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I'm hoping someone has similar issues/feedback. I have a female rescue BC mix we have had sicne she was a puppy, she is now 5. About two years ago we added a new rescue dog, a male german shorthair pointer, to the mix. We should have known she didn't like him at the shelter when we took them for a meet and greet because all she did was bark, and she was never a barker before. So here we are two years later, and I would have thought she would have adjusted. She tolerates him...She is not overtly aggressive, she does not guard or hoard food. Matter of fact she is careful to only eat half the bowl full and leave the rest for him. However, if she is on the sofa and he gets up next to her, she immediately gets down. She will not lay with him, or groom him, or allow him to groom her. If he sniffs in her direction she growls at him. They also have what we call "bark fest" where one of them will start barking and then the other will return the favor and then it takes an act of god (or husband - aka leader of the pack)to shut them up. They wrestle with each other, and it sounds vicious, but they never hurt each other.

Since he has come into the house, she has become my lap dog. All 40 pounds of her curls up on my lap, and yet my husband is clearly her leader and both dogs don't listen to my commands. That is a whole other topic. lol

 

After two years I would have thought she would have warmed to him. Is it possible she just never will, and is there anything I can do to foster an environement where she softens to him?

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I have two dogs. They have never been buddies. The don't dislike each other. But they don't really interact either. Funny, it's never bothered me. I've just always considered it just the way it is. At least they don't fight each other. That is good enough for me.

 

Just my experience.

Jennifer

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It sounds to me like she's showing a tremendous amount of restraint and behaving herself quite well, and so is he. I don't see how you could ask more of them. Some dogs are just not overly affectionate, just like some people are not overly affectionate.

 

My only advice would be to 1) get them their own food dishes and 2) start working to gain control in your own home, should something happen to your husband you and the dogs would be in a terrible position. It could be as simple as him needing to travel for a few days, no reason to wait until you need to be in control to start working towards having some.

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It sounds to me like she's showing a tremendous amount of restraint and behaving herself quite well, and so is he. I don't see how you could ask more of them. Some dogs are just not overly affectionate, just like some people are not overly affectionate.

 

My only advice would be to 1) get them their own food dishes and 2) start working to gain control in your own home, should something happen to your husband you and the dogs would be in a terrible position. It could be as simple as him needing to travel for a few days, no reason to wait until you need to be in control to start working towards having some.

 

I guess you guys are right. She is not aggressive at hime so I should be thrilled! The wrestling to me seems like fighting but a friend of mine insisted it looked like playing to her! I think it is the wrestling and the 'bark fest' that gets to me the most.

 

Since there is no food aggression, and she actually is considerate to only eat half, what would be the reason to get thier own food bows??

I would love to know how to gain more control when my husband is not around. This is something I have struggled with a long time.

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I also didn't see anything overly concerning in your post, other than the fact the dogs don't obey you at all. I do have sympathy for your situation though, my dogs don't listen to my husband well despite my attempts to train him to train the dogs!

 

She sounds like she gets along with him just fine- actually your description sounds a bit like my 2 pups, and they get along great. They wrestle all day long, but nicely- it sounds awful but their postures and actions (no biting at all) make it clear its just play. Rudder is convinced Max is a new red chew toy we got especially for him...it's his way of getting him to wrestle. Rudder always thought of himself as a lap dog but that became even more pronounced after Max came, and Rudder will get jealous and make "chewbacca" noises at Max if he gets too close when Rudder is getting attention. As for the barking, stop them the second it starts instead of waiting until your nerves are fried and you can't take it anymore- otherwise you're sending them mixed signals. And I would also get a second food bowl...it's only what about $5?

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I also didn't see anything concerning in your post, other than the fact the dogs don't obey you at all. I do have sympathy for your situation though, my dogs don't listen to my husband well at all despite my attempts to train him to train the dogs!

 

She sounds like she gets along with him just fine- actually your description sounds a bit like my 2 pups, and they get along great. They wrestle all day long, but nicely- it sounds awful but their postures and actions (no biting at all) make it clear its just play. Rudder is convinced Max is a new red chew toy we got especially for him...it's his way of getting him to wrestle. Rudder always thought of himself as a lap dog but that became even more pronounced after Max came, and Rudder will get jealous and make "chewbacca" noises at Max if he gets too close when Rudder is getting attention. As for the barking, stop them the second it starts instead of waiting until your nerves are fried and you can't take it anymore- otherwise you're sending them mixed signals. And I would also get a second food bowl...it's only what about $5?

 

Thanks. Maybe I am just oversensative about it.

How do I stop the barking though? I can yell til I am blue, I can chase them around like an idiot but they are way faster.lol I can snap them with a towel, but they don't care and then its a game "you can't catch me".

