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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, I posted the other day about Brady not feeling so well. Since last night, he's been acting much better, but the fighting has continued. The night before last, 2 fights over something they never fight about; last night one random fight about NOTHING; tonight a fight about a piece of food Brady got a hold of. Whereas in the past, Abby was usually the instigator (fights were maybe once a month or every other month and ALWAYS over rawhides bones, nothing else), Brady seems to be instigating the fights, but I am not entirely certain all the time.  Tonight, they were outside so I didn't have the same resources to split them up, I went to push them apart and got my finger bitten pretty hard...two punctures and lots of blood!!!

Background, Abby is not a year and month, Brady is 2 or 3. She tends to be the dominant. They LOVE each other and cry and fuss when not near each other.  A fight occurred as I said 1 time every month or every other month.

Recent history...last week we were on vacation. the dogs stayed with my parents. 3 fights while there...I could understand a bit more as they were out of their zones.

But, now they are home...why are they fighting so much?  I am not going to put up with it. We have a 14 yr old girl comes every day while we are at work who walks them and plays with them for a while...what if they fought while she was here? What happens when we have children?? I don't want someone, especially a baby, getting caught in the middle of a fight.  And I will never give one up...I would say no to babies before I gave up either puppy!  :(

What can I do to discontinue this? So far, they are scolded with a BIG NO!!!!! And separated for about 10 minutes. (I don't do longer so they don't forget why they are being separated.) But I am not sure how else to handle a fight.  Should we do some sessions with a trainer? What would a trainer do? They are pretty well trained...they listen well to me, they obey, etc. What can a trainer do to dissuade fighting?

Any thoughts well appreciated!
 

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Look for the signs that one is getting into an aggressive state of mind. I have this problem quite often as well. Zeus is the one that gets aggressive and when i know he is about to lose it he; gets very stiff and still, he gets a  little veiny, ears start going back, or snarling. And since i noticed this they have fought way less because i will catch him before they snap. And i correct them by saying " NO " very firm and loud to where he gets distracted. Them i seperate him and put him in a seperate room for a couple of minutes to show him that behavior isnt welcome. And another thing that is why i cant have rawhides for them because they will fight over the other one and try to keep the one i gave to each one. And they have to eat at a distance while i wait till both are done. Good luck with them and hopefully some of this helps.

I forgot i made a mistake and got Zeus' teeth in my back while trying to break them up which he didnt mean to get me i lost balance and fell into the middle when he lunged. Now i dont break it up that way and now i use water.
 

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Thank you, I watch them like a hawk right now...the second I see Brady look at her sideways or her get in his face, I separate them for a few minutes...Brady has been acting "off" lately and last night after some frisbee time outside we noticed him limping...his back right leg appearing a bit lame. He was really sensitive for the past couple days but we couldn't figure out where he was being sensitive...so I think it must be this. Maybe him not feeling well is contributing to the fighting. We are keeping him on some aspirin right now for comfort and the vet will check him out. Until I know he is better, I won't panic too much about the excess fighting but I DO NOT want them to get into a habit of this, so I want to do what I can npw to nip it.  When they only fought over rawhide bones, it was easy...separate them for rawhide bones, take them away before reintroducing the dogs. Lately, I have no idea what sets them off!
 

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It sounds like Brady might be hurting, especially as you noticed him limping and that is why he's lashing out so much...Definitely, watch them both closely, see if you can see anything that forces the issue. Also read thru that post about understanding dog body language...Hugs to Brady, hope his leg is ok... :) Possibly pulled a muscle while romping...
 

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Re: Help me out!!! Dogs fighting past 2 weeks! Follow up!

Well, I took both went to the vet yesterday and Brady was fine. They ran blood work on him, including lyme and manipulated his hips some. I have noticed less lameness in the past couple days so I figured she would see nothing from this...I figure he probably strained his hip. His glands were pretty full...so maybe some discomfort from that could have been causing his crankiness (he showed no signs until a couple days ago...so we will have to be sure they are cleaned each time we go), combined with his confusion from our vacation.  He was not thrilled with being poked at by the vet but I started kissing his forehead and he put his nose to mine and calmed right down.  He's such a mama's boy.  Their behavior has improved dramatically and they are back to playing with each other....in fact, it seems like they are trying to make up for lost time!!!

And of course, they were once again a hit at the vet's office...it's funny because cocker spaniel's and boxers are such different breeds and attract different people, so each always has their own separate fan club wherever we go...as we entered the office yesterday, I hear this woman say, "Oh my god, gorgeous!" She seemed focused on Abby the whole time, while another woman was just smooshing all over Brady. I told them that each were rescues and they were dumbfounded at how beautiful they were. As though surprised to see beautiful rescues! Maybe they will be swayed to look into that option in the future!
 

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Happy the vet visit went well, and I hope they are over the crankiness!  :wink:
 

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Anytime there are behavioral changes it is also a good thing to check thyroid.  Hypo-thyroidism is quite common in Boxers and can contribute to aggressiveness. I have had three Boxers with it out of the ten that I have owned over the years.

It is quite possible that they fighting is due to the one not feeling well also.  I would also tend to use water in a squirt bottle (one that can really squirt a good stream) for instances of fighting.  I had two females years ago that suddenly started doing this over people, usually, and if I hit them with a good spray it ended that problem.  Dogs understand this negative punishment in this situation.

Nano
 
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