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Dog Biting

edited 2 June 2019 at 8:24PM in Pets & Pet Care
17 replies 3.1K views
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  • seven-day-weekendseven-day-weekend Forumite
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    Personally I think the rescue idea is the best, if they will take a biter.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
    Member #10 of £2 savers club
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology: Terry Eagleton
  • edited 2 June 2019 at 9:56PM
    elsienelsien Forumite
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    edited 2 June 2019 at 9:56PM
    She is willing to do that, by putting him in the other room, but as she says herself that is not addressing the problem. Although she is 80 she is not a frail old lady, she has all her wits about her. I did notice that if he growled or raised his lip, she pulled him to her and stroked him - I know this was to stop him jumping off and biting, but I think to the dog that is reinforcing the bad behaviour. He is getting positive attention for growling.

    She is mortified, she seems more upset about him biting me than anyone else, she was in tears on the phone.

    Letting him stay and bite you isn't addressing the problem either, and you're right that she is reinforcing the behaviour. It's no use crying about him biting when it's happened before but she's still letting him loose to do it again. She'd be better teaching a settle command and having him on the lead while guests are there so she can reinforce sensible behaviour and intervene before he gets a bite in.
    Tell her to look for a trainer who has proper qualifications.
    These
    http://www.apdt.co.uk
    Or similar - there's another one but I don't remember the name.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
  • seven-day-weekendseven-day-weekend Forumite
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    Thanks all for your help, I will pass on the advice and the links.
    (AKA HRH_MUngo)
    Member #10 of £2 savers club
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology: Terry Eagleton
  • onwards&upwardsonwards&upwards Forumite
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    Personally I think the rescue idea is the best, if they will take a biter.

    Lots will, try as many as possible, big and small.
  • sherambersheramber Forumite
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    It sounds like the family were passing on their problem dog.

    The advice a behaviourist gives needs to be followed by your friend for it to work. There is no magic solution to behavioural problems. It takes time and dedication.

    A rescue that has access to a behaviourist would be the best choice. There is a breed rescue who could be approached as well.
  • TomokoAdhamiTomokoAdhami Forumite
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    Proper training and use of the collar or harness could keep him away from bitting.
  • Soot2006Soot2006 Forumite
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    What a sad situation for your friend to be in. Firstly, is the dog what she wants/needs in every other way?


    If not, then I think it's time to find him a more suitable home.



    If he is what she wants the rest of the time:



    Firstly, I'd recommend joining a local positive (R+) dog training group and starting weekly classes. Be honest about the nipping and maybe have a one to one before the first class. Consistent training (of the owner :p ) will really help instill a better relationship between them. Get recommendations from local dog owners, Facebook, etc. Avoid any club that uses aversive methods or too many dogs per class.



    Secondly, avoid avoid avoid the situation. Replace the idea of "biting" with "anxiety" and don't put the dog in that position. The dog needs to be protected (from itself) and that means not being able to access people in order to nip them. Teach the dog a safe space - crate or a whole room. Lots of advice for teaching settle online. Dog can go to his safe space when visitors are in the house. My own terrier is NEVER allowed to greet visitors. He stays in the kitchen for 30 minutes and then IF HE IS CALM, he can leave the kitchen on a LEAD, and be in the same room as the visitors. He doesn't get to approach them and they don't get to interact with him. When he's been around someone a few times, we up the ante with reward based proximity training and "say hello" training (for him, that just means looking at a person and NOT reacting - after some time, he can go and sniff. I would never allow him to approach and sniff someone he cannot be relaxed near or someone I don't trust myself!)


    Finally, join Reactive Dogs (UK) Facebook group for some layperson advice on how to use counter conditioning to help this dog in the long term. Incidentally, they also hold a database of the best trainers, recommended by users.



    Good luck; they're usually worth it ;).
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