Food aggression with humans

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Postby luvmypitties » December 22nd, 2006, 4:24 pm

What is your take on dogs especially pitbulls that are food aggressive with people. Not that take what they have and run but will growl, curl a lip and even lunge at you??

I bring this up because we have a pitbull in boarding right now that went after me when i thought he lost his peanut butter filled marrow bone into the next dog's run. I bent down because I heard him growling (which I thought was at the dog next to him) and thought someone took his bone. When I got down he lunged at the fence and was going crazy barking and growling trying to get to me. Any other time this guy is a sweety!! I personally dont think anyone should have a dog like that. I mean what if he gets something he isnt suposed to have and you cant get it from him without getting eaten, or if you are out on a walk and little kid has some cookie that she accidentally drops and then you might have an even bigger situation on hand.

The owner of the kennel sees nothing wrong with it. dogs will be dogs. And disagrees on either destruction of the animal or intense training to work on it. She says let him go he will be fine....

Thoughts anyone?
Tina
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Postby SisMorphine » December 22nd, 2006, 4:45 pm

I think that it's an error on the part of the owner for having not fixed that. Just because a dog is food aggressive doesn't mean it's a bad dog, but that doesn't mean it's an acceptable behavior either.
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Postby luvmypitties » December 22nd, 2006, 6:04 pm

How could one live safely with a dog like that??
Tina
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Postby SisMorphine » December 22nd, 2006, 6:11 pm

On December 22 2006, 6:04 PM, luvmypitties wrote:How could one live safely with a dog like that??

You train it to not be food aggressive. But the people who let it go, let "dogs be dogs" persay, are living dangerously IMHO.
"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another." -Anatole France
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Postby Pitcrew » December 22nd, 2006, 8:25 pm

On December 22 2006, SisMorphine wrote:
On December 22 2006, 6:04 PM, luvmypitties wrote:How could one live safely with a dog like that??

You train it to not be food aggressive. But the people who let it go, let "dogs be dogs" persay, are living dangerously IMHO.


I agree comepletely.
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Postby luvmypitties » December 22nd, 2006, 9:37 pm

Obviously these people havent done anything to correct the problem. The dog seemed to be in a trance like state. nothing got his attention when he was growling at me and lunging at the fence. He was locked on me and my actions. Kind of scary actually.

How would training go for that?? Hand feeding everything??
Tina
Our thoughts and prayers are with Mick and Christine! We love you both!

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Postby SisMorphine » December 22nd, 2006, 11:51 pm

Hand feeding, teaching trade, among other things. A dog with resource aggression with humans usually has some sort of underlying insecurity. Through positive reinforcement training, and always ending training sessions on a good note (ie: making sure they win), you can up the dog's confidence and you can see some of it melt away with just a boost of confidence.

The more a dog is allowed to practice this bad behavior, the worse it will become. As far as what happened with you it could have been a combination of resource guarding and barrier aggression. Hard to say without seeing it firsthand, though.
"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another." -Anatole France
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Postby luvmypitties » December 23rd, 2006, 11:08 am

Hope the owners of the dog are nice and will work with him on this stuff. Thanks for the info. I will pass it along to the owners!
Tina
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Postby greenkozi » December 24th, 2006, 10:18 pm

On Fri Dec 22, 2006 5:11 pm, SisMorphine wrote:
On December 22 2006, 6:04 PM, luvmypitties wrote:How could one live safely with a dog like that??

You train it to not be food aggressive. But the people who let it go, let "dogs be dogs" persay, are living dangerously IMHO.


i disagree. first, what OP was describing is NOT what i would call food aggression, but rather sounds more like "high value object" possession aggression. a marrow bone filled with peanut butter is pretty high on the list of way-cool-things for dogs. also, this dog is not in his normal environment, or with his normal people. remember that dogs don't generalize- we don't know that his people are just "letting it go"- they may be able to take the highest value item straight out of their dogs mouth, but this dog was in a kennel environment with other dogs, which is a stressful environment, and the OP taking it away was not the dog's person.

