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My husky/cocker spaniel dog (he turned a year old the day after Father's Day) is driving me crazy.

I guess you need some background information. We got him when he was 5 months old. The owner's before us us to abuse him. There was a man, wife and their 3 kids. When we received him, we took him to the vets (who's male) and right away he started growling and barking at our vet. The vet told us that he was abused by a guy. He was fine with the women there. And we think that he was abused my kids too.

When we first received the dog, my son, who's 7 years old (Alex), would try to pet him while he was eating. Big mistake because Ajay (the dog) would growl. So I was suggested that if my son started taking care of Ajay's food and water dish that the dog would stop growling. Alex has been doing this for almost 9 months and Ajay still growls at him.


And there has been a time where Ajay bit my son. I just don't know what to do. I've told Alex to not be afraid of Ajay but he is and I think that the dog can sense it. Ajay feels like he's dominate over my son. I don't want him to think that.

We have a 3 month old baby boy (Sam). Ajay is perfect with the infant.

As a matter of fact, last week, Alex was laying next to Sam and Ajay was laying on the other side of Sam, when Alex touched Sam, Ajay growled and barked at Alex.

What do I do?

Ajay's food and water bowl is in the kitchen near our cupboard. Alex goes there every morning because that's where our food is and Alex has to get his snack for school and food for breakfast.

Our house is pretty small so moving the food/water dishes some place else, i can't see that as being an option.

I'm thinking whenever Alex gets near his food bowl and Ajay starts growling, I'll just take Ajay by his collar and put him outside so that Ajay knows that he has to wait for Alex to get done eating before he can finish his breakfast. 

Or maybe Alex should take him outside so that Ajay knows that Alex is in control and not Ajay.

I don't know what else to do.

Can someone please help me because I have to get rid of him?

by on Oct. 15, 2012 at 9:33 AM
Replies (11-20):
marshsmom
by Group Owner on Oct. 16, 2012 at 12:02 PM
Quoting vinalex0581:



I just mean schedule the feedings. I feed my dogs every morning at 7
And every evening at 7. They get about 15 minutes (usually more than enough time)
and then I pick up the bowls. My own dog are used to it and if they are actively eating after 15 I let them finish, but the foster dog that come through get 15 until they learn the routine.
furbabymum
by Member on Oct. 16, 2012 at 12:03 PM
1 mom liked this

 That cracked me up! My DS used to love feeding the dogs. Now my SON is the food aggressive one. If the dogs come up to him he sticks his finger up in the air and says " Their name, get back." cracks me up. He is mimicing us but the dogs ignore him until I put my own command behind his.

Quoting marshsmom:

Quoting furbabymum:



Lol, the joys of parenthood and dog ownership. My son has recently learned that he can feed the dog under the table and then try to convince me that he ate all his dinner :D

 

vinalex0581
by on Oct. 16, 2012 at 1:46 PM

my SO has that same attitude.

he asks me, "do you like to be bothered while your eating?"

i say no.

but anyone should be able to get in that dogs face while eating and he shouldn't even flinch.

i had a dog that didn't give a shit if we got in her face while eating when we were younger.

my mom had a dog like that too.

ajay shouldn't be doing it and i don't want him to.

Quoting marshsmom:

I didn't say it wasn't "possible" ,  I just don't think it's a good idea. I have a dog that could care less, but I have another dog that would rather be left alone....I don't let my son or anyone else bother any of the dogs while they are eating, anymore than I let my son play in my plate when I am eating.

Quoting furbabymum:

 You need to pick the food bowl up when it's not in use. No reason to leave it out. Put it wherever you store the dog food. Won't take up any more space. Or if you're free feeding it's time for you to put that dog on a schedule. I disagree with marshmom to an extent. My DS can be in any of my dogs dishes while they are eating without incident. They are very desensitized and a human can do anything to their food/bones without issue. So, it's possible but this dog obviously isn't there.

I agree with Chelsea that Ajay may totally change in his view of Sam when Sam becomes mobile. Children learning to walk look like little aliens to dogs, not human at all. Can make some dogs very uncomfortable.

As for the dog gaurding the baby from your son. I'd get on the dog for that immediately. To me, your dog owns things and I do not allow my dogs to own anything.

