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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

i'm after some help while I'm waiting to get a profession trainer in.

My Dobermann bitch is almost 3yrs and she is currently 8 weeks pregnant. She has always been very well behaved, she's never been aggressive (except her hatred of motorbikes!), she's been well socialised and loved playing with other dogs.

We made the concious decision to breed her, not as a business but as family and friends loved her that much, we decided to go ahead. Plus, we want to keep one.
We are far from professional breeders but we have done extensive research(almost obsessive) to ensure that we are responsible breeders.

A few weeks ago, dora got into a spat with another dog in the park. THis was over a ball and the other owner said it was their dogs fault I missed how it started). in our park, there can be upto 15 dogs at any given time and they all get along.
A weeks or so later, a dog approached Dora when she had a ball and Dora growled then chased the dog, teeth out and growling/barking. I got a hold of her and took her away from the park. Naturally I'm now nervous in the park (which wont be doing me any favours!)
Today, Dora was happy walking along the park, but she had a ball. Another dog got close so I took her ball off her. Looking back, this was probably the wrong thing to do as it was almost as if she got confused and she went for the dog and it took me a while to get her back.

She not actually but another dog, but a doberman onto a spaniel isn't doing much for the dobie reputation!

Please can anyone offer any help of tips in controlling this?

I seem to have prepared for every eventuality, but wasn't expecting this!!

Thanks in advance!

Emma
 

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Welcome to the site.

We believe in breeding 2 proven dogs (either through conformation, obedience or some sort of working sport) that are fully health tested in order to better the breed and not breeding because we like our bitch and want another. I won't dwell on this, but it's how many puppies and dogs end up in shelters.

Are you taking her to a dog park?!? Those places are infested with disease! You are chancing losing your entire litter! This is why it's also encouraged to find a mentor, who's bred dogs for a long time, and can tell you what to do and not to do. I would think hard labor like running would be discouraged in the last couple of weeks of pregnancy but perhaps I'm wrong. As their motherly instincts kick in, they could get more aggressive around other dogs and it's also very unsafe for them to be around other dogs as they can catch viruses that can kill the pups. Their last 2-3 weeks they should be separated from ALL dogs even in the house.

Do you have everything set up for her? Do you know the nearest 24hr vet? Do you have a whelping box in a quiet room? Do you know what to do if something happens to puppy while birthing?....
 

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First off, please, please stop taking her to the dog park. She is so close to whelping that it's dangerous to expose her to strange dogs carrying who knows what diseases. Some of the most serious diseases are the most highly contagious. If she caught something, you could lose the whole litter, and possibly her.

Also, she is clearly feeling stressed out and uncomfortable being around the other dogs, as evidenced by her (I'm assuming) atypical behavior with regards to resource guarding.

I hope you have her whelping area all set up, and have introduced her to it, as well as have all the necessary items on (lots and lots of newspapers, washable pads, notebook, scales, iodine, ribbon for puppy collars, etc.) on hand, and have guidance from an experienced breeder and a good vet, in case something goes wrong.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi, thanks for your response.

The stud dog is proven, both dogs are fully health checked and come from fantastic lines. I did not take this decision lightly and fully researched everything. Of course, I like my dog therefore would love one of her puppies, but I am not irresponsible enough to just breed her for the sake of it. I have homes for all the puppies, which I know are good homes. I consider myself lucky to have that.

A dog park??? I didn't know those places existed. I took her through the normal park, around 50m long just to let her do her business with the plan to put her back on her lead for a gentle stroll around the street and back home. She doesn't run anywhere, she just likes to have a ball in her mouth. I certainly wouldn't be letting her run around when she's got a week to go!
I also don't think I'v been clear when talking about the other dogs.... the park I take her to is a large park with numerous exits (hense the 50m walk). There is a group of dog walkers in there with around 15 dogs. I wish to curb this behaviour before it gets out of hand so that she can continue to socialise with the dogs once the pups have all been immunised.

