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Introducing 2 dominant dogs

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Stacy_R
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Stacy_R » Wed Aug 12, 2015 4:35 pm

MultiPurposeK9 wrote:When visual dividers need to be put up in my experience they just never come down
Hmm. I disagree. Visual and physical dividers can be anything...even a crate. I have personally witnessed dog- aggressive dogs successfully overcome and come to a place of acceptance of other dogs. If you are training, you have to have separation in order to train individually. Visual dividers and rotating dogs isn't ideal, but is necessary during transition and training.
MultiPurposeK9 wrote:OB and place and all that are fine when training but, what about the rest of the time. The stimuli created between the two of them will be much more of a "pull" then any obedience you have done.
OB and Place when used correctly with a relative space and relaxation protocol is highly effective. Aggressive or reactive dogs can come to a point of acceptance and tolerance. The key here is BOTH DOGS need to learn the protocol and the humans need to buy in to the system completely. Space and the respecting of another's space (for both human and animal) is key.

I'm not saying it will be quick and easy, but it can be done.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Raven » Wed Aug 12, 2015 4:46 pm

Everyone in the dog world states that true dominant dogs are rare.

If that's the case, the likelihood of two aligning in the same house would be rare.

So the advice given has been given as preventative measures for two non-dominant dogs, yes?

Would the same advice be given putting two true dominant dogs together?
Though I can only hope to become the person who my animals believe I am, the things that they have taught me have made me a better human being. ~~~Sharon~~~

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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by MultiPurposeK9 » Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:18 pm

Good points, and are great for people who understand the methodology. In my protocol, I train individually, which means no other dogs near, in a crate near by or behind a divider near. No kids, no husband no wife, casual observers. Just me and the dog or handler. OB and Place work great with one dog and may not be so great with another when outside stimuli are present. Once dogs have a high degree of predictability in these behaviors and have been proofed with Duration, Distance then I introduce Distraction, in this case the other dog. Again, this is in a training scenario, what about just existing together.
Can it be done, sure anything can be done, will it be perfect 100% of the time, no. Stacy, lets be honest here, in the average home with this same problem no matter what the breed what would you venture to guess the success ratio ? Please don't include yourself as an average home I am quite sure you are not.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Stacy_R » Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:29 pm

Tappy4me wrote:The newbie they have though, Rosco the Dutch mix-about 2 years old, neutered-and Rufus are both very dominant.
RAVEN wrote:Everyone in the dog world states that true dominant dogs are rare.

If that's the case, the likelihood of two aligning in the same house would be rare.

So the advice given has been given as preventative measures for two non-dominant dogs, yes?
Excellent point, and I would say "yes" because a majority of the time dogs are labeled dominant when they are really a bit insecure about the situation and are reacting to the pressure of said situation, not dominant per-se, because the behaviors are viewed by humans as dominant ones.

Cases in point...

Tyson is not a dominant dog. However, if another dog stares at him for too long, he exhibits behaviors that most would deem as "dominant" (tail high, raised hackles, etc). Tyson is a dog that needs space and dog introductions need to be managed appropriately. Staring is an invasion of space. The raised tail and hackles are a warning ("don't come any closer - I'm not ready"...not dominance. This goes back to knowing the subtleties of your own dog's body language.

Snickers is not a dominant dog, but he does resource guard. Many people attribute resource-guarding to dominance...it's not.
RAVEN wrote:Would the same advice be given putting two true dominant dogs together?
That is a good question. I guess it all depends on each dog and how they respond to pressure. I would say that it could be done to some degree depending on the dogs, but would have to be evaluated and trained by an experienced trainer.

And honestly, depending on the level of situational insecurity in non-dominant dogs, the training can be just as intense and questionable. The key in either personality situation is determining how each dog handles and reacts to pressure and being able to manage that pressure. But that is just my :twocents:

And sometimes 2 dogs just flat out don't like each other and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it except manage it. And if that is the case, the humans are in charge of managing life. For the record...Tyson and Snickers despise each other, but have learned (through OB and Base - which is place + relative space and relaxation) to co-exist. However, that does not mean that I let my guard down because each one will still try to seize certain opportunities. In the past when I've gotten too comfortable, I've looked up only to see Snickers hanging off of Tyson's side like a cancerous growth giving the death shake for all it's worth. And also in the past, I've had to rush Snickers to the vet to have a piece of his neck stitched back on.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Stacy_R » Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:54 pm

