Ongoing Battle With Aggression

Posted by LullaBelle
Feb 24, 2009
My husband and I are in an ongoing battle with aggression and food possession.The dog is a 1 yr old Jack Russell something.He is PAST his last chance.When I purchased SITSTAYFETCH it was my 3rd book.We have been given some very bad advice for a Jack Russell.He is getting this chance, because as it turns out we have been doing ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING wrong.What works for other dogs does not work for Jack Russells.He is like another species altogether.
He was fixed Jan 7 hoping that would help.He has bitten my husband and drawn blood a few times and he is through with him,and frankly I don't blame him.I have also been afraid some.He is actually doing a good job of training us.
He has been allowed on furniture,told to go in first.fed first.
We have started the Alpha Dog training and actually have seen some results.
He respects only food,eats each meal as though it's his first and last.He eats twice a day as it is.Snacks have been stopped.In fact,he'll eat just about anything except metal.
All we ask is that he listen and be nice and give a darn about us.
He really hates the water squirting.He will start to cry and growl after about 30 seconds.The water just makes him angrier.
When I feed him out of my hand he does fine ,but I've been doing that for weeks.He doesn't seem to be able to progress to eating out of a bowl without crying and growling.
Having him on a leash for everything really seems to be helping too.
I guess I want some feedback.Good or bad.I want to make sure after all we've done wrong that I'm not causing more damage and in the end I will have a dog worth all this effort.Everyone tells me to put him down or give him away since he's causing such grief.
Posted by foxi7778
Feb 25, 2009
Glad to see you have made the first step and are aware of what you've been doing wrong and are doing what you can to rectify it...I'm sorry to hear your husband was hurt in the process.
The only thing I would suggest you could maybe try with regards to feeding is something called the NILIF (Nothing In Life Is Free) method, since your dog is so food orientated. The basic principal is that your dog works for its food, walks etc. Use the food you would use for one of his meals as rewards for good behaviour when indoors or out. Make him sit before entering/exiting the home/garden. Make him sit or perform a trick before he gets his meal. There are several things you can do using this method, it's great for making a dog realise that everything is not handed to it on a silver platter and also helps the dog to respect the fact that you are the one that provides for it and should hopefully help with the food aggression too.
What do you do when your dog starts being aggressive around food???? Don't give him it if he starts to growl...take it away till he is calm and then try again. This could be a long process, but he will eventually learn that his growling etc will lead to him getting no dinner, and for a food orientated dog this would be a tragedy!!

Best of luck, just stay calm and keep doing what you're doing and let us know what happens!
Posted by LullaBelle
Feb 26, 2009
:confusedK-I am conflicted-One of the things they say to watch for is him respecting the food and not the provider-is this only in the instance of treating a dog for no reason and too often?Secondly the weather is getting better can he be in his outside lot some if he is taken to it and from it on a leash?