I've been working on calming down my Chi' Lola. She has been very agressive almost since the day I brought her home. I have tried to work with her as much as possible, but in the past week some scary things have happend.
First, the little boy down the street rode by the house on a bike and she went after him. She jumped right out the screen. She barked and barked. I picked her up and told the boy it was ok, she's just barking at the bike. WELL when he made a move to touch her, she went crazy and tried to bite him. She was like a savage.
Then I came home last night and the living room was dark, and she couldnt see me. She barked and barked even thought I was calling her name. She backed up under the chair and when I reached for her she tried to bite me. Then she started screaming bloody murder. I had to turn on all the lights and sit on the floor for about 5 min until she could see it was me.
Yes she is the black one. And when she goes after you, she looks just like that. Its frighting.
I was thinking I may need help from a professional.
At first I thought she was just being aggresive with her sister (brought them home together from same litter) because she was trying to get a spot in the ranking with the other dogs, but this is different.
WOW! Caught in the act! Neat picture! She is really cute! You would never think a little dog like that can get so mean! My chi's don't act like that at all they run to people and want to be petted. I did once get a dog (male) chi that was 2 years old and always tried to bite me. I had to sit with him and hold him and talk to him. I would even sing and then he got to be my best friend. He still cries when we brush his teeth though. My hubby brushes his teeth and then he comes running to me with tears in his eyes! Ahh. I have had a chi that we purchased that was older bite and draw blood they were bad bites so I would definetly watch out incase she does bite someone they can bite hard and it hurts! That was only because the dog did not know me now she is nice.
I thought of something! Take her around your adult friends and get her used to being petted and played with. Be sure they know what she is capable of. I would also think behavior training would help.
***Edited By: holidayzbliss on 7/31/2005 1:53:24 PM*** Reason: ...
I have been taking her out around people as much as I can. I thought she was getting better. NOW I dont trust her to take her out around people. She still has some baby teeth and they hurt. LOL I wouldnt want someone to get bitten.
I think I need more one on one with her but its really hard with all the dogs I have. They all love me and stick to me like glue.
Im just trying to find out is this something that she is or is this something she does?
I have had many Chi's in my life and never ran into a problem like this after I've had one for this long. I can usually fix it with training, but she has become unpredictable. She seems to have become more"bold" in her actions.
I believe it may be fear bitting. How do you fix that?
Im going to try the reward thing. Lets see if it helps. The problem is I wont know if it works unil she goes after someone.
It is fear biting. It usually start small and escalates to full blown aggression. Shes really acting out to scare the person away. Shes learned that by acting like this the person will back off. This is a Lack of socialization issue. I've handled Chih's that would fly at me to get me to go away.Totally Visious.They are really just terrified. You need to start a desensitization program, and how to handle the dog properly in these situations. An animal behavioist or Canine behavioral specialist. Where do you live? in Canada Or the US.
what do you do when she reacts aggressively? Try to hug her and calm her down, or give her firm and sharp corrections? Trying to calm her down can actaully worsen things, because you're giving tacit approval of the behavior.
When I brought her home I noticed she barked a lot and went after her litter mate and the other dogs with much aggresion. She barked at everything and everyone. So I took her out on leash every day ( 3x's) with choker. When her ears perked up or she barked or growled I gave a sharp pull and firm no. I started taking her out with me for rides and to family events. She always acted shy and quiet. And it helped a little.
But this week she's gone to another level. She likes to sit at the window and when people pass by she barks and barks and barks. Only when I get very very close to her does she stop. The other day I couldnt get into the living room fast enought and she saw the boy on the bike and pushed the screen out and ran after him. She only tried to bite when he reached his hand out.
Now I've gotten some idea's to socialize and train more. My question is , in the mean time how do I trust her? Who can I bring her around and trust she wont bite.
I think Im going to go to the spray bottle, muzzle, and cotinue to use choker.
I guess my whole question was: is she just mean or just scared? So I know what to do. I cant figure her out. She seems to be very mean to her litter mate, who by the way is bigger than her, and she's tried to bite me.
I'll work on her a little more then if nothing works I'll go to the pro's.