You are the second person to metion separate food bowls. If they share food nicely, why? I am not at all opposed, just curious. It had never occurred to us, because they share food so well. they both even eat the same, taking a few kibbles to the carpet, munching, then going back for more. And like I mentioned, if she eats ahead of him she will purposely leave half the bowl for him...its very cute!

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The bowl just seems like common courtesy to me. None of our dogs are aggressive about their food, but I would not expect them to share a bowl any more than I would expect my husband to wait for me to be done eating half a plate of food so he could have his share of dinner. Then again... sometimes he's aggressive with his food. :lol:

 

Seriously though, in general I try not to anthropomorphize my stock, but I think this is one of those instances where humans and animals have plenty in common. Resources are a major motivating factor for all animals. When there are plenty to go around there is less likely to be contention, when there are shortages things begin to get more competitive. Therefore, imo, it's simply good practice to allot plenty for all.

 

But also because of the golden rule: she who has the gold, makes the rules. ;)/> In the case of dogs just swap in food for gold. And since I like to make the rules... I distribute the gold.

 

It sounds like you are going to have to go back to square one on behavior/respect with them. Are they crate trained? I'd start there. Get them crated and start taking them out on lead only, one at a time so you can remain in control. Get a recall on them on a long lead first and foremost, respect will start to come as you work with them. Be very consistent, expect a response every single time, no exceptions. If one should get off lead and is running from you do not run after them, and do not snap a towel, nothing to make it a game or incite a fear response. Just walk very calmly after them until they come to you or allow you to get close. And whatever you do, do not set the dog up for failure. In the beginning if you know they're not going to come to you, don't call. When you do so it only reinforces in the dog's mind that coming to you when called is optional. Only call them when they're on the long lead so you can reel them in if they don't respond. I'm sure others will have more advice. :)/>

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It sounds as if your dogs *do* get along, just not in the way *you* think they should.

 

As for the common bowl, it's nice that she leaves part for him, but what if she doesn't? Do you feed them and then they eat it right then, sometimes her first, sometimes them taking turns? Will you always know who ate what (eating or not eating can be the first sign of illness, so ease of noting who's eating and who's not is a big thing for me).

 

As for the comments about one bowl, I agree. I don't care how well my dogs get along or like either, I would *never* ask them to share a food bowl. You're lucky it hasn't caused trouble, but as Olivehill said, why force them to share when it's so easy to let them each have their own?

 

As for your lack of control over the dogs, I agree with the one-on-one training. You need to be consistent in what you expect of them, you need to set boundaries, and you need to correct (even if it's just time out in a crate) when those boundaries are crossed. Most often dogs don't respect owners who are inconsistent, wishy washy in their expectations, or just simply unclear to the dogs. You shouldn't rely on your husband for control; there will most certainly be times when he's not around and you will need the dogs to listen to you.

 

J.

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Do you like every human you meet?

 

 

 

 

 

Think about that for awhile.

 

 

 

 

 

 

As long as your dogs are not hurting one another I wouldn't worry about their relationship. You can be civil to people but not be friends with them.

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I second what others have said: your dogs sound like they're doing just fine. Your girl is doing a remarkable job of sharing her living space - and the food bowl? - with a dog for whom she does not feel a great deal of fondness.

 

After all, it's no different than if you suddenly had to live with a roommate that you didn't hate, but certainly could not love. I'd say your dogs are doing very well, considering.

 

Since there is no food aggression, and she actually is considerate to only eat half, what would be the reason to get thier own food bows??

 

Personally, I'd never in this world expect two dogs to share a single bowl of food. How can you keep track of how much they are eating? If either were to gain weight, how would you be able to control portions? If one has a sick stomach, how can you give him/her bland food to ease his stomach? If one of them should take seriously ill, how could you tell which one it was, and be aware if their appetite is falling off?

 

It's common courtesy to give each dog its own bowl. It's a good way to make sure each dog is eating a proper portion. It's also an excellent way to monitor your dog's health and to manage them if one should become ill or have any stomach or digestive trouble.

 

I would love to know how to gain more control when my husband is not around. This is something I have struggled with a long time.

 

This is where feeding can also play a role. Instead of just putting down a big bowl of food and leaving them to it, YOU start controlling the food. Put the food in each bowl. Make them sit and wait for it. Put the bowls down one at a time, and make them wait until you okay them to have it.

 

You can't control dogs by yelling and chasing them. You can only control them by forbidding or correcting behaviors you don't like.

 

The bottom line is, the more YOU control in your dogs' environment and life, the more control you will have. Don't just let them rush out a door, make them wait until you let them through it. Don't let them just jump in or out of a car, make them wait until you tell them to do it. A leash is your friend. And while walking on leash, don't let them tow you, teach them to walk on a loose lead.

 

As others have said, you must be firm. You must be clear. You must be fair. And you must be consistent. You can't almost or nearly correct them and then give up if they don't obey. Choose the things you want them to do or not do - and make it happen. They're dogs. You're the human. Be the boss.

