My puppy is agressive when we pick her up

Posted by Usna
Feb 27, 2010

I got an australian cattle dog /Belgian shepherd mix puppy 3 weeks ago , she is now 3 months old, and since 2 weeks ago she has started first growling, then showing her theeth at me just like a wolf and then she bites me drawing blood sometimes when I try to pick her up and sometimes when I stroke her . When this happens I say NO firmly and she stops , but when I try again she just bites me, I also tried to shh her and roll her to a submissive position but in the moment my hand goes off her neck she goes for blood , she is not food or toy agressive and she is good at obedience.She has already been phiscally checked by a vet...

Ah and she does growl and show theet to everybody when thy pick her, even strangers...

Please help me, this is the first time I've had a dog like this....
Posted by crazycrayonmom
Mar 1, 2010
Sounds like you've got a high energy dog who likes to be aggressive. First things first would be to make sure you are doing everything to prove to her that you are the pack leader in your house. Have you read the Alpha Dog part yet? I would recommend you start it right away.

I am not a fan of the roll them over and hold them down school and you're experience with it is the reason. If you are releasing your pup and she is going after you right away when you let her go, then she has not fully submitted to you, that is the goal of this exercise. Complete submission. She needs to be completely docile, body relaxed with no tension in her at all before you let her go and that is where most people fail. Especially in an aggressive dog who has won the "roll me over" battle before, it could take a very, very long time to get full submission. Most people just don't have the patience to do it properly. Every time you let her up before she fully submits she is winning and learning that she is YOUR boss. Not a good thing.

Instead I prefer the old "stop command and ignore" thing. Say a firm "no" and walk away. Dogs hate being ignored by their pack.

Now I'm going to say something that some people think is wrong. I use my dogs' crate for punishment. Sorry folks, in my lifetime I've raised 5 dogs and fostered 3. They get one shot at listening to my command and if they don't I lead them directly to their kennel and that's where they stay until they calm down. My dogs don't associate the kennel with "negative" thoughts and refuse to go in. They don't have a choice. If I say "kennel" they go. They still go in on their own when they want to sleep or play with a favorite chew toy. It hasn't affected any of them negatively. In fact, Max is lying in his kennel right now with the door open.

So in your case, if the pup bites, you say "no" and walk away if she bites again I would say nothing, take her straight to her crate and leave her there until she is calm.

The other thing I would suggest is to make sure she gets an absolute ton of activity. You have a very smart, high energy breed. They need to be stimulated mentally and physically multiple times every day. Because their attention span is short your sessions need to be short and frequent.

Good luck and let us know how it progresses!