Appropriate puppy behavior or not? How to handle

Discussion in 'Dog Training: Principle and Practice' started by Crazydoglady, Jan 13, 2019.

  1. Crazydoglady

    Crazydoglady Registered Users

    Nov 29, 2018
    I have a two year old Mastiff (Augie) and a 14 week old chocolate lab (Lola). Augie generally shares his toys with Lola and they play tug. They can lay next to each other and chew on toys face to face. My issue, is that occasionally Augie will correct Lola for trying to take a toy away from him. Now in general, I am always right there, and keep Lola from pestering him or just randomly taking his toy. I watch for signals from him to see if there is any frustration.

    I’m trying to figure out if Augie correcting the puppy is appropriate or if it is resource guarding? When he has corrected her there are always multiple signals from him that she still misses sometimes. She catches them more often now. Almost always, I’m there to redirect Lola to something else. This redirection to another toy usually results in her laying right next to him while he chews his toy and she chews hers.

    There have been 4 corrections from him since we got her at 8 weeks, one was for her being annoying and chewing on his muzzle, I wasn’t quick enough to step in for him. The other was at the water bowl when he was drinking and Lola burst in shoving him for water. After that occurrence, Lola sits right next to him when he drinks and waits her turn. He shows no signals that he is concerned with her being right there. She’s gotten to his food before (I feed her in crate, but she got super excited and I missed the house line, as she ran to his food. He made no correction. I was there quickly even though she got a bite while he was eating, he just looked up at me and I removed her and he went on eating seeming not upset. The other two times were over toys. One was a neighbor dogs toy he found in the yard. He picked it up and she came flying up to him to yank it away. He corrected her and she did not try and get it again. The other was a toy in the house he was laying quietly chewing on it and she went to grab from him. Like I said I’m right there to prevent her from just taking toys, and it seems his corrections have taught her to wait for a signal that he wants to play with her with the toy.

    Is he resource guarding, or are these scenarios that he is appropriately correcting her for being rude? If it is, what is the best way to correct the situation. The times he corrected her or the times that I redirect her, he seems to not have any concern of her being right on top of him with her own toy or her being right next to his toy.
  2. Michael A Brooks

    Michael A Brooks Registered Users

    May 26, 2018
    Blackmans Bay, Australia
    Hi @Crazydoglady

    Your account reads as if the older dog is teaching the pup some manners. It does not sound like a resource guarding problem.

    If the young dog is learning, (and from your description she is) then I don't think you need to do anything at the moment other than monitoring them, Your objective is to treat them as equals. And ensure that the older dog can find some respite from the younger dog when he wants to rest/sleep. Other than that it sounds as if they are getting on together well.

    If you want to read more about multiple dog households, then has a fair bit of information.

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