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Overprotective dog issues
07-25-2013, 08:22 AM,
#1
hollyleann Offline
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Overprotective dog issues
I have recently noticed a change in my young male dogs attitude towards some other dogs and strangers whilst walking.
The only thing I can associate with his sudden change in behavior is that I am now expecting a baby.
He is a wonderful dog and friendly to all people and other dogs the majority of the time, only occasionally he seems to get a little overprotective of me and I am not sure how I can reassure him that everything is ok?

Is there anybody else who has had a similar problem and is it because he can sense I am maybe more vulnerable now than before?
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07-25-2013, 09:07 AM,
#2
Death2Housework Offline
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RE: Overprotective dog issues
First, is your dog neutered? A growing male puppy eventually hits adulthood and that's when the Alpha starts kicking in. If he isn't, I would suggest it. If he is, then maybe you are giving off vulnerability vibes and he feels he needs to protect you. For what ever reason, that seems to be an issue you will want to work on. I'd suggest a calm low voice. Don't tense up in preparation for an incident, stay as calm as if you know there won't be one. Don't let the dog out in front to greet anyone first. He should be at your side not leading the way. Make sure you really watch for any sign of escalation and a short sharp tug on the leash as a correction at the first sign. Snap him out of it and get his attention on you. If he likes treats, maybe have one in hand, just to waft past his nose to keep him focused on something besides the big bad intruder. Good luck!
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07-26-2013, 12:03 AM,
#3
hollyleann Offline
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RE: Overprotective dog issues
Thanks Death2Housework for your reply.
I have tried many times to snap him out of it and stay calm but I know sometimes I find that hard to do as it can be embarrassing because he is a large breed dog and other people become scared.

I will definitely keep working on it and try the treat idea; hopefully we will find a balance soon Smile
He is such a loving, sweet and friendly dog that I believe it is all just for show and I hate to think that people think he is a bad dog because it is just not the case.
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08-17-2013, 02:07 PM,
#4
bluekittymama Offline
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RE: Overprotective dog issues
(07-25-2013, 09:07 AM)Death2Housework Wrote: First, is your dog neutered? A growing male puppy eventually hits adulthood and that's when the Alpha starts kicking in. If he isn't, I would suggest it. If he is, then maybe you are giving off vulnerability vibes and he feels he needs to protect you. For what ever reason, that seems to be an issue you will want to work on. I'd suggest a calm low voice. Don't tense up in preparation for an incident, stay as calm as if you know there won't be one. Don't let the dog out in front to greet anyone first. He should be at your side not leading the way. Make sure you really watch for any sign of escalation and a short sharp tug on the leash as a correction at the first sign. Snap him out of it and get his attention on you. If he likes treats, maybe have one in hand, just to waft past his nose to keep him focused on something besides the big bad intruder. Good luck!

I agree with everything said - especially the neutering! I would also add don't reassure the dog when he acting overprotective. No petting and baby talking as though you are rewarding him; he could take it as encouragement. It can also encourage his Alpha mentality. If these suggestions don't help check out dog training classes. Over-protectiveness is something you would want to get under control before the baby is born. Good luck!
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08-20-2013, 03:57 PM,
#5
nonsiccus Offline
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RE: Overprotective dog issues
As the other posters have mentioned, fixing your dog if you haven't already is a solution that you definitely want to look at. It will definitely make your dog less aggressive by way of removing testosterone from his system. Once neutered, a dog's aggressive tendencies will diminish quite a bit and he will hopefully be less problematic around strangers.

That being said, dogs will often take cues from their owners. The way that you carry yourself when you're around other people can speak volumes to a dog. If you look apprehensive, or withdrawn while speaking to a stranger the dog could misinterpret it as the stranger causing you to be uncomfortable. (Whether or not this is the case is up to you, but it might be what the dog sees.) The dog would then protect you as a member of its pack by essentially telling the stranger to "back off".

Check your dog, but also check that your posturing and attitude isn't being reflected by your dog.
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