New Aggression to my other dog - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 11:22 AM Thread Starter
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New Aggression to my other dog

Hi, we have a 15 month old doberman that has suddenly become sporatically aggressive to my older pug. My doberman and two other dogs have been sleeping together the entire time we have had her and suddenly she will growl and snap at my pug.

Does anyone have any suggestions as to how to stop this behaviour beyond smacking her nose, telling her that was bad and sending her off the bed?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 11:26 AM
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When and why is this occurring? Is it over a resource like food, toy, spot on the couch, a person? What is the sex of your pug? Is she coming into heat?
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 01:49 PM
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Unfortunately, some Dobermans become very dog selective as they mature from puppy to adult. Others may simply become unpredictable and sometimes aggressive when around other dogs. I have owned both.

If your pug is a female also, you should become aware of the fact that Dobermans as a breed are prone to Same Sex Aggression. Years ago, I had two boys who were best of friends. The were raised together. One day the 5 yo decided that his 7 yo "brother" had to die. His brother didn't see that as viable option and they engaged in a death match. Fortunately (unfortunately for my hand, wrist and arm), I was able to separate them. They lived in a "Crate andRotate" situation for years until the older boy died of natural causes.

I would definitely consider "resource guarding", as greenkouki mentioned, as a possible factor in your girl's actions. Hence, until you have a clearer idea of what is going on I would:

- NEVER leave them alone unsupervised
- Give them each a separate and distinct place to rest and sleep.
- Feed them separately. Ideally in separate rooms. Same with treats.
- Keep them both leashed if they are interacting out of doors.
- Do not allow them to share toys. They should each have their own.
- Try to see how your 3rd dog fits into this relationship. It could be a factor.
- Finally, it is very important to learn how to read your Doberman so that you can, at all times, be aware of yours girls state of mind including her immediate level of comfort.

Generally, Dobermans, with practice, are very easy to read once you learn how.

Oh... Also... Don't try and correct this unwanted behavior by smacking your girl on the nose. It will not work and may, in fact, have the opposite affect.

In any case, best to you and your 3 fur kids!

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR

Edit to say: I have a friend who returned home to find her young mature Doberman female had killed her older and much smaller male. They had always gotten along. It came out of the blue and may not even have been unintentional.
Dobermans are extremely powerful dogs with tremendous biting force. Their medium size belies their strength. What might be a simple admonishment and warning to a bigger dog could easily maim or kill a much smaller one.

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Last edited by 4x4bike ped; 04-19-2020 at 01:58 PM.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 02:32 PM
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Just a stab in the dark here - But the pug is a male ? When we got Mr. B . I was worried about him being lots bigger than her and asked the breeder about my concerns - She said don't worry about Ali , She will take care of herself and boy did she .

I'm wondering if the Pug (if he is a male ) had done something little and your female is letting him know she is not putting up with him .

Never - Never hit her to break this problem . Like John said , that can have bad results

Good luck
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 05:30 PM
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When I was a kid.........50 years ago...I remember my mothers process of puppy training.
And I suppose at the time there was not that much education about dog training.
She was raised during the depression and had farm animals and learned from her parents how to correct dogs.
But I know now that those techniques were so wrong.
First never hit swat your dog with a newspaper. Definitely protect that nose.
I do nosework with my boy Hoss and once I learned how amazing their noses are ...lets just say its amazing.
Lots of delicate stuff in those big snouts!
If they have both slept together with no problems and now things are changing IMO the younger dog is maturing.
It’s time for each dog to learn “Place”.
Each should have their own bed or mat.......and as the Human ensure those boundaries are respected by both dogs.
When they return to their own beds or mats.....provide a reward.
Nice cheek rub ......little piece of kibble from your pocket.
Look for the good behavior.....and if the aggressive dog does not respond to training “Place” suggest keeping dog on a lead so if dog decides to be non have the lead in your hand and you can insist dog returns to place. No negative tones .....just get to place. Show the dog your expectations.
Then when at “Place” say ...YES and reward.
You must be the leader in this category and expect compliance.
After all we are “Humans”.
Sometimes we have to show them what we are wanting them to do before they understand. Thats only fair IMO.
As dog goes to place and gets reward this several times in a row without the other dog around.
Repetition .....repetition ...repetition..........
Then treat when dog as dog remains at “Place” .
Dogs will do many things if they think it worth make it worth it with patience, love, and lots of positive rewards when the dog obeys your request.
Yeah..they screw up and return to old behavior ......BUT in your case your are having to break a habit and that takes a little time to undo.
So thats where the patience comes dog what you want and immediately reward the moment of success. The second that pup gets on that designated place ..BOOM .....mark it with “YES’.....then reward. At first it might be just half of the dogs body, but that a start.
Before you know it, everytime you say “place” that boy will work so hard for his favorite reward he will run to that “Place”.
Just like our human babies FIRST we must make sure they understand what we want.
Because otherwise it like the Charlie Brown movies when folks were on the phone ..remember wa-wa-wa-wa ....... so our pups really do not understand what we are saying they just pick up on our tones and body language. They watch our body language all the time and voice tones. We do the same as we interact with are fellow Humans . So as pup is successful let that pleasure show that you are really pleased.
Once we know our pup understands what we expect much will fall into place.
Obedience classes are many online also for convience.
Wishing you the best and would love to hear more from you soon.


Last edited by LadyDi; 04-19-2020 at 05:51 PM.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-19-2020, 09:38 PM
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Pretty much everything 4X4 said...

We need more information. You may need a professional trainer to assess what's going on - I'd probably look into getting a video consult right now.

Safety first. Set the dogs up for success by making sure they are not unsupervised alone. NEVER hit your dog (smack her on the nose). That will only escalate the situation and teach her that you aren't to be trusted.

Please re-read 4X4's post. It's entirely possible your Doberman may need to live in a "supervise only" situation with your other dog. She's approaching maturity, and some Dobermans simply do not tolerate other dogs as adults. If so, you'll need to take safety precautions, and potentially live a crate/rotate type of lifestyle to keep everyone safe.

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