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Advice on bullying and growling Mini Bull Terrier

Discussion in 'Bull Terrier Training' started by delsan19, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. delsan19

    delsan19 Puppy

    I am having problems with my 1 and a half yr old Mini BT, Bella.
    She grew up with my Pittie Mason who died last April of Cancer. Last year I adopted 2 puppies, another deaf Pit in May and a Boxer mix in Feb.
    Bella has started this growling when she is in the bed and anybody moves. (Yes, i made the mistake of letting them sleep with us) Now it has escelated to if you pick her up or talk to her she growls and looks like a rabbid beast. It's strange, like 2 personalities. She is so sweet when she wants your attention, but can snap in an instant. If I make her get off the bed or couch for growling, she gets down and starts wagging her tail, and smiling and looking all cute, so she can get back up there again.
    She has really started bullying Tripp, my deaf Pittie.
    She is in her kennel right now so he can eat...She will jump off the bed and run over and attack him sometimes if he is scratching or licking himself and his tags are jingling and "disturbing her" i guess...
    I have spoiled her, but no more than the other 2....
    What do I do?

  2. Dray

    Dray Bull Terrier Moderator


    Hi delsan19,
    What do you do when Bella acts this way;

    1) Towards you and your family?

    2) Towards Tripp?

    I am going to atempt to offer a little advice but could do with you answering these two questions first and then maybe going in to greater details from before she starts to growl and up to and including when/how it ends:)

    Dray x
  3. delsan19

    delsan19 Puppy

    The growling comes from you speaking sometimes, or touching her when she doesn't want you to (kind of like a cat)...She guards food. She and all my dogs are altered, and she humps the other dogs (displaying dominance). She is the smallest dog, and I wonder if she knows it and wants to be alpha so bad...I consider her to be alpha over the other dogs, except Daizy will fight back. Tripp usually doesn't.
    She sometimes will pry her way in between Tripp and I. She will also growl at Daizy if she wants under the covers where she is.
    When she growls at me or the the dogs, I yell NO. I try to be calm and assertive, but sometimes I may just be loud...I also squirt her with squirt bottle (they hate that), but it doesn't do the trick on this.
    Today she attacked Tripp out of know where and I put her in her kennel for the day. I don't know what else to do! :confused:

    Any advice will be greatly appreciated...
  4. Dray

    Dray Bull Terrier Moderator


    How old is Bella and is she asleep and suddenly woken up when most of the aggression starts. Sorry like i mean is she startled???

    The reason i am asking is we had a bitch who was very similar.
    Have you tried a behaviorist?

    Dray x
  5. delsan19

    delsan19 Puppy

    No, it's never when she's startled...
    I have thought about a behaviorist.
  6. delsan19

    delsan19 Puppy

    Oh, Bella will be 2 in July. She just started this a few months ago...
  7. daniellelv

    daniellelv Banned

    i think shes trying to dominate everyone. make sure she doesnt have SOA sudden onset aggression, a mental disorder. im no pro but i dont think thats what it is.

    you need to lower her in the pack, first off you are leader.

    eat before her.
    make her 'wait' for her food.
    go through all door ways before her.

    there are a lot of things you can try, but you might just have to crate and rotate her if everything else fails.

    if EVERYTHING you try fails, maybe a shock collar might work. but i recommend trying everything else first.

    stop letting her sleep on the bed, all of them now too. no more bed for any of them. give her treats last of the pack. place her on her back sometimes as well, while rubbing her belly. put a leash on her indoors, when she gets nasty pull her back, with a sharp no!

    i think dray could add some good stuff too, but i think the spoiling is going to have to stop and then your going to have to be stern with her from now on, she might just be a DA bull terrier from here on out, and you will just need to work with her.
  8. delsan19

    delsan19 Puppy

    Thanks Dray & Daniell. I think she is definitely wanting to dominate us all. She used to be so sweet and fun... I don't know hat has brought this on all of the sudden.
    I am going to take her on a walk by herself and maybe to the park today.
    She slept in her crate last night b/c the growling and trying to attack the other dogs was so bad. She actually curled up and went to sleep when iput her in there. like she wanted to be alone.
  9. Dray

    Dray Bull Terrier Moderator


    Sounds to me like she could be in pain somewhere and that would explain her shortness and for wanting to be alone???
    For this behavior only to have started 2 months ago i find it strange that you have never seenwork When any signs of aggression previously:confused:
    If your other dog passed away (sorry x) almost a year ago then the pecking order should have been established a long time ago.
    Do you live close to someone from the forum who could maybe pop round to access the situation for you?
    I can't believe the water treatment does not work:confused:When you use this method when do you skirt the water before the event, during or after???

    It is important to watch for the signs and to react even before something has actually happened but if you read her well enough you will know when she is about to attack.
    The growling on the sofa however is different, yes she is trying to dominate and i would just push her off without making eye contact and then ignore all her attention afterward until she either walks off and sits somewhere else or sits down by your side calmly. At this point she should be rewarded with either a small treat or with the words GOOD GIRL. Do not fuss her or then allow her to get back on to the sofa or else you go back to the beginning again:eek:
    As much as i like trying to help i would prefer it so much more if you could ask a behaviorist out to assess her and then you wont be trying all sorts of tactics when they will be able to sort the problem out in next to no time as they have seen this sort of behavior a thousand times where as i can't speak for anyone else but i have only got my own dogs and friends pooches to gain knowledge from;)

    What does Bella do if you challenge her as in walk toward her and try to invade her space while she is being aggressive?

    Dray x

    Sorry as you can tell by my reply it honestly could be any number of reasons and you taking her for a walk without the pack could intensify the situation and not subdue it:no2:
    Please let us know how you get on and in the meentime anything i can do, please just ask:sonn_u11:
  10. millwallblue

    millwallblue Puppy

    You might also get her bloods done as she may have a throid problem, as Dray says if she has only just started this could be a medical problem.

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