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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm asking this question for friends of my aunt's, so please bear with the minimal information.

Their pup is a golden retriever mix, rescued at about 4 months old, and is now 9 months. General training is going well...for example the dog is reliable off leash, well mannered with the public, etc. They did sign up for an obedience class at Petco (EEK!) and unfortunately cannot get a refund. Interestingly, they have to take a puppy class so this 9 month old is in class with young pups...I say they should just write off the money and find a more appropriate place.

Anyhow - the dog is recently exhibiting signs of food aggression and guarding. From what I understand, the dog actually got a sponge from the kitchen somehow and would not let them take it away from him...Yikes. There have been other incidents as well.

I have absolutely no experience dealing with this type of behavior and would love any suggestions. I'm obviously going to be giving them some materials on pack leadership...but I'd love some specific ideas from anyone who has experience with this type of behavior.

Thank you, thank you!

Melissa
 

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i don't know how helpful this will be, but it worked for me with the one and only dog i've ever had with this problem, AND we started it when she came home # 8 wks old. so, FWIW--i simply fed her everything she ate one piece at a time, and when she got snappy, she got a finger across her nose. she learned pretty quickly not to grab and that it was me who had the "power".

i'm positive someone else will come up with a great solution for a 9 mo old dog though.
 

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Anyhow - the dog is recently exhibiting signs of food aggression and guarding. From what I understand, the dog actually got a sponge from the kitchen somehow and would not let them take it away from him...Yikes. There have been other incidents as well.
Handfeeding is a great way to help a dog overcome a food aggression issue. As for the toys.....have they tried to "replace" what she is not supposed to have with an acceptable toy?

If the dog is just recently showing these signs, then something in the pack structure has changed to make the dog think that she is at the top of the pack.

Do they crate the dog? Is the dog a pet or are they planning on doing something with her?

I am not in agreement with the Petco/PetSmart training classes and maybe they could see about getting a store credit instead of taking a monetary loss???

I would recommend that they find a reliable trainer to help them, because with minimal info it is hard to give advice on exactly what to do. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks ladies!

I will pass on these ideas..I'm in agreement with both of you. I'll see my aunt this weekend, so maybe I'll gather more info then.
 

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I've used this method with my own kids and now my grandkids.
The dog gets half of it's food in the bowl. The second half is given a piece at a time, hand delivered to the bowl by the kids. The dogs quickly learn that a hand comming near the bowl is a good thing. It's gonna put more food in there.
For obvious reasons this is done under VERY supervised conditions, and not till my dogs have been programed to it by me. Tails start wagging when the kids approach anywhere near the feeding dogs.
I will ALWAYS supervise this with the kids, regardless of the dog.
 
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