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Old 10-24-2012, 03:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
 

itzme is an unknown quantity at this point
New worrisome behavior.......sorry so long

We have 3 pits, all pure, a male almost 11, and 2 spayed females 9 and 7. We have no issues between dogs or any in regards to them and our kids or neighborhood kids. We just moved into our new house a couple of weeks ago. Our dogs are typically fine with moving-we're a military family- and this is our 3rd home for our 7 yr old, 4th home for our 9 yr old, and 7th for our male.

Our problem concerns our male. His physical health has been deteriorating over the last year. He has developed small tumor growths and arthritis. He still plays, walks/runs, but just gets stiff sometimes. He has always been fine with each move. He doesn't mark the house, or bark at random noises, he eats normally, interacts with us normally. Here's the problem, he has always been extremely friendly with people/strangers regardless of situation-except the vet, until now. He is fine with seeing the neighborhood kids or when they have pet him. Most of our neighbors he has acted normally around. He has growled-a low almost inaudible growl, and his hair stands up, this has happened with one male neighbor repeatedly, a man working on that neighbor's roof-both between 30-40 when I had him on a leash, and a female neighbor-about 55-60, when my husband was walking him on a leash a few days later.

The female neighbor has us most concerned because there was no way it could be explained away that he was in protection mode. When he growls, he doesn't lunge, get louder, or anything else, just growls lowly. He is fine with our male neighbors wife and with our female neighbors husband. We have no clue as to why, or what to do other than avoid potential situations. If he continues or his behavior progresses we will more than likely put him down. We've decided to give it a couple of weeks to see if he is still adjusting, but he has never acted like this with any other move. We live in close quarters to our neighbors and we don't want there to even be a potential for someone to get hurt.

If anyone has any suggestions or advice we would really appreciate it. Thanks.
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Old 10-24-2012, 03:32 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Have his eyes checked. All in all though, I would hit the vet and have them check him out. Dogs in physical distress can appear aggressive.

Also, dogs are a great judge of charector too. It's possible your new neighbors might not be the kind you want to let babysit your kids, if you catch my drift.

Another option would be to walk him during times of low traffic in your area. I walk Ecko early morning and late evening. Most people are inside eating dinner, or leaving for work and school. Less dogs on the road to deal with at those times, and in your case less neighbors. If he's not showing aggression to you or your family, I personally wouldn't have him PTS. If he's in pain, that's a different story.

And thank you for uprooting your life every three to four years to support the military and their defense of our country. It takes a strong family to do that, and I appreciate you for it.
Good luck with the old guy. I hope things work out for you.
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Old 10-24-2012, 04:46 PM   #3 (permalink)
 

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We took him to the vet before we moved and he is fine as far as his eyes and mild arthritis, and the tumor growths. We had him checked to make sure he would be ok for traveling-we came from NC to OH. He wasn't able to find anything that would cause him more than some stiffness. He said our dog was on the downhill side of the mountain and would get worse, but I doubt it's progressed that much in a few weeks. His eyes were good and his hearing was still good, but not perfect.

So far both neighbors are very nice and neither one has done anything to provoke the growling. If it was just him growling at a man when I walked him I wouldn't be too concerned because I usually have our 2 yr old son with me when we walk so he could be being protective. It just seems like a progression that now he is growling at an elderly woman when he is with just my husband.

We are worried he may be starting to show signs of becoming unstable in his old age. My mom had a dog that was raised along with my brothers and me. He was a model dog that was super friendly. He became grumpy in his old age and would growl and snap at strangers so she kept him away from people. My mom had to put him down when she had a late in life baby because he growled and snapped at her when she was a toddler.

Right now I walk him when everyone is still asleep in the morning, when they are at work or school, and then at night once everyone has gone inside for the night.

Thank you for your kind words of appreciation!
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Old 10-24-2012, 05:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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My Mom's dachshund developed dimentia when she got old. It could aslo be a possiblity. Her ears were always set back like she couldn't hear anything, but she could, she just didn't know where she was, or what she was doing. At the age of 18 we finally decided it was time for her to cross the rainbow bridge. She didn't even know who we were, or how to eat anymore.
Just keep a close eye on him. If he starts to show signs, take him on a nice long walk, feed him his favorite thing and let everyone play with him one last time. It's hard watching them grow old.
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