Agree, get a professional trainer!



vinalex0581
by on Oct. 16, 2012 at 1:48 PM

how does this help him learn not to growl when my son gets near him?

not being snotty, i just want to know if this will help

Quoting marshsmom:

Quoting vinalex0581:



I just mean schedule the feedings. I feed my dogs every morning at 7
And every evening at 7. They get about 15 minutes (usually more than enough time)
and then I pick up the bowls. My own dog are used to it and if they are actively eating after 15 I let them finish, but the foster dog that come through get 15 until they learn the routine.


vinalex0581
by on Oct. 16, 2012 at 1:50 PM

what does free feeding mean?

and if i put him on a schedule does this mean that it will teach him not to growl at my son when my son gets near him?

Quoting furbabymum:

 You need to pick the food bowl up when it's not in use. No reason to leave it out. Put it wherever you store the dog food. Won't take up any more space. Or if you're free feeding it's time for you to put that dog on a schedule. I disagree with marshmom to an extent. My DS can be in any of my dogs dishes while they are eating without incident. They are very desensitized and a human can do anything to their food/bones without issue. So, it's possible but this dog obviously isn't there.

I agree with Chelsea that Ajay may totally change in his view of Sam when Sam becomes mobile. Children learning to walk look like little aliens to dogs, not human at all. Can make some dogs very uncomfortable.

As for the dog gaurding the baby from your son. I'd get on the dog for that immediately. To me, your dog owns things and I do not allow my dogs to own anything.

Agree, get a professional trainer!


furbabymum
by Member on Oct. 16, 2012 at 1:54 PM
1 mom liked this

 Let me put it this way. If I left dog food in dog dishes constantly I'd have a lot more conflict in my house than I'd care for. I do have 4 dogs though. Free feeding is leaving food down like you do.

You won't have less growling, your dog just won't have a dish to growl over. It limits his opportunity to get upset and aggressive.

Quoting vinalex0581:

what does free feeding mean?

and if i put him on a schedule does this mean that it will teach him not to growl at my son when my son gets near him?

Quoting furbabymum:

 You need to pick the food bowl up when it's not in use. No reason to leave it out. Put it wherever you store the dog food. Won't take up any more space. Or if you're free feeding it's time for you to put that dog on a schedule. I disagree with marshmom to an extent. My DS can be in any of my dogs dishes while they are eating without incident. They are very desensitized and a human can do anything to their food/bones without issue. So, it's possible but this dog obviously isn't there.

I agree with Chelsea that Ajay may totally change in his view of Sam when Sam becomes mobile. Children learning to walk look like little aliens to dogs, not human at all. Can make some dogs very uncomfortable.

As for the dog gaurding the baby from your son. I'd get on the dog for that immediately. To me, your dog owns things and I do not allow my dogs to own anything.

Agree, get a professional trainer!


 

vinalex0581
by on Oct. 16, 2012 at 3:06 PM

so if my son puts the dogs food dish down in the morning AFTER my son is done with HIS breakfast, will this show the dog that my son is in control and not the dog?

Quoting furbabymum:

 Let me put it this way. If I left dog food in dog dishes constantly I'd have a lot more conflict in my house than I'd care for. I do have 4 dogs though. Free feeding is leaving food down like you do.

You won't have less growling, your dog just won't have a dish to growl over. It limits his opportunity to get upset and aggressive.

Quoting vinalex0581:

what does free feeding mean?

and if i put him on a schedule does this mean that it will teach him not to growl at my son when my son gets near him?

Quoting furbabymum:

 You need to pick the food bowl up when it's not in use. No reason to leave it out. Put it wherever you store the dog food. Won't take up any more space. Or if you're free feeding it's time for you to put that dog on a schedule. I disagree with marshmom to an extent. My DS can be in any of my dogs dishes while they are eating without incident. They are very desensitized and a human can do anything to their food/bones without issue. So, it's possible but this dog obviously isn't there.

I agree with Chelsea that Ajay may totally change in his view of Sam when Sam becomes mobile. Children learning to walk look like little aliens to dogs, not human at all. Can make some dogs very uncomfortable.

As for the dog gaurding the baby from your son. I'd get on the dog for that immediately. To me, your dog owns things and I do not allow my dogs to own anything.

Agree, get a professional trainer!


