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My dog tried to bite me. What do I do now?

 
 
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 04:37 am
His vaccinations are up to date and his last physical was a week ago. He's perfectly healthy. He's gentle, a few months short of 2 years old and he's a beagle.

He was hunting after a small animal, nothing new. He was sure it was still behind this huge boulder. Nothing I could do would make him believe otherwise. He seemed hellbent to get that animal, more so than normal. However, it was time to go. I called him and called him and he would not come. So I approached him to pick him up and take him home.

Then he started growling at me. If I got closer, he'd snap at me.

Then, my friend heard us and grabbed my dog and brought him home. Now that he's back, he's back to his gentle self. He lets me pick him up and everything.

So my question is: what do I do now? What do I do the next time he's in this craze? And more importantly, what was so different about this hunt than any other hunt that he became so crazed? Was it because he had devoted so much time into catching this one animal? I want to know so that I can prevent it from happening again. Should I limit the amount of time he spends on one animal so that he doesn't become so obsessed and crazed again?

 
View best answer, chosen by PinkLipstick
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 04:47 am
It sounds to me as though he doesn't think you're in charge. I'd say take him for obedience training, so that he learns that you're in charge, and not him.
knaivete
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 04:48 am
@PinkLipstick,
There's no need to put yourself down.
0 Replies
 
PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 04:56 am
@Setanta,
But he's back to his old self again. He comes, sits, stays, and releases on my command.
Lordyaswas
 
  2  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 07:11 am
@PinkLipstick,
Until the next time he gets serious about something.

I agree that sometimes, when a lot is at stake (according to the dog) he will probably try to take charge again.

You are not his boss all of the time.

Beagles are field dogs and his instinct to hunt out prey in such situations will be very strong.
You need to get advice/lessons from a pro regarding this disobedience, and work at re-establishing yourself as his undisputed boss at all times.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 07:35 am
@PinkLipstick,
Did you ever take this dog for obedience training as was previously recommended to you?
PUNKEY
 
  2  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 07:37 am
It probably was a very exciting time. Then, you interrupted his "hunt."

No wonder he was irritated..

Beagles don't make good house dogs, IMHO.

PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 02:49 pm
@PUNKEY,
Yes, he was very excited. That was the first time I had let him spend so long on one animal. I thought it would be good to let him get this boulder situation out of his system, since he always loses animals when they get there. He usually gives up after about 30 minutes or so.

But this time, he ran around the boulder for hours, whining like beagles do when they hunt. I had never seen him spend so much time around that boulder, whining for one animal. He wouldn't give up no matter how much time passed.
FOUND SOUL
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 03:02 pm
@PinkLipstick,
If he's a hunting dog, it's in his make-up. Once they get a taste of killing, they want to do it again.

I have a Husky (Wolf), she is the most placid dog, she's around 11. I've never, ever seen her hurt a fly... One day early in the morning unfortunately as I let her out to do her business, a Possum was outside in the tree but couldn't get up quick enough so thought that it best stay quiet. Kia smelt it, leapt up off the ground, grabbed it and rag dolled it. From then on, when she saw a small dog (outside our house as we have a small dog) she would crouch in wait.

The point being, perhaps even though that's their nature, take that nature away from them as your dog may very well kill someone else's pet, a cat, another smaller dog as it's a hunting dog and you've taught it to hunt.

PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 03:17 pm
@ehBeth,
Yes, but they told me that no matter how much obedience training he went through, because of his breed, everything gets thrown out the window when he is in "hunting" mode after small animals.

That's why beagles should never be left off their leash unless they're in an enclosed and safe area; because once they get a sniff of something and hunt it down, they will not come back when called.

That was fine. When he's off leash, he's always in a safe area and all I had to do was wait until he got the animal or gave up on it. It never took more than 30 minutes or so. If it took more, I would just pick him up and take him home.

However, yesterday I tried something new. It was the same exact boulder he always gets stuck on, so I figured I'd let him get it all out of his system so he wouldn't be so obsessed over it anymore. We stayed by that boulder for hours. However, I then realized something; instead of calming down over time, he just became more and more obsessed. No matter how long I waited, he wasn't calming down. He even whimpered, which he only does when he's really into a hunt. I'd never heard or seen him like that before. He'd never been that far gone before during a hunt; to the point where he would growl at me to continue hunting.

0 Replies
 
PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2014 03:25 pm
@FOUND SOUL,
I haven't taught him to hunt, he's been hunting since the very beginning. He's a beagle, a hunting dog. Whether it's birds or even small insects in our backyard, he'll sniff them out and give chase. However, he doesn't kill his prey. He leaves them alive so that he can keep releasing them and chasing after them again. Also, because he's a beagle, he's not allowed off his leash unless he's in an enclosed and safe area.

However, once he's caught animals the first time around, he goes back to following orders. The other day he caught a parakeet in our backyard (no idea where he came from), I ordered him to "release" and aside from having dog slobber on him, the parakeet was perfectly fine.
PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 07:32 am
@PinkLipstick,
UPDATE!