I am well aware of diseases that dogs can catch, she is fully upto date with her jabs however I'm not sure how else she is supposed to go to the toilet without going outside? The vet also stated that as she had her jabs only a few months ago, there was no real need for her to have further ones during pregnancy.

I understand peoples concerns re irresponsible breeders. The people who own the stud dog are fantastic. The have bred dobermans for years and have gone above and beyond with helping me and steering me in the right direction. However, I was interested in asking others for their opinion as this was more of a behavioural issue than a pregnancy one.

Welping box etc wise - yes, I have a whelping box (in her own room) which was set up last week for her to get used to. I have heat lamps and an array of items on stand by. I am fortunate enough to have the funds to use should I need to call a vet at the last minute (of which I have the number for at hand, as well as out of hours!) The vet is well aware of her condition as I have had her there twice during her pregnancy to be checked and scanned.

Dora has not been generally aggressive with other dogs (I expected her to be stand offish etc, but this is not the case), she has just developed this obsession with the ball and was looking for advise re this for when she can resume her normal walk routine with all the other dogs.

Thanks
 

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please stop taking her to the park while she's pregnant. please.
 

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Bitches, when they are in heat or pregnant can get quite snarky, their hormones are a ragin' and just like women, they just aren't their normal selves.

In addition you are risking the health of the litter and your girl by taking her to the dog park. Not to mention adding unnecessary stress to her life.

To keep her in shape, you need nice long walks, maybe play ball with her in YOUR yard. Keep her away from other dogs and areas that other dogs frequent.

Do make sure you have Calcium (Breeders Edge Oral Cal Plus) on hand and know when to administer it. A heat source for the puppies, and that you know what Green discharge means, when it is normal and when it is not. Make sure you know what to do if you have a stuck puppy, and be prepared to sleep with her starting NOW and until the puppies are 3 weeks of age and that somebody is with her 24/7 beginning now until the puppies are at least 3 weeks of age.

As you are new to this you probably need to take her to the Vet, or have the Vet come to your home after she is done whelping to make sure she in "cleaned out" and has passed all placentas.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi,

Thanks for your replies.
I'd like to point out that I'm in England, as far as I'm aware, we don't have dog parks, I think there's some confusion there.
The vet has confirmed that I am ok to walk her where I walk her as previously stated.

I do appreciate everyones advice however, I cannot stress enough that I do have everything sorted for her with no expense spared and at vet at hand.
I have researched her pregnancy and whelping almost to the point of obsession! I have taken the time off work (even though my partner works opposite shifts) and im fully prepared to sleep on the sofa!

My aim with this post was to gain advice on the aggression she has shown with a ball. As in if she continues this aggression once she is back out living her normal life.

Thanks.
 

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If you've done your research and read books then why are you still taking her to parks where she can contact a very contagious disease?! Shelian has been breeding for quite sometime and REALLY knows what's she's talking about. I have currently started reading in preparation for a litter than I may have in a year in half, as well as being mentored by 2 different breeders. In fact, for my first litter I'll actually be staying at a breeders house so my bitch has 24/7 expert care and I have a 24/7 mentor. Please stop taking her places where she can come in contact with other dogs or places where other dogs have frequented. It's very easy to lose an entire litter AND the bitch, there are many others who have taken more precautions that have lost litters so please be careful in this final hour.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ok, im getting slightly confused here. The vet stated that as she has had her jabs recently, this will be passed onto her pups. She has had every available vaccine going.
As stated before, I live in England. You have promted me to have a look at world wide dog diseases, there seems to be a hell of a lot more in America and only the ones she has been vaccinated against here (with the odd, extremely rare exception down south).
I have been advised by a professional that she is safe.
So, if she has had her jabs against the diseases here, what other diseases can she pick up?
Are vaccines the same in America? Is there a bigger problem with diseased dogs?

I minimise her time outside anyway as i dont want her running around or stressed with other dogs. But you cannot get away from the fact that she needs to go outside.

