How to Train Your Dog to Get Along with Other Dogs

Medium
1-2 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

Let’s be honest for a moment.  As humans, we often meet people we dislike or that rub us the wrong way.  Part of being able to function in society, go to work and be social, however, is learning to get along with other people.  The same can be said when it comes to training your dog to get along with other dogs.  Even as an only dog in a household, Fido will often have to interact with other dogs when they visit the vet, go for walk,s or if they want to enjoy dog parks or other social and fun pet-centric events.  Learning good doggy social skills, therefore, is a critical part of your dog’s core training.

Defining Tasks

The extent to which your dog will need to be trained to get along with other dogs will depend on their individual personality and the level of interaction you foresee.  If you will be bringing an additional dog into the household, your pet will need to learn to share their space, toys, time, and resources with other dogs.  If Fido is the only pet, your dog will need to ignore other dogs while out in public or greet them politely when they cross paths.  Each of these skills will involve gradually introducing your dog to other canines and building positive associations with the experience of being around each other.

Getting Started

For the best results, you should begin training your dog to get along with other dogs as early as possible.  Starting your dog off young builds positive experiences that your pup can refer back to time and again as they encounter dogs in the future.  As with any training, you will want to have a wide selection of treats in a varying range of attractiveness or value.  Dry, bite-sized dog cookies, small pieces of cheese, hot dog slices, and cooked steak or meat are all good options.  You will need a sturdy flat buckle collar and a medium length leash, preferably with a second loop for shortening length if needed.  Finally, a calm and friendly neighborhood dog and their owner will be a great mentor and can often help to create good interactions and pawsitive reinforcement of doggy manners.

The Positive Reinforcement Method

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Positive Reinforcement method for Get Along with Other Dogs
Step
1
Distance and treats
This method for teaching your dog to get along with other dogs works well if you don’t have another pooch to help you practice. It can also be trained in a variety of settings. Start out on a bench or sitting well away from a path where dogs frequently walk. Every time a dog comes into view, immediately treat and praise your pooch.
Step
2
Getting closer
After several sessions, slowly decrease the distance between your dog and the path. Eventually you should be several feet away from other dogs but not close enough for the dogs to touch or interact. Remember to treat and praise every time they see a dog and react calmly.
Step
3
Parallel walking
After several sessions, walk parallel to the path, well away from other dogs. Try to keep your dog’s attention and treat and praise for good behavior and calm walking. Keep your dog a far enough distance away that they aren’t able to touch or interact with other dogs.
Step
4
The meet and greet
After some time of this type of positive reinforcement and acclimation, ask another dog owner with a calm, friendly-appearing dog if your pooch can say hello. Keep the initial greetings short and be sure to treat and praise immediately after the positive interactions.
Step
5
Repeat with multiple dogs
Repeat the positive introductions with multiple dogs of varying sizes and energy levels.
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The Introduction Walks Method

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Introduction Walks method for Get Along with Other Dogs
Step
1
Walk off energy
Start off by spending some time playing and walking with your dog. Many calmer dogs will often become nervous around others with higher energy levels. Working off some of their excess energy which will lead to calmer interactions between pups.
Step
2
Parallel walking from a distance
Start out by walking your dog next to a friendly dog from a great distance. This is called parallel walking. Your dog should be able to see the other dog, but not touch or interact. 15-20 feet is a good amount of distance. Sporadically give your dog treats and praise them for acting calm.
Step
3
Arcing paths
Walk the dogs towards each other in arcing paths towards each other. This will allow the dogs to approach each other but not actually interact. Treat and praise your dog for good, calm behavior, especially after reaching the apex of the arc and as your dog is walking away.
Step
4
Decrease distance
Repeat walking your dog in arcing paths, decreasing the distance at the apex of the arc each time. Remember to treat and praise your pooch for remaining calm. Towards the very end your dog should just be out of reach of the other pooch.
Step
5
Meet and greet
Allow your dog to meet the other, calm and friendly dog. You should approach the other dog from the side with the friendly dog remaining stationary in a sit or calm stand. Try to keep the leash slack and remain calm yourself. Repeat this introduction with a variety of dogs to build positive associations.
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The Teaching to Give Method

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Teaching  to Give method for Get Along with Other Dogs
Step
1
Prepping the toy
Start out by getting your dog excited by a favorite toy. Play a game of tug and otherwise let your pooch enjoy the toy. The idea is to make the toy valuable to your pooch so that they wouldn’t willingly want to give it up for nothing.
Step
2
Trading for treats
Take a treat in your hand and show your dog that it is there. With your other hand, grasp the toy. Move the treat near to your dog’s mouth and gently tug on the toy, prompting your dog to drop it and take the treat. Praise your dog when they release the toy.
Step
3
Add in the command
After several sessions of trading, add in a command word such as “give” or “drop”. You should say the command as you are removing the toy from your dog’s mouth.
Step
4
Remove the trade
After reinforcing the command word over several sessions, remove the trading aspect by saying the command without having a treat in hand. Your dog should drop or release the toy. When this happens, immediately treat and praise. If your dog doesn’t willingly release the toy, go back a step and reinforce the command.
Step
5
Repeat in multiple scenarios
Repeat this training in multiple scenarios, including with other dogs around, to help get your dog used to giving up and sharing their toys. The idea is to train your dog that when they release a toy they will receive a reward and positive reinforcement of their good behavior.
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Written by Amy Caldwell

Published: 10/08/2017, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Storm
German Shepherd
9 Months
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Storm
German Shepherd
9 Months

She barks loudly
at other dogs and becomes aggressive hair stands up on her back etc

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jeff, Do you know how she does when up close with other dogs? (Don't test this on your own if not sure). Hair standing up is a sign of arousal. Arousal is connected with fighting and aggression but it can also be fue to nervousness or even excitement at times. See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class anywhere within driving distance of you. These classes are for dog reactive/aggressive dogs, who all wear muzzles and are intensively socialized together in a structured environment. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Piper
Dachshund
3 Months
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Piper
Dachshund
3 Months

My puppy gets very excited about other dogs and barks and tries to run towards them with her tail wagging. But the second she gets close she cowers and growls at other dogs and tries to nip them. What do I do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Faith, I highly suggest enrolling pup in a puppy play group or kindergarten class as soon as possible for moderated off-leash play time. Do not wait, start this week if you can! The first couple of times you go, pup will likely hide under your chair and watch the other puppy's play - stay calm and confident. Don't pet or sooth the worry, just act happy to be there and like you are having a great time. What normally happens is that after a couple of sessions, pup's curiosity overcomes their fear while watching the other puppies having fun and they begin to try to play with one or two of the calmer puppies. Once they have successfully played with a couple of pups, they will generally gradually start joining in with the collective group. Moderate the play, and when one pup seems overwhelmed, calmly distract pups away from each other, have them perform a couple commands for treats, then let the shy puppy go first, to see if they want to re-initiate play with the other puppies again. If they do, allow all the pups to play again. Be sure to explain pup's tendencies to the class instructor ahead of time so that they can be sure pup is in an appropriate class and help mediate the interactions. This approach isn't something that can be done if you wait too long. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kipper
Border Heeler
1 Year
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Kipper
Border Heeler
1 Year

Hello,

Kipper was found by a dumpster with scars on her neck, and that's all I know about her past. She is over all a very calm sweet dog, and loves people! She gets along well with pretty much all dogs outside. She gets randomly aggressive inside, especially with my boyfirend's dog (female Akita mix). We have tried many different methods to integrate the dogs, but sometimes play turns to fighting very quickly.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Cassie, I do suggest hiring a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues and aggression to help in person and be able to evaluate what the dynamics in the home. I also suggest working on calmly and consistently building pups' respect for the humans in the home. I also suggest teaching both dogs directional commands, like Place, Down, Leave It, and Off, so that the dogs can be told not to resource guard spaces, people, or things, to leave when being pushy or demanding, and to give the other dog space when needed. I suggest feeding and have both dogs sleep in separate locked crates to avoid stress around food and while unsupervised. I also wouldn't allow the dogs to roughhouse and play right now - since times of high arousal - like play, tends to lead to fights, work on both dogs working for what they get at home, simply exist together calmly and give each other space, and practice things like Place on separate dog beds/cots for extended amounts of time. Always be careful when working with any form of aggression to avoid a bite. Many dogs will redirect their aggression to whoever is closest while highly aroused. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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brownlee
Pit bull
2 Years
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brownlee
Pit bull
2 Years

we live in a house with no backyard so i take my dog on a walk 3 times every day. each time we see another dog mine goes insane and barks and jumps and tries to run up to the other dog. what should i do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lily, First, see if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area. This is a class for dog reactive and dog aggressive dogs. It is an intensive socialization class where all of the dogs wear basket muzzles for everyone's safety and the dogs are walked together and socialized together to help overcome issues more quickly. Also, work on a very focused, structured heel. Check out the video and article linked below. He needs to start out the walk walking slightly behind you and not in front of you - because in front he cannot focus on you and is scanning the horizon for dogs. Starting out the walk right can make a huge impact on how a dog responds when they do see another dog. Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo I would need more information to help further. If this is leash reactivity - meaning that he does fine with dogs while off leash or once he greets the dogs, then I suggest working on his respect and focus for you and correcting the behavior by keeping him extremely on task walking with you. If this is aggression and he is not alright with dogs in other environments, then you will need to deal with the root of the aggression and determine what type it is. If he is afraid you would work on pairing the presence of other dogs with good things while he was calm, in addition to building his confidence in you. If it is dominance, possessiveness, territorial, or protective, then you would work on building his respect and focus on you and desensitizing him to other dogs through a lot of practice heeling around other dogs from a distance that he can handle, with well timed corrections and well timed praise - there are several different exercises to work on for this. If this is genetic you are going to be looking at high level management since the root of the aggression likely cannot be changed. You would work on increasing his respect and trust for you, desensitizing him to other dogs, and having an advanced level of obedience so that he could respond to you even in the presence of high distractions. Check out Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training for more details on dealing with aggression. If this is fear aggression, then you could also use a more positive reinforcement approach. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Sheba
German Shepherd
4 Years
1 found helpful
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1 found helpful
Sheba
German Shepherd
4 Years

