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I recently adopted an American Bulldog. He just turned two years old and had been neutered at six months. I read several sites and books mentioning that these dogs get along okay with other pets. He is such a loving dog when it comes to my girlfriend and I, my nephews and cats (loves cats!). However, I recently took him out to a dog park (yes, now I know.....never again) where he was apparently provoked by another dog.....before I knew it he had the other dog by the throat and was shaking it around. I obviously was completely taken aback. We got them seperated and neither dog was hurt. The dog he went after was the aggressor and being that I didn't see what happened, I figured the other dog threatened him (the owner also said he'd been bitten several times as he comes off aggressive). Anyway, again this weekend while walking my dog he went after another dog and again had it on it's back attacking at it's throat. This time I had told the person to keep his dog away from mine (the dog is my girlfriends brother-in-laws dog). I am completely shocked by this behavior and don't know what to expect. Is this somewhat normal? Or is there something else going on? Thanks for your help.
 

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You should have done more research first. AB's have a tendancy to be very aggressive toward other dogs, even in the same house. You really need to be more careful from now on. That kind of stuff is what feeds the media on BSL and is a detriment to the already shaky impression people have of all bully breeds. Bully breeds, as a rule of thumb, should NOT be taken to dog parks and should be kept at a very safe distance when walking on a leash. It's not at all abnormal for the type of dog.
 

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I agree with what you have said, above but my question is if you shouldn't take AB to dog parks what are some other ways to socialize them.
 

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dog aggression and socialization

phisigozzy, some AB aggression stems from dominance, territoriality, protective insticts, pure dog aggression, or fear. Even though you had your boy neutered (good job), he can be dominant with other dogs that are not part of his pack. Dogs, BY NATURE, WILL KILL dogs that are not part of its pack!!! Neutering will help, but not cure the problem..........EVER! You just have to be dilligent. Dog parks are for poodles not ABs. YOUR DOG with the propensity to fight other dogs, off leash, should NEVER be off leash. Common sense. If you do not like this responsiblity, you should get a different dog. ABs are not for everyone. Having said that, you can "almost" cure the problem by going to a trainer. YOU are the alpha. If you know what to do......you can dissolve the problem.

Gator, your dog needs socialization primarily with your family/pack. Socialization means that it is well adjusted with PEOPLE and surounding environment, not running around like a lunatic with other dogs. Dog parks ARE THE WORST PLACE to socialize your dogs and the best place to get parasites. It is where you teach them BAD behavioral habits, like not coming when called. In essence, you are sabotaging your bond with your dog. You teach them that other dogs are WAY more fun than you. So, why should a dog come when called???
Like I said before, an AB is NOT a poodle or a maltese. Originally, IT WAS BRED TO KILL THINGS, like other animals and STRAY DOGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Socialize them by taking them on a leash to crowed streets, on a leash. Get every kid to pet your dog. Get your dog to see/hear everything. You spend time with it. In reality, the only person the dog needs is YOU.

My circumstances are a bit different, but it applies to many. I do not let me dogs play with other dogs. My pups do not associate with my OWN dogs, until they are about 6 months. Why? I want the pups, in it formative years to absolutely imprint that I AM THE SOLE SOURCE of pleasure. I have all the goodies. I am PLAY. I am hugs and pets. I socialize them heavily with kids and women. So, by the time they are one or so, you get a dog that is indifferent to other dogs. They rather play with me than running off to play with other dogs. My two dogs play with eachother, but as soon as I show up, they drop everything to play with me. Simple conditioning, makes for a very LOYAL and predictable pet.

Socialization is not like humans. These are NOT humans. We should not humanize our pets. They are wolves that have been toned down. However, their social and mental health is optimized when we understand their pack mentality.
 

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PeterC,

Boy you certainly paint a different scene than what I am looking for. I'm not going to take him to a Dog Park but I certainly don't want my dog pretending to be Braveheart. I don't think most people try to "humanize" their pets but I do think they like to have peace of mind that their dog isn't a killer.

I may be over stepping my bounds here but I don't want the same things for my dog that you appear to think they need.


James
 

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Gator said:
I agree with what you have said, above but my question is if you shouldn't take AB to dog parks what are some other ways to socialize them.
There is no real need to socialize them. If they are dog aggressive, they're dog aggressive. There's no reason to take the chance of another dog, owner, or yourself getting hurt breaking something up. Just keep it well human-socialized and work it/get it exercise and that's enough. All in all, I agree w/ PeterC. Also, I'm sure all of us want to know our dog isn't a killer, but, by instinct, they WILL in some instances, kill another animal. It's just the way bully breeds are.
 

