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 ball guarding at the dog park

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JoJo'shuskies
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Join date : 2013-11-28

PostSubject: ball guarding at the dog park   Sun Sep 07, 2014 6:29 pm

I have a 2 year old femal husky. She has been going tot he dog park daily since she was 4 months old. She is very social. And almost always sweet as pie. Every now and then, she will find a nasty, stinky tennis ball at the park, and she will guard it. She has had a few episodes where it has gotten violent if another dog tries to steal it. Luckily no one has ever gotten hurt (not even blood draw), but the behavior scares me. I would hate to not go to the park, as it is a wonderful outlet for her energy, and a great place for her to socialize (me too!). Does anyone have any advise on how to nip this behavior?

We have another dog at home (a small shih tzu) and there has never been any evidence of guarding with him, but he is very submissive to her, and would never try to steal a toy, or anything for that matter, from her.

We also have several kids, and she has never displayed any aggressive behavior toward them...they can take bones, treats, toys, food etc... right out of her mouth with no problem.

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amymeme
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Female Join date : 2013-12-20

PostSubject: Re: ball guarding at the dog park   Mon Sep 08, 2014 9:34 am

Does she let you take it away? I think I would just scope out the grounds as soon as I get there and pick up all toys.
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Vetsky
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Male Join date : 2014-08-18
Location : Montreal

PostSubject: Re: ball guarding at the dog park   Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:25 am

I will start this post saying I have no clue what I'm talking about.  However, I noticed that our puppy has been leaning towards some food aggressions.  Meaning that she would growl if we tried to take the bowl away from her.

I have been working on the problem for about a week now.  What I did was have her sit, and wait for the "take it" command before allowing her to take the food.  If she lunged for it I would block her and lift the bowl up.  A week later she is perfect and will not budge until the "take it" command is given.  We just started working on the leave it.  Meaning I would let her eat the food, then 1/2 way through issue the "leave it" command. At this point I have to move her off the bowl, and she will then sit and wait for the "take it" command. Each day the "leave it" is sinking in a bit more.

I'm not sure if this is the right way to do, but it seems to be working.  I would think the exact same thing would work for a toy, or tennis ball.

Good Luck!
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JoJo'shuskies
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PostSubject: Re: ball guarding at the dog park   Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:03 pm

Thanks for the suggestion. I can try this technique. The problem is, at home she is fine. She does fully understand the leave it and drop it command. Even with our other dog. It always occurs randomly with a 'unknown' dog....and very suddenly. I am not sure how to reinforce the training around strange dogs, especially at the park, where training treats can cause huge problems.
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JoJo'shuskies
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PostSubject: Re: ball guarding at the dog park   Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:05 pm

I did pick up all the balls/toys today, and there were no problems. She is fine with people taking them from her. I hope the other dogs don't miss the tennis balls too much
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MiyasMomma
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Female Join date : 2014-06-26
Location : west Texas

PostSubject: Re: ball guarding at the dog park   Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:13 pm

JoJo, training in stressed situations is a good thing, makes for a better mannered husky. Jeff and Amy gave good advice, my two cents, teach her"Be Nice", we have a senior kitty and Miya loves to play, kitty doesn't want any part of it, I tell Miya be nice and she calms down considerably, enough that the cat can get a couple of good whacks, lol.
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