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Discussion Starter #1
I posted this in the chi-chat forum, but perhaps it belongs here instead? I really need some direction with this.
HELP!! George has graduated from just growling at my daughter to actually snapping at her. He's done it twice so far. Today was over her sandwich that got knocked on the floor.

She isn't rough with him, doesn't mishandle him. I'm afraid this is purely pecking order related. Nonetheless, it cannot continue. He's not sick, or injured, there's nothing wrong with him, he just thinks he's ranked higher than she.

I can see how my actions might be promoting this idea. When we ride in the car, he used to ride in my lap, I've recently made him start riding in the passenger seat, and he has to lay down; my dd has always ridden in the back seat in her booster seat. George used to sleep in my bed, until this week, now he sleeps in a carrier in my room, but not in my bed anymore; my dd sleeps in her own bed in her room.

I don't know... I just need help in making him stop! I'm so mad at him!

Tonight, for dinner, I got my dd to get his food bowl and call him. Then, I had her make him sit for her, then she put the bowl in his kennel and shut it.

I recently started putting him on the floor when he growls at her. I used to ask her to back up and give him some room. Uhh, mistake!

Anyhow, he didn't hurt her, and I don't think he will actually bite her; but this behavior is unacceptable. Help! I need tips, suggestions, feedback, anything ya got

I'm thinking of putting his crate in her room, on the floor to sleep, o have him start sleeping in another room than mine.
 

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You've got the right idea. Having your daughter feed him is a good start. Also putting him on the floor when he behaves inappropriately. I would crate him in another room, not your room or your daughter's. Put his crate in a common shared space in the home; like the living room or kitchen. They can get too possessive over areas like the bathroom. Nip it in the bud now, because it will escalate to a real bite.


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I'm new here and don't know much about Chis, but I have had dogs all of my life. There is no such thing as a bad dog, only mismanaged training, or misunderstood rankings.

Your little George seems to think he is the alpha. You have to take your power back and be the leader of the pack. And please don't be mad at him or shout at him - this doesn't correct the behavior, it promotes more inappropriate behavior. Bad behavior should be corrected with a firm leadership, a HEY or BAA - something to get his attention and break the behavior. When he reacts by relaxing his posture and coming to you - praise the good behavior like he's won the lottery. And you are doing the right thing by demoting him. When he demands your lap or attention, ignore him. Then, when he is not expecting it, offer the affection on your terms. If he comes after your plate, a gentle nudge away with your forearm (not hand) and a grunt, means this is my plate or my sandwich and you are being rude. George needs to learn that you are the Queeny, and everyone else is merely a pack member. You're doing great!! Just don't get obviously mad at him - instead, praise good behavior and simply correct bad behavior indifferently. He wants to please you, he's just confused and feels he is entitled when he is not.

I hope I haven't come off as a know it all - I'm not. I just had to learn quick recently with our new puppy coming home. Our resident dog Daisy who is quite large, decided she didn't like the tiny 3 lb pup. We needed to demote her in a bit hurry and take our power back from her ... and in two days I have her wrapped around my finger. It's all in how you carry yourself, direct them, and place yourself at the top of the totem. There's lots of great books out there. I just read My Smart Puppy and it is quite helpful for puppys as well as dogs.

Good luck - you're doing awesome!
 

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I know it seems like your chi is trying to "move up" in the "pack" but I can assure you that this is not the case. The "pack theory" of dog training has been scientifically disproved. The original theory was based on a pack of domesticated wolves. Dogs DO NOT behave the way the pack theory speculates... And neither do wild wolves!
Your dog is being a dog and is testing his boundaries. Please stop trying to "demote" him as this can cause a lot more harm than good in the long run. If you need help with training, I strongly urge you to seek out a behaviorist or positive reinforcement based trainer to help you. If the trainer even suggests using punishment that exceeds saying an "ah ah" or "no", fire them quick and try another one. It's not going to be a quick fix but you will wind up with life long good behavior if you stick with positive training.
Good luck!


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not what I meant

I'm afraid my use of the word "demote" was horribly misunderstood in the next post. I by no means meant that "punishment" should be used to train any dog ever when I used the term "demote". And I DID state "positive reinforcement" and proper "correction" by distracting/halting from the inappropriate behavior with a firm (not screamed) voice, and then praising the dog up and down when the posture changes/the bad behavior stops.

I'll just back out quietly now. Mind my own. I wish you luck and happiness with George. Hugz.
 

