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I've been a reader on this forum for 8ish months, but first time posting. Love bully breeds and I'm in need of some advice or insight. I really tried not writing a novel here. I rescued Riley at 5 months old, so I don't know his bloodline. All I know if he's quite the firecracker. I have another 13 year-old neutered, pit bull mix (Jake) whom I've had since 8 weeks of age. He's the sweetest boy and has never shown any concerning issues. Riley is now approaching 2 years of age and we've had the first real incident. Some backstory on him: at around 9 months old, he started developing leash aggression/reactivity, which I jumped getting a handle on immediately by going to a trainer (2 actually). He's not perfect but can greet other dogs on leash without a problem (as long as the other dog doesn't show any aggression) and we can enjoy hikes together. Riley has also been pretty well socialized with several dogs outside the household. He gets daily exercise: a walk before and after work and in the warmer months, I ride the bike with him running for 3-4 miles. He's a sweet guy too who I love dearly. The incident involved letting the 2 dogs run and play in some wide open wilderness (as is a norm for us), Riley was being rambunctious and nipped Jake during some aggressive play that Jake wanted nothing to do with. Jake reiterated by lunging at Riley aggressively (but didn't bite) and Riley grabbed him. He had Jake's head in his mouth and the fight ensued. We were able to get them separated (after laying on and punching Riley in the abdomen in an attempt to knock the wind out of him). Jake had only a few puncture wounds and Riley had no bites. It felt like it lasted so long, but in reality was less than 5 minutes. Once Riley let go, he didn't try to go after Jake again and they've been fine ever since. I now, of course, am not leaving them together unsupervised. I'm considering getting a basket muzzle for Riley for use during excess stimulation times, aka play. He plays very rough with a couple buddies he's grown up with (husky and American bulldog) and honestly, I'm always a little nervous it's going to escalate but never does, as his play buddies do not have an aggressive temperament whatsoever. My observation is he seems to be fine as long as the other dog shows no aggression, but the moment he's senses aggression, he reacts instantly. Any thoughts on the muzzle? I feel like it would be great to train him to be ok with it as a precaution. I've gotta do whatever I can to try and curve this attitude. Thanks for reading.
Here's a link to photo on flickr. (I couldn't get anything to upload here) -
https://www.flickr.com/gp/[email protected]/4ZY14J
 

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What Joe said and also purchase a break/parting stick so you don't have to punch your dog next time they get into a scuffle.
 
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