i have three female labs, one of each color. my problem is, the 1 1/2 yr old yellow and my 3 yr old black are being very aggressive towards one another. in the last three days i have had to pull them off of each other. the yellow will growl and the black will attack. i love my babies very much and do no want them to get hurt. how can i fix this problem without having to keep them separated. the yellow very much so out weighs them all and is my youngest. what can i do?!!??
The 1 1/2 yr old is approaching adolescence..probably challenging the pack order some. Ultimately you need to be the alpha and set the guidelines. But you may need to let them work it out a little, I'm by no means and expert and you may want to have a trainer come to your home to observe but it often sounds and looks worse than it really is. Dogs communicate differently.
for aggression cases, i also second seeking professional help, and you should keep the dogs separated until you can get a handle on things.
the more they fight, the harder it will be to re-train/re-condition them to live in harmony.
minor fights and bickering between dogs are usually harmless and even ones that get out handle should be easily and quickly stopped when owners intervene by commanding them to stop. fights were owners have to physically pull and yank a dog off another dog are dangerous, and left untreated, the fights and aggression may escalate.
i also recommend the following booklets. these are not thick books. they are thin phamplet sized booklets. these resources are not specifically geared toward aggression issues, but they may help you deal with general multidog questions and concerns.
Feeling Outnumbered? How to Manage and Enjoy Your Multi-Dog Household.
by Karen B. London, Patricia B. McConnell
How to be the Leader of the Pack...And have Your Dog Love You For It. ("How to" booklets from Dog's Best Friend)
by Patricia B. McConnell
"Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend." ~ Corey Ford
Take what I say with a grain of salt, and I apologize if it sounds mean, cuz it's not meant to...
But are you sure they are really being aggressive and not just playing?
When we got our second dog and witnessed how Maddy and Hudler would play fight, if we weren't absolutely sure of their temperments and personalities, it would have been VERY SCARY. Teeth, growling, "bear" noises, Hudler sitting on Maddy, her getting insulted and fighting back harder. Sometimes they bit hard and drew a little blood.
The sounds they can make sound really bad to a person and what you might think is a bad fight is nothing to them. You might just not understand their method of play and establishing the pecking order in the pack.
Normally I let the dogs do as they please, until I find it a royal pain in the butt and then I step in as Alpha and make them cut it out.
The 1 1/2 yr old is approaching adolescence..probably challenging the pack order some.* Ultimately you need to be the alpha and set the guidelines.* But you may need to let them work it out a little, I'm by no means and expert and you may want to have a trainer come to your home to observe but it often sounds and looks worse than it really is.* Dogs communicate differently.*
I agree! Doubt that it's true aggression. But a re-shuffling of things, as the adolescent tries to shimmy one or two pegs up the totem pole.
Well it's easy to tell if they are playing or being aggressive. And it's not by the sounds. A playful dog will have his butt in the air, tail wagging, ears back, relaxed face. An agressive dog will have the tail straight up in the air, face and ears forward and a concentrated look on his face. This dog's body will be rigid and focused.
You have to look closely at the conditions of when this starts. What happened right before hand?
BTW, I have an older 2 yr old mixed-hound dog. The only way to establish peace in a multiple dog home is having one alpha/pack leader. EVERY dog, is number two. Period and no favoritism. Which is really hard to do.