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Family of 5,

I understand your concern, but ...

Dogs ARE predators. They ARE killers.
If ya want peace of mind that your pet is not a killer, ya can't have a dog (or cat for that matter).
And you certainly don't want a dominant, working dog breed like an AB.

I believe it works much better for owners of bully breeds to proceed with the full understanding that their sweet loving pet is also a very powerful and dominant predator.

I think the point, as Pete so aptly points out, is that playing with other dogs does not have anything much to do with "socialization".
 

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hey there got to add my 2 cents why do you want your AB to play with other dogs if you want a dog you can take to parks and play with other dogs walk down the street with out a leash so on GET A LAB you are all your AB needs he dosent need other dogs in his life maby you should have reasurched the breed better before getting him !...dont get me wrong not all AB are killers but all have the abillity to kill also not all AB are dog agressive theres lots of AB's that get along with other dogs ....SEE me personaly i hate people id rather hang with my dogs and family THATS MY PACK ! thats all wee need dog parks nutting but a joke and NOT ! good for your dog at all ! IMO!
 

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Agressive

Thanks to you all. I am here to learn things about my dog and I do daily(actually hourly) from this site. If AB aren't supposed to socialize with other dogs then I will make sure that mine doesn't. I bought this dog for my family because I read it is very loyal and protective of it's family. Being that I travel alot I wanted something my wife and kids would feel secure with.
The last this I need is Bubba biting another dogs head off :D.

Thanks Again!!!
 

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Re: Agressive

Family of 5 said:
Thanks to you all. I am here to learn things about my dog and I do daily(actually hourly) from this site. If AB aren't supposed to socialize with other dogs then I will make sure that mine doesn't. I bought this dog for my family because I read it is very loyal and protective of it's family. Being that I travel alot I wanted something my wife and kids would feel secure with.
The last this I need is Bubba eating another dogs head off :D.

Thanks Again!!!
You bought it for the right reasons and you're doing your research. That's good. Just make sure you never stop doing your research.

~S
 

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I agree with Peter C! Dogs don't need to run and play with other dogs to lead healthy, happy lives!! In fact in many cases it is detrimentel.
 

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Family of 5.....

It is great you are doing your research.

QUOTE " I don't want the same things for my dog that you appear to think they need. " I think you are 100% wrong.

You say, you don't want a dog like mine. Trust me. You do not have one like mine. That I agree with you. I believe mine are BETTER pets, yes pets, than yours. Why? They are more predictable, loveable/focused towards their master, and they LISTEN to my commands consistantly. That is what a great pet is supposed to do. PLUS smooches. :wink:

However, my dogs are not "braveheart". LOL. They are family guardians, first and formost. AND I don't guess.

They just behave predictably. Does yours? They come to me NO MATTER WHAT THE DISTRACTION (except screaming decoys. LOL. we are working on that one. hahahah) Does yours?

My dogs want to be with me only. They are EXTREMELY loyal. Is that not what EVERYone whats from a dog??? I think so. YOu stated you wanted a loyal dog. Me too!

QUOTE "I don't think most people try to "humanize" their pets. " Are you kidding me? That is why my girlfriend has more change of clothes for her maltese than I have underwear. :evil: :p

QUOTE " I bought this dog for my family because I read it is very loyal and protective of it's family. Being that I travel alot I wanted something my wife and kids would feel secure with. "
Like I ask every single one of the people I train with. HOW DO YOU KNOW YOUR DOG WILL DO THE JOB IF SOMEONE DOES BREAK IN?" Don't know for sure? Well, you should not feel secure then and do not rely upon the dog.
I absolutely KNOW for sure what they will do. 100%

See, I think we want the dog for the same reason!

PS. "It is when you think they are not predators that people get sued for dog bites. " I got that quote from my training buddy. I think it speaks volumes.
 

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Re: Family of 5.....

