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Old 04-25-2015, 01:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Aggressive Boxer

I adopted a Boxer in January, she is approximately 6 years old, very calm and sweet and named Ginger. When we adopted her, she had been living with the rescue agency for two months among 23 other dogs. She never showed any signs of aggression.

I have a little maltipoo named Pixie; Ginger and Pixie get along great, never showed any aggression. I also have two daughters and Ginger is the most loving dog to both of them. A friend of mine who had a Yorkie and a male boxer has stayed with us and again, no aggression. We take Ginger to the dog walking street every Sunday and, again, no aggression! She is the calmest, sweetest dog ever!

But, where I live a lot of people own dogs. We take Ginger out twice a day for her walk on a leash. Sadly, she lunges at 3 of the dogs every time. It's always the same dogs; a mutt, a poodle and a shih tzu. She never attacks the yorkie or the schnauzer or any other dogs. Only those three. I don't understand why and, to be honest, this is starting to cause problems with my neighbors who, of course, all hate the scary looking boxer.

It's gotten to the point where I'm afraid take Ginger out myself, she is a strong dog, so my husband has to do it. I am a very strong woman, I mean, I'm a fighter (MMA) and I can handle it but if my hand slips just once... I don't want to even think about it!

What could be causing this and what can I do?
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Old 04-25-2015, 09:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome aboard and thank you for saving her!

First except the the fact that this dog may "never" get along with other dogs! She can be trained to be safely around other dogs. Until you have achieved that, she can't be trusted around other dogs period!

Dogs can't be allowed to "pick and chose" who they like and don't like. If you can get that point, understand and except it...then you can move forward. It's not about the dog it's about you.

And because it is always mentioned, is seeking the help of a qualified professional a possibility??
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Old 04-26-2015, 10:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Welcome aboard and thank you for saving her!

First except the the fact that this dog may "never" get along with other dogs! She can be trained to be safely around other dogs. Until you have achieved that, she can't be trusted around other dogs period!

Dogs can't be allowed to "pick and chose" who they like and don't like. If you can get that point, understand and except it...then you can move forward. It's not about the dog it's about you.

And because it is always mentioned, is seeking the help of a qualified professional a possibility??
Well, there is a dog trainer close to here, but I don't know how qualified he is. I've lived in Guatemala for going on 15 years and have never seen any sort of service dogs. This dog trainer works mostly with puppies and he just trains them to do tricks from what I heard.

I am shocked that she picks and chooses. My husband says he thinks those dogs are probably jerks or something My Maltipoo plays with them without any problems except the poodle who is aggressive to humans and other dogs.

This behavior is new, though, so I'm confused by it.
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:50 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Does this only happen when she's on a leash?
Are the 3 dogs she lunges at on leashes or loose or behind a fence?

She is not aggressive, sound like she is "reactive", google leash reactive, fence reactive, barrier reactive.

My two are complete terrors to other dogs when on a leash, but perfectly fine if loose together in a fenced in area.

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Old 04-26-2015, 04:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Well thanks for posting your location. That information pretty much cuts the "hire a trainer" advise, off at the knees. I doubt "puppy" guy will be off much use to you??

If she lived in a pack of 23 dogs that is where she learned rules, boundaries and limitations from. That structure is gone now and she needs a leader. Your family is her "pack" now and "you" need to show her how you expect her to behave.

For me a dogs background makes no difference. I have "standard" protocols, I follow, in that way I can see "issues" before they become "problems."

Most likely when you first got the dog you did not do anything like this:

I just got a rescued dog what do I do? | stickydogblog

"Nobody" does, I didn't with my rescue GSD, not doing the above, did not work out so well in the short run!

Most likely some papers were signed, payment made, leash handed over and off you go. Folks go home and at some point...off to the Dog Park we go! With a dog they have no understanding of in tow!

Most of the times it works out, sometimes...not so much! My log way of saying...'Know your dog."

Yes "leash reactivity" is the issue. And yes a search will pull up "everything" on dealing with it! The problem with that "approach' is that "everything" looks the same! To "me" it doesn't. I have a very good understanding of what works and what's uh...crap!

