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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,
I'm the proud new mama of a 3yr old chihuahua named Moki. We got him from a rehome situation about 2 weeks ago now (elderly owners passed; Moki went to grandson & his partner, but they couldn't keep him because they already had 2 big dogs and some cats). He's the perfect pup!
Aside from one thing - he tends to snap during a few specific situations. If he's napping and has to be picked up, he'll snap. He also snapped when my mom was toweling him after a bath. Today he snapped at my grandmother after she had tried to move him off of her lap, which prompted me to write this post.
He's not neutered and we don't know much of his past.
Any help would be appreciated, because I don't want this to turn into a bigger issue! So far he's really great with people - doesn't bark, doesn't bite. Only snaps during the situations I've listed. Thanks!
 

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I have a 10 year old maltipoo/chihuahua that snaps, too. I have worked with him since I got him 5 months ago to stop. A firm NO! And he needs to get down/away for a few minutes and ignored. Screaming will scare him into thinking he has to protect himself. Gustav hated having his butt and tail brushed and burrs taken out around his mouth. The initial brushing, I used a muzzle. After that, I talk to him and slowly pet his butt. Then once he was ok with that, it took about three months, now we’re working on the tail. If he has a burr by his mouth, I’ll pull on it lightly and he’ll run away. After a couple of days, he’ll lick my elbow, and I’ll be able to take a sewing scissor and cut out the burr. Try to find out the trigger for the snap, say a firm no, and remove him from where he is. And then ignore him for 5-10 minutes. It’ll take time, patience, and love. How long have you had him? The older lady may not have interacted with him much. If he’s napping, wake him first. The toweling may be something new, he may never have had a bath before. It may have scared him. Getting off the lap, you may just have to stand up, he’ll scramble out of the way. Neutering may help immensely. I got a shih tzu that was a holy terror, now he’s fixed and turning into the nicest dog. Are you sure nothing hurts? That is a common reason a dog snaps at someone. Best of luck!
 

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Thank you for your response! I try to catch him with a sharp "AH" when it happens but usually it catches me by such surprise I freeze up and then lose my chance to correct him haha. But at least now I know generally when it happens, so I'll try to stay on top of it. After he snapped at my grandmother I did give him an "ah" and we all ignored him for a few minutes.

We've had him two and a half weeks now. He's fine with being picked up, with cuddling, snuggling, petting. It's just when he's comfy and has to be moved. When I have to move and he's on my lap, I sort of just shimmy my legs until he's up, then pick him up and move him - but if I try to pick him up while he's laying down, that's when he snaps. *I should add that even if he's awake he'll snap. My mom once woke him up to take him out to pee about 3am - she woke him up vocally and then tried to pick him up, but he snapped, so she just left him.

I'd really like to get him neutered. My mom is on the fence about it, but he's primarily my dog and he's almost always with me, so I'd like to get him fixed. I think it'd help his marking issues as well.

I don't think he's in pain, because he doesn't snap at random, and he's very limber - but I'll have to keep an eye on him because he's fallen down our hardwood stairs three times now 😭
 
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