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Bea fights Sled dog


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The sled bitch had been clambering onto Colt in the river as he was fetching a ball. Grabbing his neck and growling. Colt told her to scr@@w off a couple of times, but really the ball is the most important thing to Colt. (Unfortunately)

 

Bea on the other hand doesn't have any obsessive tendencies toward the ball. When she was returning the ball the sled bitch was coming at her too. Growly, hackles up, but hesitating when Bea would release the ball and snap at her. Sadly this only worked a few times. The dog decided she wanted Bea's ball and attacked her outright. Sled bitch is 1 and 1/2 yrs., Bea is 6 mos. Sled bitch, 40 lbs., Bea 28 lbs. Sled bitch is a rescue from a reserve who looks very much like a smooth coated BC, but is BC X husky X whippet. Gorgeous dog.

 

Now all this happened in about a three minute span of time and the owner of the sled bitch had two other dogs who she was throwing sticks for. I asked her if the bitch would escalate when I saw her going at Colt. The owner said "I don't think so she just plays rough." She had had her for about three months. Anyway I was keeping an eye on the dogs and wasn't so sure. Being polite I didn't ask her to call off her dog even though that is what I wanted her to do.

 

So dog goes at Bea, Bea takes her on. Lots of growling, snarling, rolling and snapping. The woman is yelling at her dog to come off. I am yelling at Bea to chill. I can see Bea acknowledge me, but the other dog is not going to stop. I tell the woman to grab her dog's hind leg and pull. I can't get Bea's she is so much smaller and underneath most of the time. The woman pulls her dog away.

 

There had been no screaming or yelping and neither dog had a scratch on them. Great relief. The woman was such a nice person and so apologetic, that I just said well guess my little one learned a lesson today. Though I'm not sure what. My lesson was to ask the other person to call off their dog if they are at all inappropriate.

 

My husband was there too and he started throwing the ball into the river again for Colt. The sled bitch kept her distance and stayed with her own pack. Bea stayed by my side for a few minutes and then went back to play with Colt and husband.

 

Whew!

 

Now, question. Although Bea plays with many dogs of many sizes, breeds and ages and approaches dogs in a relaxed manner, if they are at all inappropriate, like say they come in really fast in her face or jump on her, or me for that matter, she will get her hackles up and growl. Not a deep warning growl, a for God's sake stop that kind of growl. I tell her to chill and she does and most times will end up playing with the dog. BUT if the dog is at all aggressive, she will not back down, she is in their face right back. I know this because it has happened twice now since this bitch fight which was over the Easter weekend. Once with a 70 lb. husky who jumped a doodle friend of hers as we walked by. The husky growled deep as it came along side, then launched himself at the doodle who was beside Bea, and Bea went for him. Fortunately the owner called her dog off immediately as I did Bea who came to me. Second dog was this morning, an 80 lb. pittie X that went for a ridgeback friend who again was walking along side Bea. Bea was right in there and the dog went for her, but the owner called dog off before he touched her and again Bea came when called off too. Both ridgeback and doodle adopted submissive postures, but both attackers kept on going.

 

How best to deal with this? The owner of the fight-picking pittie cross actually said I better get a handle on my little pup because if she's doing that now what will she be like when she is grown? She also said a pup shouldn't be like that. She is the second person to tell me that. Both felt that pups should back down.

 

I want to say that Bea is a dream to train, keen and biddable as the day is long even though she is very intense and has such high drive. She does not guard toys or food dish or anything either in the house or out somewhere.

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Take my opinion with a grain of salt, but if that were my pup, I would only think she was a very confident dog. She isn't instigating anything, and is simply defending herself/friends. And, she's coming off when called, so I wouldn't do anything to change that. If a strange dog is going to attack and not stop, I'd want my dog to fight back, not roll over.

My oldest girl (2.5yrs) is a pittyX, and the sweetest dog I've ever met, but if another dog goes at her, she'll pin them instantly. No biting, but she takes charge now. That, to me, isn't a bad behaviour....

