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Thread: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

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    Arts'y bulldog farts'y Become a 4 Paw Member ModernFemme's Avatar
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    Exclamation My eyes are bugging out of my head!! Help!!!

    Remi loves to torment one of my favorite cats. This cat recently will go after him if he gets too close. Remi of course loves it and thinks it's a huge game. When I feel my cat has had enough, I will open the sun room (which is a bit chilly this time of year) and let the cat go through the small opening of the sliding door, which obviously Remi can't fit through.This morning however, as I open the door and lift up my foot to signal I didn't want Remi to pass that boundary, Remi growled!!! It was more like a snarl, but, but it's only something I've heard come out of him when he was attacked once at a dog park. Regardless, this is completely out of character for him. I don't even really know what he was snarling at, but I'm guessing it was me. It was, however, just the one time and he wasn't making eye contact. My baby is 5 months. We make him work for everything. We constantly establish ourselves as dominants, which the exception of allowing him up on a section of the couch. For example, if he is going after the cat and pissing him off, I will put myself in front of the cat and stare him down a bit until Remi backs off and won't meet my eyes, and either sits or lays down. Is this growl a sign that I need to be working harder? I'm thinking I need to get him into obedience training ASAP. We have trained him, and continue to train him, on basic commands, always working his brain, but it just feels like his personality is changing on me. The can of coins and nos aren't working nearly as well. In some cases he ignores them. Any suggestions??? Help!!!! The idea of Remi turning into an aggressive/dominant dog is terrifying to me!!
    Last edited by ModernFemme; 12-10-2012 at 02:14 PM.



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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Well I am no expert whatsoever but classes couldn't hurt anyhow right? Cutty and Miila can both be vocal at times but r not aggressive. Like Cutty will grumble as we call it, when I bust him for say eating my 1 year olds food and send him out of the kitchen. He started with aggression issues when he was just over a year. I didn't have this forum for the great advice I got with Miila so didn't handle it the way I should have I am sure. Thankfully getting him neutered changed him back almost 99% I would say. He will still grumble from time to time but never bite or anything. He is all show and does listen with that teenaged asking back attitude. Miila every once in a while will act like she wants to growl over me telling her what to do and I submit her instantly. I think for her it is a little reminder she needs of where he is in the pack. I think going thru Miilas aggression when she came here has me more on top of her for any slip up. I know what she can revert to and that is not an option, so that's why I submit for the drop of anything if I need to. Still something I only have to do once every few months if that.

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    The Ultimate Sourmug Sherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    I never liked the can of coins, it makes them jumpy. I like the calm and assertive approach. I would definitely say classes are in order, he's at a great age for it. And the owner of the dog learns how to achieve desired behavior.
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ModernFemme View Post
    My baby is 5 months. We make him work for everything. We constantly establish ourselves as dominants, which the exception of allowing him up on a section of the couch. For example, if he is going after the cat and pissing him off, I will put myself in front of the cat and stare him down a bit until Remi backs off and won't meet my eyes, and either sits or lays down.
    I'm not sure what you mean by "stare him down" but from what I've learned both in training classes and reading books to establish yourself as the Alpha in the pack is the energy and confidence displayed, to stare him down would be a "challenge" in the dog world but since I'm not there to see it I can't really know what you mean, I picture you standing over or in front of him staring until he backs off ... to me that isn't the way I would do it, if trying to move him away from the cat I would do my verbal "ATAT" sound and would choose to do what is called the body block approach, so it would be like this: "ATAT" then I would put myself in between the two and block him from his target (i.e. the cat) and slowly walk him backwards, I tend to use a lot of visual commands I point to where I want my dog to go and most of my cue is done from that simple ATAT point and calm but assertive energy. hope this is of some help!
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    Lucy-licious
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    It could be a sign of over dominance on your part...Its a very fine line that we walk as good pawrents and being over dominant can cause a fear responce that is similar to agression. That he didn't show eye contact makes me feel this is more lkely than him trying to dominate you xx
    I am a very dominant person in this household and have had a few minor problems with Lucy...after much reading I learned that I was the problem and needed to correct my behaviour and be less dominant with her. It worked...just less growly and less shouty on my part...a more calm and soft, firm approached has worked wonders xx

