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Discussion Starter #1
I have a question regarding Guido. Sometimes I'll sit next to him or I'll stand next to him and pet his head. He'll look up at me with his eyes and start to growl. He'll gradually get louder and louder and I can't figure out why he does that. Sometimes he'll do that to me after he's eaten all the food and I keep telling him to stay back so that Macy can eat.

If he does something wrong, like tear something up or mark in the house, we'll say, "Guido, what is that?" Then he gets really mad and he'll growl if you even come near him. Other times it seems that there is no reason as to why he does it.

Any ideas as to what I can do to calm him down when he gets upset like that? I noticed that if I rub his neck below his ears he relaxes a little, but not for long. He doesn't snap or bite, he just growls and stares you down.
 

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Liz might be the most help here, sounds like a behaviorist issue.
 

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I'm no expert here, I'm going to let Lillyzmomma handle this one, but it sounds like a behavior issue..If I remember right you got him from someone else, yes? I'm wondering if this is the reason they didn't want to keep him...Something is definitely causing this, but I just don't know enuf to say where to start...Poor boy, I'm hoping that we can get some answers for you.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah, I figured lillyzmomma would have the answer. I bet it is territorial or something of that nature.
 

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That's what I'm kinda thinking as well. He's new to your house, it's like finding his place in the pack..For the feeding, you might want to try feeding them in separate rooms, I know it would be a pain, but just a thought...I watch mine also when they eat, not for the same reasons as you, but Samson is on a diet and he always finishes before Angel, who eats very slow, sometimes he will go over to her dish and if she backs away, he'll just move right in and finish her food!!! Oink... :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well Macy won't even eat until he is done and for the past week I noticed that he eats his bowl and then starts to eat hers! Then when I refill her bowl he tries to go after that too and that's when I tell him no and he starts to get mad.

I'll see what Lillyzmomma says, but I think tonight I might try feeding them in seperate rooms and see if Macy will eat at the same time.
 

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uridiscence\";p=\"17015 said:
Well Macy won't even eat until he is done and for the past week I noticed that he eats his bowl and then starts to eat hers! Then when I refill her bowl he tries to go after that too and that's when I tell him no and he starts to get mad.

I'll see what Lillyzmomma says, but I think tonight I might try feeding them in seperate rooms and see if Macy will eat at the same time.
that would be the best bet until you figure out what the problem is.
 

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As much as I would like to say this is resource gaurding, I can't without more info.  Does he allow you to remove his bowl WHILE he is eating from it?  Does he grown, bare teeth, snarl, snap at Macy when she passes him while he's eating?  Does he growl, bare teeth, snarl, snap at you when you pass or stand next to him while he is eating?

Anymore info you can think of would be helpful!!!

When you growls at you when you pet him:

If you are petting him on the top of his head, it may be that he doesn't like it.  In my dog body language post, it states the behaviors (sounds, looks etc...), but I didn't get into detail about some of the things that can trigger them, so I'll give you a brief idea right now.

Aggressive behavior triggers that HUMANS do to dogs ALL THE TIME!!!!!:

---Petting on the top of the head
---Standing over a dog, while meeting or petting
---Patting on the top of the head
---Pounding or rough petting on the head and body
---Direct stare into the eyes


Ways to eliminate these triggers:

---Pet from the underneathe (jaw, ears, neck)
---Squat down at dogs level at an angle for a meet and greet
---Pet gently (no patting, pounding, or rough petting)
---Look at the dog then look away exposing throat for dogs view (showing your throat tells your dogs that you aren't a threat and that you are exposing a vital and sensitive area for proof; in body language this is like saying to a dog, "I'm not going to hurt you...see....I'm giving you the chance to hurt me!"

uridiscence---If you can get me more info I'll do what I can to help you.

Hope this helps everyone.

Liz and Lilly
 

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Discussion Starter #9
ok, here's some more info:

Yes, you can remove his bowl. He never bares his teeth, snaps, or snarls. He just growls. He doesn't do anything when Macy walks by him when he is eating and he doesn't care if she eats in the bowl next to him.

He does growl if you stand over him when he's eating. He'll look up at you and start to growl.

He doesn't always growl when I pet the top of his head so I think it may be the eye contact. Lots of times he comes up to me and I start to scratch and pet the top of his head and he falls asleep standing up so I don't think it's the petting.

The only time he snaps is when he's growling and you keep pushing him to stop instead of leaving him alone.
 

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Next time he growls at you during direct eye contact or standing over him, I want you to squat down to his level at an angle in a relaxed fashion.  Look at him then away exposing your throat.  Give him a command to come to you (be prepared to enforce it [go get him] if need be; giving a come command reinforces your position as leader, and your physical postioning shows him you aren't a threat to his safety).  When he commits (starts to come) to coming start praising!!!  

This actually doesn't sound like resource gaurding at all.  What it sounds like is dominance displays.  What you need to do is establish yourself as leader with him (sounds like Macy already has this one figured out) and put an end to these displays.  He has probably been giving you these signs in a non-aggressive fashion for a bit now, but has escalated a bit because YOU weren't paying attention or they weren't working for him.  What we DON'T want is for this to escalate anymore.  

I'll make a couple phone calls and see what myself and a couple friends can come up with to help you with this issue safely and without having to pay for a behavioralist.

Liz and Lilly
 

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Discussion Starter #11
OK, thanks. I'll give that a try. He doesn't do it to my boyfriend or to Macy. So it's just with me.

Macy shows him dominance quite a bit, she's always standing over him and I catch her trying to climb his backside every once and a while. I don't think she understands that concept.
 

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I recommend reasing the dog body language stickey and becoming as familiar with it as possible.  Knowledge of dog body language is very important for a dog owner to be aware of...especially if they have more than one dog.  I think you might find some answers there as well.

Liz and Lilly
 

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I just barely saw this thread but it's definitely a dominance issue. He thinks he's higher ranked than you. Macy climbing his backside is also a form of dominance (Macy being dominant over him). Liz gave good advice... sounds just like a Dog Whisperer show Steven and I watched last week... he said the same thing and helped them resolve the issue. It's definitely an easy fix... he just thinks he's over you... and you need to show that... no... you are the leader.

Good luck...  :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, Guido is wearing me out today. We had our Dish installed this morning so the dogs went in their crates. Guido didn't stop barking for an hour. I had to keep going over there to shake the pop can, but he was persistent.

Once he finally got tired of barking Macy started whining and she wouldn't stop until I let them out. I kept shaking the can at her too, but that didn't phase her.

Guido has barked at every little noise today and he's really starting to frustrate me. Shaking the pop can doesn't seem to be working. I can't go near him either because he starts growling at me and he snapped at me last night and this morning when I tried to grab his collar to put him in his crate.

I don't know what his deal is lately, but the growling is getting worse no matter what we seem to do. He's wearing me out...
 

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Keep a leash on him 24/7 so you can do what you want with him..

I'll let Liz finish the rest...

(Dog Trainer in training)

:wink: sorry Liz.. had to have a bit of fun
 

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Discussion Starter #16
A leash is a good idea. I'll see what else Liz has to say about it. I just called our vet because they have a behavioral tech on staff and I'll see what she says too.

Luckily he is sleeping right now...
 
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