 

Best of luck. And do separate their food. If you control the food, you control more of them. :)

 

~ Gloria

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Thank you everyone. I can see what you mean about two food bowls. I honestly never thought of it that way. When I tried two food bowls in the beginning they both ate out of each others' anyhow, so I never knew who ate what. Keeping one out of the others' was drama, so we joined bowls.

 

They are both semi-trained, all by me. This is what is odd about the control in our house. They both wait for food, they both sit, and do simple commands, and I am the one who trained them both. I work with them on leash training, since my BC pulls..I have had to be intensive with her. However when it comes to stopping the barking, or the wrestling...they refuse to listen to me at all. But if my husband barks thier names they cease and desist immediately!

*shrug*

 

As for crates...the GSP boy is in his crate at night, only because he still occasionally chews things when people are not around to entertain him. However the BC got out of her crate at about age 2...she is very well behaved. She does not chew, and the two years she was crated was hellish. For her, crate is a timeout or trouble spot.

 

Thanks everyone for the input, I really appreciate it! Anything I can learn, is always a benefit...my dogs are amazing little critters, so anything that helps them be more amazing...I am open to!!

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Well, I don't know...I guess I personally don't see a problem with feeding them the way you are, if it's been working for them for a couple of years. What you've described, sounds to me like they're just respectful of each other and then occasionally play. The barking is probably just fun. lol

 

Ok, if the barking is the real problem, and they are reinforcing each other to continue after you say stop, I would just take one of them out of the room and see what happens. Barking after I say stop means time-out.

 

Good luck! :)/>/>

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Ok, if the barking is the real problem, and they are reinforcing each other to continue after you say stop, I would just take one of them out of the room and see what happens. Barking after I say stop means time-out.

 

Good luck! :)/>/>/>

 

Ok, I can try that. Catching one of them is gonna be fun. haha We even tried a muzzle, because they hate it, as punishment...and it only works while it is on one of them! ;/

 

Thanks!

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Ok, I can try that. Catching one of them is gonna be fun. haha We even tried a muzzle, because they hate it, as punishment...and it only works while it is on one of them! ;/

 

Thanks!

If you go into the situation with that attitude you won't succeed. You let the dogs out, they don't listen, you go GET them -not chase. Like someone else said, you walk down to them like you mean it (don't say anything, just walk to them like you know you are going to grab them by the collar and take them inside). Block them but don't chase, eventually they will stop moving and let you close enough so you can grab a collar. If you really can't get that down then don't let them out unless they are on a long line so you can grab that. The idea you want to get across is that they must listen the 1st time or you will make them comply (going to get them and ending the fun). No need for punishment, the rules should be clear-they listen or they have no fun. They probably listen to your husband because he says it like he means it, and he does. You need to follow through on your commands-don't repeat yourself or get into a game of chase. If your dogs know you will follow through they will listen eventually.

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If you're going to try this, then I suggest leaving a leash on that you can just grab. No chasing. Say, "Uh..Oh..too bad" or whatever else you want and time-out. When you get quiet from either one, give a quiet signal like finger to your mouth say "shush or quiet" then give them a treat or pet or good boy. Some positive reinforcement. I've used a technique similar to this to get my dogs to stop acting like maniacs at the door. Now all I have to do is approach the door and say "thank you" and they stop and walk away from the door.

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Apparently my attempt at humor did not go over. Just joking about catching them...although they are fast!

 

Thanks everyone for the input, I really appreciate it!

I realized it was a joke. :D What I meant though, was if you go into it with a goofy attitude of 'oh well they're just being silly' then you won't get the results you want. Sometimes you need to be more 'business' like before you get to be silly with your dogs. If that makes any sense?

Good luck! Let us know if you make progress with 'barkfest'!

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I realized it was a joke. :D/> What I meant though, was if you go into it with a goofy attitude of 'oh well they're just being silly' then you won't get the results you want. Sometimes you need to be more 'business' like before you get to be silly with your dogs. If that makes any sense?

Good luck! Let us know if you make progress with 'barkfest'!

 

Makes sense. When they go into bark mode I am totally business..Just yesterday I attempted to separate them, putting the GSP into his crate. They just barked through the door. I even tried putting them into the crate together since the BC is not fond of being that close to the GPS and it stops it for the moment, but the minute I let them out they are back at it. And If I get up to get them to put them on time out they both scatter and start running around the sofas to get away from me. They must have gone into full bark mode 7 to 10 times within the hour and a half I sat down to catch up on my DVR! I really hate to revert back to the zap collar, they are expensive, but they worked for everything else when we were training them not to dig. We had a bad experience with electric fence, so I fear putting collars back on them.

