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Aggressive Behaviors in 9 week old BC

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I have had my dog for 8 days now. He is starting to have some issues and I want to nip them in the bud before they really do become BIG issues.


Problem #1: riding in the car. At first he was very good in the car. Now as soon as we are in the car he starts getting very rough with me. He bites at me, tries to get in my lap and bite my hands, bites the shifter, makes growly whiney noises and tries to lunge at me. He also tries to hump my arm in the car! It is a very dangerous situation. He MUST learn to ride nice in the car. He is less naughty in the back but tends to tear things up back there. I guess putting him in the back is the solution,


Problem #2: Tonight my son left a piece of a baguette in the back seat of the car when he was dropped off someplace. I had put the puppy back there for a short trip not thinking about the bread. Well I went to take him out of the car away from the bread he was now tearing into and he snapped at me very badly. I yelled no loudly. I let him go and he went back to the bread and when I tried to take it he again snapped at me and bit my hand a little. Again I yelled no and removed him from the bread and we went inside my MIL's house so I could do barn chores. Inside someone had put a chicken bone down for the cat and the puppy went for it. I was able to remove that from his mouth with out trouble.


Problem #3: Putting on and taking off the leash. He is snapping and biting in a nasty way when I do this. Just a few minutes ago when I had put him on a tie out while I finished putting my chickens to bed he got ugly and bit my hand. He did not break skin but it is sore and swollen :unsure:




Other than this he is very smart and seems very trainable. I try to keep him busy with different toys and activities along with some training, I understand their need for exercise and work. He tends to play a little rough but not terribly (although our 4 year old beagle does seem to think he is the spawn of Satan) It has been raining for days here and I have not gotten to take him out to walk or play as much as I did when I first brought him home but I would not think that would turn him into an aggressive dog! (not sure why my writing went all slanted, I did not make it do that on purpose and could not change it back)


How do I train him for these issues?



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1) Put him in a crate in the car. He should not be loose. Even smaller vehicles can fit a puppy sized crate.


2) Institute a nothing in life is free policy.


3) He should not be loose to get things like chicken bones.


4) Use a slip lead to get him onto a leash so you don't have to grab his collar. Once he has settled with the slip lead on, switch to a regular lead clipped to his collar.


5) Work on handling exercises, touching every part of his body gently.


Try to locate a trainer in your area that is up to date on modern training techniques.


This web page has some good training articles.

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Our dog used to be a lot more mouthy and nipping when she was younger but she gradually got better and now at about 8 months the nipping is much more the exception than the norm like it used to be.


Back when she was that way riding in the car had the opposite effect with her, it actually calmed her down.


She also used to always fuss and nip when I tried to put on or take off the leash and now that also is more the exception than the norm.


Part of what may have helped (besides her just maturing) is that I would give her a "time out" in the crate for about 10-15 minutes when she would get in a rowdy / nipping mood, and I got her used to the phrase "no biting" and would repeat it several times when she would be nipping and while taking her to her crate for a time out. After a while it got to where I could simply say "no biting" when she would start nipping and she would stop.


Stay encouraged, I know like it might seem like such behavior will never stop, but over time with training and "time outs" his behavior should improve more and more !

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I agree with everything Liz said. A crate/kennel is your friend. It will safely contain your puppy in the car and will likely protect him should you ever be in an accident (and will certainly help prevent him causing an accident by distracting you).


He does sound as if he may be a bit overstimulated. I would also suggest that rather than yelling (if that's indeed what you are doing), you use a strong, deep, firm voice. Getting loud, especially if you have a more feminine voice, could be having the opposite effect on your pup (that is, it could be adding to the arousal/stimulation). A voice correction need not be loud to be effective, and in fact, your pup may start to listen better if your voice remains calm and matter of fact.


I think you also need to be more diligent about checking out a space before putting him down in it. Picking up random things to eat or chew could be dangerous (i.e., chicken bones), so better to be proactive in that regard.


Pups do need exercise, but don't fall into the trap of thinking that exercise will cure all behavioral issues. While you're exercising your dog to control his behavior problems you may not only be creating a dog who requires A LOT of exercise in order to be sane enough to live with, but you may also be setting your pup up for orthopedic problems later. Training (tricks, obedience) and puzzle type toys can go a long way toward wearing a pup out mentally without risking the problems that come from too much exercise.


You can find information on NILIF online. It's worth trying with your pup. He really does sound like a fairly typical pup who is just pushing the boundaries and being a little overstimulated. <--That said, I can't see what's happening or exactly how you're managing him, but this is my best guess.



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Neeko wasn't very good in the car in the beginning, I use to harness him to the seat. After awhile I didn't have to do this, he learned the car was relax time:-) also yelling never worked for my BC, lol. I learned this almost immediately. I don't even have to tell him no, all I have to do is say uuuuuuh ( like breathing in) or ooooooh, and he almost! is so upset that he disappointed me I think he is crying!

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