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BLUE & MAUDE – DEERHOUND & GSD

PROBLEM – DOG AGGRESSION

 
Off to Falmouth Cornwall to deal with growing dog aggression issues being experienced by Jane and David White, with their two dogs Blue and Maude. These are two big dogs which would pose a challenge to most dog owners, regardless of experience. Jane has written a pretty detailed report, so here it is:-

 
" My husband and I were pretty much at breaking point when we called for help from Peter Mounsey of Ashclyst Dog Training and Behaviour in Devon. We have two dogs – Blue, a Scottish deerhound and Maude, a German Shepherd. Blue had started life as an under socialised puppy, and had then been attacked three times on walks. He had consequently become fearful around other dogs and showed this by barking and lunging at them. This was just the beginning of the problem.

We had failed to realise that the very boisterous ‘play’ sessions between Blue and Maude were actually an opportunity for Blue to intimidate and bully Maude. She in turn was learning that this was a normal way to react to other dogs – Blue attacked her, so she started reacting aggressively to other dogs. The two of them were working together on walks – Blue would show aggression to strange dogs and then Maude would back him up – as Pete described it, she was his ‘enforcer.’
Things came to a head when Blue and Maude cornered a small dog on a walk and both of them terrorised and nipped him. Luckily the dog survived, but we were beginning to feel we would have to get rid of one of the dogs, a devastating thought.

Peter was immediately able to sum up our situation and problems, and point out their origins, all of which calmed us down. He was very clear that there would be a lot of work and commitment involved if we wanted to make changes to our dogs and have them behaving acceptably. I think it’s fair to say we changed our style of dog ownership over night, making it clear to the dogs who was in charge, in a fair and firm manner. Peter gave us lots of advice about every area of dog ownership – exercise, training, commands, recognising body language etc. He brought his ‘stooge’ dog Rudi along to demonstrate how to control Blue and Maude, using very simple tools and commands. I felt such a relief after the first session – as Peter pointed out, when we stripped away the aggressive behaviour in Blue, we could all see the frightened dog underneath.

 
Maude has proved to be a harder nut to crack, but we are seeing real improvements in her. Again Peter allowed us to see the positive side of her, when we had started to view her as purely a problem dog.
Six months on from Peter’s first visit and we are a much happier, calmer family. We don’t dread dog walks any more and we feel far more confident about our ability to control Blue and Maude. We recently took both dogs to a dog show in Falmouth, where they were surrounded by hundreds of other breeds. Both dogs behaved impeccably. Knowing we have the benefit of Peter’s lifetime support guarantee is very reassuring, I cannot recommend Peter and his services highly enough. Many thanks again for all your help Peter,

Best wishes
"JANE & DAVID WHITE.