Also, can someone please tell me what a dog park is?

Thanks.
 

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Hi OP,

A dog park (in America) is essentially a giant fenced in patch of field were everyone lets their dogs off leash to play. It is often very unsafe as many dogs don't have proper mannors and are quite rude! There are many fights and people don't pick up their dogs droppings and spread illness quite quickly! We avoid them all together.

I don't know anything about dog pregnancy but I'd imagine it would affect her mode and tolerance for other dogs.

Maybe just keep her on leash and try to protect her from other pups. Once she has her litter I'm sure her behavior will return to normal.

She's already very pregnant so I won't advise anything but best of luck with your litter and post pics!
 

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"Also, can someone please tell me what a dog park is? "

Hi Dorasmom.

Although I respect BFL's opinion, I feel it is a bit harsh and not truly representative of all American "leash free" parks

Here in Portland, "dog parks" or "off leash parks" are a designated area of public parks where one may exercise their dog free of a tether. Some are quite large. Acres in fact. This is because it is strictly against our city code to have a dog in public not on a leash. We also have a very strict "scoop" law which pretty much makes our streets and sidewalk free of poop compared to several years ago.

Other than that this is a fabulous city to own a dog. They are welcome in most stores and facilities, except those that sell or serve food. Dogs are welcome at most restaurants that have outdoor seating. Still there is a need for city dogs to be able to socialize and stretch their legs. Hence the "dog park".

The vast majority of our "dog parks" are not fenced in and are actually very well maintained by the city and users and monitored by County Animal Control. They are a god-send to some dog owners. Personally, I gave them up when I got my last boy. To many clueless owners for one thing and basically over the years it has been my observation that many Dobermans are bit to rambunctious to be thrown in to a mixed melee of multiple untrained dogs.

That being said, I believe the knowledgeable folks here were referring to increasing your girl's stress level by being exposed to strange dogs at a time when she is likely prone to be highly hormonal. And, exposing your dog to disease at a time when she is highly susceptible. Keep in mind we only inoculate against a very few of the potentially communicable diseases that a dog may encounter.

Keep in touch
Keep us updated

John
Portland OR
 

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Things are a lot different here in the states - for example, most people with large breeds here have fenced yards and you don't need to take your dog to a park in order to exercise them or potty them. I would suggest that you keep your girl on leash and try to avoid areas where dogs and owners congregate as she is not herself at this point in her pregnancy.... hormones and nesting instinct are kicking in now, and any strange dog is a threat.
 

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I'm sorry but I just don't get letting any dog run off leash around other dogs when they are about to whelp, I don't care what country you are in. What if one of those other dogs was aggressive and tore into her?? It just seems so very irresponsible. Please keep her close at hand, on leash and away from other strange dogs. Take her to potty AWAY from other dogs where she won't be stressed at all - she is obviously anxious about it judging by her behavior.

She is only just maturing at this age, even though you have bred her, and many female Dobermans decide they don't want to share anything with any other dogs at this stage. I wouldn't b surprised if she never went back to being happy go lucky running around loose with a bunch of other dogs. That would be very atypical adult Doberman behavior.

Won't even get in to the whole breeding of a pet dog with no mention of major health testing or any titles. Too depressing.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks again for the last few posts. I do appeciate the constructive ones. It sounds like things are very different here due to laws etc. I wish more restaurants/shops let dogs in here! That would be great! All we have is the local pub :)

Unfortunately though, I do think that some of my post has been slightly blown out of proportion. At no point have I said she's running around (a small patch of grass through the park to then put her on a lead.) The parks I am talking about are not "dog parks". We know the dogs in the park, they are not strange dogs.
And as for not health testing??? Where did that come from? I stated that she has had ALL health tests as had the stud and has been to the vet twice during her pregnancy.

I feel like there may have been something lost in translation, which is a shame.
 