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I know it seems like your chi is trying to "move up" in the "pack" but I can assure you that this is not the case. The "pack theory" of dog training has been scientifically disproved. The original theory was based on a pack of domesticated wolves. Dogs DO NOT behave the way the pack theory speculates... And neither do wild wolves!
Your dog is being a dog and is testing his boundaries. Please stop trying to "demote" him as this can cause a lot more harm than good in the long run. If you need help with training, I strongly urge you to seek out a behaviorist or positive reinforcement based trainer to help you. If the trainer even suggests using punishment that exceeds saying an "ah ah" or "no", fire them quick and try another one. It's not going to be a quick fix but you will wind up with life long good behavior if you stick with positive training.
Good luck!

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THIS. I 100% agree. The whole pack theory and dominance theory has been largely disproven.

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I know it seems like your chi is trying to "move up" in the "pack" but I can assure you that this is not the case. The "pack theory" of dog training has been scientifically disproved. The original theory was based on a pack of domesticated wolves. Dogs DO NOT behave the way the pack theory speculates... And neither do wild wolves!
Your dog is being a dog and is testing his boundaries. Please stop trying to "demote" him as this can cause a lot more harm than good in the long run. If you need help with training, I strongly urge you to seek out a behaviorist or positive reinforcement based trainer to help you. If the trainer even suggests using punishment that exceeds saying an "ah ah" or "no", fire them quick and try another one. It's not going to be a quick fix but you will wind up with life long good behavior if you stick with positive training.
Good luck!


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100% agree. Great post.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
What I'm asking for is specific suggestions. What specific actions have any of you taken to curb inappropriate growling/aggression.

We all have differing opinions about demoting, and pack theories, and behavior, and 'no bad dogs' and bad training. I'm not going to get into that.

Please don't assume that I don't know how to train, or haven't bothered. I'm seeking advice for this problem bc I need help with it, not because I'm not using the 'right' training method or believing in the 'right' theory.


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Discussion Starter #10
I'm new here and don't know much about Chis, but I have had dogs all of my life. There is no such thing as a bad dog, only mismanaged training, or misunderstood rankings.

Your little George seems to think he is the alpha. You have to take your power back and be the leader of the pack. And please don't be mad at him or shout at him - this doesn't correct the behavior, it promotes more inappropriate behavior. Bad behavior should be corrected with a firm leadership, a HEY or BAA - something to get his attention and break the behavior. When he reacts by relaxing his posture and coming to you - praise the good behavior like he's won the lottery. And you are doing the right thing by demoting him. When he demands your lap or attention, ignore him. Then, when he is not expecting it, offer the affection on your terms. If he comes after your plate, a gentle nudge away with your forearm (not hand) and a grunt, means this is my plate or my sandwich and you are being rude. George needs to learn that you are the Queeny, and everyone else is merely a pack member. You're doing great!! Just don't get obviously mad at him - instead, praise good behavior and simply correct bad behavior indifferently. He wants to please you, he's just confused and feels he is entitled when he is not.

I hope I haven't come off as a know it all - I'm not. I just had to learn quick recently with our new puppy coming home. Our resident dog Daisy who is quite large, decided she didn't like the tiny 3 lb pup. We needed to demote her in a bit hurry and take our power back from her ... and in two days I have her wrapped around my finger. It's all in how you carry yourself, direct them, and place yourself at the top of the totem. There's lots of great books out there. I just read My Smart Puppy and it is quite helpful for puppys as well as dogs.

Good luck - you're doing awesome!
He knows who is the leader; he just seems to think she is at the same level as he.

It is getting better. I'm having her interact with him more and seriously, just changing his position in the car from front seat to floor of back seat, and having him sleep in a common area are making a difference. I've started having her feed him too. I'll fix the bowl then have her take over and have him sit, then she can put the bowl in the kennel and close it behind him. She's also the one who lets him out when he's done.

What have you done with yours to get her around your finger? Maybe I can try some of that too.

Oh- last thing: I've been training George in short sessions with basic commands plus a few fun ones like "circle(s)" and I use a clicker for it. He's very smart and LOVES his sessions. At first, he didn't want to do things unless I had a treat, but I've just about gotten him past that. He still gets praised or his favorite toy thrown, just not always a food treat. This is really helping with his general obedience and not being so snappy with my dd.


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All I did was: when Daisy showed any kind of aggressive or "overly" upset behavior toward the tiny puppy, a firm and meaningful BAAA is what I would say. She would be surprised (but not frightened) and turn to me with the distraction. "Come" I would calmly say. Her posture would change to relaxed and she would come to me. I would then lavish her with praise for being such a good and friendly girl.

Always just distract and stop the bad behavior but I never punish or scream - I just let her know I don't like it, and then when she acts appropriately, she is praised up and down.

I never meant to offend anyone. I just wanted to share my experience. It seems so easy and works so well. I hope all is going well for you.
 

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I don't think anyone has been offended renkma, it's great that you shared your experiences with IwillcallhimGeorge and if that method works for you it's good to share, keep chiming in everybody's input is welcome. X
 
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