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Why Does He Bite Me?
  • bobc33bobc33
    Posts: 287
    Well Shadow bit me again tonight, this is the 22nd bite though the first one since last fall.

    Scout and Shadow have been getting along well after a very rough start. Scout was horrible to him for many months when I first brought him home, but with a lot of patience, training and the help of a professional behaviorist I thought we were over it.

    Just now Scout was laying half asleep in the middle of the room and Shadow went over to the door which means he needs to go to the bathroom. Nothing unusual and then Scout flies across the room and attacks him. I drag her off to the other side of the room, but when I let her go she streaks over and attacks him again. I drag her off a second time and while bringing her to the other room Shadow comes up behind me and bites my calf badly.

    Why the hell does he bite me and not her? Of course 2 minutes later they are grooming each other.

    I'll never figure them out.
    Post edited by Sangmort at 2011-09-21 01:35:09
  • CaliaCalia
    Posts: 3664
    There is a likelihood that Shadow bit you accidentally while trying to get back at Scout, but it's hard to say without being there.
  • Koji's momKoji's mom
    Posts: 632
    I'm not sure at all about your doggie dynamics, but it's my understanding that dogs have incredible control of their biting...(ie when playing with flashing teeth, they totally control their bites) so I would guess they don't "accidentally" come from behind and bite your leg...Maybe a "redirect" of aggression, but not an accident...?

    Sounds like maybe should have behaviorist back - or a new one...Good luck
  • emmyemmy
    Posts: 553
    I think that dogs do have a lot of control about whether to bite and how hard. My dog bit a person once since I got him, and it was when she picked up another dog he was fighting with. Based on her account of what occurred and his reaction to biting her, I really think he meant to get the other dog.

    However, I'm totally not a behaviorist or expert of any kind. 22 bites is a lot, I think you should get a good behaviorist.
  • Could be redirected aggression too. I've had Toby snap at another dog when I grabbed his collar--he was not happy with me, but he won't bite me, so he bit at the other dog instead.

    22 bites? What kind of circumstances were these bites in? Not mouthing?

    What were you working on with the behavioralist? Seems like that person needs to come back and help you work with the dogs more.
  • bobc33bobc33
    Posts: 287
    Redirected aggression sounds plausible, it certainly is not an accident.

    Some of the bites are when I tried to handle him or pick him up. Both his kidneys are badly formed so perhaps it hurts, I've long since learned not to pick him up, brush his coat or trim his nails. He was "mistreated" his first 8 months in this world before I got him so that too probably adds to his aversion to handling.

    Some of the bites were during his" angry" phase as I call it, but since he was diagnosed with very low thyroid levels and has been on meds his disposition is much better. He actually is a total sweetheart 99.99999% of the time.

    The majority of the bites have been when Scout attacks him, which though very rare now, certainly was the case a couple of nights ago. She attacks him, he cowers and goes defensive but won't bite her but does me if I'm close. I keep him away, or under a very watchful eye, when around other people and kids. It is hard because he loves people and kids and is very affectionate, but obviously him biting someone besides me is not an option. So for some reason he feels it is OK to bite me, though will not bite Scout who is the one attacking him.

    The next step suggested by the vet and behaviorist is to vivit Dr Dodman at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine who is highly recommended. It is neither cheap nor close by, but is needed.
  • Koji's momKoji's mom
    Posts: 632
    Oh my gosh, sounds like a tough situation...Poor little guy - and poor you! I hope they can help you - let us know what happens!
  • Wow, it does sound tough. You've got so many things to deal with: the medical issues (luckily the thyroid is taken care of; sometimes I think of the thyroid meds like miracle drugs they work so well!), and then the fact that he is no doubt fearful from pain and past bad memories....

    I don't know what to tell you, except maybe they will have to be kept separated if Scout keeps attacking him. I hope the Tufts doctor will have some advice. You're really doing the right thing, trying to sort it out, but damn, it is hard sometimes.

    Hang in there.....Keep us posted on your progress.

  • bobc33 said:

    The next step suggested by the vet and behaviorist is to vivit Dr Dodman at Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine who is highly recommended. It is neither cheap nor close by, but is needed.

    My two shibas don't get along at all, they used to when we first got them but as they got older one became dog intolerant and very aggressive towards the other. I keep them separate at all times now except on walks and they are fine. I live in Massachusetts, and I assume you might as well since you were considering going to Tufts? Did you ever go see Dr. Dodman? What was the name of the behaviorist you used to work with your pups?

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