She is very territorial, she nuts up every time another dog comes in yard or where she can see them. When I take her to Petsmart to get groomed she doesn’t act like that. She goes from 0 to 100 in seconds. She is 100 lbs and I am a 66 year old woman, what can I do

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Gayle, You need to hire a trainer who specializes in aggression and has access to other trainers on staff and well behaved dogs to practice around. Because of her strength it will be difficult for you to implement the training on your own so I suggest getting in person help. Look into Sean O'Shea from the Good Dog, and Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training on YouTube. I still suggest hiring a trainer to help you though. Aggression is one of the things that often requires professional help. Many things can be taught on your own, but aggression often benefits from having assistance from someone who deals with it often, comes well recommended, and has the resources like other dogs, to practice the methods around. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Molly
collie spaniel mix
2 Years
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Molly
collie spaniel mix
2 Years

hello,
when Molly was less than a year old she was at a training class and another dog came at her to attack her. she did not get hurt. Now when we owned another dog she was super aggressive. they would fight over toys, when someone rang the door bell or just go at each other. we had to surrender the second dog it was getting to dangerous. I really want to adopt another dog. a tea cup yorkie. how do I train molly to be friendly with a new dog? thank you

Chenae

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Chanae, First, you need to honestly evaluate whether she was the initiator of the fights, or if it was only your dog that you re-homed. If the other dog was the only one constantly starting issues, you may be able to add another dog but life with both dogs probably will never be able to look relaxed and unstructured because of her history. I know of others with dog reactive dogs who are able to add a second dog but you need to first work through your dog's general issues being around other dogs, which will probably involve working with a training group that specializes in aggression and reactivity and who has access to a lot of other dogs to work on desensitizing her. You will need to work on the resource guarding before adding another dog. Her life will need to be really structured, meaning she needs to heel with a lot of focus on you and walking slightly behind you on every walk (and not be allowed to scan the horizon looking for other dogs), she needs to wait for permission before eating, be fed in a closed crate, be crated trained, be able to do a 2 hour Place or Down-Stay command, know Leave It, Out, Come, and be very responsive to commands around high distractions, like other dogs running past. When you have established that level of respect, trust, focus on you, and obedience, then you can ease into introducing another dog by having Molly rotate between being on Place, in a crate, or on a structured heeling walk around the other dog - no freedom around the other dog at this point, only structured activities together with a high level of focus and management from you. Both dogs should be fed in closed separate crates to prevent resource guarding and stress around food, and toys carefully chosen and controlled when they have what. A household with a dog aggressive dog is possible but it will never look like a household with two dog-social dogs, and the Yorkie is small enough that it could easily be killed during a fight, and being bullied by another dog will cause a second dog to become fear-aggressive too - continuing the cycle. After a couple of years of careful management and structure with both dogs, they may become accepting and trusting enough of each other and respectful enough of your rules, that they can have more freedom with each other (always supervised still though). This often happens when things are managed carefully enough for long enough, but there are no guarantees that things will be able to be more relaxed. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Enzo
1/2 German Shepard 1/4 Bull dog, 1/4 Boxer
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
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Enzo
1/2 German Shepard 1/4 Bull dog, 1/4 Boxer
2 Years

Hello. When Enzo was young, he was great with other dogs. Never had any problems. Then as time grew I noticed him playing more rough with the other dogs at the dog park, following their lead. So we stopped attending as much. Then about 6 months ago he freaked out when another dog was near and tried snapping at him. After that I limited his social interactions. Now I have two new dogs moving into my house, neither are aggressive. We've tried to get them friendly but Enzo is still freaking out. By this he is snapping his jaw and barking lunging at them when they are close by and I have to use all my strength to hold him back. Then at a further distance he is crying in a very high pitched sound, going crazy trying to get loose. We've tried having them sniff at each other. Using just the female dog to try and get them aquanted and Enzo just wont calm down. He doesnt care about treats or anything when this is going on either. What can I do? With the walking method, he just pulls and cries the entire time trying to get to the other dog

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Taylor, It sounds like he may associate other dogs with the highly aroused state he was always in around them, where the dogs have to be a bit defensive, competitive, and overly-excited. Over-arousal can lead to fighting and frustration. You want him learn to associate dogs with something calm and pleasant, and not something really exciting or frustrating. He needs to practice heeling around other dogs from a distance, a high level Place command around other dogs also in Place, and a lot of other obedience where his focus is on you and the other dogs are just background information but not something he is supposed to be focusing on; to do this, his focus on you and respect and trust for you need to increase a lot, then you can gradually work up to getting him around other dogs while doing something structured like heeling, with the dogs in the distance. As he improves, you can decrease the distance between them and add more movement from the other dogs. Check out Jeff Gellman from solidK9Training. He specializes in aggression, fear and similar behavior problems and has hundreds of videos on Youtube. Sean O'Shea from the Good Dog also has several great videos, as well as The Canine Educator based in New York state. Aggression and reactivity can be harder to treat yourself and you will need a lot of volunteers with their own calm dogs to serve as dogs in the background while doing this. You also need someone to show you how correct effectively (avoiding a bite, the right level of correction, the right timing, and correcting the looking for dogs and tensing up to get his attention back onto you and off the dogs before a big outburst, ect...), and someone to show you what your attitude and body language needs to be like - very calm and confident, not anxious, angry, or overly excited. Because he doesn't have a bite history and hasn't drawn blood as far as you have mentioned you may be able to tackle his needs on your own if you have enough people with calm dogs willing to help you and you are able to do the research needed to understand how to do the training by watching tons of videos - but this will be a ton easier if you hire a trainer who specializes in behavior problems and trains similar to the trainers in the videos mentioned above, using mostly positive reinforcement but also a ton of structure, obedience, and boundaries, and the right about of corrections where needed to break through to the dog so they can be open to learning something better. Avoid trainers who use alpha rolls and extreme dominance type training. Effective corrections and structure aren't the same as pinning a dog to the ground just to make a point. Also, avoid those who do not have a lot of experience with aggression, many trainers only focus on obedience in class type settings (which is fine for those who need obedience, but not what you need and won't help on it's own). Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Willow
Mix
1 Year
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Willow
Mix
1 Year

my dog was fine with other dogs when I first got her(she was 6 months old). Then my daughters dog snapped at her. but not right away did I see a change in her. But it happened gradually. Now I think some of it is my fault. She is extremely aggressive for a 7 lb dog. Especially to puppies. With big giant dogs she want to play. I cannot get her attention to even focus on a treat or otherwise. I unfortunately out of embarrassment to other owners have held her mouth and picked her up. She loves loves people. And when no other dogs are around she is the sweetest. I cannot afford formal training but I think I made her bad, please help.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Maribeth, Check out the articles and videos linked below to work on her respect and responsiveness to you - which is the first step. It sounds like it may be fear-aggression but other types of aggression commonly surface around 1-2 years so you may have something else going on too. With fear and other types of aggression you want her to feel like she can depend on you to handle situations that make her nervous, and listen to commands related to how she should behave around other dogs. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Dog Training Do’s https://www.solidk9training.com/sk9-blog/2016/09/08/the-ten-commandments-of-dog-training-and-ownership-do-2 1-2 years is a common age for aggression or fear related behaviors to surface because of the dog's mental and sexual maturity around then...protectiveness, fear-aggression, territorial behavior, possessiveness, dominance issues, and reactivity are a few common things that can pop up for some dogs during that time - it's often related to the dog's genetic personality, the type of leadership you provide, the dog's socialization level, competing with other animals, and instincts. Check out Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training on YouTube, he has hundreds of videos on aggression and fear. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Hero
Great Dane
18 Months
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
Hero
Great Dane
18 Months