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Take my opinion with a grain of salt, but if that were my pup, I would only think she was a very confident dog. She isn't instigating anything, and is simply defending herself/friends. And, she's coming off when called, so I wouldn't do anything to change that. If a strange dog is going to attack and not stop, I'd want my dog to fight back, not roll over.

My oldest girl (2.5yrs) is a pittyX, and the sweetest dog I've ever met, but if another dog goes at her, she'll pin them instantly. No biting, but she takes charge now. That, to me, isn't a bad behaviour....

 

Yes I believe Bea is a very confident pup. I just don't want to see her get hurt.

 

The weather has just warmed up here and there are many new dogs on the the trails. Dogs that don't get off leash walking during the fall or winter or early spring? People I have never met so don't know if they have control of their dogs. I mean three dogs in two weeks who have gone after dogs I have been with. That doodle and the ridgeback are such easy going gentle dogs. In the past year on those trails I have only witnessed one other fight and had fended off a grouchy old shephard when she went for my Colt pup when he was Bea's age.

 

I guess I feel I don't have control of the situations. Yes, Bea's recall is excellent and she really calms down quickly but...

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Yes I believe Bea is a very confident pup. I just don't want to see her get hurt.

 

The weather has just warmed up here and there are many new dogs on the the trails. Dogs that don't get off leash walking during the fall or winter or early spring? People I have never met so don't know if they have control of their dogs. I mean three dogs in two weeks who have gone after dogs I have been with. That doodle and the ridgeback are such easy going gentle dogs. In the past year on those trails I have only witnessed one other fight and had fended off a grouchy old shephard when she went for my Colt pup when he was Bea's age.

 

I guess I feel I don't have control of the situations. Yes, Bea's recall is excellent and she really calms down quickly but...

 

I'm no expert but I don't think there is anything wrong with Bea. She didn't start anything. She was just defending. To me, it sounds like those other owners are just trying to rationalize their own misbehavior (and misbehavior it is--dogs that attack other dogs should NOT be allowed off leash). If this were me, I would probably stop taking my dog to wherever this place is, for this season, and find someplace more remote, less dog-populated. Or walk my dog on leash during the week in safe locations where other dogs are always onleash, and save off leash time for when I could get to a safer off leash place during the weekend. I don't like meeting lots of strange dogs off-leash, because what can you do, and you never know whether to trust them (so--by default--I don't). But Vala is very small and I don't trust strangers to be able to control their dogs. I have seen dog fights (not with my dog, but other people's dogs) get very vicious.

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I'm no expert but I don't think there is anything wrong with Bea. She didn't start anything. She was just defending. To me, it sounds like those other owners are just trying to rationalize their own misbehavior (and misbehavior it is--dogs that attack other dogs should NOT be allowed off leash). If this were me, I would probably stop taking my dog to wherever this place is, for this season, and find someplace more remote, less dog-populated. Or walk my dog on leash during the week in safe locations where other dogs are always onleash, and save off leash time for when I could get to a safer off leash place during the weekend. I don't like meeting lots of strange dogs off-leash, because what can you do, and you never know whether to trust them (so--by default--I don't). But Vala is very small and I don't trust strangers to be able to control their dogs. I have seen dog fights (not with my dog, but other people's dogs) get very vicious.

 

 

I must admit I was thinking the same thing, but I'm not sure trails without dogs exist. Even our mountain trails have hikers with dogs. We're a very dog friendly city. These trails are only five minutes from my home and I can walk for miles through woods, wetlands and beside a river which the dogs swim in every day. I walk my dogs every morning and evening on these trails. Many other people do too. Never had the problem in the past.

 

I was really hoping there might be something I am missing here and not doing or something I could incorporate. Aside from tethering her to me which is a real drag for her I can't think of anything else.

 

I appreciate your response.

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