 


furbabymum
by Member on Oct. 16, 2012 at 3:50 PM

 I should have looked at other responses before I hit reply to this. There are a lot of really smart women in this group I'm sure are giving you great advice. For me, my DS has a lot of power over our dogs because they know that what HE says I back up. They know I'm in control of everything. So, I do not believe that when my DS carries a food dish to my great pyr that my great pyr sees my DS as higher up because of that. Course my DS is 1 and a lot shorter than my dogs. Whatever I say goes and they know that my DS is not to be touched so they don't touch him. My DS was running around trying to get my dogs to eat pizza out of his hands and they absolutely refused to do it because I DO NOT like them to take things out of his hands. So I called a dog over and helped my DS hold the pizza out to the dog after making them sit. Only then would they eat it.

Of course, I had all my dogs from puppies and we never abused them. They all know and respect me for what I am. Your dog has trust issues. He was abused and he is going to need a lot of work on that.

If it were me, I wouldn't have my DS feeding a dog that growled at him. I'm just not willing to take that risk.

What you do is YOU feed the dog, let it eat for 15 mins like Marshmom said and then put the dish away. Do this twice a day for the rest of the dogs life.

Limit the food dish and you limit the food dish aggression.

Quoting vinalex0581:

so if my son puts the dogs food dish down in the morning AFTER my son is done with HIS breakfast, will this show the dog that my son is in control and not the dog?

Quoting furbabymum:

 Let me put it this way. If I left dog food in dog dishes constantly I'd have a lot more conflict in my house than I'd care for. I do have 4 dogs though. Free feeding is leaving food down like you do.

You won't have less growling, your dog just won't have a dish to growl over. It limits his opportunity to get upset and aggressive.

Quoting vinalex0581:

what does free feeding mean?

and if i put him on a schedule does this mean that it will teach him not to growl at my son when my son gets near him?

Quoting furbabymum:

 You need to pick the food bowl up when it's not in use. No reason to leave it out. Put it wherever you store the dog food. Won't take up any more space. Or if you're free feeding it's time for you to put that dog on a schedule. I disagree with marshmom to an extent. My DS can be in any of my dogs dishes while they are eating without incident. They are very desensitized and a human can do anything to their food/bones without issue. So, it's possible but this dog obviously isn't there.

I agree with Chelsea that Ajay may totally change in his view of Sam when Sam becomes mobile. Children learning to walk look like little aliens to dogs, not human at all. Can make some dogs very uncomfortable.

As for the dog gaurding the baby from your son. I'd get on the dog for that immediately. To me, your dog owns things and I do not allow my dogs to own anything.

Agree, get a professional trainer!


 


 

marshsmom
by Group Owner on Oct. 16, 2012 at 4:12 PM

Everything that furbabymum said, and I'll add that not only does this limit the opportunities for aggression, but it also sends a message to the dog that you are controlling the resources. I wouldn't let your son do the feedings on his own untilt he dog has learned his place and has developed more trust and confidence. But, he could certainly assist you and this would help the dog see him as someone who controls the resources as well.You need to get into the dogs head, make him work for you and learn that by pleasing you rewards come, after that clicks in his brain he develops more confidence in his place in the household, his focus changes from anxiety and fear to wanting to please you.  The problems you are having are not going to disappear quickly but you need to take a leadership role with him.  In doing that alone it will eliminate much of the dogs anxiety and fear.  Read "The Other End of the Leash" by Patricia McDonnell.  This can help you communicate more effectively with the dog and start practicing the NILIF lifestyle.  Make sure the dog gets plenty of exercise and love and good stuff happening in his life.  Most of all be patient and persistent. 

NancSBRN
by Bronze Member on Oct. 17, 2012 at 1:48 AM

Put your dog on a feedings do not leave the food down 15 minute he eats or itis taken up. I have one dog I feed in the kitchen We have mulitple dogs and each dog has their own place. I do not have a set time I feed at various times during the day because then I don't have then anticpating feeding times. I control the resource.   If you work outside the home this is a harder thing to do.

I would put the dish in another place away from where your food store is. Opposite side of the room should be good enough.

I also like the nothing in life is free method. Make him work for attention and have good manner but I agree if you can afford it a real trainer is important to have. He definately feel he is above your son and part of this is gaurding his food store you need to take the option away from him.

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