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Thanks again for the last few posts. I do appeciate the constructive ones. It sounds like things are very different here due to laws etc. I wish more restaurants/shops let dogs in here! That would be great! All we have is the local pub :)

Unfortunately though, I do think that some of my post has been slightly blown out of proportion. At no point have I said she's running around (a small patch of grass through the park to then put her on a lead.) The parks I am talking about are not "dog parks". We know the dogs in the park, they are not strange dogs.
And as for not health testing??? Where did that come from? I stated that she has had ALL health tests as had the stud and has been to the vet twice during her pregnancy.

I feel like there may have been something lost in translation, which is a shame.
Has she been tested for vWD, holtered, echoed, full thyroid, hips and eyes tested... WHat about the sire? You could be potentially breeding 2 2 dogs that pass on a breeding disease. Health testing for all of the hereditary issues the run in the breed. Are you well versed on them? The reason you don't understand what people are talking about is because you haven't owned a dobe long enough and done the proper research on breeding. You just have a nice dog and decided it should be bred but do you know your dogs lineage and what all of the dogs in it have passed away from or at what age?
 

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I'd walk her on leash, and away from other dogs as much as possible. Even if the other dogs aren't total strangers to her, she doesn't need to be bothered by them. Imagine, if you will, that you are eight and a half month pregnant, and while you are out on a walk, you are swarmed be a crowd of casual acquaintances, wanting you to play a game with them. I'd imagine you'd feel pretty overwhelmed and defensive, and want them to just leave you alone.

When people talk about health testing for breeding dogs, it's more involved than a simple vet visit. For Dobermans, it means hip x-rays, maybe elbow x-rays, vWD status, and (here in the US, at least) an ultrasound of the heart and a 24 hour EKG holter test, as well as thyroid testing. The heart testing is because an estimated 50% of all Dobermans will die from Dilated Cardiomyopathy.
 
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OK. I fully understand you must walk your girl to do her toilet duties! Try leaving the ball at home. Just don't bring it with you. Or any other beloved item for that matter. Use a treat as a reward for doing her thing, take your stroll, if you must, alter your route to avoid any potential for off lead dogs charging at her that she can misinterpret in her hormonal state. Due to those hormones, you will see personality changes, accomodate those to the best degree possible, and try not to let ill behaviour become an ingrained habit, hopefully once all the hormones of pregnancy and raising a litter have passed, she'll revert to her previous good nature. Sometimes not, but hopefully!
Be cautious when allowing strangers in to see the pups after birth, she is going to be protective, and that may result in abnormal (for her) actions, watch your girl, read your girl and proceed based on her comfort level. Don't push her at this point in time, no matter how well tempered, or well socialized, a pregnant/nursing dam can become a very different animal(just like women<smile>) Best of luck with all your pups, may they all enjoy the love of a good family for the entirety of their lives!
 

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Off Topic reply:

People are commenting on your choice to breed because they are very passionate about Dobermans. While this is an amazing breed, they are also very much riddled with disease and conditions which reputable breeders are trying so hard to get rid of. Your response for breeding is to NOT better the breed, but because you love your dog so much you must have a puppy from her. When you say you health tested her, can you list them? Did you get OFI's done? Holters? Echos? vwD? What do you mean by great lines? Do these lines hold Ch's? Working titles? How far back do these lines go? Do you know each cause of death within those lines? Do any of these lines carry unstable temperaments? This is just the basic outline of what good breeders think about.

As for resource guarding, what did your research on breeding say?

For the safety of your dog, please keep her away from other dogs. Why chance it?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
As stated before...... She has had ALL health checks.
When i say all, i mean ALL. And that is the same for the stud. Hips/eyes/vwd.... You name it. If it was available, she had it. So please dont make assumptions and jump down my throat.
Yes, i love my dog, she has a fantastic temprement and therefore i made the decision to look into breeding her which led me to calling the vets and getting a quote. Guess what? She passed, so happy days... The breeding process begins.

Thank you to the people who have been helpful and read my post.
To the othrrs, i respect what you are trying to tell me, but please try not to judge too much. I am doing my best.
 
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