PeterC said:
Like I ask every single one of the people I train with. HOW DO YOU KNOW YOUR DOG WILL DO THE JOB IF SOMEONE DOES BREAK IN?" Don't know for sure? Well, you should not feel secure then and do not rely upon the dog.
I absolutely KNOW for sure what they will do. 100%
I agree with everything you said except for this part. NOBODY can say absolutely 100% what a dog will do in a certain situation. What it does in training isn't ALWAYS what it will do another time. Also, I agree that I don't know what my dogs will do if someone DOES break in. However, I don't want it to get that far. I want people to see and hear my dogs at the door and not want to take that chance. A guy came today to deliver flowers to my wife. The dogs all three, went absolutely nuts! My wife said "Why do they have to do that?" My response was, "Would you rather they sit and wag their tails and want to lick the person trying to enter our house, who we don't know? I KNOW that dude would NEVER come back when we weren't here to try to rob us. If someone comes by at night or when we aren't home and even touches the door or window, he's going to have three bulldogs at least "acting" like they're going to rip his throat out. Maybe they would run and cower in fear if he came in anyway....but not many people want to take that test.

~S
 

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Amocat00 quote "NOBODY can say absolutely 100% what a dog will do in a certain situation"

It is like telling a dog to "stand up". If your dog has never seen/heard this command how do you expect your dog to perform this task? If mine has seen, heard, performed this task multiple times, and I know he LOVES to do it, why would I not expect him to do it for me consistantly? No, certain things are 100%. I KNOW my dogs.

Amocat00 would it not be good for your wife if your dogs DID go nuts (great alarm dogs) but downed quietly, carefully watching, when told to do so by your wife, so she can receive her delivery? As you stated, I am sure your wife would agree. If your wife cannot open the door because your dogs are going nuts and she cannot hold back the three dogs, then she is a prisoner.

I want to share a story of one of the family I sold my dog to. He was a doctor with 2 120lb rotties and 1 90lb giant pit. They barked and went nuts, too. However, someone did break in his estate while his kid and wife was home. The dogs did nothing. Just bark. Needless to say the doctor was very upset. Obviously, this robber was someone who could read dogs. How many criminals do you think own pits and rotties???? I would say the majority. LOL. That is why he now has ONE proofed AB now.

Now, tell me which way he feels more secure for his wife and kids. One controlled PROOFED dog or three hard to control GREEN dogs? I would pick the one that involves lesss crap removal. :D

JMO.
 

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PeterC said:
Amocat00 quote "NOBODY can say absolutely 100% what a dog will do in a certain situation"

It is like telling a dog to "stand up". If your dog has never seen/heard this command how do you expect your dog to perform this task? If mine has seen, heard, performed this task multiple times, and I know he LOVES to do it, why would I not expect him to do it for me consistantly? No, certain things are 100%. I KNOW my dogs.

Amocat00 would it not be good for your wife if your dogs DID go nuts (great alarm dogs) but downed quietly, carefully watching, when told to do so by your wife, so she can receive her delivery? As you stated, I am sure your wife would agree. If your wife cannot open the door because your dogs are going nuts and she cannot hold back the three dogs, then she is a prisoner.

I want to share a story of one of the family I sold my dog to. He was a doctor with 2 120lb rotties and 1 90lb giant pit. They barked and went nuts, too. However, someone did break in his estate while his kid and wife was home. The dogs did nothing. Just bark. Needless to say the doctor was very upset. Obviously, this robber was someone who could read dogs. How many criminals do you think own pits and rotties???? I would say the majority. LOL. That is why he now has ONE proofed AB now.

Now, tell me which way he feels more secure for his wife and kids. One controlled PROOFED dog or three hard to control GREEN dogs? I would pick the one that involves lesss crap removal. :D



JMO.
I'm not disagreeing with you. I wish I had the time and resources to better train my dogs. However, they are trained fairly well, and she can control them to a degree. She just orders them to come to the steps and go downstairs. Then, she receives her delivery. I wish her and I could both take the time to train them even more, or have them trained, to go to down and stay when ordered to. We just haven't gotten there yet. But, I'll stand by my belief that NOTHING is 100%, especially when dealing with animals. I don't care how well they're trained.

~S
 

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Its really important to also know that other breeds will be the picker of the fight, Pitbulls have or should have the confidence where there is no Need to challenge, nor will they or should they display the obvious warning signs other breeds use such as bearing of the teeth, growling or standing hair up.

I also found like others have posted that there is no need to socialize them, but joining an obeidence class or conformation show is a good way to get him out and about.

Good Luck to you and I can say I have been there. :D
 
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