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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, so Debo and I are attached at the hip. That's my little guy right there. We are very close.

We got our other puppy, Jass (a bullmastiff), a couple of weeks ago and he won't let me spend any alone time with her. She'll come up and want me to play with her/pet her and Debo can be chewing on his bone, and if he sees her by me, he litterally runs up, gets in between us and starts nipping at her neck. He almost wants to fight her off of me. He gets all excited and wants me to pet him and basically show him that I 'still love him'. He gets very aggressive towards her if she's near me. He will also sometimes get between me and whomever I'm hugging (my son, fiancee) but not as bad.

He also seems to be trying to mark his dominance as the alpha dog. They both seem about equal, b/c lil' Jass, even though she's not yet 3 months is quickly catching up on his size and not scared of him one bit!! lol. When we first brought her home, she let him know she wasn't playing when he tried to test her several times. She can definitely hold her own. They play fight alot, and Debo seems to be more aggressive and barking at her if she sits on "his" patio chair outside or if anyone is petting Jass. He was having more "accidents" the first week and a half (I guess marking territory) and he just won't let her have any attention. We litterally have to split them up when we want to have some alone time with Jass, b/c he'll be all up in our face, like "What about me!!!???".

I'd like to have everyone in the same room at the same time and have some individual time with each. I'm not sure what to do, any suggestions? Maybe it will just come in time?
 

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Take her aside ALONE and play with her and pet her. Don't let him be present for it... My two don't fight over me even then though Toby is attatched to my hip because I ask for the affection.. They don't get it when they want it..

Liz will be able to help you out better than I can...
 

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If you are dead set on having alone time with Jass (although I find it somewhat upsetting that I read no mention of alone time with Debo---maybe I misread something or you didn't add that bit?) then seperate then into two seperate rooms where they cannot see each other and progress with the along time that way.  However, in many cases, if you continue on this path Jass will begin doing to Debo what debo is doing now and if it becomes aggressive altercations Jass is likely to do more damage (not that Debo wouldn't hold his own, but Jass is gonna be huge) physically.

The problem I am seeing in this situation is that Debo feels as though he is being edged out for attention.  I believe that he is looking for reassurance of his position in the pack as well as reassurance that you still love him.  I also feel that there may be a bit of favoritsm with the puppy just because she is a puppy.  If I were you I would give them ALL attention at the same time.  I know this can be hard to do, but is worth it in the end.  By giving them attention at the same time, you are reinforcing that they are part of YOUR pack and that YOU are in control.  

Let me set up a few scenario's for you:

**Scenario 1:

You walk over and are giving Jass attention...
Debo, who has been asleep on the floor until this point, wakes up and comes over for attention as well...
Debo splits (walks between you and Jass to stop the attention) and redirects you to giving him attention...
You refuse him attention...
he gets a correction instead...
This happens nearly everytime you approach to give Jass attention and Debo approaches to solicit for attention as well...

Result of Scenario 1:

Debo learns through your corrections that Jass is a source of corrections.  He begins to behave in more aggressive ways and the aggression escalates because NO ONE in the house is paying him any attention or noticing these clear signs.  End result is that Debo and Jass fight and one or both get hurt.

**Scenario 2:

You seperate both dogs so that you may give one attention...
Debo can here the play in the other room...
He begins to paw the door/walls/floor and to whine to tell you he wants to play too...
when you're done you go to get Debo and see the resulting damage to your home...
He gets a correction (and because its after the fact he doesnt understand what he did wrong and automaticaly links your unhappiness with im and not the damage to your house--this is the way dogs think--they live in the now...not the ten minutes ago)...
He begins to see link his ostracism [sp] to you playing with Jass and you return to get him from the room hes been seperated out in as an unpleasant experience because you become angry everytime you bring him back out (you're angry about the damage but because it was ten minutes ago he doesnt understand that and thinks you're mad at him...AGAIN...)

Result of Scenario 2:

Debo learns through the seperation and corrections (due to the damage of your home) that Jass is the source of his seperation and that YOUR return is unpleasant and that everytime you return he gets in trouble.  He becomes more destructive when seperated so that YOU may have alone time with Jass and becomes fearful when YOU return to release him from the seperation.  

Scenario 3:

You choose to give Debo and Jass as much equal attention as possible...  When giving Jass attention, and Debo approaches and solicits for attention, you include him...
When giving Jass attention you call Debo ove to give him attention as well...
You include both dogs, to th best of your ability, in games and cuddles etc...
You train both dogs at the same time...  

