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Guarding problem

Species: dog | Category: behaviour | Submitted: 5 November 2007 10:10AM | viewed 50068 times
Q Elaine asks:

Alfie is a terrible guarder and will take your hand off if you try and retrieve an object he is not allowed. It is almost like he looks for things to guard? He will not let you put on a lead. He will not let me remove him from furniture. I have had him castrated to try to solve this issue and it has not worked. He has given my daughter and I nasty bites also. These are the bad things which happen generally on a twice daily basis. The rest of the time his character is so good and that is the reason I am having so much difficulty in this problem. I have asked breeders for help but have got no where with it. Please save Alfie?

Q Our vet says: It sounds as if Alfie may be too dominant and considers himself to be the boss. Dogs still think much as they would if they were in a pack situation and they consider we humans to be members of their "pack".

Some dogs have a tendency to want to be the leaders in their pack and they do require special treatment if things are not to get out of hand. As caring owners we can often give the wrong signals to such pets and what we see as care and consideration for their welfare, they see as our submission to their superior leadership! If they then consider our actions (such as approaching a coveted object or trying to remove them from their place on the sofa) as a challenge to their dominant position in the family pack they will warn and then sometimes bite to repress our challenge.

Since Alfie has already bitten I would strongly suggest that you get in touch with an animal behaviourist in your area to help you with this problem. Also while you are waiting for help and advice, avoid all the situations which provoke Alfie to bite and supervise him at all times when he is with children.

Any behavioural changes you must make will take time and effort on your part so you need to be prepared to work with a behaviourist to get the best outcome for you and Alfie. I hope it all goes well for you!

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