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When they start with the barking, you have to move them away from each other. Put one outside and the other in a room that is the farthest away from the other, if you have to. You have to break the behavior with whatever means you need to. This is s self-rewarding behavior for both of these dogs, and the longer you let them practice it, the more ingrained it will become, and the harder it will be to stop it.

 

A dog that runs from me when it knows I am coming to get it is something that I absolutely won't tolerate. If a dog does not come when called, or even worse, runs from me, they lose their freedom, period, end of story. The only exception to this is a dog with fear issues. I've had a few foster dogs with fear issues, and in that case, I just need to build the dog's trust. Again, if they have the opportunity to practice this behavior, they will just keep doing it, and it will be very tough to break them of it. If the dogs have to drag a leash in the house until you teach them that running from you will not be tolerated, then so be it.

 

Your dogs need to learn that privileges are earned. That includes something as simple as being loose in the house. I don't mean to sound harsh, but as long as they are able to get away with these behaviors, they will continue them. If they aren't allowed to get away with these unwanted behaviors, they will be extinguished because they are no longer working.

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Mary..Not harsh at all. I am fairly new to dogs so I am learning them just as much as they are learning me!! And I will take every bit of advice I can get! Thanks for the input. It's very frustrating, especially when Hubby is home and just needs to bark "DOGS!!" and they both cease and desist!

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Makes sense. When they go into bark mode I am totally business..Just yesterday I attempted to separate them, putting the GSP into his crate. They just barked through the door. I even tried putting them into the crate together since the BC is not fond of being that close to the GPS and it stops it for the moment, but the minute I let them out they are back at it. And If I get up to get them to put them on time out they both scatter and start running around the sofas to get away from me. They must have gone into full bark mode 7 to 10 times within the hour and a half I sat down to catch up on my DVR! I really hate to revert back to the zap collar, they are expensive, but they worked for everything else when we were training them not to dig. We had a bad experience with electric fence, so I fear putting collars back on them.

 

Oh, no, PLEASE do not use the "zap collar." This is not a dog problem, this is a human management problem.

 

Think of it as if they were unruly children. If you gave a couple kids a toy, and they insisted on smashing it into things and trying to break stuff, you would take the toy from them and put it away, right?

 

The same with your dogs. If they just bark and bark, then END it. If you can't remove the bark, then remove the dogs who are doing the barking. Put one in one place, one in the other, and separate them so they can't see each other. It's "time out" for doggies.

 

There is no reason for this utter chaos in your house, other than you are failing to control the situation. If you put one dog in his crate and they are barking through the door, where is the other dog? Standing outside the crate? That's totally not fair and totally not going to work. You can't put one kid in his room and leave the other careening up and down the hall outside.

 

Crate or confine BOTH dogs. Be all business, put them in *separate* crates or places where they cannot see each other, and let that be the end of it.

 

When you let them out later - say half an hour or so - expect silence. If they go amok again, they go right back in the crates or separate places again.

 

YOU control the situation. YOU control their environment. You have to make the right thing easy and the wrong thing hard. MaryP is correct: this behavior is self-rewarding, and you have not given them a *reason* to stop. They won't stop simply because you want them to because it's FUN! And if you don't make them stop, and nothing comes of it but more excitement and upset, they have no reason to stop.

 

You must also stop looking at the fact your husband commands them with a word. Clearly he has established himself as He Who Shall Not Be Messed With. You, on the other hand, are just Mom, who loves them and plays with and feeds them, but who's not especially demanding or scary.

 

So, step it up. If the crazed barking starts, you INSTANTLY end it. Be CALM, be firm, tell them NO and catch the nearest one and crate him/her. If the dogs scatter to run or evade, pick just ONE dog and concentrate on catching him first. You can't catch two dogs, but you can catch one at a time, so pick one and do it.

 

But don't scream, don't run, do not chase. They probably think the chasing is part of the game! Simply walk that ONE dog down and keep coming. Think Terminator! :P Let him see that grim determination in your face. And do this, no matter how silly he gets, until you've got him/her cornered. Then take him calmly, quietly by the collar, put him/her in their crate or room or yard, and walk away.

 

Then repeat with the other dog and put him up, too. No drama. No fuss. No yelling or upset. Just END it.

 

This won't change things over night, but sooner or later, they'll realize, "Gee, when we bark and go crazy, mom doesn't chase us and yell, any more. She just gets up and walks us into a corner, and then she locks us away from each other. That's no fun at all." And if you are consistent and persistent, the behavior will fade away.

 

Also, as an added possible deterrent, get a plastic soda or water bottle and put in half a dozen pennies or pebbles. If you bash this loudly in your hand along with bellowing (not screaming!) a big NO, you may be surprised at the result you get.

 

But remember, you must separate BOTH dogs, not just one. If they are barking, the fun must end completely and quickly. Best of luck!

 

Gloria

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