MultiPurposeK9 wrote:In my protocol, I train individually, which means no other dogs near, in a crate near by or behind a divider near. Once dogs have a high degree of predictability in these behaviors and have been proofed with Duration, Distance then I introduce Distraction, in this case the other dog.
I don't think anyone is disagreeing with that. If I am working with one dog - it's that dog until, as you said, certain behaviors are proofed. Then you add distractions (whatever it is you are working on overcoming). This family has to work within their environment and, if after training, each dog goes back into it's own area of the home, or kennel, or crate to relax, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. That's what happens at board and train facilities...You work with one dog, put it up (in its kennel or crate), and then get the next one. And, quite frankly, if the dogs are separated into entirely different areas of the home (and if I remember correctly, one is upstairs and one is downstairs) place and OB training can be done while one is up and the other down and then they can switch.
MultiPurposeK9 wrote:Again, this is in a training scenario, what about just existing together.
That is the point of OB+Place+relative space with relaxation protocol - you are teaching them to exist together. OB = "you listen to me" whereas Base (place+relative space+relaxation protocol) = thinking, self-calming, dealing with pressure, and good decisions. You train both and you can typically get at least to where they can co-exist (with management and a watchful eye if the dogs truly despise one another).
MultiPurposeK9 wrote:Stacy, lets be honest here, in the average home with this same problem no matter what the breed what would you venture to guess the success ratio ? Please don't include yourself as an average home I am quite sure you are not.
I've seen it work successfully in the average home with tough breeds with proper guidance and instruction from a qualified trainer. The key is that humans have to buy-in 100%.

I am not saying that this will be a piece of cake, but I also think that there is hope for co-existing. There is always hope until you exhaust all efforts.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Wed Aug 12, 2015 7:29 pm

Stacy_R wrote:
Excellent point, and I would say "yes" because a majority of the time dogs are labeled dominant when they are really a bit insecure about the situation and are reacting to the pressure of said situation, not dominant per-se, because the behaviors are viewed by humans as dominant ones.
This is an awesome point and an important point. Sadie could be seen as dominant, but she is far from it. She is super insecure so will act scary, but you say " BOO" and she runs and hides. Where Thalie, is dominant, not agressive but dominant but she is super quiet and stealthy.


RAVEN wrote:Would the same advice be given putting two true dominant dogs together?
Stacy_R wrote:That is a good question. I guess it all depends on each dog and how they respond to pressure. I would say that it could be done to some degree depending on the dogs, but would have to be evaluated and trained by an experienced trainer.
excellent point again. Personally if two dogs were dominant, I dont think it would be a good idea to put them together, but they may be dominant in their own space?
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Raven » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:03 pm

I've wondered if the word dominant rolled around by mistake (perhaps to describe stubborn, head-strong, difficult, mismanaged, etc. dogs, or dogs that don't conform to our norm and, therefore, learn differently) and the term stuck...meaning there really isn't any such beast that exists as a whole but we believe they do. We continue to revise our thoughts on things, dogs behavior included, so I guess I'm somewhat of hold-out on this.


Stacy, I just saw your new profile. Once you've had Tyson as long as I've had Thor, you'll no longer be able to remember what the hell your hair color was.
Though I can only hope to become the person who my animals believe I am, the things that they have taught me have made me a better human being. ~~~Sharon~~~

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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Stacy_R » Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:41 pm

Raven wrote:I've wondered if the word dominant rolled around by mistake (perhaps to describe stubborn, head-strong, difficult, mismanaged, etc. dogs, or dogs that don't conform to our norm and, therefore, learn differently)
I would say emphatically yes...that this term is used loosely and incorrectly 99% of the time.

Raven wrote:Stacy, I just saw your new profile. Once you've had Tyson as long as I've had Thor, you'll no longer be able to remember what the hell your hair color was.
:DScool: :whistle: :pint:
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Thu Aug 13, 2015 12:09 am

Sharin, we are on the same wavelength, After I read and posted about dominant dogs, I kept thinking about it. Is there really such a beast?

I agree with you Stacey, I dont think it is used properly
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Owned-By-Hendrix » Thu Aug 13, 2015 9:57 pm

Dominance to me is a confident, self-assured dog that reacts forward and with intent consistently, without overt aggression. I agree it is applied wrongly 99% of the time. The very few truly dominant dogs I've met and live together go through phases of rotation and very strong OB, but the owners know they cannot be left alone together. One of those "cats away the mice will play and kill each other" type deals. They know the handler is the Chief and aggression towards each other is not tolerated. When the handler's away the rules can't be enforced so it's a free for all.

