Very aggressive oung puppy

Posted by susharb
Nov 26, 2010
I have two 13 week old pointer mix puppies. From the look of them, dad may have been a Labrador. I adopted one, Ruby, at 6 weeks and she has been with my 11 yr. old terrier mix. When the terrier would "correct" Ruby, Ruby, even in the beginning, would "argue" by barking, growling and showing her teeth. Now, Ruby's sister, Shelby, came back up for adoption. I decided to adopt her because Ruby has such high energy and was getting into trouble. Shelby had the same situation where she was. I have had her for two days. They do play together and rough house but Ruby is very dominant aggressive with Shelby and they have been in a couple of very intense fights, instigated by Ruby. I find this unsettling in such young puppies. I'm afraid I have a problem dog on my hands. Anybody have any experience with this? Later this evening: Ruby threatened to bite me when I tried to take something from her. When I scolded her, she growled at me again. I am going to get rid of her. She needs someone who is comfortable with her and as strong willed as she is. I'm not much of an alpha person, I guess.
Posted by KOPCaroline
Nov 27, 2010
Hey shusharb,

Some puppies are notorious for pushing their limits for being "in charge". Most of the time you can leave them with other dogs to sort their places in a hierarchy out for themselves, but I understand some dogs take it a little to far, and injury can be a risk.

Alpha training involves sticking to your guns, so to speak, and responding with power, not necessarily physical action. However, if you don't think you can handle Ruby, I admire your honest decision to rehome her. The simple fact is the sooner the better, so that she can adjust to her new family setting.

I hope everything goes well with your other two, let us know how the house settles down
Posted by MaxHollyNoah
Nov 28, 2010
Hi Shusharb,

I also think it is a good idea to get rid of one of the puppies but why Ruby? You have had her since she was 6 wks old and it is partially your responsibility that she has developed such aggression. To get rid of Ruby means that you are transferring your problem to someone else.

When you got Ruby, I hope you knew what you were going to get. A puppy is a puppy. Puppies need a lot of boundaries and rules to become a well-mannered and respectful adult dogs.

Getting another puppy to Ruby to keep her busy and entertained is not a solution here since she needed more disciplines rather than entertainment. What you are doing now is comparing the two puppies and picking one that is easier for you. Shelby might seem to be a nicer puppy now but she might develop other problems in the future. Each problem should be addressed and corrected as they arise.

However, thinking the sake of your 11 yrs old terrier mix, it will be stressful to live with Ruby, especially Ruby is/will be much bigger in the size. If your decision is based on your old terrier mix' sake, I will respect your decision to get rid of Ruby.

I have been fostering and retraining dogs and I have seen many dogs that were placed with a new family and have become much happier so I have no objection about finding a new and more matching family for one of your puppies. I just wanted you to be straightforward with Ruby's issues with potential adopters so that they are well aware of what they are getting and willing to work on those issues.

If you ever change your mind and try to work on Ruby's issues yourself, I recommend that you would treat your terrier mix as the No. 1 dog and place Ruby below the terrier mix. You have all the leverages (foods, walks, anything Ruby wants are in your hand) so Ruby will learn how to respect your authority with a correct approach without using physical power.

I hope you won't take this personal and let us know your final decision.
Posted by MaxHollyNoah
Nov 28, 2010
Hi Susharb,

I forgot to mention one more thing. You said you got Ruby when she was 6 wks old. That was way too early to separate her from her mom and siblings! Puppies learn a lot of things, especially socialization including how to play with other puppies/dogs during that time.

>When the terrier would "correct" Ruby, Ruby, even in the beginning, would "argue" by barking, growling and showing her teeth.

This shows either Ruby was trying to play with your terrier, or trying to protect herself from your terrier. Pls think this way, if you were taken away from your mom and brothers/sisters when you were too young and thrown in a totally new world with an old guy who would "correct" you.

Now, I don't know how Shelby has been raised the last 7 wks period but I assume she would have spent longer time with her mom and siblings and has learned proper playing manners. Your Ruby has missed the very important lessons.

Anyway, you cannot turn the clock back but I still think that Ruby is young enough to learn boundaries and rules to deal with her canine family and with human family. Good luck