My dog attacks my other dog whenever I walk into the room.

dhs9831August 13, 2013

I have two dogs. Little bit, A Min-Pin who has been here for 9 years, and Kennedy, a Yorkie mix who Ive had for a year. They both get along okay for the most part, but whenever I, or my family members walk into a room, Kennedy darts for Little bit and attacks her and I have to pull them apart to make them stop fighting. Kennedy like I said is a year old, making her sort of the new dog in the house, so I would think little bit would be the alpha dog, since she has lived here the longest. Im not sure what to do. They get along just fine until a human walks into the room Can anyone tell me why, or how to make it stop?

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Someone more knowledgeable/experienced will step in, but I had a female cat who took to attacking the newcomer, another female. This was after she had welcomed her nicely, however, and was met with hissing. I asked my vet about ways to handle the situation. I believe what she told me was to let them work it out, don't interfere with the (mental) process. That's pretty much what I've done with my animals anyway, generally, within reason of course! These two did work it out and actually became friends. Neither were aggressive animals to begin with. I wish I could remember exactly what she had said, but it's gone! lol She was quick to respond about their natural instincts and seemed quite sure of the process though.

I did do some, usually, positive coaching though for feedback to them. Tried to reward and instill friendship and good manners, lol.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Tue, Aug 13, 13 at 16:31

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 3:54PM
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Thanks for your reply. I am sure it is some territorial thing, but I would think after nearly a year living together that it would be sorted out already. And the other thing that perplexes me a bit, is that it only happens when a Human walks into the room. As soon as we walk in, kennedy hunts down little bit wherever she is and attacks. Surely there is something I can do. We cant just stop walking into rooms lol. Hopefully someone can help me understand whats going on and how I can fix it.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 8:48PM
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Have you talked with your vet? These two girls I had, took well over a year. The newcomer also had trouble with a male in the family but after a year or more she fell in love with him. Go figure. So, a year is a long time, but certainly showed that apparently even so it does not mean things are hopeless. Sometimes people give up after a few days of hissing, lol.

That's a young pup, so hopefully will grow out of it. A little guidance could go a long way, for sure. I wonder if some obedience school would help with some self control.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 10:15PM
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Are they both spayed?
I would start with basic training..........come, sit, stay so that they learn to respond to you. It sounds like Kennedy has taken the lead role and thinks she is protecting you. IMO, she doesn't respect you nor see you as the leader. When you break up a fight, be sure you don't console or baby either one of them, then separate them with a leash or crate until they settle down,

I would first try using some treats and redirect their attention when you enter the room. Use something with a strong scent, like dried liver treats, and have each one sit before she receives her treats. Over time the treats can be replaced with affection and they should come to see humans in a positive way.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2013 at 11:19AM
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Thanks for your replies! Annz, little bit is spayed but kennedy is not. Could this have something to do with it? I will take your advice as far as treats and not babying either one of them. Currently I am scolding kennedy and babying little bit when Kennedy attacks. I just feel so bad, especially since little bit is so old, she just doesnt have as much fight power anymore, so I feel sorry for her. And you are right, it does seem like kennedy is trying to protect us from little bit, it just doesnt make sense to me because little bit is posing no threat, and is generally minding her own business or even napping when kennedy attacks her.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 12:07AM
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I have two shihs now, but when my first one was about 2yrs I lost my old dog and got a 3 yr old shih. my first shih was such an easygoing thing, but the new one was a little tyrant and constantly trying to assert herself. the breeder suggested i just let them sort it out for themselves, but after several weeks the constant fights were just driving me nuts and I'd had enough of it. I know it was the new dog instigating all of this but I had to be careful not to play favorites and create more tension between them.

I simply did this: whenever they started fighting I would clap my hands really loudly and holler "hey! hey! hey!", until I got their attention and they would stop. I did this every single time a fight broke out, and the number of fights started to dwindle until eventually they just stopped. I was letting them know, this is not on, and knock it off, and it worked. It was enough to get them to refocus their attention on me and let them know that I wasn't going to allow it.

My dogs are very spoiled, I really never raise my voice to them, but in this situation I had to do something drastic to get their attention when they were in that mode. I let my dogs get away with a lot of things, but I don't like aggression and fighting among animals because I think that's in a whole other category of bad behavior that you need to get on top of, especially since one of your dogs is a lot older, she doesn't need this in her life, and neither do you (because it's damn stressful!) LOL

This post was edited by trancegemini_wa on Thu, Aug 15, 13 at 0:48

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 12:30AM
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Has Kennedy always done this, or did she initially accept the situation and calmly get along with Little Bit? If she has always done it, has something changed to make you more concerned lately? What is different? If it is new behavior, what changed around the same time as Kennedy's behavior? Think about all of these things. Think about exactly what Kennedy does, how she does it, what she looks at, when does she start the behavior, what stops it, and if there are changes in the environment that make her attacks better or worse. Write all these things out, keep notes. Have everybody in the family write what they see during these attacks. Don't say things like "Kennedy got jealous and attacked Little Bits when she was sleeping on the couch." Since we cannot know what is going on inside her, saying she is "jealous" or "scared" or "dominant" does not help. Instead, say, "I opened the door and came in from the garage and as soon as Kennedy saw me, she jumped up. She ran in circles barking for about thirty seconds. I could tell she was excited because the hairs on the back of her neck stood up and she was bouncing up and down on her front legs, which she held stiff. She darted toward me once, then ran to where Little Bits was sleeping next to the arm of the couch and jumped on the couch and grabbed Little Bits my the scruff of her neck with her teeth and shook her a bit. Little Bits squealed and yipped, so I knew she was scared." See, describe behaviors. Then the behaviorist can use her own observations and info you have gathered to give you the best advice.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2013 at 1:40AM
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Just a little clarification ~

Are they alone in the room when someone walks in and the "attack" happens ?
If you (or the predominant human) are in the room with them
will the "attack" still happen ?

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 4:42PM
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they are generally alone in the room when someone walks in. I have noticed that from time to time it happens if an adult human is in the room and gets up from a chair or something, then the attach ensues again.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 5:05PM
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It seems (I am no expert) that it's NOT a dominant issue with
Kennedy ,although that's what it appears to be,yet more of a separation "anxiety" issue.

When someone gets up they are presumed to be leaving.
When someone comes in,well, they have been gone.

Like I said I am no expert~just trying to give you more avenues to explore.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2013 at 5:24PM
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Our 10 yr old male shih tzu also attacks our 9 yr old male pikanese. Plus the shih tzu has been peeing everywhere in the house, he even stood on the bed and peed all over it right in front of me. He goes out to pee but still pees big puddles on the carpet. We just cleaned the carpets and this is my sons house but his dad refuses to have the dog put to sleep. I read that after a certain age shih tzus lose control of their bladders. Is this true?

    Bookmark   September 28, 2013 at 1:40PM
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