Believe him to be dominant but not sure that's truly the case. It's hard to want to even try to socialize him because of his size (170 pounds, 38 inches at the withers). He was not socialized as a puppy. Not sure how to show him how to/reintroudce play to him (with other dogs). He injured another dog when he was corrected and lashed out.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Megan, Honestly, I wouldn't ever let him play off leash with other dogs again. His lack of socialization as a puppy, lack of impulse control exhibited when he redirected aggression onto another dog, and size honestly makes it unsafe for him - possibly forever. However, that doesn't mean you can't socialize him in another way. I highly suggest hiring a trainer who uses balanced training - including a lot of positive reinforcement in addition to some fair corrections, who comes well recommended by previous clients, and who is very experienced with e-collars. Due to his size, I highly recommend e-collar training his obedience after teaching it initially in a fenced in area using a long leash - which you will let drag most of the time to avoid being pulled over. Once he has some obedience and an e-collar intermediate level, practice his obedience with other dogs in the background, such as at parks and outside dog parks (not inside). Join an obedience class (even though he already knows the tasks at that point) and have him practice his obedience commands around other dogs. You can also create your own practice group with friends who are wanting to train their dogs. The goal is for him to perform calm, structured activities in the presence of other dogs - not to necessarily even greet them and not to play. Use the Passing Approach and Walking together methods from the article linked below to introduce him to other, calm dogs, one by one. When he does well with a variety of other dogs, join a dog walking or dog hiking groups through a local obedience club, social group like meetup.com, or start your own with friends. A structured heeling walk is a great way to socialize dogs together because their adrenaline is lower, they feel happy, they are more focused on you and the walk (if required to heel) and not on competing with each other, and it stimulates them physically - relieving tension. Wrestling with other dogs can increase arousal and adrenaline and make fight more likely. Heeling is calming when structured. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Because of your dog's size, obedience training with a professional using the e-collar needs to come first though. Solid obedience will help with management in general so that you can then practice things around other dogs without as much risk. Check out James Penrith from Take the Lead dog training on YouTube to learn more about e-collar training, also called remote collar training. Only every use a high quality e-collar and the person training needs to know a lot about training with e-collars before beginning (whether you learn a lot or hire someone). You absolutely should not put the collar on your dog and just start pushing buttons. There is a very specific way to train to make them safe and effective at the correct level, without stressing the dog more than other methods. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Kylo
Cattle dog
9 Months
0 found helpful
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Kylo
Cattle dog
9 Months

We would like to socialize Kylo but he acts aggressively toward just about every other dog we encounter. Is there a way to correct this behavior?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Christina, See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area. A G.R.O.W.L. class is a class for dog-aggressive or dog-reactive dogs, where the dogs are intensively socialized together while wearing basket muzzles, using structured exercises, more quickly. I wouldn't make your pup being able to run and play with other dogs the goal, but with professional help, would pursue pup being able to do things like go on structured walks, practice obedience, and calmly be around other dogs - things that keep dogs' arousal level low and calm, to make aggression more manageable and help dogs co-exist better. This is something that generally takes a lot of dedication and time to work towards from the dog's owner. A G.R.O.W.L. class could be a great way to get there a bit sooner if you can find one. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Layla
Lab mix
18 Months
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Layla
Lab mix
18 Months

Layla is a rescue we have had for about two weeks. She is very friendly- too friendly to other dogs, including our other lab mix (3 1/2 yrs old male). She briefly sniffs them, licks their mouths and then proceeds to jump on their heads and neck to play. And she doesn’t stop jumping even when the other dog backs off. She is wagging her tail, not barking and not growling at all. When I pull her away on a leash because the other dogs and owners look nervous she goes crazy yelping and howling- trying to get back to the dog to play. My dog has not yet snapped or acted aggressively towards her but he is clearly not interested in playing that way. She cannot be around him or other dogs without attempting to roughly play. She is living in a separate room now because I do not want them to have a negative interaction before I get some behavior advice.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Susan, I suggest teaching her Out and using the How to Deal with Pushy behavior section of that article also once she has learned what out means. Practice Out with her around your own dog, telling her Out as soon as she is unmannerly, then you enforcing the command using the pushy behavior section of that article. Out: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ I also suggest playing "Jazz Up, Settle Down" with her. To play, get her excited with you, then suddenly give a command she knows well, like Sit, and then freeze. Stay frozen until she calms down and Sits - this is going to take her a few minutes at first. Repeat the command calmly one time after 2 minutes - if you think she has forgotten what's going on. When she sits, give a treat and calmly praise, then tell her "Okay, go play!" And resume playing. Practice this red light, green light game often. At first only get her a bit excited before giving the command - so that she CAN obey. As she improves, get her more and more excited before giving the command - so that she has to calm herself more and more. Only add more excitement when she gets to the point during practice where she can instantly obey - at that point make it harder and practice until she can instantly obey then too - then make it even more exciting, ect... During a walk, I suggest not greeting other dogs nose to nose for a while - you are headed for leash reactivity potentially. Instead, intentionally work on socializing her around other dogs in structured ways. Practice obedience command like Down-Stay and Heeling around other dogs - recruit friends who also want to practice with their dogs and create your own obedience practice class or join an intermediate obedience class. Check out the Passing Approach and Walking Together methods from the article linked below. Practice those methods with pup and friends with well behaved dogs. The goal is to desensitize her to other dogs and for her to learn to be calm around other dogs - you want other dogs to be pleasant but boring to her - not exciting playmates right now. Passing Approach and Walking Together methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs A structured wall is also super important for pup. Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel More heeling: https://youtu.be/EcwvUOf5oOg If there is a local meetup.com or obedience club group that does structured heeling walks or hikes with dogs, that could be a fun and good way to socialize her more calmly. You want her focused on you and heeling behind you, learning to ignore the dogs around her (not greet every one), and just enjoy walking next to them. It becomes more of a working co-existing relationship between the dogs and is a good place to practice focus on you and respect for you around dogs - which can help and is needed. Keep in mind how service dogs behave around other dogs. They are extremely well socialized and play with other puppies while little, but then their socialization looks like calmly co-existing around other dogs as they mature. That's what she needs to prevent leash reactivity - learning structured, calm co-existance. That doesn't mean she can never play, but the emphasis needs to be on calmness now until she learns that, then calmness should be the norm with occasional play with the right dogs off leash (if you want to let her - it's not necessary). On leash is hard for almost all dogs to varying degrees though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cowboy
Corgie/Heeler mix
4 Years
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Cowboy
Corgie/Heeler mix
4 Years

He has grown up with my other dog ,(Jackrussel Terrior mix),Jango. Jango is only seven months older. They get along wonderfully most of the time. However there are times when Cowboy will start getting snarly and snappy for no specific reason. Within the passed year Cowboy has gotten aggressive enough with Jango to give him 4 bite wounds. After the first incident I even get nervous when they get too close to each other on the couch with me. It seems even a sudden movement from me or even a certain sound from one of them can spark a ppotential incident. I feel I am living in a constant state of wwariness that they will injure one another. How do I prevent or troubleshoot these matters?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, I do suggest hiring a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues and aggression and comes well recommended by clients, to help in person with this. You need to know what the dogs' body language is around each other and be able to observe subtle signs that the dogs are resource guarding people, places or things, or perhaps one bullying and intimidating the other, and the second one reacting defensively. It might not be obvious until a dog has pushed it too far and triggered a fight, but could be going on often, and needing to also be addressed right when there are subtle signs for you to learn to pick up on - if not already doing so. Additionally, I would work on building trust and respect for you so that they are not making and enforcing rules for each other, but looking to you to do so. You want to add in a lot more structure and boundaries for now, working on things like the working method linked below, teaching both a 2 hour long Place, directional commands like Off, Out (which means leave the area), Down, Leave It, and Off, so that you can tell them where they should and should not be in relation to being pushy with you or bullying each other, and both should be crate trained. Working and Consistency methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Leave It: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out - which means leave the room: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Keep a drag leash on the dogs when you are present if they won't listen to your directional commands once learned well. Calmly lead the dogs where you told them to go as needed by picking up the end of the leash. If you see any signs of aggression toward you, pause and get professional help to deal with aggression toward you also. Training will likely need to be mortified to take extra precautions to keep you safe. Don't risk a bite. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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benji
Maltipoo
4 Years
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benji
Maltipoo
4 Years

Benji is 4 years old and we put him in the stroller when in stores. the other day a nice service dog, collie, walked by us and he started growling, this is an ongoing thing ONLY towards dogs, not people. He is strictly MY dog and very possessive, my husband says he is just protecting me, is this true? I don't need him to actually want to play with other dogs, just want him to be congenial. what can I do, please

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Julie, No, I would not allow the growling - it's actually a huge issue around Service Dogs because many people are depend on their service dogs to keep them safe and alert to important medical issues. If a service dog is distracted by another dog displaying aggression, it could put the dog's handler in danger because that dog is less likely to be doing their job well and is stressed. You might have been in a pet store or feed store, but be sure that you are not taking pup into any stores where civilian dogs are not allowed as it's illegal. With that said, it sounds like pup is being possessive of you and reactive toward the other dogs - this isn't the type of protectiveness you want. It's generally an issue with pup not respecting you and lacking socialization around other dogs while young. See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class anywhere in your area. A G.R.O.W.L. class is a class for dog aggressive and dog reactive dogs who are all intensively socializes together in a shorter amount of time to help them overcome their issues with other dogs. It's often a very positive and structured environment which can be really good for pups. Second, work on building pup's respect for you. I suggest teaching pup the following commands and having him work for everything he gets for a while -by him having to do a command first. These are gentle ways to build pup's respect. He may even be happier with having more to do and more structure - adding structure can help with things like anxiety too. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Working and Consistency methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Also, don't tolerate any pushy behavior from pup right now - no nudging, barking at you, guarding things, or being pushy. If pup does any of those things have pup leave the room using the Out command. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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max
Border Collie X
18 Weeks
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max
Border Collie X
18 Weeks

he not geting on with dogs

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Paul, I highly suggest hiring a trainer to work with you on this if you are having issues this early. If you work on this early, pup can likely overcome it, but it becomes harder to overcome the longer you wait. Depending on the details of how pup isn't getting along with other dogs will effect the course of action. If pup is just shy, I highly suggest joining a puppy play group or kindergarden class that has time for off-leash, moderated puppy play under the supervision of the trainer. Pup will likely hide under your chair the first couple of weeks but typically curiosity will get the better of them and they will gradually start socializing with some of the lower key puppies in the class and get over their fears - which is very important for preventing fear aggression later. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Daisy
Lab mix
5 Years
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Daisy
Lab mix
5 Years

She came from an Indian Reservation. I had a trainer for a short time because when walking and seeing other dogs she would get excited. As time has gone on she is better but still to where she needs to be. This doesn't happen every time we pass a dog.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Thanks for the question. You've worked with a trainer before and know how beneficial and helpful that can be - good for you for helping Daisy in this way. If she needs brushing up on her basic commands, take her through the next level of obedience so that she can get even more comfortable and responsive to what you ask. The methods in this guide may work very well with Daisy since she is not acting out every time she passes a dog. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs As well, can you join a walking group in your area that has a variety of dogs on its roster and a trainer that is experienced with group dynamics? Ask your vet for a recommendation. Other suggestions can be found here:https://wagwalking.com/training/be-calm-around-other-dogs. All the best as you train Daisy!

