, but Zoey outweighs Pippy by 4 or 5 times, and we don't want her to kill her. We have tried numerous things to stop the behavior, including squirting Zoey with water when she starts getting aggressive, using a can with beans in it to make noise to distract her, and grabbing her and pushing her down (being alpha). Nothing seems to work. Zoey is not the alpha dog overall, as a matter of fact might have been the bottom of the pack before Pippy came along.

I know there are a lot of dog people on this forum. Anyone have any ideas what is causing this behavior and what we can do to stop it? It almost looks like hate at first sight. My guess is that there is something in Pippy's smell (anal glands) that sets Zoey off. Not sure what we can do to stop that. I'd hate to have to give Pippy up. Zoey is an incredibly sweet dog otherwise. It's weird. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:41 PM   #2
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We've had similar "not getting along" issues with cats that we have had over the years and would just sternly tell the aggressor "no" when she hissed. They eventually worked it out.

Wish I had better input for you.
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:59 PM   #3
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No dog expert here, but I wonder if you made one of those hissing sounds like the dog whisperer does and then immediately put her in a crate for a time out each time she exhibits that behavior.
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Old 05-11-2012, 01:34 PM   #4
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Hey, glad to help. First off, don't leave them alone together. Crating, separating in different rooms, whatever. So that when they interact, you are in control.

There is much to suggest that the pack order nearer to the bottom is much more acrimonious than at the top, as the top dog is pretty much a known fact, whereas moving up or down from the bottom is a whole 'nother story.

Okay, now that you are sure that a dog mangling isn't going to take place, by preventing their interaction when you aren't there, you can start on the behavior modification. What you are doing is a good start. Immediately correcting the behavior is key, and even putting the pug on a leash and giving her a tug if she goes after the little one.

Next move would be to consult your vet, who has known your older dogs for some time and can best assess if behavior modification will need to include medication. Sometimes that is needed, at least short term.

I've got two girl dogs who have escalated their disagreements to the point that the oldest is now kept inside all day by herself and the younger one has to stay outside all day with the rest of the pack. And the old girl is the only one besides the princess dog (Biscuit the tiny dog) who is allowed in our bedroom at night. It works, but I wish they'd just deal with each other.
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Old 05-11-2012, 07:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
Hey, glad to help. First off, don't leave them alone together. Crating, separating in different rooms, whatever. So that when they interact, you are in control.

There is much to suggest that the pack order nearer to the bottom is much more acrimonious than at the top, as the top dog is pretty much a known fact, whereas moving up or down from the bottom is a whole 'nother story.

Okay, now that you are sure that a dog mangling isn't going to take place, by preventing their interaction when you aren't there, you can start on the behavior modification. What you are doing is a good start. Immediately correcting the behavior is key, and even putting the pug on a leash and giving her a tug if she goes after the little one.

Next move would be to consult your vet, who has known your older dogs for some time and can best assess if behavior modification will need to include medication. Sometimes that is needed, at least short term.

I've got two girl dogs who have escalated their disagreements to the point that the oldest is now kept inside all day by herself and the younger one has to stay outside all day with the rest of the pack. And the old girl is the only one besides the princess dog (Biscuit the tiny dog) who is allowed in our bedroom at night. It works, but I wish they'd just deal with each other.
+1
Hard to know for sure but it sounds like you will have to help the situation ala Sarah SC at this point.
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Old 05-11-2012, 07:57 PM   #6
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We had an "only" dog for 12 years - a little rough & tough rat terrier. She thought she was queen of the world and hated all other animals. Then my daughter's in-laws found a little stray yorkie which ended up at our house. We were unable to find the owners (we think she was a throw-away dog because she was pretty sick). She's all well now. Anyway, the old girl hated the yorkie and would snarl, growl and snap at the yorkie. We kept a close eye on them and would reprimand the old girl anytime she acted up, but also made a point of praising her if she behaved. Whenever we handed out treats, we always made sure the old girl got hers first so that she knew she was still #1 dog. Eventually, she learned to tolerate the new dog - but it took probably two years for that to happen. Although they were never close, the old girl even got to the point where she would allow the yorkie to lie next to her (as long as she wan't touching her). We lost our old girl to kidney cancer last year at 16 yrs old. It just takes a lot a patience.
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Old 05-11-2012, 08:37 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
Hey, glad to help. First off, don't leave them alone together. Crating, separating in different rooms, whatever. So that when they interact, you are in control.

There is much to suggest that the pack order nearer to the bottom is much more acrimonious than at the top, as the top dog is pretty much a known fact, whereas moving up or down from the bottom is a whole 'nother story.

Okay, now that you are sure that a dog mangling isn't going to take place, by preventing their interaction when you aren't there, you can start on the behavior modification. What you are doing is a good start. Immediately correcting the behavior is key, and even putting the pug on a leash and giving her a tug if she goes after the little one.

Next move would be to consult your vet, who has known your older dogs for some time and can best assess if behavior modification will need to include medication. Sometimes that is needed, at least short term.

I've got two girl dogs who have escalated their disagreements to the point that the oldest is now kept inside all day by herself and the younger one has to stay outside all day with the rest of the pack. And the old girl is the only one besides the princess dog (Biscuit the tiny dog) who is allowed in our bedroom at night. It works, but I wish they'd just deal with each other.
Good advice here from Sarah. I've had a similiar situation with my cats and found the aggression appeared to be related when they were fed and given attention from my husband and I. Yeah, I know cats and dogs are very different, but your situation reminds me very much of what I went through with my kitties.

I seperated them when necessary and paid particular attention to times when they were fed and petted. DH and I made sure to feed and pay attention to the aggressive cat and the one he picked on at the same time. We found punishment, such as using a water spray bottle or saying "no" in a firm way had little impact and seemed if anything to make matters worse.

It's slowly gotten better. At the worst, it sounded awful even though they never inflicted harm on each other. Now, it's gotten down to the point where they hiss, swat without making contact, then settle down.

Patience is the key in working out these issues in multi-pet homes. Good luck.
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