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Sally G.
Sally G., Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 9520
Experience:  Service /assistance dog trainer,Therapy dog evaluator and trainer, AKC evaluator, pet first aide and member of PAS Animal Response Team.
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I have a Terrier who has become possessive of my bed. A

Customer Question

I have a ***** ***** Terrier who has become possessive of my bed. A couple of months ago I let him sleep on my bed as opposed to his cage and he loved it. So much so that I got rid of the cage because he no longer used it. Ever since then, he has become possessive of my bed and get very aggressive when I get near it and when I am in it and I move, he pounces on me and bites. What can I do?
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Dog Trainer will know how to help the dog training. What is the dog training's name and age?
Customer: Coco is his name. He is 9 years old. Can you explain lethargy?
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Dog Trainer should know about Coco?
Customer: Yes. My husband passed away a year ago and he was the "pack leader" in the family.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Sally G. replied 10 months ago.

Hello and welcome. This is just a short note to introduce myself or to request needed information for your problem. My name is ***** ***** I have been in the dog field for 25 years. I am a Therapy Dog & AKC Evaluator/trainer/ as well as an assistance/service dog trainer, specializing in behavior. It will be my pleasure to help you today.

I am sorry for the loss of your husband, that must be very hard on you.

How is Coco with other valued items like food, bones, toys etc. Can you take them from him without incident?

Does Coco have his own bed?

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
He has his own bed but, at night, he likes to be in my bed. Then he attacks when I try to move. I'm afraid he will attack when I move on my sleep! He is not aggressive about food, toys, etc.
Expert:  Sally G. replied 10 months ago.

Thank you, ***** ***** working on your answer now and because each answer is personalized it will take me a few minutes to type it up .

Expert:  Sally G. replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for your patience. If you have something else to add or ask later feel free to post

Dogs that do not like either humans or other dogs near valued items are considered possessive aggressive. This means that anything they view as a valued item belongs to them and anyone that tries to take it will be warned and possibly bitten.

When we have possessive aggressive dogs, we do have to do certain training. This training is done daily but it is fairly simple and you can do it at home.

Clicker training in general obedience to establish your role in the home and to show the dog you are consistent in what you expect from him. I would train in short sessions, ten minutes, but do this several times a day as your schedule allows.

I would definitely work on the command off, and get your dog off the bed with commands rather than try to move him and I would train a 'default behavior' of him going to his own bed and staying there when you sit or lie in yours.

The learn to earn program goes along with the daily obedience training. This just means that you are now going to control everything in the dog’s life, his wants and needs. The lead dog of a pack keeps everything for themselves and only shares when they want to. This means that you no longer will put a full bowl of food in front of him but you will use his food as a training reward. This shows him you have control over needs, then you are going to put all toys , bones etc,. away and you will decide when he can have them and when he can play with you. This shows control over wants.

I am going to direct you to sites to take you through the clicker training . You want to get these commands down very well, Off, down stay, sit stay, and go to bed.

It does take time to train and that is why I want you to do it in shorter sessions rather than a long session, dogs seem to stay focused more in shorter sessions.

Clicker training/positive method training/ print off

video’s to see how clicker training is done, scroll down to videos

clicker maintaining focus

Dr sophia yin learn to earn

Here is an example of what a default behavior looks like

Of course the easiest thing to do would be to reintroduce the Crate and train him to go into the crate at night, but I do feel that with your husband's passing the dog may try to take over in other areas as time goes on.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thanks so much Sally. I will look into these websites and do the training. I may also reintroduce him to the cage just for bedtime. Can I write to you to let you know how it goes?
Expert:  Sally G. replied 10 months ago.

Oh yes! You can keep this link in your email and come back anytime! If you are going to teach him to go in the crate then the easiest way is to give some special food, so if he eats dry food normally, give a small bowl of wet food in the kennel and lead him to it, open the door and say kennel or Crate. Close the door while he eats, then open it and say release which tells him it is okay to get out. Some dogs do very well in the crate if it is placed near the owners bed. So they are sleeping with you , but not actually on your bed.

Expert:  Sally G. replied 10 months ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Sally G.

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