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Ruby
Goldendoodle
3 Years
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Ruby
Goldendoodle
3 Years

My dog is spoiled and has anxiety and won’t get along with other dogs

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I suggest checking out Jeff Gellman from solidK9Training on YouTube. I also suggest seeing looking for a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area, which is a class for dog reactive/aggressive dogs, who are all intensively socialized together while wearing basket muzzles in a structured environment. Working on commands to build pup's respect and trust for you can often help with reactivity and anxiety as well. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Out - which means leave the area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Stella
Mix- beagle and besenji
2 Years
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Stella
Mix- beagle and besenji
2 Years

Stella is very sweet to people. I tried introducing my fiancé’s dog almost two years ago and it didn’t go very well so my family and I didn’t bother introducing her to other dogs, which was our mistake. But now the other dog moved in with us and we live in the basement and she lives with my family upstairs.

We got a trainer and my dog is doing much better on walks. I’m able to be as close as 4 feet to the other dog without her freaking out. But I need her to behave in the house and I’m at a lost. I was wondering if you have ANY advice. I really don't know what to do

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Eden, I suggest adding a couple of other things to what you are currently working on with your trainer. Practice the Passing Approach and then Walking Together methods from the article I have linked below, specifically with the family dog - so often that the other dog becomes boring eventually and they can finally walk together. Continue to practice general things on walks around strange dogs, but you want that specific dog to become normal even before pup can tolerate other dogs as a whole. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Work on desensitizing pup to the noises and smells and other triggers that they associate with the dog being on the floor above them. Check out the barking- desensitization videos below. One of the videos talks about desensitizing to guests, but you will use the same principles with hearing the other dog's bark, walking around up stairs, and smells where he has been. Video 1: https://youtu.be/Jp_l9C1yT1g Video 2: https://youtu.be/X5BjvNScFPs Video 3 - guests: https://youtu.be/bpzvqN9JNUA When dog training classes resume throughout the country, I also recommend finding a G.R.O.W.L. class - which is a class for dog aggressive or dog reactive dogs, who all wear basket muzzles for safety during class and are then rapidly socialized with each other in a structured environment under the guidance of the trainer. Finally, check out Thomas from the Canine Educator on YouTube. He specializes in behavior issues like aggression and has a number of free videos where you can learn more about aggression and training on that YouTube channel. https://www.youtube.com/user/AmericasCanineED Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Misty
Mix
3 Years
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Misty
Mix
3 Years

She is really friendly, I feel like this time cooped up has made her forget that other dogs exist. When we go to the park she used to be the friendly dog, now anytime we go she lunges and barks/growls (especially larger dogs than her). Just want her to realize all dogs are her friends and not try to dominate everyone she see's because that is another thing, she always wants to be the dominate one to other dogs (humps and pushes them over when playing)

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kathryn, I suggest recruiting some friends, neighbors with dog-friendly dogs, or finding a local obedience club, rescue or meetup group that does group dog walks or hikes together. Practice the Passing Approach method from the article linked below to initially desensitize her to some friend's dogs, then use the Walking Together method once she is doing better to get her walking with other dogs - slowly closing in the distance as she gets calmer. The structure of the walk will help with the dominance and reactivity. The endorphins and pleasant association of walking and having a "job" around other dogs will help her associate them with good things again, without increasing the adrenaline and arousal usually present during rough play. Passing Approach and Walking Together methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Once her overall attitude around other dogs is happy and calm again, even with new dogs, you can transition to play dates and see how she does. Some dogs do better playing just one on one with certain dogs or specific personalities and by doing structured activities with other dogs - like the walks. Others are fine in a larger group. Start with the heeling structured walks, then you can see whether she needs to keep it structured or you can reintroduce group play again. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cosmo
Maltipoo
8 Years
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Cosmo
Maltipoo
8 Years

Our dog can be mean to other dogs. Not always, but often, when he interacts with another dog, he barks at them, growls at them, and tries to intimidate them. He is the aggressor. We think a lot of it has to do with his experience with our cousins dog, Sadie. Sadie is an Australian Shepherd. Cosmo and Sadie would both be together at our grandmas house, and Sadie would constantly stare at Cosmo and growl. She seemed jealous of him. They must have had a hard time ‘sharing territory’ since they both felt grandmas house was theirs. At this point, Cosmo showed no aggression towards Sadie, he just seemed scared and tried to ignore her. One day, Sadie attacked Cosmo and bit his neck and ear pretty good. Our uncle has to pry Sadie off of Cosmo. Cosmo had to get stitches in his neck at an animal hospital and be put under for a couple hours. He wore a cone for weeks after and hated it. He socialized with huskies and a young Malshi when he was young, but other than that, his primary dog interaction was Sadie. We would like him to be kind and non-aggressive to other dogs so he can be off the leash on walks. What can we do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alyssa, First, see if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area and attend that if so when it becomes an option again with social distancing situations. A G.R.O.W.L. class is a class for dog reactive or dog aggressive dogs, who all wear basket muzzles and are intensively socialized together in a structured environment to help desensitize them to other dogs more quickly. All of this should take place under the guidance of a qualified G.R.O.W.L. instructor. Second, a good way to do introductions with other dogs is to recruit friends with calm dogs and use the Passing Approach and the Walking together methods from the article linked below. Start with the Passing Approach method and work on that method until pup can stay calm during each pass. At that point switch to the Walking Together method. After a few practice session of this, when the dogs can calmly walk side by side finally, take pups on walks together with both in a structured, focused heel. This gives both dogs something other than each other to focus on, keeps their energy calm, and helps them associate each other with the pleasant experience of a walk. Repeat this with lots of different dogs, one or two dogs at a time - you want other dogs to be associated with calmness, pleasant experiences, and boring things - not roughhousing, wrestling, nose-to-nose interactions always, or being rushed by them. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Sometimes you can even find others to practice with through obedience clubs, meetup groups, or hiking groups. When he does greet another dog nose-to-nose, give slack in the leash, relax yourself, and keep the greeting to a max of 3 seconds, then happily tell him "Let's Go" or "Heel" and start walking away, giving him a treat when he follows so that he will learn to quickly respond to that command in the future. Keeping the greeting relaxed and short can diffuse tension and give the dogs enough time to say hi before competing starts. Avoid dogs that don't respect his space, pull their owners over to him, and generally are not listening well - those dogs are often friendly but they are rude and difficult for a nervous dog. Telling an owner that your dog is in training, is often a good polite way to request the dogs not meet. Also, avoid greeting dogs who look very tense around your dog, who stare him down, who give warning signs like a low growl or lip lift, who look very puffed up and proud - that type greeting with a dog is likely to end in a fight since your dog doesn't know how to diffuse that situation. A stiff wag is also a bad sign. A friendly wag looks relaxed and loose with relaxed body language overall. A tense dog with a very stiff wag, especially with a tail held high is a sign of arousal and not always a good thing. Before you allow pup off leash, also work on teaching pup a reliable off-leash come and off-leash heel so that you can call pup to your side to heel when another dog is ahead. Come and the PreMack Principle: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-to-come-when-called/ Reel In method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall An off-leash heel is generally started just like a normal leashed heel, then as pup improves you practice the heel on a long leash so that pup is following because they are paying attention to you and not dependent on the leash - but you can use the leash to guide back when needed and prevent pup from disobeying and having inconsistent training. Once pup can heel in places like your neighborhood on the long leash, then also go places where other dogs are walking around and practice the long leash heel around other dogs - with pup learning to ignore other dogs unless told to "Say Hi". I personally prefer starting with a normal weight long training leash - like what you see online and in most pet stores, then going to an extremely light weight but strong one when pup is almost ready for complete off-leash work. Since your dog is smaller, you could probably start with the light-weight one too. The light weight helps the training transfer to off-leash better since pup is less aware of a leash being on them prior to taking it off completely. Whenever pup starts not coming or heeling again well, snap the leash back on for a month and do a refresher training course to deal with any issues - the refresher shouldn't take nearly as long as the initial training but at some point most dogs will test ignoring you again and need the refresher. Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ely
American Bulldog
3 Years
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Ely
American Bulldog
3 Years

What he sees another dog he will pull and when the dog gets closer he Growls and try’s to bite he lives with a dog but doesn’t how a problem with her

