joie de vivre
Join Date: Apr 2009
Dogs Name: Cypress (Dobe) & Dempsey (Rat Terrier)
Dogs Age: 05.08.19 & 11.04.14
Gallery Pics: 9 Visit brw1982's Gallery
Thanked 31,840 Times in 8,833 Posts
I agree with Gretchen Red. I would like more context for the situation.
Yes, it is unacceptable that he's snapping / biting. And everyone has to make their own decision about what they're willing to take on and try to fix. I will say that, although, yes he is snapping or biting, the fact that he hasn't sent anyone to the ER indicates to me that he does have some amount of self-restraint. If hit bit your son's leg and didn't do damage enough for medical attention, then he held back, IMO. Again, its still unacceptable that he did it but an adult male Dobe could have ripped your son open if he intended to do so. So I believe that was a warning about something with your son. Were you there to see it? Can you think of anything that might have triggered it? Anything the dog could have misread?
Also, you've only had him a few weeks, so its hard to be confident that the dog you're seeing now is the dog you'll see in a year. Have you heard of a honeymoon phase with dogs?
Perhaps its inappropriately named for your case but, basically, it just means it takes time for the dog to unwind and feel comfortable in a new home. Landing in a new home is a stressful life change for a dog and different dogs will react differently. Also, let's be honest, you have no idea how he was handled in his previous home. Maybe everything was fine and he's just very upset and stressed out at going to a new home. Or maybe things weren't so great for him there and he doesn't really trust people. Who knows? The reason doesn't necessarily matter now because we can't change his past and it doesn't magically stop what he's doing now.
Having said all that, I agree that you probably need a crate if you don't have one. (Maybe you already know the rest of this, in which case feel free to ignore me but in case you don't...) You mentioned that you gave him space and time but what kind of space? And how much time? Because of the stress of a new home, a new dog should be given more quiet time than you might think he needs - totally undisturbed by people, and other dogs or pets to observe and process the new environment. I typically spend at least a month integrating dogs unless I happen to get lucky and have a new dog who settles in super fast. And even then, IME, new dogs continue to relax and show more and more of themselves throughout the first year.
I would also try to stick pretty close to a simple and straight forward schedule with him for now so that he can start to predict his environment and day-to-day life.
Is there any sort of pattern you can identify in the situations when he seems most uncomfortable? Sometimes things that you wouldn't think would be an issue, might be with a new dog.
I don't know what to tell you about trying to get in touch with Margo and hold her accountable. I wish you had found this forum sooner so you could have been warned about her. For about 16 years, I lived roughly 45 minutes from where she operates and I'm sorry to say that she has a poor reputation in dogs and has ever since I first heard about her. I've never known of her to stand behind her many dogs before and I can't imagine she'll suddenly grow a conscience and do it now either. I'm also sorry to say that I wouldn't be surprised if she lied to you about getting out of breeding to dump a dog she no longer wanted or to change her kennel name again in an attempt to escape her reputation. But none of that helps you either. I'm just sorry you're dealing with all this.
Old Drum's Crimson Crisp CGC, "Fiona" 04-21-2009 - 01-15-2018
Old Drum's Fiery Rumors of Taliesin CGC LC-10D, "Tali" 05-09-2008 - 08-19-2018 Sirai's Novel Weapon, AKC S.T.A.R. puppy, "Cypress" 05-08-2019 -
AKC/UKC CH Bur-way's Unscripted, CA, "Dempsey" (Rat Terrier) 11-04-2014 -