problems with dog only responding to one person

Posted by robandanne
Sep 6, 2010
We have a sheppward/chow mix that we adopted from rescue in March. Claire was fine with my husband when we first adopted her. However, once I was out of school for the summer, Claire would only allow me to put her leash on ad feed her. We just started training her by ignoring her for two days and now we are trying to teach her how to sit in order to receive meals, walks, etc. She is sitting with me, but not for my husband. Any suggestions?
Posted by kjd
Sep 7, 2010
Hi, Anne.

She has to sit before she can eat? And she won't sit for Rob? I've yet to hear of a dog starving itself unless it was physically unable to eat. Rob should be feeding her. She might hold out for a day or two, but, if she knows how to sit, she will sit for Rob in the end.

However, make sure she really understands the word, that anytime it is used it means the same thing. Rob may want to teach her sit from the beginning -- hold a treat over her head and guide her into a sit. She may have picked up some body language you use when you say "sit" and that is what she is responding to, rather than the word.

Good luck. I think you'll find she straightens out once she realizes her food is on the line.
Posted by robandanne
Sep 7, 2010
Thank you kjd. I was thinking along the same lines. Our dog Claire has become somewhat aggressive with my husband. We think she is trying to dominate over him which is not good. We have had her since March, and she only started this behavior(not letting him put the leash on or feed her since the summer. I love her and don"t want to let this get out of hand.:confused:
Posted by KOPCaroline
Sep 8, 2010
Hey rob and anne

First off, have you taken Claire through any training classes or socialization classes? If not, I'd recommend your husband taking her (by himself) to these. It will help establish him as a boss-type owner.

Your husband should keep working with her on basic training. 10 minute sessions throughout the day are a great way to train dogs; remind him to make a HUGE deal of it when she listens. If she's absolutely not listening try putting her in a timeout area for 10 minutes, bringing her out, and trying again. If you're around and see her not listening, try giving her a warning like saying her name in a negative tone.

You can take turns with your husband in the room just getting Claires attention. Sit on different sides of the room and take turns calling her. When she listens to either of you, its amazing! If she wont respond to your husband, YOU ignore her. Once she does respond, even if its just turning her head and looking at him, make a big fuss. This is an easy way to start into getting her to pay attention to his commands. Work up the training list from here.

I hope this helps, others might have other suggestions. Good luck!