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Owen, I suggest looking for a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area, which is a class for dog reactive/aggressive dogs, who all wear basket muzzles and are intensively socialized together in a structured environment. I do suggest working with a trainer for this, especially since many dogs will redirect their aggression to whoever is closest while aroused - and pup may bite you if that happens. I also suggest working on the structure of your walk. You want pup to be working during the walk - having to stay behind you, focus on you, perform commands periodically, and not have his mind on scanning the area in search of other dogs. The walk should start with him having to exit your home very calmly, performing obedience commands at the door if he isn't calm. He should wait for permission ("Okay" or "Free" or "Let's Go") before going through the door instead of bolting through if that's an issue. When you walk he should be in the heel position - with his head behind your leg. That position decreases his arousal, reduces stress because he isn't the one in charge and the one encountering things first. It prevents him from scanning for other dogs, staring dogs down or being stared down, and ignoring you behind him. It also requires him to be in a more submissive, structured, focused, calmer mindset - which has a direct effect on how aroused, stressed, and aggressive he is - it makes him feel like the responsibility is on your shoulders not his around other dogs. Additionally, when you do pass other dogs, as soon as he starts staring them down, interrupt him. Don't tolerate challenging stares at other dogs. Remind him with a fair correction that you are leading the walk and he is not allowed to break his heel or stare another dog down. It is far easier to deal with reactivity when you interrupt a dog early in the process - before they are highly aroused and full of adrenaline and cortisol, and to keep the dog in a less aroused/calmer state to begin with. This also makes the walk more pleasant for him in the long-run. When pup passes other dogs and stays calm, reward the calm body language. Do not reward while tense and acting aggressive though, look for calm. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Dont know yet
E.b.t
4 Years
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Dont know yet
E.b.t
4 Years

Hello I'm wanting to adopt a 4 year old bullie however she doesn't get on with other dogs. Will it be easy to get her to socialize I have had previous dogs and am a responsible owner. I'd love to take her but eventually I would like a sociable dog
Many thanks

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I would consider this carefully. You will have to put a lot of time and effort into training this dog - with no guarantee of success. Do you know much about her? Has she had aggressive contact with other dogs before? If it is just a growling, unsociable problem you may be able to change that. But unless you have a clear idea of what you are getting into, I would wait and think it over. First, look into trainers in your immediate area who are used to working with dogs that do not get along with others. Remember, you have to have the time (and money) to invest. I do appreciate that you are trying to help a dog in need - but just imagine how different things will be for you for example, if you adopt a needy dog who is super friendly and one you can take everywhere with you. That is much more rewarding and less stressful. A friendly dog needs you just as much as a dog who has issues. I hope this helps!

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Max
Siberian Husky
3 Years
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Max
Siberian Husky
3 Years

Max has a habit of getting on top of everything. From going on top of the kitchen counters, to the sofa to even some cars. How can I train him not to do such?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Max is very handsome! You're best bet is to teach him the off command - most dogs catch on quickly. Here are guides to read: https://wagwalking.com/training/stop-counter-surfing The Create an Alternative Method. https://wagwalking.com/training/stay-off-the-couch-unless-invited: The Command for Off Method. https://wagwalking.com/training/stay-off-the-furniture The Spot Method. Also obedience train Max in all of his basic commands and if he is trained already, brush up on them. Help him learn to listen to you: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you The Consistency Method is excellent. Lots of reading for you and many helpful tips. Good luck!

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Cub
Patterdale Terrier
9 Years
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Cub
Patterdale Terrier
9 Years

Hello!

I have a patterdale Terrier that’s a good house dog she’s good with people but gets aggressive and snappy and just doesn’t like other dogs!! However my sister wants to get a chihuahua puppy!! She’s not getting one because of cub! Because of her dislike of other dogs!! But she was just wondering if there would be a way to introduce cub to the chihuahua puppy and eventually get cub to accept the puppy without trying to attack and kill it!

Please can I have a response on:
Leanne.Wheeler10@outlook.com

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Leanne, You would need to work on her issues with other dogs in general first, before I would attempt to add a puppy safely. See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area. That class is a class for dog reactive/aggression dogs, who all wear basket muzzles for safety and are intensively socialized more safely and quickly in a structured environment. If pup was able to overcome her aggression in general, then adding a new puppy would also involve a lot of management, boundaries, and safety measures still. Both would need to be crate trained, taught directional commands like Out, Place, and Leave It. Interactions would always need to be supervised and the dogs crated when not supervised, or puppy in an exercise pen. You would need to be the ones to provide clear boundaries and rules at home for both dogs - like no aggression, no guarding things, no pestering another when they want to be left alone, no stealing toys, ect...and be the ones to enforce that rules and not expect or allow the dogs to. Dog reactive dogs can get to the point where they can live with another, but it requires a whole lot of careful management and training honestly. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Josie
pitbull
2 Years
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Josie
pitbull
2 Years

Josie absolutely loves people of all ages. She great with everyone including kids as small as 5-6 years old (never been around a baby), but super loving and curious to all people. Whenever a dog is around she goes insane, starts barking and tries pulling towards the other dog(s). Usually scaring the other dogs away. I want her to be able to be around other dogs without scaring them or hurting them. I want her to be able to make friends especially now that we live in an apartment with a dog park area for her to play in.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Becky, See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area. That class is a class for dog aggressive and reactive dogs, who are all intensively socialized with each other in a structured environment, while each wears a basket muzzle for the safety of all. To introduce the muzzle, first place it on the ground and sprinkle her meal kibble around it. Do this until she is comfortable eating around it. Next, when she is comfortable with it being on the floor with food, hold it up and reward her with a piece of kibble every time she touches or sniffs it in your hand. Feed her her whole meal this way. Practice this until she is comfortable touching it. Next, hold a treat inside of it through the muzzle's holes, so that she has to poke his face into it to get the kibble. As she gets comfortable doing that, gradually hold the treat further down into the muzzle, so that she has to poke his face all the way into the muzzle to get the treat. Practice until she is comfortable having her face in it. Next, feed several treats in a row through the muzzle's holes while she holds his face in the muzzle for longer. Practice this until she can hold his face in it for at least ten seconds while being fed treats. Next, when she can hold her face in the muzzle for ten seconds while remaining calm, while her face is in the muzzle move the muzzle's buckles together briefly, then feed her a treat through the muzzle. Practice this until she is not bothered by the buckles moving back and forth. Next, while she is wearing the muzzle buckle it and unbuckle it briefly, then feed a treat. As she gets comfortable with this step, gradually keep the muzzle buckled for longer and longer while feeding treats through the muzzle occasionally. Next, gradually increase how long she wears the muzzle for and decrease how often you give her a treat, until she can calmly wear the muzzle for at least an hour without receiving treats more than two treats during that hour. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Scrappy
Mixed
4 Years
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Scrappy
Mixed
4 Years

So, my pup is very reactive to new people and dogs (even dogs she has been around multiple times). She will bark, jump, and whine at people. And she completely overpowers other dogs. She’s not aggressive in any way, but will chase other dogs and constantly try to get them to play with her. I would like her to be a bit calmer when she comes into contact with people and a lot less “in your face” with other dogs.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Hello. I am going to send you some training exercises you can use to help make your walks or outings a bit more peaceful. You can apply these methods to anything your dog is reactive to. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what he is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram his opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at his (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell the dog, sit, "watch me" or whatever command you want to use for this exercise. Remember to go slowly. You will see a significant change in his behavior after a month of consistent practice.

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Winnie
Shih Tzu
3 Years
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Winnie
Shih Tzu
3 Years

We go camping and and she doesn’t get along with any of the dogs she rlly good everything else she does but she snaps at the dogs and start to fight them and it’s not good and we are going again at the end of the week so plz get back ASAP. Thank you

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, sorry for the delay - I assume you are camping now. My advice would be to work on these skills: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs The Passing Approach Method. As well, https://wagwalking.com/training/get-along-with-other-dogs-1 The Obedience Commands Method. It will really come down to slowly trying to socialize Winnie to other dogs and you may have to do this when you get home. Join a walking group with other aggressive dogs. The trainer will work on having them get used to each other, with slow introductions and other methods. Once she has made a few friends, Winnie may feel more at ease around other dogs. Good luck!

