My pregnant gsd mix has all of a sudden started growling at my boyfriend. She has never acted aggressive before; and if I don’t figure out why, I don’t know what will happen to her. It was weird, he was leaned over trying to love on her, and she just started growling, I thought he might have just startled her, then she did it again. If I was holding her, she was fine, being her normal self, taking turns licking us. But I can’t keep a dog that may attack my handicapped boyfriend or our nieces, which she is just fine with, right now. Before you ask, no he hasn’t hurt her or done anything to her. So what would cause this new behavior? Could it just be the pregnancy?
That seems pretty likely, given that she is going through a lot of hormonal changes right now. It couldn’t hurt to have the vet take a look at her though, because sometimes if a dog randomly growls it can be out of pain. Had your boyfriend been petting any particular area when it happened?
Don’t lean over her, that can be aggressive stance for dogs. Especially with her heightened state as pregnant, I would make sure everyone around her has proper dog manners. To be perfectly blunt, pregnant bitches require a bit different ability than a normal dog, and I wouldn’t keep people around her right now that don’t know how to properly handle one. I hope you researched all of this before breeding her
Not 100% sure, but I don’t think she was bred on purpose. Full story on this thread: https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/forums/topic/trying-to-find-a-good-food/
To answer obsessed no, he wasn’t petting her at all. He was getting ready to, and I just remembered that she was acting afraid of him at first. And just to be blunt; it is physically impossible for him to harm her; due to his disability. And you’re also correct about this being a happy accident. I’m also worried because she is so young, I’d say not even a whole year yet. I need to do some research on pregnant dogs, never had one, and cats are so different.
Hi Kelsey, I wouldn’t get rid of her just yet, a growl is just a warning to say, leave me alone, go away, or I’m sore, if she wanted to bite, she would of bitten your boyfriend without any warning but she didn’t….
When I first rescued my boy, I couldn’t touch his front paw, he’d growl at me, it kind of scared me cause I’ve never had a dog growl at me, after I gained his trust & I was real gentle around his paws, I turned his paw around to have a proper look real slowly & inbetween his toes he had red ulcers sores, poor thing he was just telling me in dog language, to leave his paw alone, it’s sore. I got cream & the paw healed, then when he was sick he also growled at me when I tried to move him into my room one night, he wanted to be left alone in another room, so I left him, he hasn’t growled anymore…
I’d say its cause she is pregnant, I just googled how many pups can a GSD have, it said anything from 5 to 16 pups, that’s alot of kicks, we just have 2 legs kicking us…
A few weeks ago I was grooming Lily on her leg, and she suddenly growled and snapped at my hand, not like she was actually going to bite but as a warning. Her leg had been sore lately, so I immediately assumed it was out of pain. I took her to the vet a few days later, and they put her on pain meds and suggested x-rays to find out what’s going on. We’re still getting to the bottom of it, but I realized that Lily had actually been in quite a bit of pain and that was her way of showing it. Since your boyfriend wasn’t actually touching the dog, it is unlikely that he caused her any pain but she could be in pain anyway from being pregnant. I wouldn’t regard it as a behavioral issue just yet. If it keeps happening, I would recommend taking her to the vet, and if she gets a clean bill of health then you could look into getting help from a trainer.
Thanks for the help! She has been allowed in our room again, and is doing great! I think it was an isolated incident (probably from discomfort, sleepiness). So I’m gonna keep an eye on her mad make sure she’s as comfy as possible.
Just returned home from staying with grandma in th er, to find that Lucy has snapped at him. I’m at my wits end! According to him he was just looking at her and said hi when it happened. I’m nearing the end of my rope here. He is the only one she is aggressive towards. If that’s any help.
Hi, is she a rescued dog, my last dog Angie disliked men, when we adopted her from the RSPCA, she was only allowed to be adopted by women, no men, so my daughter & I were the lucky ones that the RSPCA choose, she was OK with some men but not all men, it depended on their looks & build I found…Your boyfriend isn’t probably doing anything wrong, she may just dislike men, is she the same when any other men have met her or come over??? you said that your boyfriend is disable, If you don’t mind me asking, in what way is he disable, is he in a wheel chair? something is different & she picks this up & doesn’t understand it & re-acts to the situation…how long before she is due to have her pups?? your boyfriend will probably have to stay away from her pups, just in case she re-acts to him..
Susan, he doesn’t use his wheelchair at home, as he mostly stay is in our room. She has never seen him in it. She was a stray, and she is close to due date–a week or two most likely. She loves our guy friends. But the wierdest part is we have had her almost two months and she was just fine until these episodes. And he has arthrogryposis, basically, his joints are fixed in position, he can’t walk or use his hands/arms, which is why an aggressive dog is extremely dangerous in our home.
Can you find a good rescue group to take her and her pups in? Sounds like you guys are afraid of her and it won’t be a good environment for anyone. Especially when the puppies come.
When you have a dog that has been through what she has (not to mention being all hormonal), there is a certain degree of understanding body language and behavior that needs happen.
I would begin, perhaps under the guidance of a trainer, by instructing your boyfriend to simply not look at her, talk to her, or acknowledge her in any way. She is uncomfortable about your boyfriend for some reason. It could be his disability, it could be the fact that she’s possibly been mistreated by men, or that she’s afraid of a male presence for the safety of her pups. She needs to understand that they can both be in the same room and he’s not going to harm her.
Once they are both ok with this, have him begin to offer her treats, again with no talking or acknowledging of any kind. Just have him drop a treat every now and then. Work it up to him giving her the treats dirrectly, and then to him gently petting her while she takes the treat. Do not allow him to lean over her, or touch her face. If he is to approach her, have him approch her from the side, and always, no matter what, make slow and deliberate moves around her until she understands that no one is going to hurt her.
She’s afraid of him for some reason, and the goal is to desensitize her and teach her that he is not going to harm her. I would also suggest that if you, or someone you trust to properly handle the dog, are not around to take charge of a potentially dangerous situation, that she be crated or kept in a seperate room from him. If you are not comfortably with her being around him while she pregant, I would recommend having someone foster her until her pups are born and weened, and she is spayed. Hormonal and fearful dogs are more likely to act on instinct rather than training and conditioning. And being fearful or nervous yourself around such a dog does not help the situation. You guys are doing a good thing by taking her in, but don’t get in over your head and make matters worse by not properly dealing with aggressive and fearful behaviors.
Akari is correct-even looking at a dog in the eyes is not good language in dog world. I highly recommend finding a behaviorist (not that I think your dog has necessarily behavior problems, but dealing with a pregnant bitch is usually a bit tougher than a normal obedience trainer will be able to help you with) and most importantly, everyone that is around the dog should attend-especially your boyfriend. This way they can teach you the proper mannerisms to have around her
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