My husband and i recently got a 1 year old Lab to keep our current 2 year old lab a playmate & company during the day. Although the two dgos get along well, our new dog and my husband are not. OUr new dog came from a house with two children and a woman/man married couple. She had no problems with her previous owner (male) and *according to them* has never had other problems with men. But she refuses to go near my husband and will actually growl and try to hide from him, either behind me or another object. She wont even let him put her outside to potty. Help!!!
Type of Animal: Dog
Pet's Gender: Female
Pet's Age: 1
Name of Dog: Labrador
Letting her sniff his hand, him giving treats, him feeding, him letting them outside, me ignoring her when she growls, me standing in front of her when she growls and saying "NO"
You are going to have to change the way you treat this dog. He considers you his master, but does not feel your husband is and thus feels he is able to boss him around. However, he might also have been abused by a man and thus is leary around your husband. The growling may be her way of warning him to keep his distance.
This can be solved, but you will have to step away from the situation. This may be difficult for you to do. For the next few weeks, I want you to not hold the dog, not love on the dog, feed her or walk her and if possible have no interaction with her. She will likely try to force interaction, but do your best not to interact.
Have your husband hand feed her during this time, and walk her. Don't just let her out, have him take her out for walks at least in the morning and evenings and when he is off work, several times during the day. Have him be the only one to talk to her or pet her. He should not call her to himself for loving. Let the dog come to him for attention. In the meantime, no attention from you. If she comes to you, ignore her. Soon she should be going to him for attention. She should be on the floor to receive attention and he should only pet her after she has done something to deserve petting such as sitting when commanded to do so.
If he commands her to sit every time before giving her attention, she will learn that he is her boss as well as you. No treats are to be given either unless she sits for it. This should stop her behavior. O nce he has become his dog as well as yours, you can resume interaction with him as well, but I recommend you also make your dog "work" for attention and treats.
An alternative way is to leash the dog with a chain collar. Each time your dog barks at your husband, give her a short tug for a correction and tell her “NO” in a low firm tone. Dog’s growl when they are commanding other dogs which is why you used a low firm tone. Do this each time. I realize it may be an ongoing battle. You may do training where your husband comes in the room, you make the correction and your husband leaves immediately. Make the correction as soon as she starts to growl. Have small tasty treats like hotdog slices ready. If the dog does not bark at your husband, praise her and give him a small treat. Practice this often. Each time she doesn’t bark, give her a treat. Before you know it, she’ll be associating your husband and not barking with getting treats and praise. At this point you will want to cut back on the treats and make them a sometime reward with the praise being the reward. Remember, the correction should not be hard, or choking, just a quick short tug, to break her concentration while you tell him “NO”.
The following site is helpful. Be sure and click on the link to the left on obedience. and links on subsequent pages leading to detailed instructions.
Training works best if you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below.
In addition, if the situation is not improving using the techniques on the previous website, you may have to consult a professional behaviorist. You can usually find a behaviorist by asking your Vet for a recommendation or you may be able to find one using the following site.
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