There are some dogs which are dominant socially with other dogs and that's it. They don't want to be bottom rung and work better with submissive dogs or some neutral dogs. I also see it applied to dogs with a very fine tuned pack sense. A true dominant dog wouldn't let itself be usurped by a new baby or new romantic partner. The truly, truly, truly dominant ones are a PITA to be around and live with - these dogs only let you "lead" because they haven't figured out a way to beat you yet. I have only heard stories of these and seen a few worked.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Raven » Thu Aug 13, 2015 10:57 pm

Owned-By-Hendrix wrote:the owners know they cannot be left alone together
So my thought here was: a lot of dogs can't...but this doesn't MEAN dogs who can't get along are dominant. And then you wrote:
Owned-By-Hendrix wrote:There are some dogs which are dominant socially with other dogs and that's it
It's the whole of a dog, not parts of, that would define it as dominant (if I'm to buy into there is such a thing as a true dominant dog). It's an all-or-nothing...ALL characteristics/traits of the dog ALL the time under ALL circumstances.

I keep having a thought about dominance that leaves my head as soon as it comes to mind. Drat.

Years ago, I watched videos of Ed Frawley's "dominant" dog. He pointed out certain behaviors to show how dominant dogs behave. In one, he had a mild-mannered girl just hanging out with the dog. To my little pea-sized brain, all I saw was a mischievous (or ill-mannered or bratty) dog. A point made was: that dog would never do that with him.

Well, of course not. The girl had no relationship with the dog and wasn't even trying to take charge.

I didn't get it.

My Thor is a very confident, fearless beast. He did not go willingly down the path of acceptance and it took a long time, and until he did, he was always trying to scheme--you could NOT ease up on him or let ANYTHING slide. Every awake minute (no joke) was work, either impromptu or planned sessions. Would someone have called him dominant? Probably.

And one last thing: I was taught that raised hackles are NOT a sign of a dominant dog. Hackles raise for the same reason a bird fluffs its feathers---to look bigger in the face of a threat, perceived or otherwise. I've also heard that ONLY dogs who lack confidence raise their hackles.

I haven't read any recent (and perhaps updated studies) information on this.
Though I can only hope to become the person who my animals believe I am, the things that they have taught me have made me a better human being. ~~~Sharon~~~

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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Fri Aug 14, 2015 12:25 am

I think now I am more confused. I see Thalie as dominant, she is the boss, she calls the shots, she is consistent and trustworthy like what you said Kira. Thalie gets along with most, but she actually ignores all of them, If they try to do a dominant move, Thalie wont take it and will get mad.

Sadie would be seen more as dominant by an untrained eye, where she is not.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Owned-By-Hendrix » Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:01 am

Owned-By-Hendrix wrote:
the owners know they cannot be left alone together


So my thought here was: a lot of dogs can't...but this doesn't MEAN dogs who can't get along are dominant. And then you wrote:

Owned-By-Hendrix wrote:
There are some dogs which are dominant socially with other dogs and that's it


It's the whole of a dog, not parts of, that would define it as dominant (if I'm to buy into there is such a thing as a true dominant dog). It's an all-or-nothing...ALL characteristics/traits of the dog ALL the time under ALL circumstances.
Agreed, it doesn't mean that dogs who don't are automatically dominant. However, if you leave two truly dominant dogs in a room, you'll come back to two mangled dead dogs, blood everywhere, and a destroyed house. One person told me she carries a cattle prod because of her two truly dominant dogs - when they fight there's no pulling them apart without one and even then it's a struggle. Not saying that won't happen if you leave two dogs who hate each other in a room, but it's a different level of aggression and action. And for the socially dominant I probably used the wrong word choice, but couldn't think of one that would work besides dominant. To me, a socially "dominant" dog is one that is self-assured but will challenge a dog that walks in without showing proper submissive or "it's cool" signals. It wants to be "top rung" in the social hierarchy and won't stand for less, unless a stronger dog is there. Generally speaking, this is the fight that breaks out that ends as quickly as it began once the other dog shows submissive behavior. There could also be a thousand other reasons for this behavior, but for the sake of broad examples I'll assume it's not based in aggression, fear, insecurity, or reactivity, or jerkiness. You're right to assume that whole parts make a dog "truly" dominant, however, I would say socially "dominant" dogs are probably the first kinds of dogs people label as truly dominant, which is misleading because in and of itself doesn't make a dog truly, wholly dominant. The one thing I'll say is that when observing a dog, the truly dominant factor has a way of showing itself that is hard to describe without video. It's like observing a behavior, which I think we all automatically try to find the trigger or root of, and finding nothing simply than "it was a challenge to THAT dog's authority/position", less about resources or space. It's only after checking everything off you're left with that explanation. There's a group I'm a part of on FB which talks a lot about drive theory and dominance, to which we all agree that most cannot see true dominance, most dogs are not truly dominant unless you have certain lines, and that sometimes that dominance isn't as obvious as one thinks until a stimulus is there. There does seem to be a common line of "the dog will eat you if it doesn't want to do something" when spoken about a truly dominant dog.