Yes so far a lot of words and no, so far no "specifics??" I actually have a few reasons for that. First because if you going to continue to do dog dog on dog encounters, one by way??
There is no chance of fixing this, somebody is going to get hurt at some point.

Second well your in "Guatemala" trainers are hard to find apparently, that's why I asked.

And lastly and most importantly is because if "you" are going to fix this, then you will need to be as good as many of us on this board are!

By that I mean if you think resorting to a Gentle Leader or EZ walk is a solution?? Then I'm out, that's "not' the way I roll! The ball is in your court.
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Old 04-26-2015, 10:45 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gypsiemouse View Post
Does this only happen when she's on a leash?
Are the 3 dogs she lunges at on leashes or loose or behind a fence?

She is not aggressive, sound like she is "reactive", google leash reactive, fence reactive, barrier reactive.

My two are complete terrors to other dogs when on a leash, but perfectly fine if loose together in a fenced in area.

She is always on a leash when we leave with her. Even at the dog walking event they have on Sundays here, she is leashed. The other three dogs, come to think of it, are not on leashes but the other dogs in my neighborhood always are. She only lunges at the dogs that are never on their leashes.

I've never heard of reactive, I'm going to have to look that up!
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Old 04-27-2015, 12:53 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I adopted a really loving sweet boxer who is leash reactive about 9 months ago. We are a work in progress. She is doing better but there are still a handful of dogs in the neighborhood that she completely looses her cool...and i mean she lunges, growls, sometimes stands on two legs, lurches, shakes etc...
A harness did not work well for us because it would get shifted to the side. I switched her to a slip leash for a few weeks and now a limited slip collar and leash ( i do not want her to slip out of a collar)

She walked pretty well on leash as far as pulling so initially i was not concerned that she sniffed around alot and zigzagged and walked in front of me because she was not pulling BUT after spending time with a behaviorist and watching videos on youtube, and reading stuff on this forum about reactivity I am working on her walking next to me on a loose leash, sitting when I stop, and i give her permission to "go sniff" that way she does not think she is in charge. We do the watch me command...which is where i tell the dog watch me and i point at my eyes and she looks at me...then i give her a treat I do this often and she can hold my gaze for a while now.
I also change directions and try to avoid putting my dog in a situation where she may freak out because each time they do the behavior of reacting gets reinforced and i give space or cross the street when passing another dog.
We have been working like this everyday for 2 months and i have seen an improvement...but it is a constant effort with setbacks along the way...Good Luck
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:23 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by k_ann View Post
. I switched her to a slip leash for a few weeks and now a limited slip collar and leash ( i do not want her to slip out of a collar)
Sounds like a Martingale Collar. And your approach is basically what I
recommend..."Loose Leash Training" looks like this:


https://www.boxerforums.com/1736170-post12.html

Getting that done is the first step.

It sounds like the OP has encounters with off leash dogs? That is a bit different but the first step, is there dog needs to be under control, then you can address the strange dog issue.
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Old 04-30-2015, 08:53 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chip18 View Post
Sounds like a Martingale Collar. And your approach is basically what I
recommend..."Loose Leash Training" looks like this:


https://www.boxerforums.com/1736170-post12.html

Getting that done is the first step.

It sounds like the OP has encounters with off leash dogs? That is a bit different but the first step, is there dog needs to be under control, then you can address the strange dog issue.
YES! It's only with unleashed dogs. I'm working on getting her under control, and have been searching online, but as you said before, a lot of the advice seems the same and since I don't know much about dogs, I'm not sure which advice is the best yet!

I'm working on it.
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Old 04-30-2015, 09:13 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I used the technique in this book to desensitize a Boxer a few years ago. He'd lunge at dogs on walks, and it was actually fear based.

The Cautious Canine-How to Help Dogs Conquer Their Fears: Patricia B. McConnell: 9781891767005: Amazon.com: Books The Cautious Canine-How to Help Dogs Conquer Their Fears: Patricia B. McConnell: 9781891767005: Amazon.com: Books

Looking back, it just got worse over time. He was a very confident dog so I was surprised it was actually anxiety. This goes further then just the watch command.
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