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HELP!!! Male Doberman turning aggressive

Foophy3415

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Hi, my name is Diana and I’m new to this. I have two Doberman pinchers. They are everything to me!!! Unbelievably the greatest dogs ever!!! Ok so Inhave a male and female. Tungsten, is the males name and Kona is the female. The male is a fawn, or Isabella. He is an awesome dog and so protective and loving!!! He is a mommas boy loves his mommy and has to cuddle next and share my pillow every night. He’s 3 years old. The female is a black and rust and 2 years old. She’s the daddy’s girl but so loyal and loving to both of us. The male is also loving to my husband. I have had both of them since they were puppies the female. 8 weeks old and the male 3 months. They have and are excellent dogs. The issue I have been having is I think the male may be turning. I don’t know what to do. He has never bit anyone till just recently. The male doesn’t like to be bothered when he’s sleeping but because he pretty much sleeps on top of me sometimes the blanket will be under him or the rv remote etc. So say gently pull the blanket not even realizing he is on it. He will suddenly get up and start growling and showing his teeth. I’ll be able to calm him down most of the time, but then he’s still pretty grumpy after. About a week ago he got loose off the dog run and went to the neighbors house. The neighbor has a chicken coop and my dog HATES BIRDS especially chickens. So he runs around the chicken coop ramming his bed in the fence around it. My bf and I try to do everything we can to get him to stop and bring him back home. He doesn’t listen to us AT ALL and all of our efforts don’t work. If we grab him by the collar he tries to bite us. He ended up bitting my boyfriend. And we got Tungsten. Then we put him in the kennel. When we let him out he is so good and wants to be as close as he can and continuously kiss you. I believe he feels bad. I don know what to do. Today I was sitting next to him and for now reason starting growling and barking at me and I called my bf. If my boyfriend didn’t come I would of gotten bit. I love my dog so much!!! He’s my baby. What do I do? I’m scared of him but do not want to get rid of him!!! Help!!!
 

AnnV

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Hi- sounds like your dog may be testing/challenging the pack hierarchy. Take a look at the info in the links below:
 

Oh Little Oji

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Welcome.

Well, in a nutshell, dogs – especially working breeds – need structure, rules, training and a leader who is authoritative enough to handle the dog's level of dominance.

This breed is not just beautiful and loving. It's a lot of things. Although the breed is a long way from what it was in its early days, it was designed to be a serious working dog – specifically a bodyguard.

One of the biggest messages I wish I could gat across to those interested in this breed is: Don't let them on the furniture, with, or without you!
 

Firestar Dobe

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Have you done any training with your Dobes? Training is extremely important in this breed. They are very intelligent as well as powerful. They need a strong leader or they can become unmanageable. Most powerful breeds are surrendered between the ages of 3 and 5 years old because they haven't been trained and start to become dominate and difficult to handle. You really need to get a handle on this as quickly as possible! Dobes need exercise, not just physical, but mental exercise as well. Without that mental exercise, they become frustrated and bored, which can also bring on unacceptable behavior. With determination and patience you can turn this behavior around. Don't give up! There is a ton of info on this site from some very experienced owners who are always willing to share their knowledge! Ask as many questions as you can, and :welcome: from Wisconsin!
 

LifeofRubie

Active Member
Go back to basic obedience, set strict rules and boundaries, and don't let them on the furniture.

My Dobe has prey drive and would no doubt be very interested in a chicken coop and might also tune me out. My initial thoughts (disclaimer: I am not a dog trainer or behavioral expert) is that him being loving afterward is not him 'showing remorse.' Dogs don't really do that. He has no idea he did anything 'wrong.' Him snapping at you when you tried to grab his collar is not really aggression; he's in an extremely excited state and just reacting to outside stimuli.

My Dobe also does not like to be bothered when she's sleeping so if she must be disturbed, it's very calmly and gently. She has never, EVER snapped or growled at me BUT she also sleeps in a crate at night and was taught young that it is a privilege to be on the couch or on the bed (for evening/morning snuggles) and if she does not follow my rules, she is kicked-off.

Sounds like it's time for some tough love and NILF training in your house! Very doable, though.
 

Kaiser2016

Active Member
I think the male may be turning. I don’t know what to do. He has never bit anyone till just recently. The male doesn’t like to be bothered when he’s sleeping but because he pretty much sleeps on top of me sometimes the blanket will be under him or the rv remote etc. So say gently pull the blanket not even realizing he is on it. He will suddenly get up and start growling and showing his teeth. I’ll be able to calm him down most of the time,
This is a scary scenario and I agree with NILIF training. Make the dog work for everything he gets. He's had it too easy so far and now that he has reached maturity, he is starting to take advantage. First privilege to lose is the bed sharing. If he can't handle you reaching for your own blanket on your own bed, then no bed for him.
 