Never harshly correct a fearful dog, especially with a yank when on the choker. When a dog is fearful at something and you harshly correct them, the aggression will escalate, if they are going to associate the correction and the object. So now if you were correcting her for say barking at a kid, she will not only be afraid, she will associate the correction with the child. Which could make the behavior escalate. You shouldn't coddle a fearful dog either. I would start with basic obediance, its hard to control a fearful dog if it doesn't know the basics.
***Edited By: sue on 8/1/2005 9:02:49 AM*** Reason: sdg
Thanks sue, but I dont "yank" my dog on choker. I correct her using choker I dont coddle her either, because She's too busy barking or growling. Unlike my other female she doesnt run and hide when scared. She makes a mad dash to approach the threat. Now that she has tried to bite me, and the little boy down the street, I feel I cant trust her around anyone. If she will bite me she will bite anyone.( if she's scared) In the case of the little boy all I can think of is she was associating him with the bike he was on.( she doesnt like strangers on moving bikes )
What I want is to stop her from using bitting when scared. I know I can work on her with bikes and trucks( she doesnt like them) but what about when something else comes along that I dont know about, and it scares her? I dont want her to thing she can bite.
Thanks for the good Ideas though, I will keep them in mind.
"Correct", yank, what ever, Its still a correction, or a punishmnet type treatment. Your still aiming for a punishmnet to stop the behavior. Keep the dog away from outdoor stimualtions for now, the more shes put in situations that make her act aggressively, the more it works and shes rewarding herself for the behaVIORS. Start form scratch. keep her confined to a room, feed her separately etc etc.. Find a behaviorist to give an action plan. The advise should be a desensitizing type of plan, be careful, some people I've heard use aggressive harsh treatment as their plan. Just so you have an idea of what your looking for, where are you?If you can only find a trainer, it should be someone with behavioral modifing traINING.
Yes I shaved my dog, and its a long story. I have posted the problem I was having with him and his itching ect.
After many vet visits, meds, shampoo's, no air fresheners, stopped treating lawn and so on, the groomer suggested shave him and see what happens. It worked!!no more itching or shedding. When groomer cut his hair she said he had a very thick coat that may have been the problem. especially down his back. I dont know if there are pic's of him with longer hair but in some pic's you can really see.
Sue: thanks I will see if they have one.
***Edited By: bellanchico on 8/1/2005 1:32:23 PM*** Reason: misprint
This is a tough situation. I think a behaviorist would help a lot if you can find one. I aggree with sue though, any type of harsh punishment I think will escalate the problem. Unfortunantly I've seen many aggressive "fear biting" chihuhuas. I think its just part of being so small. I think I would be afraid of most anything too if I were that small, bless their little hearts. They're adorable, but I don't trust most of them. I've been snapped at more by chi's than any other breed. Usually, trying to give a shot or clip their nails. The thing with fear biting is that they'll bite anyone, not realizing they may be biting someone they love. They're just too scared. I do wish you luck in the situation. I wish I had more info. but a specialist could probably help a lot. Be careful and good luck! She's a cutie!
Im not sure how old your chi is, but I have been in a similiar situation and its finally getting better. We bought a samoyed (I know a different dog, but same characteristics) and although they are not known to bark or act aggressive he did. If anyone came to our house he would act like he was about to attack, circling them, barking barking and acting like he was about to jump on them. This went on and I was ALWAYS petrified if the UPS, fedex man came or the mail lady etc. I told my dh hes going to bite someone and we are going to get sued. Our dog was well socialized but like you, I was SCARED to death to take him for walks because of the way he would act. Hes a very strong dog and at the park he would pull me on the leash chasing people, and specially other dogs and it would scare me that I would not be able to hold him donw. SOOO time went on, I continued to cringe at his behavior, work with him and nothing. One man told me one day hes just scarred, he will grow out of it...and so he did. When Kody turned 2 it was like an on off switch. Hes now a calmer dog, he barks some but not in that "attack" mode. He will actually go up to someone and sniff and then he knows its ok before he barks...so give it time...continue to socialize your chi and with time it will get better. I was to my witts end and ready to ship him out (not really :) but finally hes a half decent dog...Oh he still HATES things that roll (wheels on cars, bikes etc) but hes ok with people :) Hope this helps or at least gives you some hope.... wra-nc