It is super hard to talk about dominance in theory, because there is so much that may explain a behavior. Someone once said "I know it when I see it" about dominance and it's true.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:16 pm

Owned-By-Hendrix wrote:
It is super hard to talk about dominance in theory, because there is so much that may explain a behavior. Someone once said "I know it when I see it" about dominance and it's true.

Yes, thats true.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Raven » Sat Aug 15, 2015 1:16 am

Raven wrote:And one last thing: I was taught that raised hackles are NOT a sign of a dominant dog. Hackles raise for the same reason a bird fluffs its feathers---to look bigger in the face of a threat, perceived or otherwise. I've also heard that ONLY dogs who lack confidence raise their hackles.
Thoughts?

A separate thread?
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Tappy4me » Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:09 am

Raven wrote:
Raven wrote:And one last thing: I was taught that raised hackles are NOT a sign of a dominant dog. Hackles raise for the same reason a bird fluffs its feathers---to look bigger in the face of a threat, perceived or otherwise. I've also heard that ONLY dogs who lack confidence raise their hackles.
Thoughts?

A separate thread?
That is an interesting point! I'd be interested to hear more.

After reading all the comments, maybe I use the word dominant in the wrong sense after all. They are both dominant per say in their own environments... bringing them together, there was alot of hackle raising and growling upon the first introductions. This would fit with the lacking confidence/insecurity point above...

Anyways, after this past week of rotating the dogs and letting Rufus get his scent everywhere, among some more introductions, both dogs are getting along very well. Today, they have actually been playing with each other. I can't believe they are getting along so well, but I will take it! It will make things sooo much easier for everyone now. Such a relief! :)
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Stacy_R » Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:21 am

Raven wrote:And one last thing: I was taught that raised hackles are NOT a sign of a dominant dog. Hackles raise for the same reason a bird fluffs its feathers---to look bigger in the face of a threat, perceived or otherwise.
Agreed. And it can also be just a sign of excitement/over stimulation. This is where it is very important to "know thy dog."

Tappy4Me wrote:Anyways, after this past week of rotating the dogs and letting Rufus get his scent everywhere, among some more introductions, both dogs are getting along very well. Today, they have actually been playing with each other. I can't believe they are getting along so well, but I will take it! It will make things sooo much easier for everyone now. Such a relief! :)
This is EXCELLENT news! Just keep your eyes peeled and watch them. :)
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Owned-By-Hendrix » Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:56 am

Yay Rufus!!!!!!

I agreed with Sharon and Stacy - hackles raised is like goosebumps on us. It's an automatic response that can be from several different things, not all relating to fear or aggression. My friend's dog raises his hackles and happy wags his tail at her and asks for pets. My dude will raise them when he's unsure, when he's trying to hump his Kong Bounzer toy (which never works), and when he's thinking about being a jerk.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Sat Aug 15, 2015 2:00 pm

Tappy4me wrote: Giving them a chance to get each others scent slowly
They get each others scent quickly, alot quicker than we do. There is no slow with them. They can smell things outside the house far away, a dog on the other side of a wood divider is not a challange.
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Re: Introducing 2 dominant dogs

Post by Dutchringgirl » Sat Aug 15, 2015 2:03 pm

Tappy4me wrote:
Raven wrote:
Raven wrote:And one last thing: I was taught that raised hackles are NOT a sign of a dominant dog. Hackles raise for the same reason a bird fluffs its feathers---to look bigger in the face of a threat, perceived or otherwise. I've also heard that ONLY dogs who lack confidence raise their hackles.
Thoughts?

A separate thread?
That is an interesting point! I'd be interested to hear more.

After reading all the comments, maybe I use the word dominant in the wrong sense after all. They are both dominant per say in their own environments... bringing them together, there was alot of hackle raising and growling upon the first introductions. This would fit with the lacking confidence/insecurity point above...

Anyways, after this past week of rotating the dogs and letting Rufus get his scent everywhere, among some more introductions, both dogs are getting along very well. Today, they have actually been playing with each other. I can't believe they are getting along so well, but I will take it! It will make things sooo much easier for everyone now. Such a relief! :)
No, not only dogs who lack confidence raise their hackles, Thalie will raise hers and she is super confident.

This is great that they are getting along. stay slow and dont push it.
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