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Sparky
Bulldog Schnauzer
10 Years
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Sparky
Bulldog Schnauzer
10 Years

We got Sparky from a shelter a few months ago and we’ve noticed he doesn’t get along with any other dogs. He can notice a dog from a distance and ignore it but whenever we try to meet him with another dog, he immediately gets aggressive and tries to fight. We really want him to learn how to interact with another dog.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ericka, See if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class within driving distance. That class will involve all the dogs wearing basket muzzles and being intensively socialized together in a structured environment. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bell
Staffy Bull Pit
2 Years
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Bell
Staffy Bull Pit
2 Years

Bell comes from being 4 months in a kennel,where she was in medication for her stress and aggresion.I am foster caring for her, but soon I will have another dog coming(mindind it for a friend).Bell doesn't get along with other dogs! How can I train her to be around other dogs???
Thanks Virginia

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I highly suggest hiring a professional trainer in your case. Look for someone who specializes in aggression and reactivity. You can also see if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area, which is a class for dog reactive/aggressive dogs, who wear basket muzzles during class and are intensively socialized together in a structured way under the instructors guidance. At home you will want to work on a high level of management. If pup isn't crate trained, introduce the crate. Also, work on pup learning a 1-2 hour long Place command they can do with distractions. Work on building you and pup's respect and trust between you so that pup is more likely to let you handle situations, make and enforce rules between the dogs, and listen to you. This can also help pup feel more secure. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Working and Consistency methods: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you When you introduce the dogs, do it on neutral territory, having pup work for you through commands like Heel, to get them into a calm state before the introduction. Check out the Passing Approach and Walking Together methods. Without prior work on the dog aggression, I don't recommend just having them meet even on the walk though. The general aggression needs to be addressed first, then a structured greeting with your friend's dog when pup is safer around other dogs. https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Also, be aware that dogs who are aggressive can redirect that aggression to whoever is closest when highly aroused, even if the dog is normally fine around that person or dog - called redirecting. This is another reason I recommend working in person with a trainer on this issue. Look for someone who has access to well mannered dogs to practice the training around before your friend's dog arrives. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Nella
French Bulldog
4 Months
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Nella
French Bulldog
4 Months

My dog has recently been separated from her sibling, they both got on and slept in the same cage, they did however okay fight and this would sometimes get a little ruff but never hurt each other. They got very jealous of each other too. On walks Nella would always bark at other dogs and seem aggressive towards them. Now she has been separated from her sibling she is slightly more nervous at everything but still barks at other dogs on our walks. We really want her to be good with other dogs as our family have other dogs and we want to be able to take her round on visits. What is the best approach for a 4 month Frenchie?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I would start socializing Nella with the family dogs. When they grow up together, it helps the relationship. Make sure the first introductions are on neutral ground and all should be well. The best way to ensure that Nella will do fine with other dogs is to take her to dog training classes - it is excellent socialization in a controlled setting. Visits to the dog park are good, too and a park with a separate enclosure for small dogs is ideal. When on walks, try the Passing Approach Method described here: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs. Before training classes, you can work on Nella's skills at home: https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-great-dane. Make sure that Nella gets lots of interaction with people, too, to keep up her confidence in that respect as well. Happy training!

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Skittles
Bichon shitzu terrier
5 Years
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Skittles
Bichon shitzu terrier
5 Years

We got skittles when she was 4 years old and it’s almost been two years with her. She is very protective which makes me think she grew up in a bad home. She has anxiety when we open a curtain or a window. I don’t get it. But the problem is with other dogs. She is a small dog but she acts like she is the boss and is mean to all sizes/types of dogs. I try convincing my parents to get another dog so she can be more social but they don’t think it’s a good idea. How can I help her be more friendly to other dogs?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I would work on a few things with Skittles when you are out on walks. Try the training tips you see here: https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs. Try the Passing Approach Method, which means that when you are walking her, you work on keeping her calm as you approach dogs, gradually making your way closer to them. It is explained in the guide. I would also look for a walking group in your neighborhood. These groups are made up of a trainer and other dogs who have issues with socialization. The dogs walk together a few times a week, or once a week, and get to know each other on neutral ground. Look into that option. Taking Skittles to dog training is another good way to give her exposure to dogs, and a trainer will be there to help. When searching for a trainer, let them know the issues that Skittles has. Start training her at home with commands as shown here: https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-great-dane. Also, having her heel when on walks will go a long way to good behavior (dogs do love to train and learn things). Try the Turns Method explained here: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel. Good luck and happy training!

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Ruby and bailey
Maltese
6 Years
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Ruby and bailey
Maltese
6 Years

I have question about my dogs. They were attacked by a dog before.

They doesn’t like dogs now. They are so afraid and fearful to other dogs. They just lunge bark or nearly nip at them.

What can I do to train them? Any advice.
I love my dogs to bits. I want them to be comfortable and happy on walk or anything

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Paula, First, I suggest working on a structured heel and a few obedience commands with each. Turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Next, go somewhere that you can put a lot of space between pup and another dog off in the distance, like a calm spacious park or field with a friend and their well mannered dog. Practice with only one dog at a time at first. Put enough distance between your dog and the other dog for yours to see them but not react poorly. With the other dog in the background far off, practice lots of obedience with rewards, to get pup into a calm, working mindset and focused on you and not the other dog. Practice until pup isn't bothered by the other dog. When pup can handle the dog from that distance, very gradually decrease the distance over a series of training sessions. Don't decrease distance until pup is comfortable at the current distance. When pup can handle the other dog being within twenty feet, practice heeling the two dogs past each other from opposite sidewalks or similar distance. Reward both for focus on their people and staying calm, interrupt any stares or tensing up before it turns into a full blown reaction. Only decrease the distance once pup is calm at the current distance. Expect this to mean walking past each other possibly hundreds of times. End each training session before pup seems to be exhausted or mentally struggling to focus even more. Practice with only one dog at a time, only walking the dogs together around other dogs once both are fine separately. Expect to have to practice some more with the dogs together once they are fine separately because they will feed off of each other's nervous energy and need to learn to take their cues from you while together also. Try to keep your attitude calm and confident. Don't comfort a bad reaction, act nervous, or angry if you can. Try to act the way you want pups to feel. Practice can help you feel confident and calm also, since it can be hard to feel confident at first with reactive dogs. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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amg
Boerboel
1 Year
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amg
Boerboel
1 Year

my dog does not get along with the puppies.it barks,fights,growls at the puppies

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, are the puppies related to Amg? Or are they new puppies you have brought into the home? Either way, it will be important that you do not give Amg access to the puppies at all, to ensure their safety. I would call in a trainer to assess Amg's aggression against the puppies. The trainer can give you advice on how to deal with Amg in the home environment. Socialization with other dogs is extremely important. Group obedience classes are a good way to accomplish that. Look online for trainers in your area and be sure to tell them of Amg's personality issues right off the bat. The Boerboel is a strong breed that is used to working, so make sure that you are taking your dog on lengthy walks every day and providing the opportunity to run and blow off steam. When walking your dog, work on heeling skills to gain control and focus as described here: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel. And to start the obedience training: https://wagwalking.com/training/obedience-train-a-whippet. Lastly, to work on the aggression: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-rottweiler-puppy-to-not-be-aggressive. But seek professional help as well. Good luck!

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Hershey
Chihuahua
3 Years
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Hershey
Chihuahua
3 Years

Hershey can be a bit aggressive towards dogs in my neighborhood. He can be calm at first, letting the dog sniff him, but then tends to start barking afterwards.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Your dog needs to learn new behaviors to quell her fear. First we reduce her fear around new dogs, and then we begin adding cues such as “watch me” or “sit.” Research tells us that most leash reactivity is caused by fear, not by aggression. Dogs bark and lunge at other dogs to warn, “Go away! Go away!” Dogs fear other dogs because of genetic reasons, lack of socialization, fights when they were puppies, or any scary (to the dog) interaction with other dogs. Sometimes having low thyroid levels contributes to unwanted canine behavior. During this time, avoid any punishment for reactivity. Doing so will make her concerns even bigger. Dogs learn by making associations, and you want your dog to associate other dogs with pleasant things — never punishment. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what she is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram her opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage (or somewhere out of the way if those two options aren't possible) with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at her (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell your dog "watch me" every time you see another dog approaching. Your end goal is for your dog to see another dog, and remain calm, looking at you for guidance. And this will be either continuing your walk, or being allowed to interact with the other dog. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thanks for writing in!

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Clinton
hound mix
2 Years
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Clinton
hound mix
2 Years

So I rescued clinton about 2 years ago. He used to live with other dogs and had no issues. Now everytime he sees a dog he goes crazy and tries to assert dominance. How do I fix it so I can have him interact with other dogs again?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Patrick, First, know that just because a dog does well with a couple of dogs they are raised with, that doesn't mean they were socialized with other dogs in general...Think about a person who grew up with family but never left the house...how would they be around strangers? Pup may generally not be good with other dogs because they were never socialized before coming to live with you, so a lot of work in that area might be needed. Do you know how pup does up close with other dogs, or off leash with dogs other than the ones they were raised with? If pup is fine off leash and up close, the issue is probably leash reactivity - which has more to do with the walk on leash and is addressed just in that scenario, and a simpler fix. If pup doesn't do well with dogs in general, the issue is more likely aggression, which will require a more thorough training process to address. I would start by looking for a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area, which is a class for dog reactive/aggressive dogs who all wear basket muzzles in class for safety, and are intensively socialized together. This is a quicker way to make up for some lost socialization if that's what's going on. Introduce the muzzle ahead of time and use a basket one for comfort, so the muzzle doesn't cause any stress for pup. Break this introduction in the video into several sessions, only progressing to pup wearing it more as pup is comfortable and happy to put their face into the muzzle to get the treats. Muzzle introduction video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJTucFnmAbw&list=PLXtcKXk-QWojGYcl1NCg5UA5geEnmpx4a&index=6&t=0s Check out trainers like Thomas from America's Canine Educator on youtube to learn more about aggression. If pup's aggression goes beyond leash reactivity, and especially if you don't have a growl class you can attend, I recommend working with a trainer in person, who specializes in behavior issues like aggression. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Cash
Pit bull
2 Years
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Cash
Pit bull
2 Years

I adopted my dog from a shelter and in his old home he was attacked by 3 other dogs. He LOVES humans but when he gets too close to other dogs he gets aggressive no matter what the size of the other dog.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Your dog needs to learn new behaviors to quell her fear. First we reduce her fear around new dogs, and then we begin adding cues such as “watch me” or “sit.” Research tells us that most leash reactivity is caused by fear, not by aggression. Dogs bark and lunge at other dogs to warn, “Go away! Go away!” Dogs fear other dogs because of genetic reasons, lack of socialization, fights when they were puppies, or any scary (to the dog) interaction with other dogs. Sometimes having low thyroid levels contributes to unwanted canine behavior. During this time, avoid any punishment for reactivity. Doing so will make her concerns even bigger. Dogs learn by making associations, and you want your dog to associate other dogs with pleasant things — never punishment. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what she is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram her opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage (or somewhere out of the way if those two options aren't possible) with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at her (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell your dog "watch me" every time you see another dog approaching. Your end goal is for your dog to see another dog, and remain calm, looking at you for guidance. And this will be either continuing your walk, or being allowed to interact with the other dog. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thanks for writing in!

