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    1. #1
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      SamsonsMom's Avatar
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      Reactive Behavior

      I'm putting this in the puppy thread since Mr. Asher isn't two yet (will be two 11/17). He's still my little puppy

      I had a contractor come out yesterday to give me a quote for siding on my house. I went outside before he knocked and while out, I heard Asher barking like a mad man and bit differently than normal -- he had a certain desperation in the bark. I was out there 15 minutes. I came back in and he had ripped apart his bed and managed to pull my fleece throw between the bars and ripped it apart...in 15 minutes. Just let me say this was Samson's bed and it was 150 bucks. Mamma not too happy little boy ripped apart brothers very expensive bed. Have had that bed for 4 years. What the hell was that? My guess he heard the mans voice and us talking and the only way he could release his frustration is by ripping apart his bed?

      Admittedly, I do not get visitors often at all. I've had contractors through the house with Asher and Samson but after the initial bark off, they are fine. I believe what I described above is why the pet sitter didn't work well for Asher. This is the first time he has done this that I have witnessed.

      Any training or anything I could do to help prevent future occurrences?

    2. #2
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      Was Samson in the house with him? Was there any altercation? (this would be my main concern for if/when he goes "off" unless Samson got out of his way...and his rage hopefully wouldn't be totally redirected)

      That just strikes me as very odd...but I've never had a dog with any negative tendencies toward humans. Even Dan's dog-directed reactivity is calm...he'll do a sit/stay two feet away while I pet (just doesn't want the dog in his face).

      I hope somebody has some advice for you.

      Oh, wait....wait, wait, wait....

      Is he presently on an anti-inflammatory? Check for side effects. I know Rimadyl can cause aggressive behavior.
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    3. #3
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      Regardless of why it happened, watch him to make sure he didn't reinjure himself during that.

      Danny has kicked in sore hind end issues merely playing tug-of-war with Sunnie and our male Akita reinjured his knee rearranging his bed.

    4. #4
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      He was in his crate at the time. When I came in, he sat down. I opened the crate and his butt was rotating like nothing was wrong. I let him out and he was fine. Fine since. No injuries, just the bed. Went for our walk later in the day and he did great. We go for injections Thursday and I'll talk to the surgeon or intern about it. Very odd indeed.

      I don't think it was his reaction to the human, I think it was the fact I was outside talking to someone and he couldn't see me? I may ask a neighbor for assistance and try the same again but then let the neighbor come in. Asher loves all people.

      Edited to add..... The more I sit here and think about it the more Rimadyl is worrying me. My pet sitter handled Asher since he was 8 weeks old. She didn't start having issues with him until earlier this year. He started on Rimadyl earlier this year. Definitely something I need to take seriously.
      Last edited by SamsonsMom; 08-26-2018 at 01:17 PM.

    5. #5
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      It almost sounds like he has a canine version of FOMO(fear of missing out). “I can hear you having fun and I’m not part of it and it’s awful!!!” In which case, maybe it’s a variant of separation anxiety rather than reactive behavior? I tend to think of reactive as aggression, so SA at least sounds less scary.
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    6. #6
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      This sounds like a reaction the dog can't help and therefore, unless you can put in a ton of time with different people, you might look at a management scenario vs. trying to fix it. It sounds like the dog tends toward anxiety or stressing up quite a bit. In addition to management (crate/pen to keep him safe, with no access to anything he can pull inside the bars), you might look at more mental exercise for this dog, physical as well, when he's healthy again.

    7. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by SamsonsMom View Post
      I'm putting this in the puppy thread since Mr. Asher isn't two yet (will be two 11/17). He's still my little puppy

      I had a contractor come out yesterday to give me a quote for siding on my house. I went outside before he knocked and while out, I heard Asher barking like a mad man and bit differently than normal -- he had a certain desperation in the bark. I was out there 15 minutes. I came back in and he had ripped apart his bed and managed to pull my fleece throw between the bars and ripped it apart...in 15 minutes. Just let me say this was Samson's bed and it was 150 bucks. Mamma not too happy little boy ripped apart brothers very expensive bed. Have had that bed for 4 years. What the hell was that? My guess he heard the mans voice and us talking and the only way he could release his frustration is by ripping apart his bed?

      Admittedly, I do not get visitors often at all. I've had contractors through the house with Asher and Samson but after the initial bark off, they are fine. I believe what I described above is why the pet sitter didn't work well for Asher. This is the first time he has done this that I have witnessed.

      Any training or anything I could do to help prevent future occurrences?
      So the last time you had a contractor out, they came in the house and both dogs could see/meet them, right? I know Labradors are not the most protective breed in the world, but they can be aware of someone they don't know, that they can't see. He may have thought you were in trouble with a person he didn't know, and he had to save you. I would make sure to introduce the dogs to new people at the house, I do, and as soon as my dogs know the "alpha bitch" (me) is okay with whomever is over, my gurls are fine.

      Sounds like he may have a bit of separation anxiety too, maybe a professional trainer/behaviorist can give you some pointers. I know that early socialization to visitors is important, and impulse control when people visit, even if you have to leash or crate them initially. My dogs get excited when someone comes over, then they all settle and find a place to lie down.

    8. #8
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      Yea, it wasn't aggressive -- more anxiety related.

      I like to think I give him enough mental stimulation. I try to do more of that since the poor guy has been physically restricted since March. Past 3 weeks we have walked daily and he has been swimming for 30 minutes twice a week. He works for his treats and meals and we do games. He is actually more attentive to the mental games than Samson. Samson doesn't have the patience for it! lol I will try to do better.

      Contractors come through the house and they get excited but settle. Asher has never acted out of the ordinary. This time, I didn't invite the contractor in. When I opened the door he said hello and Asher heard his voice...then I went out and closed the door. Thinking about it, delivery people have come to the door and he's fine. I was just out front mowing the lawn and sweeping and he knew I was out there. Didn't make a sound.

    9. #9
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      Oh, good....glad it didn't seem aggressive.

      Maybe he just got excited, started pulling, and then decided it was so much fun that he kept going. Frustration from recent restriction probably did play a part. Maybe it was like indoor, restricted, zoomies or something.

      I'm glad it doesn't seem as if he hurt himself.

    10. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by SunDance View Post
      Oh, good....glad it didn't seem aggressive.

      Maybe he just got excited, started pulling, and then decided it was so much fun that he kept going. Frustration from recent restriction probably did play a part. Maybe it was like indoor, restricted, zoomies or something.

      I'm glad it doesn't seem as if he hurt himself.
      Me too. That's all he needs. I think we turning the corner on his elbows so he just needs to keep it together for me.

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