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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherry View Post
    I never liked the can of coins, it makes them jumpy. I like the calm and assertive approach. I would definitely say classes are in order, he's at a great age for it. And the owner of the dog learns how to achieve desired behavior.
    ^^^^^ agreed.
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    Arts'y bulldog farts'y Become a 4 Paw Member ModernFemme's Avatar
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    @Sherry, @cali~jenn, @Lucy-licious - Thanks so much for all your comments! A little bit more information:

    The can of coins has worked wonders for us, but it's really only used when Remi is causing us physical pain; some of you may remember a couple of months back when he used to nip so hard he'd draw blood and cause me bruising for weeks. He was relentless. No's and yelping did nothing, didn't even phase him. Distracting with toys did nothing. The can of coins was literally the only thing that worked. (And I totally stand by this) I've recently tried the ATATAT (not consistently, because I stopped when I realized he wasn't responding) and shhhhht (since day 1, did nothing) noises, but Remi appears unphased. He won't even look at you. But, what I probably didn't explain very well is that the can really had no part in this particular issue. I can just tell he's beginning to become "desensitized" to it in general. And getting bolder in his approach in trying to dominate members of his family.

    I've done a ton of reading, and no book I've gotten my hands on really seems to explain how to radiate this calm and assertive behavior. I rarely shout at Remi, and I always try to radiate patience and an unwavering firmness. I know I have to be consistent and mean what I say, and that I'm the one in charge. I definitely don't feel like Remi is afraid of me at all. (He's snuggin' me on the couch as I write this) But... read on...

    What I often do is body block. He will try to get around me, and I will just keep moving so he can't. I definitely meet his eyes, and he will often meet mine, and then he will eventually look away, sit, or give me space. I usually stand with my arms crossed. Looking at this from all your perspectives, I am beginning to wonder if this is too hostile of an approach.

    Side note: Our last family dog (when I was living with the 'rents) was a husky, and with them, you constantly have to establish yourself as the alpha, and you sometimes had to do it physically (just to clarify, we're not talking alpha roll here... ha ha ha.) but you would be good for a few weeks before the next challenge. What I find strange is that EBD actually seem to be more challenging than huskies in that sense. One a husky respects you as leader, you can go for a while without having to remind them. With Remi, it's kind of exhausting. Maybe I just don't remember much of the husky's puppy years.

    @[replacer_a], are you saying that when I meet Remi's eyes, I'm actually saying in dog speak that he's the one in charge and I'm challenging him??! Woah.

    Any suggestions on how I can be more calm?? LOL!!!!! You guys know I overthink everything.
    Last edited by ModernFemme; 12-09-2012 at 08:02 PM. Reason: side notes



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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ModernFemme View Post
    @[replacer_a], are you saying that when I meet Remi's eyes, I'm actually saying in dog speak that he's the one in charge and I'm challenging him??! Woah.
    Yes, direct eye contact is a challenge to an alpha dog.... since it does not sound like he is 'alpha' and just trying to push the limits and he is the one to look away says he knows you are the boss however, i would not use that technique - too chancy. The body blocking is not a bad thing... just you may not need to be as assertive as you are with a husky. we need to do this with Banks a lot as she thinks she IS alpha so we need to be more assertive with her. we body block a lot with her and most dogs as she is just soooooo hit or miss.
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    Arts'y bulldog farts'y Become a 4 Paw Member ModernFemme's Avatar
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by 2BullyMama View Post
    Yes, direct eye contact is a challenge to an alpha dog.... since it does not sound like he is 'alpha' and just trying to push the limits and he is the one to look away says he knows you are the boss however, i would not use that technique - too chancy. The body blocking is not a bad thing... just you may not need to be as assertive as you are with a husky. we need to do this with Banks a lot as she thinks she IS alpha so we need to be more assertive with her. we body block a lot with her and most dogs as she is just soooooo hit or miss.
    Screw it. Next time I need to be calm and assertive, I'm going to try to channel the energies of both Buddha and Dr. House.



