Aggression Towards a Specific Person? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 04:15 PM Thread Starter
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Aggression Towards a Specific Person?

My pup Olive is nearly 3 months old and we've had him for a little over 3 weeks. He's doing really well for the most part - minimal whining, doing well with basic commands, etc. But here's the thing - I live with my girlfriend and Olive is significantly more aggressive toward her than me. Over the past week and a half he's gotten a lot better about nipping me and does it pretty rarely (I use the yelp/ignore method when he bites me and then praise him when he gnaws on a toy). He's still very nippy with my partner though and she's getting frustrated. He often ignores his toys just to bite her feet/hands. He's also started humping her fairly often. Even though she yelps/ignores him/leaves the room/praises him when he grabs a toy pretty much the same way I do, he definitely goes after her more often. Any one else had this problem of aggression toward a specific family member? Any words of advice?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 05:15 PM
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Make sure she consistently doesn't allow the bad behavior and praises the good. He's very young and will learn alot in the months to come.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 05:35 PM
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At three months of age I'd doubt it's aggression - more likely playing as he would with a sibling, rather than a person. Have you thought about taking him to obedience school?

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 05:58 PM
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two steps no. 1 http://www.clickertraining.com/node/3249
.
no. 2 http://www.dogstardaily.com/training...ite-inhibition

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 08:20 PM
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it's play. I hand and foot play with my little guy, and he only does it with me. it took me a while to figure out why he'd sometimes nibble on my hand when I tried to pet his head. he wanted to play. I only hand play with him, b/c my other dogs are 85 lbs and 140 lbs. and I like my hands attached to my arms.
If his 'nipping' is unwanted behavior, then listen to Dave. all play needs to have rules, like stopping when you say so.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2012, 04:54 PM
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you're right Jacqueline., it isn't aggression, but with any mouth on skin activity, one wants to limit it. It's important that young pups do nip so that we can teach them how not to. The Dog Star Daily article talks about teaching bite inhibition , and it is very important, even for a small dog .

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2012, 06:28 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks folks! Very helpful advice. As for obedience classes, I can't really afford them. But! We do click training in short bursts 4-5 times a day and he's already figured out sit, down, off, and we're working on come and fetch. In fact, I think he might be less inclined to bite me because I do so much more training with him than my partner does. He's smart and I know he'll get the biting thing!
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2012, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Olive'smom View Post
Thanks folks! Very helpful advice. As for obedience classes, I can't really afford them. But! We do click training in short bursts 4-5 times a day and he's already figured out sit, down, off, and we're working on come and fetch. In fact, I think he might be less inclined to bite me because I do so much more training with him than my partner does. He's smart and I know he'll get the biting thing!
Remember that by skipping a puppy kindergarten class, not only are you missing a training opportunity, but MUCH MORE IMPORTANT, your puppy is missing out on critical socialization during the MOST IMPORTANT few months of his life. You will never regain this sensitive period. If you are not going to do a formal puppy K, you need to make the commitment to arranging off-leash social opportunities for him with MANY other dogs/puppies on a regular basis over the next few weeks. And you need to have the experience to know what GOOD social interactions are, when to step back and when to step in.

You only have a few weeks to start your puppy off on the right foot with social skills. (which also helps with bite inhibition, BTW) After that, it gets MUCH harder.


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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2012, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
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I couldn't agree more Karen. A dear friend has a 1 year old Maltese that's great with people, but wasn't properly socialized with dogs. She is a nightmare. I certainly want to avoid that fate with Olive. Fortunately, some places in my area (petco for example) offer free puppy playtime groups. My plan is to take Olive to as many as possible. I can also take him to the dog park for tiny dogs. I also have some friends with dogs who can play with Olive. Hopefully that will be enough!
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-27-2012, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Olive'smom View Post
I couldn't agree more Karen. A dear friend has a 1 year old Maltese that's great with people, but wasn't properly socialized with dogs. She is a nightmare. I certainly want to avoid that fate with Olive. Fortunately, some places in my area (petco for example) offer free puppy playtime groups. My plan is to take Olive to as many as possible. I can also take him to the dog park for tiny dogs. I also have some friends with dogs who can play with Olive. Hopefully that will be enough!
Great. Sounds like you have a good plan for socializing him then. And remember, good dog-dog social skills are the result of a lifetime of reinforcement with positive experiences!


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