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Pip
Grayhound
4 Years
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Pip
Grayhound
4 Years

Hello there I have a 4 year old grayhound. He has never bit a dog before but eveytime he gets the chance to greet a dog he is fine and then will turn very quickly and will jump up and bark at the dog. Since this happens alot I have lost the trust in him just incase he does snap. I have started keeping him away from dogs this has to stop. What can I dog

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
225 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Your dog needs to learn new behaviors to quell her fear. First we reduce her fear around new dogs, and then we begin adding cues such as “watch me” or “sit.” Research tells us that most leash reactivity is caused by fear, not by aggression. Dogs bark and lunge at other dogs to warn, “Go away! Go away!” Dogs fear other dogs because of genetic reasons, lack of socialization, fights when they were puppies, or any scary (to the dog) interaction with other dogs. Sometimes having low thyroid levels contributes to unwanted canine behavior. During this time, avoid any punishment for reactivity. Doing so will make her concerns even bigger. Dogs learn by making associations, and you want your dog to associate other dogs with pleasant things — never punishment. The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what she is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram her opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage (or somewhere out of the way if those two options aren't possible) with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at her (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell your dog "watch me" every time you see another dog approaching. Your end goal is for your dog to see another dog, and remain calm, looking at you for guidance. And this will be either continuing your walk, or being allowed to interact with the other dog. Please let me know if you have additional questions. Thanks for writing in!

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Zeus
German Shepherd
5 Years
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Zeus
German Shepherd
5 Years

Zeus is an energetic dog and sometimes he is too energetic. He was always good with dogs and even grew up going to dog parks. Now he isn’t good with dogs but I think he is fine with girl dogs. He is really good with all humans, even babies. I think what might of happened is that when we were at the dog park with two other dogs this dog came up to Zeus and bit his nose and from what I can remember we had to put Zeus on a lead because he wasn’t good with the other two dogs (after he was bitten). When Zeus is concentrating and there are no distractions he is really good at taking orders and is a VERY well trained and smart dog. He used to bark a lot at other dogs but now he doesn’t as much. Zeus pulls a lot on walks too and we have to put a head collar to make it easier to walk him. How can I make him better with dogs and other animals? And how can I help him to not pull so much? If there is more information that I should give that may help, let me know. Thank you.
IMPORTANT
PLEASE CONTACT ME WITH MY EMAIL.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, to start, I would enroll Zeus in dog training. He'll love it and thrive on it. Since he is very smart and receptive to the training, it will be great for him. I suggest the classes because it is a good way to give him socialization with other dogs in a controlled environment with a trainer who can read his body language and move forward based on that. To get him ready for class: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you (read the entire guide for excellent tips). As for the walking on leash, I suggest that you working on training Zeus to heel. His keen mind will happily work as he walks and soon you will be able to replace the head collar with a normal collar, making the walking experience much more pleasant for both you and Zeus. Take a look at all of the methods and work on them as you walk. They do work! https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel. All the best to Zeus!

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Teddy
Patterdale Terrier
5 Years
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Teddy
Patterdale Terrier
5 Years

My dog (Teddy) doesn’t get in with our new puppy (Ronnie). At the moment we have separated the house but we have to walk Ronnie three the house to go to the toilet. This is ok as Ted won’t go for him unprovoked but he will try and block his path. Ted is also very protective over his toys. Ted Ronnie is very keen to play with Ted but as soon as Ronnie tries to initiate play (whilst Ronnie is on a lead) Ted will go to bite him. (He hasn’t yet as we’ve intervened). He’s fine with Ronnie as long as he can pretend he’s not there. Any advice welcome.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Natalie, For the behavior I do recommend hiring a private professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues like aggression to come to your home and work with you in person. The training will likely involve building Teddy's overall respect for you calmly, so that Teddy will better listen to your commands, doesn't view themselves as the one making and enforcing house rules, and can learn some obedience commands that can help the two dogs co-exist. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you I would also reward Teddy whenever Ronnie first enters the room or Teddy is being calm and tolerant, before Teddy does anything aggressive or even intimidating toward pup (don't reward while Teddy is posturing, staring Ronnie down, lifting a lip, or generally being intimidating - you want actual relaxed body language and tolerance). I would work on commands with both dogs to help with management, like a 1 hour place command, Down-Stay, Leave It, and Off commands. Working up to the dogs being able to be on separate Place beds while back tied with leashes long enough to have slack in them, but short enough that they couldn't get to each other if they bolted off Place before you could intervene. Reward calmness while on the beds and interrupt any aggressive or tense body language with the help of your trainer. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Gladys
French Bulldog
5 Years
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Gladys
French Bulldog
5 Years

We have a neutered male chocolate lab who is 7 years old, and a female spayed French bulldog who is 5 years old. The lab is definitely not an alpha male and the Frenchie runs the show. So much so that, when we tried to bring in a male neutered English Bulldog puppy, she did not allow him to assimilate into our family and they ended up fighting. Gladys would not back down when Meatball (the puppy) would put a paw on her back and would constantly race him to the door, etc. The puppy then became more and more aggressive toward her and ultimately, this ended in a huge fight with blood and injuries. We had to surrender the puppy because his personality did not mesh with the other two dogs who have been in our household for years. It was horrible. Traumatic for all of us and very sad for me. The only thing I can think is that his personality was a little bit more aggressive than what I originally thought. He was definitely aggressive to one of the female dogs in the dog park who was a little bit afraid of him. I hope I have done the right thing. But now... we all want to try again with a female English bulldog. What are your thoughts about bringing a female puppy in with these two older dogs? HELP!!!!!!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Annika, I wouldn't recommend adding another dog based on the history unless Glady's dog aggression is improved first. I would see if there is a G.R.O.W.L. class in your area, which is a class for dog aggressive/reactive dogs who are intensively socialized together in a structured environment with the help of the class trainer. I would also have a trainer work with you to gain more trust and respect between you and Glady to prepare pup for letting you make and enforce rules in the home between all the dogs, and listening to directional commands well from you, dealing with any possible resource guarding, possessiveness, or pushiness Glady may have before adding a new addition. Finally, a female dog is actually more likely to lead to confrontation between the dogs than a male. Females tend to fight more than dogs of the same sex, so I wouldn't necessarily prioritize a female. A dog with a more submissive, laid back temperament could help however. You will need to ensure Glady isn't bullying the puppy and creating fear aggression though. It may be possible to add another dog to the household but it will involve a lot of work, management, and the right pup for things to go well. I would pursue training to address Glady's general dog aggression toward dogs she didn't grow up with, as well as work on building trust and respect for you, see how she does after that, before deciding whether to add another dog. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lilly
Mix golden and lab
6 Years
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Question
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Lilly
Mix golden and lab
6 Years

We have a 6 year old dog and a new puppy... our oldest keeps growling at the puppy everytime he approaches her. Suggestions please!?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Chandler, First, I highly suggest crate training the puppy. Almost all puppies will cry the first two weeks of crate training - it is new to them and they have to be given the opportunity to learn to self-sooth and self-entertain to prepare them for environments they will have to be in later and prevent dangerous destructive chewing habits that happen without confinement. Use the Surprise method from the article linked below to gradually help him learn to be calm in the crate and to relax by using rewards for being Quiet. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Once pup is crate trained then life with both dogs can be a lot easier for everyone. Crate pup at night and when you leave, and you can use an exercise pen with some toys in it also. When you cannot directly supervise the dogs together, puppy should be crated or in the pen. When you are supervising, teach both dogs the Out command (which means leave the area) and make whoever is causing issues leave the area as needed. Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Decide what your house rules are for both dogs and you be the one to enforce the rules instead of the dogs. No aggression, no pushiness, no stealing toys, no stealing food, no being possessive of people or things, no bothering another dog when they want to be left alone, or any other unwanted behavior - if one dog is causing a problem you be the one to enforce the rules so that the dogs are NOT working it out themselves. For example, if pup comes over to your older dog when she is trying to sleep, tell pup Out. If puppy obeys, praise and reward him. If he disobeys, stand in front of your older dog, blocking the pup from getting to her, and walk toward pup calmly but firmly until pup leaves the area and stops trying to go back to your older dog. If your older dog growls at your pup, make her leave the room while also disciplining pup for antagonizing if needed. Be vigilant and take the pressure off of your older dog - you want her to learn to look to you when there is a problem, and for puppy to learn respect for your older dog because you have taught it to him and not because your older dog has had to resort to aggression or she has to hide all the time. If you want pup to be free but don't want to chase after him while you are home, you can also clip him to yourself using a six-foot leash, so that he has to stay near you and not wander near your other dog. Whenever puppy enters the room, give your older dog a treat while pup is not looking. Whenever she is calm, relaxed or tolerant of puppy also give her a treat. Try not to let puppy see you rewarding her though so that he doesn’t run over and overwhelm her. Right now your older dog probably needs to feel like you are the one managing puppy, protecting your older dog from him pestering her, and making his appearance pleasant for your older dog. If you can take the pressure off of their relationship and help their interactions to be calmer, then she may adjust to puppy's presence as he grows, especially when he calms down when older. If your older dog is guarding you from puppy, being pushy, or displaying other behavior issues, work on building her respect for you also. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Working method and Consistency method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oscar
Border Collie
8 Months
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Oscar
Border Collie
8 Months