Result of Scenario 3:

You have reinforced that YOU are the leader of YOUR pack.  You have reinforced that you are in control, but that your dogs are of equal status in YOUR pack.  You have taught them that there is NO favoritism in your pack.  You now have a well balanced pack that is happy to accept attention when YOU give it.

**These scenario's are all too possible and are stated as a potential worse case scenario.  

As owner's we are responsible for our dog's behavior.  Unless your dog was a rescue (I understand that yours are not) and you are dealing with issues that came before you and your dogs came to be a pack together, your dogs behavioral issues are generally your fault.  No dog is perfect as no owner is perfect.  All we can do is be the best we can for our pets.

I believe that you are trying to do everything you possibly can to right this situation.  I believe that like all the Boxer owners on this forum, you are doing a wonderful job being good parents.  When issues like this arise with a dog in your pack, they need to be dealt with ASAP so that the aggression and inappropriate behavior does not progress and escalte.

I recommend that you read the og Body Language stickey and become more familiar with it, so that you can spot inappropiate behavior before it gets very far.

This response is not intended to insult but to educate and give you more options.

I wish you the best of luck and let me know if you want more help.  (PM me and if you like I can call you/you can call me and I can walk you through it.)  I know you can handle this and I'm proud of you for trying to get as much info and as many ideas as possible to wok on this situation.

Welcome to the forum!

Liz (Professional Dog Trainer and Behaviorist) and Lilly (Hearing Service Dog and Therapy Dog; dually certified)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you so much for the advice and scenarios. It helps alot. I just want to clear up that I spend so much time with Debo, I feel guilty for not spending some one on one time with Jass, and getting to know her. Jass is my fiancee's dog, but I want to spend time with both of them. Of course I have a little favoritism over my boy Debo, but love em both. I made sure we gave him extra attention when she came home, so he didn't feel left out. I know it's like bringing home a new baby and your older child feeling left out because everyone is "ooo'ing and ahhh'ing" over the new addition. He gets even more attention now, so he doesn't feel like the outsider.

The thing is, Debo and I lay together and play together and Jass doesn't mind. She'll play with my son or fiancee, or just lay (she sleeps alot lol), so Debo and I get lots of time. I'd love for us all to play together. When she comes over, even though he's had all this time with me, he wants me all to himself it seems. He automatically nips at her neck or gets in between us. I just wanted to be able to build a bond with her as well and have some play time with her without Debo interfering and biting at her. I try petting them both and it's a domino effect where Debo gets jealous that I'm petting her and Debo goes for her neck (just nipping, not vicious) and then she wants to bite back and then they start, what seems like play fighting. They both do good at walks and when we do our little training sessions/treats (although Jass likes to try to steal Debo's treats from him ha), but again that is always me walking Debo and me feeding treats to Debo.
 

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In the case of him not wanting to "share"...

If Jass appraoches to play, cuddle, get attention etc... and Debo behaves in this manner, STOP whatever attention he is getting and walk away.  This sends a clear message that the behavior is unacceptable and you will not tolerate it, just like when a pup is exhibiting inappropriate behavior during playtime and you stop the game.

Good Mom!!!

Liz and Lilly
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sounds good. I will work on that. Thanks for all of your advice.
 

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Your welcome.  Let me know if you need anymore help!!!

Liz and Lilly
 

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I just want to stress that I recently had a similar issue with our two. Everything was perfect with them...we went away for vacation and after vacation, our two were fighting a lot...Abby seemed to want my attention more than usual and Brady did not want her to get any, he wanted me all to himself! I spoke with Liz about this and she gave me similar advice.  You think you are doing best by trying to give each your attention...in my case, if they were on separate ends of a room or something, I would pet Abby, then pet Brady (or vice versa). I thought I was being "fair," but Liz stressed the importance of petting them together as they do live in the moment. To avoid conflict, for a few days, if they weren't together, I didn't even attempt to pet one...I just waited until they were in an activity where I could catch them together. Within 2 days, things were improving. By the end of day 3, they spent an hour playing with one kong together (both chasing it) without a single tiff eruptin, and not that 3 weeks have passed, I can say there hasn't been single scuffel in about 2 weeks! Things are back to how they were before vacation...so follow her instruction to the dime and hopefully all will be well shortly!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
yes, i do see now it's important to include both of them in play and not to separate them. they should both learn together and play together. thanks so much!
 
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