JanS

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I would also have him vet checked to make sure he's not physically sick or hurting.
 

Ravenbird

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All the above advise, plus be aware that when you begin removing his privileges things could get worse (him challenging you) before they get better. Stick to your guns when you say no to him. Once he is in charge - which it seems like he's sure he is - he won't like being told what to do or what not to do.
 

AnnV

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How are you and Tungsten today @Foophy3415?
Welcome to the forum! When I first posted in this thread I was in a hurry to respond.
 

Cferg

New Member
Hi, my name is Diana and I’m new to this. I have two Doberman pinchers. They are everything to me!!! Unbelievably the greatest dogs ever!!! Ok so Inhave a male and female. Tungsten, is the males name and Kona is the female. The male is a fawn, or Isabella. He is an awesome dog and so protective and loving!!! He is a mommas boy loves his mommy and has to cuddle next and share my pillow every night. He’s 3 years old. The female is a black and rust and 2 years old. She’s the daddy’s girl but so loyal and loving to both of us. The male is also loving to my husband. I have had both of them since they were puppies the female. 8 weeks old and the male 3 months. They have and are excellent dogs. The issue I have been having is I think the male may be turning. I don’t know what to do. He has never bit anyone till just recently. The male doesn’t like to be bothered when he’s sleeping but because he pretty much sleeps on top of me sometimes the blanket will be under him or the rv remote etc. So say gently pull the blanket not even realizing he is on it. He will suddenly get up and start growling and showing his teeth. I’ll be able to calm him down most of the time, but then he’s still pretty grumpy after. About a week ago he got loose off the dog run and went to the neighbors house. The neighbor has a chicken coop and my dog HATES BIRDS especially chickens. So he runs around the chicken coop ramming his bed in the fence around it. My bf and I try to do everything we can to get him to stop and bring him back home. He doesn’t listen to us AT ALL and all of our efforts don’t work. If we grab him by the collar he tries to bite us. He ended up bitting my boyfriend. And we got Tungsten. Then we put him in the kennel. When we let him out he is so good and wants to be as close as he can and continuously kiss you. I believe he feels bad. I don know what to do. Today I was sitting next to him and for now reason starting growling and barking at me and I called my bf. If my boyfriend didn’t come I would of gotten bit. I love my dog so much!!! He’s my baby. What do I do? I’m scared of him but do not want to get rid of him!!! Help!!!
Welcome,
My first piece of advise is to step back emotionally from your situation. Read your own post back to yourself. And then try to imagine if you were reading your post that was written by someone else and other dogs. I think you are anthroporphising your dogs way too much. I can appreciate your affection for your dogs but in this situation it’s only going to make it worse.

Just for example. You said your dog “hates” birds. Dogs don’t hate anything. That is a human thing. Your dog actually wants to at minimum chase if not kill and eat the chickens. It’s prey drive all canines posses it just in varying degrees. I’m always amazed that they can even train police k9’s to not chase cats. When they are working in the highest state of prey drive possible.

If I were you I would look into a balanced trainer. And start building some serious structure in your dogs life. Try kenneling unless training and exercising or going to the bathroom. And if it were me I would be feeding through training. And bring your up your value in your dogs eyes. Do this for a month. And start building your relationship back up from the ground. It’s like hitting the reset button. Or boot camp. It’s basically indoctrinating the dog to the new way things are going to be.
 

Two Dobes

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Welcome! Great advice from everyone, ditto from me. Training and setting boundries is extremely important with this breed, no matter how sweet they are. I struggle with my husband treating the dogs like they are babies, because they are so loving. But they only listen to me ;) because I don't give them an inch....even something simple, like walking on leash...they drag my husband around...not me......they know they can get away with not listening with my husband.
 

Rnrgyrl

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Hi I am late to the game but I have a pack of five now. I have two Chihuahuas under 10 pounds and a schnauzer that is 13 pounds and my dobe is about two years old and we now have a four month old Rottweiler cane Corso mix. I can’t believe how lucky I am this Doberman can be dead asleep and the new puppy jumps on him and the doorman slowly will look over at him and then start playing. I’ve never dealt with any aggression with my dogs but I am constantly training every day and I spend lots of time with them and set lots of boundaries. They free feed together from the same bowl and drink water from the same bowl. I’m always prepared to do some thing if I ever encounter aggressiveness so I would just have to say I’m lucky but always learning from other peoples posts and other peoples suggestions. I hope you’ve been able to remedy your situation! Good luck and blessings!
 

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