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yellow female

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Not sure what to do i have a yellow female lab. She just turned 3 yrs old. A hunting machine, excellent pedigree full of titles. She has made hundreds of retrieves on pheasants, ducks, geese here in northeast, SD.

Very friendly dog, loves my 1 1/2 yr old son. Very sweet dog.

Problem...in talking to a trainer, he said she has a dominance problem. She is aggressive towards other females. I hunt with friends etc. She tends to start fights with other females. The trainer said that this problem can be lessened but is hard to cure. I actually don't have a huge problem out hunting but i live in a neighborhood with lots of mutts. She has charged people walking dogs by. I'm worried i may get in trouble if she attacks some little mutt.

As i said, she comes from trial lines so she a real hard charger. Will retrieve all day long. She has been obedience trained (unprofessionally) and as mentioned has 3 full years of hunting exeperience. I'm just think i may need to get rid of her to someone who hunts with male dogs or is a lone hunter and/or lives in country. She responds to a collar. She'll stop the problem but it hasn't cured it. I don't want to get rid of her but may need to. I won't give her away because of her training/pedigree and experience. Anyone... ideas?? frown.gif

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I lost my Black lab last fall due to his age. Not looking for a pup, looking for a good hunting and family dog. Thanks

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Knowing how hard it is to sell a dog after it has been around I feel for you. We lost a four year old a few years ago to Addisons and it would be nice to still have him around.

Is she intact and has she had pups? Some dogs will develope a "territorial" mind set after welping, and this may continue after the pups have left. My other question is if you have asked other trainers or just one? I think if you search around you will find a trainer that can help you. Anyways when you pick a new pup you may want to stay away from the most dominant pup next time. I don't want to pass judgement but it happens sometimes that a owner cannot control a dominant dog. It is not that you can't but rather you wouldn't have the heart to. Dogs are a pack animal and by establishing a pecking order where you are the leader the dog will follow your behavior twards others. Don't feel bad, because this does happen and even more with field trial lines.

My only other question would be, Is if this behavior started any time after the baby came, or has she always been this way? She may think of the baby as a pup and that maybe a reason for agression also. I'm sorry if you are set on getting rid of her, but she sounds like a good dog that may just need some pro training.

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This is hard to judge without seeing the behavior in person, but it sounds like you have a dominant female. My very first dog (an American Water Spaniel) had a lot of the same characteristics. I was in my early teens and at the time, had no idea on how to handle such a dog. Has she always been this way, or did it develop recently? In my opinion, the answer to that will make some difference on whether or not something can be done. I think you can always alter a dogs behavior to some extent, but some things are hard wired and you just have to accept it.

I would hate to see you have to give up your dog, but if she is charging other dogs with their owners at hand, you have a legitimate concern over the damage your dog could do to other dogs, or even their owners. Also - I am sure your hunting companions don't like to see their own dogs abused. I think you should consult another pro and in the mean time, keep her kenneled or tied up so she can't charge the street. If you do have her out, always have the collar on her. If she starts to run to the street, yell "no" and then "here." When she refuses the "here" comand, then yell it again as you start to burn her. When she stops and turns around, then let off of the button and praise her as she comes back to you. Hopefully this makes sense. Do not burn her on "no." After a couple of times, she should start to get the idea. If you can get a neighbor with a dog that she doesn't like to help you, then you could set her up several times in a row to really teach the lesson.

I once witnessed a dominant dog that like to fight, until he met the wrong dog. Something to think about...

Good luck. If her skill as a hunting dog is worth it, I would try to make it work first, but that may also involve altering the way you take care of her as a whole.

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Keep the power steering collar on her when she's not in the house. This way you'll always have control over her.

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Sorry i should have been more direct in my post. I wasn't necessarily looking for training tips. Just ideas or if anyone else experienced this. I should note without trying to be arrogant..that i know dogs quite well. I have trained several, owned several worked under a trainer some years back for a summer job (i'm a teacher)and trained a few dogs for other people. I'm not just a guy with a pet dog. Again-not trying to boast, just stating.

I have done several measures etc. The collar works great. It stops the issue quickly. However-it has not cured it. I don't particularily want a dog that has to live with a collar on. She would have to in my neighborhood. I live a neighborhood that is full of bums with piece of sh!t dogs tied up to trees with chains. No obiedience, training etc. The charge out at people and bark 24/7. I think this drives her nuts. She deserves to be in a better place. I have two trainer friends and know another that is a national dog competitor and all said the same. She has a dominant issue. Hard to tell when they are pups. They all said that it can be lessened but hard to cure. She has been this way since her first hunt at 6 months. She retrieved several ducks for me. My friend's dog came to close to her "pile" and she ripped into his female. She was half her size.

As far as hunting ability-she's outstanding! I really don't want to lose her but she has charged out to other dogs that people are walking by with. Someone could really take offense to this. I have her collar on but when doing yard work etc, i don't always have eyes on her. So many mutts here it seems like everytime i look away, here somebody comes with one. I zap just as she makes her move.

She belongs in the country with a hunter.

I was just wondering if anyone else had this sort of experience?

thanks for the replies ps she is intact and has never had a litter.

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Sounds like a nice dog for the right hunter. I hope you end up finding a nice home for her. You may want to sell her on a 'no-breed' agreement or withhold her papers until proof of spaying. Many times I have see these 'dominant' traits passed down to pups of these dogs.

Case in point: My cousin had a male that was bred who had the worse case of a dominance issue I ever saw. It manifested itself often in hunting situations. His dog needed to make all retrieves and hover over the birds or it would fight any dog in the immediate area. He kept a pup out of that breeding and it too, had those same traits. He also said another dog he knew from a different litter did the same thing. I quit hunting with him because of this... he thought nothing of it till he was going to get sued over his dog causing another to receive 40 stitches from a fight... His dog came after mine once and the only thing I would put between them was my boot... The teeth were really flying... not good!

Be really open with the perspective buyer so they fully understand what they are buying into. Maybe your trainer has somebody who needs a 'guide' dog. This may be your best avenue to get her into a proper setting.

Good Luck!

Ken

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all good points Labs4,

I have a couple parties interested and been very open about her. All in all she isn't that bad-truly. I haven't had a too bad of trouble out hunting-i more so worry about it in town. If i lived in the country this would have absolutely never crossed my mind.

thanks

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That is a tough issue to resolve, particularly if it is genetic in nature. If it is an acquired behavior, sometimes it can be corrected. But in most cases I have seen, they have been genetic issues. Personally, I have never had a dog with this issue but have seen several over the years. From observations, I have not seen others have much success with curing the problem, even when placed with pros. Regarding the e-collar, your lucky she responds as I have seen some dogs actually go the other way with it (get more charged up and viscious). Probably ideally suited to someone who hunts by themselves and perhaps on their own property or not where they come into contact with other dogs. It seems like she might work out well for someone with a large farm and who does all their hunting there. Has she been exposed to kids? Is she only aggressive around dogs or is she possessive with other things (food, bones) around kids? I am sure you can find the right environment for her.

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things will work out one way or the other. As i metioned. She is only aggressive with female dogs. She loves and is somewhat protective of my 1 1/2 yr old son. Loves people/kids. Not issue with food, toys etc. Just female dogs and or any dog that gets too close to her birds.

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