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New agression in family dog

  1. #1

    New agression in family dog

    I have two dogs a german shepard/lab mix and a catahoula/pit mix. I rescued both as puppies and they have grown up together, they are only a year apart (my catahoula being younger, age 4).

    Per common catahoula traits my dog Lexi has always tested boundaries and has tried to be top dog over her older sister. I have tried to make sure that the hierarchy is always practiced (my other dog always gets fed dinner/ treats first while both receive equal affection. This past weekend my two got into it outside (my shepard loves to run and play constantly while my catahoula does not so my catahoula will sometimes snap at her older sister if she has had enough). Well my shepard comes in slightly limping and has a puncture wound on her front leg. I figure that ok, it was probably an over reaction on my catahoulas part and I need to adjust their exercise time. They have been perfectly fine for days until tonight when I came home after only being gone 3 hours and my poor shepard has a two other puncture wounds (big ones) on the same leg, in the same spot. My husband has taken her to the vet and I am just so distraught. We love both our dogs but we just dont understand why our catahoula has become so aggressive and we are worried about what will happen next time we are gone. This catahoula is also very distructive, no matter what we do (toys, running her around, affection) she just likes to get into trouble and try to break into the house when are gone. Someone please help, my husband is ready to rehome her but I feel so guilty but we also canít put our other dog (and our young children) in any danger. Let me mention she has never shown aggression to my children but I am also very careful and never leave them alone with the dogs.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    6,024
    nothing fights like two females. I've had shepherds for years and only once have I had two females at the same time, eventually they learned to co exist but they never liked each other. The newer shepherd was a rescue who had been badly abused and was very submissive but when the older one started being aggressive the younger one didn't back down which led to problems, my older one was 14 and the younger one less than two, I worried because the young dog was bigger, stronger and much younger and she could have hurt the old girl. But she didn't, she just let her know she was not going to be bullied.

    At first I crated the younger one when I wasn't home, she liked the crate so it wasn't an issue, but the longer I had her the less she wanted to be in the crate, so the troublemaker was crated for a time out. She got to realize when she started a fight she would be crated and she hated it so eventually they co existed. They never liked each other but they did learn to co exist but I never left them alone together.

    So that being said you may have to crate one that starts trouble. It will take a while but she will learn that if she can't be good she will be crated. The only other alternative is rehoming but that should be a last resort. Even females brought up together will come to a point when they decide they don't like each other, so its nothing you did or didn't do, it just is.

    If you don't want to crate one can you gate them off in separate rooms? Put a blanket over the gate so they can't even see each other. Sometimes just the sight of each other can bring on a fight
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    10,911
    So sorry to hear you're having such a problem, I would be very worried too. It is excellent that you always fed the Shepherd first, as she is the dog who was first in your home. I feel bad also that she has been attacked more than once by your Catahoula. She may need even more exercise than she's getting, and possibly being confined to a separate run while you're away to keep your other dog safe.

    You're wise to think of your children, even though nothing yet has happened, she may only be going after your Shepherd, but you never know. I don't blame your husband for wanting to rehome her, that would be on anyone's mind in that situation.

    Sorry I don't have any more advice to offer, maybe someone else here has more input for you. Until you decide on what's best for your family, please just keep the dogs apart if you're not home to supervise, maybe the Shepherd can stay in the house and Lexi can stay outside when alone? Will post again here if I think of anything that may help you in your situation.....welcome to the forum.

    I agree with Linda that same sex may be an issue with the Catahoula, and bring out aggression.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    6,024
    The problem with rehoming her knowing of her "problem" you would have to tell the new owner all about her behavior and have them sign a waver releasing you from any potential lawsuit if things get out of hand and she causes some real damage. If you don't get a signed agreement between you and the new owners you could be held liable for her actions if they or someone else ever tried to sue you
    he is your friend and protector, he will love you unconditionally, you owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion

Please reply to this thread with any new information or opinions.

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