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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by ModernFemme View Post
    What I often do is body block. He will try to get around me, and I will just keep moving so he can't. I definitely meet his eyes, and he will often meet mine, and then he will eventually look away, sit, or give me space. I usually stand with my arms crossed. Looking at this from all your perspectives, I am beginning to wonder if this is too hostile of an approach.
    @[replacer_a], are you saying that when I meet Remi's eyes, I'm actually saying in dog speak that he's the one in charge and I'm challenging him??! Woah.

    Any suggestions on how I can be more calm?? LOL!!!!! You guys know I overthink everything.
    I did not mean to upset you, that's why I said I'm not sure how this "stare him down" was meant and since I've never seen you do it I can only go by "what I picture in my head from reading it" so with that being said let me try to explain.... There is a BIG difference between looking your dog in the eyes and what I perceive as "staring a dog down" making eye contact with your dog is not a bad thing unless you do it in the wrong way. If your dog growls AT you, at that very moment he is giving a dominate challenge and if your response is given with assertive dominance and you "stare into his eyes" that would be a challenge. at the same time if you respond with a calm assertive approach, look at him and simply disagree with him that would not be a challenge that would be an Alpha member saying settle down. Its seriously all in the approach you use .... never get angry and respond with any kind of leadership, your dog will not respect that, but rather take a deep cleansing breath, and calmly correct the situation.

    Again, I never meant to upset you!!
    I suffer from "M.B.S." (Multiple Bulldog Syndrome)
    because one bulldog is NEVER enough!!

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    Arts'y bulldog farts'y Become a 4 Paw Member ModernFemme's Avatar
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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by bulldogs4me View Post
    I did not mean to upset you, that's why I said I'm not sure how this "stare him down" was meant and since I've never seen you do it I can only go by "what I picture in my head from reading it" so with that being said let me try to explain.... There is a BIG difference between looking your dog in the eyes and what I perceive as "staring a dog down" making eye contact with your dog is not a bad thing unless you do it in the wrong way. If your dog growls AT you, at that very moment he is giving a dominate challenge and if your response is given with assertive dominance and you "stare into his eyes" that would be a challenge. at the same time if you respond with a calm assertive approach, look at him and simply disagree with him that would not be a challenge that would be an Alpha member saying settle down. Its seriously all in the approach you use .... never get angry and respond with any kind of leadership, your dog will not respect that, but rather take a deep cleansing breath, and calmly correct the situation.

    Again, I never meant to upset you!!
    I'm totally not upset! Please, no offense was taken. I'm just trying to figure out the best thing I can do for an awesome relationship with my bully. I realize not all bullys are the same, but I definitely come to you guys for a good starting point. Thanks for all your help, girly!



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    Default Re: My eyes are bugging out of my head!!s Help!!!

    With Miilas have done the stare down.mainly when she has crossed the line, like if causing a near bicker etc. in the case where I feel she needs reminded of her place I will pin and stare her in her eyes while pinned. Only have done this a could times when she has gone beyond the point and it seems to work in this instance. BUT she was challenging her role as alpha and that was a problem. I wish I was better at this stuff,I just know what worked when we had problems and our problems weren't this. Now with Cutty even when being cute and sweet when he was young nothing caught his attention until I started with a AUGHT type of sound.hard to write it in word tho. Is is the sound I still make when they are busted and they always respond but until this sounds was completely ignored.maybe a diff loud sound will help? Also I do think with Miila I knew the damage she could do,having been bitty her already.i wasn't afraid in the slightest and she knew that so she had no choice but to respond. Had Cutty challenged me back in the day I am not sure I would have had that confidence Nd things could have been much diff. Thankfully we never had that problem occur or who knows where we would be.

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