My dog was in hunter mode again this morning. He growled at someone. I heard him and rushed over. This time, instead of trying to grab him forcefully, I tried distracting him from hunter mode to pet mode again. So, I took out a treat. It must have done something to him, because even though he didn't take it (normally he would be all over that, being a beagle and all) he didn't growl at me. Then, I told him his favorite phrase "Good job, boy!" which he loves to hear. I touched him, he flinched, but did nothing else. I pet him until he lost the tension in his muscles.

The last step would be to pick him and and take him away from the situation, but I was scared. Last time, he growled at me and it made me feel very sad and rejected. I don't want to ever feel that way again, but I know I need to have the courage to drive this home.

In the end, my friend came up and grabbed him for me again. He immediately returned to pet mode, turned all his attention to me, and did all the tricks in the book to get the treat that had remained in my hand this whole time.

Progress! From start to finish, he did not growl at me! In fact, he was even inching away from the other animals location on his own! Now, if only I was as fearless as my friend (-__-")
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 07:54 am
@PinkLipstick,
PinkLipstick wrote:

Now, if only I was as fearless as my friend


you need to do more training with your dog - your dog sees your friend as a leader. you are not seen as a leader by the dog.

PinkLipstick
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 09:23 am
@ehBeth,
My dog is a beagle. He's a hunter. The instinct to seek out his prey until the end and kill it has been bred into him. That will never change.

What will change is how I handle the situation. Today, I tried something different and he did not growl or snap at me, even though I approached him and touched him (which incited a growl in him the last time he was so excited about a hunt). He slowly moved away from his prey, too. My friend impatiently grabbed him and moved him 5 feet away from the prey and my pet was back to doing tricks for treats.

We'll keep practicing this switch from hunter mode to pet mode until I can do it all on my own without the help of my friend. Though, I could have very well done it all on my own if I had worked up the courage to pick him up myself. However, my bad experience the last time left me with feelings of sadness, rejection, and betrayal. So, I'll need to train myself as well to get over those feelings. Only then will we repair our bonds of trust and be better able to communicate with one another.
PUNKEY
 
  -3  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 03:33 pm
You are living a delusion. A two year old dog that acts like that has something wrong with it.

Something's very wrong with that dog. (inner bred?)

Either give him to a farmer or a proper hunter who has other beagles. Better yet, take him back to the dog's former owner.

That dog is going to hurt someone - maybe even you.

He senses no Alpha male in you or anyone else and is out of control. These "pet modes" you talk about are not his true self.

PinkLipstick
 
  0  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 11:44 pm
@PUNKEY,
Apparently, you don't know a thing about Beagles. True, I have learned he needs more training to learn to forget about the hunt, but giving up and getting rid of my pet because I didn't like that he growled at me once? Do you honestly think you can get a dog expecting him to never need training and automatically be the perfect pet that never disobeys you?

That's incorrect. Pets are a working process. You're going to meet bumps in the road, and if I was going to give up when I got to those bumps and abandon him at the pound, I would have never gotten a pet to begin with.

Here, educate yourself on the breed. Training never stops with Beagles, but the rewards are endless, which is why they're one of the top breeds for families:

http://youtu.be/BAf7lcYEXag

Jeez, I hope you never get a dog. You'll turn tail and run as soon as you realize he actually needs training.
PinkLipstick
 
  0  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2014 09:58 am
@PinkLipstick,
UPDATE 2:

He was hunting today again. I tried things that incited a growl in him last time (approaching and touching him during a hunt) and no growls. I tried the commands and he followed them all.

Hmm, this leads me to believe there must be other factors present for him to react that way. Perhaps he needs to be really frustrated after chasing an animal for hours? Or perhaps the animal needs to be really big and within grasp?

I don't know if or when he'll ever growl again, but if he does, I'll be ready to turn it into a training experience. I ordered smelly treats. I learned that the scent of what I have on hand needs to overpower the scent on the floor for him to forget about it.
ossobuco
 
  3  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2014 10:08 am
@PinkLipstick,
Did you ever give the dog training lessons by a professional? That is essentially training for the owner, to become the alpha.
Germlat
 
  1  
Reply Sat 18 Oct, 2014 10:35 am
@PinkLipstick,
I had a couple of dicey moments with pets, where I was not certain if they understood I was the Alpha. In the end it worked out.
0 Replies
 
MattWSpanjer
  Selected Answer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 21 Oct, 2014 02:30 am
@PinkLipstick,
Be nice. Gain trust. My Shitzu little baby doll bit me a long time ago but now she loves me to pieces because I spoil her and well she is just pampered. Anyways you need to understand that dogs have boundaries and personal space they like to hold on to. Don't invade but make sure they know who's boss at the same time! Very Happy hope this helped. I love all animals personally, but for them to love back, as with humans... You must gain their trust in you. Good luck with your pet!
 

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