in a more general sense, pit bulls are still dogs. high value items are still high value items for pit bulls. even if we SHOULD be able to take things away from all pit bulls in all situations, that's not always feasible or realistic. it may be more realistic to have an understanding and expectations of your dog/pit bull: my dog will growl over raw bones but not rawhide. my dog will not guard kibble, but might guard wet food,etc. if none of the above is acceptable, you should teach your dog waht IS acceptable. if any of the above is acceptable, and your dog may guard his very very special raw b one, you'll probably want to manage that accordingly- not have him have a raw bone when there are visitors, let the kennel where he is boarding know, etc.


just my .02 cents. :|
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Postby mnp13 » December 26th, 2006, 4:31 pm

I thikn the above post is a possible disaster waiting to happen. I have had to give my dogs different meals for one reason or another - and put the wrong dish in the crate. I need to be able to safely reach in and take that bowl away, regardless of how high value that item is. Some dogs will come out of their crate if you call them, but some won't. I don't really consider the breed in this example. If the dog is going after me for reaching into the crate, that dog is in a world of trouble. Same for "high value" toys. They are mine and I will take them whenever I want. That is not to say I just dive in and grab them. I agree that dogs are dogs, I am respectful of his space, but he is still going to give it up.

Riggs LOVES his red rubber balls, when he has both, he holds onto the extra one tightly with his front paws. I either lift him by his collar and get the ball away, or reach under and pull his paws off, which can be a challenge because he can hold the ball prety tight with even one paw. However, I am not in any danger of being snapped at or threatened. Well, to be honest, he growled once... but let's just say that he'll never be doing that again.
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Postby luvmypitties » December 27th, 2006, 1:15 am

Michelle you bring up very good points!!!

I agree that guarding a kind of natural instinct of the dogs but we as the high dog i the pack should get whatever it is that we want from them. I dont care who it is, they can come in and take something away from my dogs because we played the game where I took whatever they were playing with away until i wanted to give it back. Hands were always in the food bowls and in their mouths while they were trying to eat. we did this with all of our dogs, even the non-pitbulls. Jake who I have only had a year has some guarding issues with me but those were soon corrected after he turned at me once. He wont ever do it again. He is food aggressive with our other dog but not the cats. He will share toys but not the high value items like bones or rawhides.Those are guarded against the other dogs (they are now seperated while having yummy treats and eating food) but anyone and I mean anyone can take treats, bones and food away from my dogs.

I dont think it should be seen as the dog is away from home and its not around 'its' people, thats making excuses for aggressive behavior which should never be done. I think it is something that the owners of the dog let it go when he started doing it. I personally dont think it should be a tolerated behavior. In rescue we have put dogs down that are like this because they are deemed unadoptable because of the aggressiveness and the potential dangers this causes. (both to the dog and any person who comes in contact with that dog).
Tina
Our thoughts and prayers are with Mick and Christine! We love you both!

RIP my precious Noah! You are greatly missed and still so loved!!! 7-12-06-- 2-21-07
RIP Abby! I always loved you!
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Postby satanscheerleader » December 27th, 2006, 9:37 pm

There are some behavioural/tempermental issues I don't mind working with a dog on but any sort of aggression to the kids or me, nope. Won't tolerate it. No dominance issues, no guarding issues. Nothin'. They are rock solid with the family or they are not part of the family. :| Saying that.... my dogs are also raised in an enviroment where they know their place from the get go, they are treated with respect by the kids, they are well socialized and get what they need, even if it isn't always what they want! lol Basically, if a dog is showing these issues in a strongly run pack, they've got a screw loose as far as I'm concerned.
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Postby DemoDick » January 6th, 2007, 7:10 pm

I really think it depends on what the owner expects from the dog and how they manage the animal.

I know of several dogs who are food aggressive and have been that way since reaching sexual maturity. Many breeders who produce police, military, and protection dogs will tell you to expect some level of food aggression from their dogs, especially until they have established a foundation of trust with their new owners.

It's not really something I look for, or look to avoid. Sometimes it comes as part of the package, and you deal with it through elimination or management. For many people, it is absolutely unacceptable, and that's fine. It's really a personal thing.

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