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Thread: Any tips for overcoming ball obsession/aggression?

  1. #1
    Pooper scooper BoscosMom's Avatar
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    Default Any tips for overcoming ball obsession/aggression?

    For the past couple of months, Bosco has become OBSESSED with balls. Since he's been a puppy he's been obsessed with balls, but I feel like its gotten worse. For example, when going for walks and he sees a ball on someones lawn, he'll run towards it with full force, pulling my arm out of its socket in the process.

    But the worst is when we take him to the dog park. He is extremely athletic and fast, and can outrun most of the labs and german shepherds at the park. So when someone comes with a ball, he'll outrun all of the dogs, grab the ball and hold on to it. WHen other dogs come near him, even to sniff or say hello, he growls at them and runs off. Most of the dogs back off, but on a few occasions, some dogs have reciprocated the aggression and I fear a fight will happen one day.

    This has gotten extremely annoying and I feel like we can't take him to the dog park anymore. It sometimes takes us 30 minutes + to catch him and take the ball back. Any tips on how to overcome this? I feel like we've tried everything and he can't shake this bad behaviour.

  2. #2
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    2BullyMama's Avatar
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    Default Re: Any tips for overcoming ball obsession/aggression?

    These can be tough ones to fix.... work with him at home on 'leave it' and 'drop'... find a very high valued reward for him, dried liver, small pieces of steak... something he will forget about the ball and want what you have instead. this will take a LOT of time and patence on your part.

    use the 'nothing in life is free' training tool as well... make sure all household members and doing the same commands and be consistent. Also, and most important, do not take the ball and put it away or throw it away where he can not see it or then do not return it to him at some point. Do short sessions of taking the ball, let him see you place it somewhere... wait a few minutes then give it back. Teach him that the ball is his when you say it is and make sure he knows it is not GONE... that will result in toy/ball aggression, which is what you are trying to avoid this growing into.

    good luck... consistency is your best friend here
    There is a part of your heart not alive until a bulldog has entered your lif

    Nitschke (2004-2011) and Banks (2005-2014) -- My angels
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