My dog gets aggressive to other dogs. Family have dogs but we can't meet up as oscar just won't get on. He was attacked as a puppy by another dog when he was a puppy.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Liz, I either recommend, looking for a G.R.O.W.L. class within driving distance, which is a class for dog reactive/aggressive dogs, where all the dogs are socialized together in a structured environment while wearing basket muzzles for safety. Or Working with a training group that specializes in behavior issues and has access to a lot of well behaved dogs, like the trainers' dogs, and working on desensitizing and counter conditioning pup to other dogs gradually, through things like the Passing Approach method. Because of the risk of a fight or pup redirecting aggression to whoever is closest, like you, I recommend doing this with professional help and potentially a basket muzzle. This will need to be done carefully, rewarding pup's calm body language, interrupting and refocusing pup back on you when they start tensing up, reacting poorly, or fixating on the other dog, and gradually decreasing the distance only as pup improves. This will need to be practiced around a lot of different dogs, one at a time, moving onto the next one when pup improves around the current dog, so that pup can generalize the new response to other dogs to multiple dogs, not just those dogs they practiced with. Passing Approach, https://wagwalking.com/training/greet-other-dogs Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Honey
Shepherd mix
2 Years
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Honey
Shepherd mix
2 Years

So my dog is young and on Christmas we were going to have my grandparents come over they brought there two dogs that have spent the night at our place with only dominate issues as my grandmas dogs are male which is showing dominate behavior and a female who doesn't care unless my dog honey gets in her face know back to the issue honey and the male got into a brawl upon arrival but that started after the male wasn't happy with my curious baby seeing who it its I just want to have them over and my grandparents not worry about checking on there dogs during a holiday

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Samantha, I recommend reaching out to a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues, who can ask you more questions over the phone, skype or in person, and get a through history of Honey and the other male's previous socialization from you, as well as information about the dogs' body language leading up to the fight, how both dogs usually are with other dogs outside their household, and how the dogs are being managed when together. Honey likely would benefit from more socialization and learning how to back off when dogs send her body language cues that they want more space. That is a common issue with young dogs. The male dog may have issues with tolerance and impulse control. In which case, teaching him to look to the people in the home to handle things he is uncomfortable with could help, instead of him trying to managing Honey's behavior himself with aggression. I would certainly keep the dogs separate when you aren't actively working on introducing them and training them together in the future. Practicing structured heeling walks with the dogs, with each dog being walked by a different person to put space between them, crate training the dogs and having them crated when people are eating, things are chaotic or stressful for the dogs during busy gatherings, or you can't supervise their interactions, and teaching them all a Place command - where each dog goes to their own separate Place bed and stays there to help each dog give the others space and manage interactions can all help future gatherings be more peaceful. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Leia
Chihuahua
3 Years
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Leia
Chihuahua
3 Years

Our dog does not like other dogs bigger than her. We would really like to adopt our foster puppy (lab/hound mix) but Leia growls and snaps every time he is near.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sara, Whenever pup enters the room or your older dog is being especially tolerant and calm around him, give her a treat while puppy isn't watching - you don't want him running over and starting a fight. If your older dog doesn't listen well to you, I recommend working on building her trust and respect for you so that both dogs are following your rules for interacting with each other and letting you handle the any issues instead of resorting to aggression or feeling bullied. Check out the article linked below for some ways to build her trust and respect for you. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you I also recommend you be the one to manage pup and help them learn to respect her space and decrease the stress of their interactions. As part of that, if you haven't already done so, I highly suggest crate training the puppy. Use the Surprise method from the article linked below to gradually help him learn to be calm in the crate and to relax by using rewards for being Quiet. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Crate pup at night and when you leave, and you can use an exercise pen with some toys in it also. When you cannot directly supervise the dogs together, puppy should be crated or in the pen. When you are supervising, teach both dogs the Out command (which means leave the area) and make whoever is causing issues leave the area as needed. You want to reduce some of the stress involved in pup being around. Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Decide what your house rules are for both dogs and you be the one to enforce the rules instead of the dogs. No aggression, no pushiness, no stealing toys, no stealing food, no being possessive of people or things, or any other unwanted behavior - if one dog is causing a problem you be the one to enforce the rules so that the dogs are NOT working it out themselves. For example, if pup comes over to your older dog when she is trying to sleep, tell pup Out. If he obeys, praise and reward him. If he disobeys, stand in front of your older dog, blocking the pup from getting to him, and walk toward pup calmly but firmly until pup leaves the area and stops trying to go back to your older dog. If your older dog growls at your pup, make her leave the room while also giving pup a consequence like leaving if needed. Be vigilant and take the pressure off of your older dog - you want her to learn to look to you when there is a problem, and for puppy to learn respect for your older dog because you have taught it to him and not because your older dog has had to resort to aggression. If you want pup to be free but don't want to chase after him while you are home, you can also clip him to yourself using a six-foot leash, so that he has to stay near you and not wander near your other dog. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Gunner
Labrador Retriever
14 Months
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Gunner
Labrador Retriever
14 Months

Hi. Gunner is very lovable, well-behaved for the most part, very friendly toward all humans, and gets along with our two cats well. However, he doesn't get along with other dogs. When he was about 5 months we took him swimming and there were two other full-grown dogs there. He played in the water fine with them. But since then every time he encounters another, he jumps on them and growls. His tail is not wagging (as if playing) we we quickly pull him back. He has been exposed to my son's bulldog twice, my daughter's golden puppy twice, and all of my neighbor's dogs numerous times, and it's always the same result: we have to restrain him.

Gunner began having seizures at 10 weeks old and is on medications to control them. He has not had one in over 6 months. Could the medication cause his reactions to other dogs, or is this something that we have to keep working on?

Since that first swimming meet and greet, he has not been exposed to any dogs bigger than him. Should we try doing that?

Your thoughts are greatly appreciated!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tony, For further exposures, I would only work on that in the safety of a training set up that keeps all the dogs safe, like a G.R.O.W.L. class. If you can find a class in your area, one of those could be very beneficial for him. They are classes for dog reactive/aggressive dogs who are intensively socialized in the structured environment of the class with each other while wearing basket muzzles for safety and supervised by the trainer. I can't say whether that particular medication could have side effects that show up as aggression. Some medications can cause side effects that lead to increased anxiety or aggression in general but I am not a vet. I would speak with your vet about whether that specific medication could have any side effects related to that. I would also ask your vet if the seizures themselves or any underlying abnormalities that the seizures are a symptom of also may be related to the behavior, and if so, whether that could be addressed with your vet. I am not a vet, so I can't speak toward how the medication or seizures could be related to aggression in your case, but I would ask your vet if I were you. If sounds like either way pup is lacking in socialization, so even if the medication or medical condition is making the aggression worse, a lack of socialization is likely at least part of the issue. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Buster
Boston Terrier
3 Months
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Buster
Boston Terrier
3 Months

This is buster and he's 14 weeks old. He's lovely natured but seems to have a problem settling in his new home with new dogs and doesn't get on with the dogs he lives with. Is there anything that we can try to do with him?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
833 Dog owners recommended

Hello Laura, I would need a bit more information about Buster's behavior around the other dogs to help with anything specific. The following can help facilitate good relationships between dogs in general though. 1. Reward Buster whenever you catch him being especially good when another dog is in the room. Try to do this without the other dogs seeing, so no one else rushes over for a treat also - because others rushing over could cause a food fight and make things worse. 2. Structured heeling walks with two people walking each dog is a good activity to help dogs bond calmly. Practicing obedience exercises with the dogs with two different people, like Down-Stay, Place, Heel, and Sit-Stay to give them something calm and focused to do together, without crowding each other. 3. Give clear boundaries between all the dogs and you be the one to make and enforce rules. Things like no hover around another dog while he eats, no pestering another dog when he wants to be left alone, no stealing another dog's toy, food, or bone, no pushing another dog aside for attention, climbing on top of you or being pushy with you for attention, no intimidating another dog in general, or keeping them out of a space or certain room, no growling or acting aggressive toward another dog, or bullying another dog. If you catch any of the dogs breaking a rule, you be the one to enforce the rule by doing something like making the offender leave the room, give you a stolen toy to be returned to the original dog, ect... 4. Crate train pup, and ideally all the dogs. Give a dog food stuffed chew toy in the crate and have pup spend time there or in an exercise pen when you can't supervise interactions between the dogs right now. 5. Teach Place, and work up to the dogs being able to do a 1 hour Place on separate place beds in the same room, for calm co-existence. 6. Enroll in a puppy class that has time for moderated off-leash play if pup is lacking social skills. Puppies tend to learn best from other puppies. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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