Naughty Beagle

Posted by Snick605
Mar 29, 2008
I have a 3 year old Beagle who's neutered. I also have a female JRT that's about the same age. In August my JRT had puppies. Once all the puppies left my Beagle started to get aggressive with us, when we try to move him and now he's been nipping at random people that come into our house. He's never been aggressive before and I think it may have something to do with the puppies being taken out of the house and not coming back. It's just my theory though and we're worried about liability with him attacking people. Any ideas/suggestions?
Posted by Todd
Apr 2, 2008
HI there and thanks for your question

Hmmm sounds like a naughty Beagle to me. I think the pups may have something to do with it. Sudden changes in households tend to upset dogs and they often react by developing aggression or other strange behaviours that have never occured before.

We can fix this problem but as usual it will take time, effort and most of all patience.
The first things i am going to mention i mention in nearly every post i make. These are obedience and alpha training. These two points underpin nearly all behavioural problems and in so doing are the best way to get a headstart with any issues you are having

The first advice i would give you is to ensure you and your family members have read and understand the techniques in the bonus book "Secrets to becoming the Alpha Dog". These are great techniques for maintaining or establishing your position at the head of the household. No matter what the problem is all dogs need to know where the stand in the house for both yours and their peace and comfort.

Here are some ways to reinforce your position-

1) If you come across your dogs while they are sleeping or lying on the floor then you can reinforce your position as alpha dog by making him move so that you can pass by.

2) Make sure that you always go through doorways first. A good method to reinforce your position as alpha dog is to walk your dog around the house on the leash, making your dog wait while you walk through doorways first.

3) At mealtimes make sure that your dogs eat after all of the humans have.

4) Do not feed your dogs tidbits or let it pester you at the table. Save the morsels and tidbits for training sessions instead.

5) Do not greet your dogs straightaway when you arrive home. Make it wait until you are ready and then call it to you.

6) Whenever your dogs want attention or anything wait till they are sitting and being well behaved.

7) When you give a command make sure that you are in a position to enforce the action that you require from your dog, especially in the initial stages of Alpha Dog training. Also, use the Alarm-No-Command technique as described in the Alpha Dog bonus book to reprimand your dog if it does not obey your command.

Now to the obedience

You will work very hard on both dogs obedience. Regular training sessions are key to improving your dog's obedience responses and keeping it used to answering your commands.
Concentrate on the sit and stay, down and stay, heel and wait commands. The more obedient they are the more likely you are to have success and get him to respond to you when they have misbehaved. This training will take a lot of time and patience.

Once you have done basic alpha and obedience training the problem may have reduced in its severity but you need to reinforce the correct behaviours to fully stop the problem.

NOw your boy has to learn that aggression is never tolerated no matter what the situation or how minor the aggression is.
Aggression can range from barking, jumping, biting, growling and rushing at people. Whenever he does this he needs a quick reprimand.

The best way to reprimand a dog is to use a verbal as well as a physical reprimand. When he does show aggression you need to quickly reprimand him with a loud GRRRRR or AHHHHH and at the same time use a water pistol or throw a blanket over him.

This will let him know that he has made a mistake and this is not okay.

He needs to also start to be socialised a bit more.

He needs to start meeting some more people in and around your house.

Have him on a lead and get your friend to sit on a couch a few metres away from your beagle.
He may approach your friend half a metre at a time but only when he is being good. Ask him to sit, if he does step forward and make him sit again. Keep going like this.

If he gets aggressive at any stage he needs to be reprimanded as i mentioned and asked to sit again. Wait until he is sitting and calm and then proceed.

Make sure your friend has some treats that he can give to your boy when he gets close to him.

Have a few sessions with the first person until he is comfortable with them. Then try a different person etc etc.

After a few weeks try to introduce him to people outside. Once he is happy with them introduce him to dogs in such the same manner.

They must both be on the lead at all time. Don't let them meet noise to noise until after a few sessions and make sure that you have him under control and trust him

Medication may be requiered at some stage. There are some natural remedies like DAP and Rescue rememdy that naturally will calm your dog and reduce his anxiety. If these don't help some other medication may be may need to talk to your vet about this.

This problem will take time to solve. Safety is the most important thing and if you think he may require a muzzle then go ahead and get one. I am here to help along the way so just give me a message if you need help