Aggression Toward Other Dogs

Chris wanted to know how to stop aggression toward other dogs:  “I have a 3 1/2 year-old Chihuahua. He grew up with our other dogs: two Rottweilers and a Shar pei with no problems but he shows aggression toward other dogs. If we are out and about– if he sees another dog– no matter how big it is– he goes crazy and wants to attack it. I can’t get him to be friendly to any other dogs.

Will This Little Dog’s Aggression Toward Other Dogs Get Him In Trouble With The Big Dogs?

I am afraid one of these days one of the big dogs is going to just eat him! He will even run up to them growling and acting mean. How the heck do I deal with this? I so badly want him to get along with other dogs. Do I need to use a shock collar?  I have begun reading your dog training book but really need some advice quick.”

My advice to Chris is that he should finish reading my dog training book (as there is a lot in it about how to stop aggression toward other dogs) and then start using our NILIF (Nothing In Life Is Free approach) and work through the obedience exercises I outline in the back of the book. This will give you the tools you need. You’re also going to need to directly address the aggression by correcting your dog (which the obedience exercises you will learn how to give a motivational correction and how to tell if your corrections are motivational).

Aggression Toward Other Dogs Isn’t Treated
Any Differently Simply Because Your Dog Is One Of The Toy Breeds:
All Dogs’ Brains Work The Same Way

Just because your dog’s body is small does not mean that his brain works any differently than a big dog’s brain. Don’t be fooled. He’s motivated by all of the same drives and instincts as any other dog.

Aggression Toward Other DogsAs for training collars– I’d recommend starting by trying a small chain slip collar (commonly called a ‘choke chain’). You need to fit it so that it only has an excess of 1 inch of chain when pulled tight. You’ll use it the same way I describe in the book for the prong collar: Loose-tug-loose.

If you find that you can’t get a motivational correction, I recommend ordering a “micro prong collar” from one of the pet supply web sites on the internet.  Once you’re able to give a motivational correction, teaching a Chihuahua to stop aggression toward other dogs is really pretty easy.