Ok, I'm sorry, but I have been chewing on this all morning and I feel the need to post again
This will be long, bear with me...
Cannon, I'm not trying to pick on you or anything, honest. I can understand and appreciate why you are giving the advice you are. On the surface, to most people, it may seem like good advice. I want to go into more detail on my thinking process as to how I came to the conclusion I did, in hopes you will be able to understand where I
am coming from. Hopefully you'll see I'm not just talking out of my butt here!
I'm going to go into some doggy basics, more for the OP's benefit. I don't want to insult anyone's intelligence, I'm sure a lot of you guys already know this stuff.
What do we know
about this older dog and the situation?
1. He is a 2 year old male possible bully breed mix.
2. There is a possibility of anxiety issues/pain or illness, based on the description of shaking, panting, and hiding.
3. The OP describes a random
, "bad" attack on an 8 month old pup, and random
displays of aggression thereafter.
What can we safely
assume and take away from these things?
1. The dog is now likely a fully mature male bully breed mix. We ALL know this is prime time for DA behaviors to show up.
2. The description, to me, could be interpreted either way to be caused by anxiety or pain. In either case of anxiety or pain, the dog could be feeling very vulnerable. The pup is starting to mature into an adult male, losing his "puppy pass", and is likely, in the dog's mind, becoming a threat to him. (We all know the saying, "fight or flight!") What concerns me is that usually
, the dog who is afraid or in pain will only be aggressive if he feels he is in a situation he cannot escape. In the scenarios from the OP, it seems like the older dog is seeking the younger one out (ex. "our older dog randomly gets close to my puppy starts growling at him").
3. The way the OP keeps talking about the "random"-ness of the incidents, is what suggests to me the dog is unpredictable
If the dog is in pain, the vet check will quickly spot it and correct it.
If the dog is anxious, insecure, I can see why Cannon would suggest trying to build the dog's confidence by having him build some positive associations with other dogs. For the younger dog, this may
not be a bad idea, to help with any bad vibes toward dogs after the attack. I say MAY because I really know almost nothing about the younger dog's temperament.
With the older dog, at first glance, that advice might not look so bad. But the unpredictability, possible mental/medical problems, and the possibility of DA are all big factors at play here.
The fact the older dog is seeking the younger one out to fight to me shows dog reactivity, if not outright DA. The OP seems to be fairly inexperienced with aggressive dogs (hence this topic
). Is this a dog that you want on the street, in public, in the hands of an amateur, with the advice to force
an aggressive (fearful?) animal to submit to another dog invading his space?
Basically: Is the risk to the OP's and someone else's dog worth the reward?
In my opinion........ no. I think the OP needs help from a professional who can lay eyes and hands on the dog, and give OP the tools he/she needs to manage the situation. All we have is a single post to go on! Assuming everything OP wrote is true, I think it would be completely irresponsible to suggest anything OTHER than a professional.