Monday, February 6, 2017

8 Signs You Have an Aggressive Puppy (2/6/17 Update on Daisy)

2/6/17 Update on Daisy's Training

Since my post on 1/15/17, Daisy has been evaluated by Scott Borden with Our Dog Trainer and had her first training.  

However, before her first training, the trainer gave me several documents to read and implement. His program foundation is based on "Nothing in Life is Free" and even before her first lesson, I began her "Relationship Reboot Program". 

Basically, you control everything: their food, toys, time, space, and affection. The result of this reboot is your dog will become more relaxed, more affectionate, more tolerant and much happier.

I saw results almost immediately with this reboot. She seemed to mellow a little bit and was much more respectful of me.

The other dogs don't care for the extra attention Daisy seems to be getting.
I like the way the program builds on itself. Her first few lessons will be based on learning basic obedience training to give her self confidence and make me a strong pack leader in her eyes. 

We have been working on three basic obedience skills: 

(1) "Place" which means basically she must stay put where ever I deem is her spot until I release her. I can see this being very handy in many situations.

(2) We also started the "Heel" exercise to teach her to stay aligned with my hip when walking, turning, zig-zagging, etc. 

(3) The last thing we worked on during her first lesson was "Recalls" to teach Daisy that she must always come when I call.

I have been practicing with her for about 30 minutes each day in increments of five to ten minutes. I am very proud of her quick progress. She is a smart girl.

Sharing "Place" with her brother.

Lesson number two is two days away and we are anxious to learn more new things. I know this is going to make my Daisy the sweet girl I know she is. :)


1/15/17 - Wow, it feels like forever since I've posted. Christmas was fantastic as always - lots of family together time. However, Christmas felt a little different for me this year because I was retired. I was able to slow down and enjoy every moment. I kept thinking, "This is what Christmas is supposed to feel like!"

Now that all the Christmas decorations are lovingly packed and stored and I have spent quite a bit of time cleaning up the house, I was excited about getting back to my blog.

I am going to dedicate this post to Daisy. Daisy is my youngest mini at 1.5 years old. She is my beautiful baby with a Great Dane size attitude! She has displayed this attitude since she was a tiny pup. 


Most pups wiggle when you hold them, but Daisy growled, nipped and protested loudly if she wasn't feeling it. Most new puppies are playful and respectful of their older housemates, but Daisy started scuffles with them from day one. 

My hopes were that she would calm down and relax in our multi-dog household and become the sweet mini schnauzer that I knew she could be. Well, that really didn't happen. Her bad behaviors have escalated over time.

I felt she was socialized sufficiently living with four other dogs and spent a lot of time around my five grandchildren and large family. In the summertime, she traveled every weekend with us to the lake and rode in our motorhome to our beach vacations. She was exposed to many different situations.

She barks incessantly and will not respond to the hush command like our other dogs. She tries to intimidate my grandchildren, even chasing and nipping if I don't catch her in time. She gets aggressive and intimidating when people enter our home. 

Taking her for a walk, omg, that is an experience you would have to see to believe. She lunges and barks viciously if we happen to pass a stranger or another dog. It becomes very embarrassing. 

She actually nipped a jogger's leg as we were walking on the beach during last summer's vacation. Thank goodness, he was understanding. It was at that point that I decided she needed some serious intervention and I needed to watch her like a hawk from then on.

I have tried one training facility with limited success. I really couldn't afford their full program, but I paid for a mini version and in retrospect, she obviously needed a lot more training. 

I am going to contact a local trainer next week. His name is Scott Borden from Sellersburg, IN. I have heard many good things about his program, Our Dog Trainer, and his website has a couple of dogs like Daisy who have been rehabilitated. I will update you on her progress over the next few blog updates.

I want to leave you with eight behaviors to watch out for in your puppy that may indicate you need to get professional training asap:

1. Abnormal intense "play" -  Your pup shows signs of excessive aggression, a little more intense than the normal puppy play such as snarling, growling, snapping, and nipping.

2. Fearful behavior - A pup is usually curious and ready to play with everyone. If your pup hides or backs away from new people, this is not typical puppy behavior.

3. Dead eye stare - I have noticed when Daisy locks her eyes on something that is irritating her (usually one of my other dogs), she becomes deaf to my commands. She is going to attack if I don't physically intervene.

4. Aggressive barking - The kind of barking that they refuse to stop with a command.

5. Dog reactivity - When you walk your pup and they act aggressively when approaching other dogs (lunging, growling and/or barking).

6. Possessiveness - Acting aggressively to people or other dogs over a toy, food or even their owner. Daisy thinks I belong exclusively to her and gets nippy with the other dogs when they come close. I do not allow this, but she still gives them a nasty look and would nip at them if I turned my back.

7. Biting - Not normal puppy mouthing, but intent and purposeful biting.

8. Dominance - Showing aggressive dominance over their dog housemates. Daisy likes to pick on our small, elderly dog. If he tries to get to the door first, she will aggressively attack him.

I hope I have helped anyone who has a puppy that doesn't display normal puppy behavior. I wish I had realized sooner this was something she wouldn't outgrow and gotten help sooner. I'm sure the longer you wait to get help, the longer it will take to turn the behavior around.

Stay posted for updates on Daisy's progress!

Here's a video I took of Abby trying to get Daisy to play with her. Abby can be relentless, lol.


  1. Thanks for the write-up! You described my dog, my rescued-schnauzer., to a T!

    1. I'm glad you found my blog. I truly believe dogs each have their own unique personalities. Of course, they can be influenced by their circumstances, but sometimes they are just naturally more fearful, outgoing, rambunctious, etc. I knew from the first day I had Daisy that she was different. You just have to love their differences and work with them to help them fit in.

  2. I am so glad I found your blog. I have a 6 year old mini who exhibits these signs exactly. He is loving and sweet with us but if anyone comes over I have to crate him as he barks, growls and tries to bite. Walks are a nightmare if anyone or any other dogs are around. I have owned dogs my whole life and never had this issue before.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment. Schnauzers are funny little dogs, aren't they? Don't you just hate crating him? I feel so bad when I have to crate Daisy. Hopefully, her upcoming training will help her in the situations that make her fearful. I plan to keep my blog updated with her progress. Hopefully, I can help some others who have a "Daisy" too.

    2. Yes, I hate crating him. I work from home so crating is rare but necessary when we have friends over. I just want him to act like the sweet lovebug he is with me around others. Thanks for updating as you go along this precess. I will be trying it with Winnie.

  3. I have 2 boys 4 amd 2 and they do not get along and are each very possessive of my husband and I. I am finding that the older one is becoming more aggressive towards the younger one. My vet suggested a dog behaviorist but I know they'll tell me we need to treat them like dogs. But they are our babies. Looking forward to following your blog

    1. Yes, my dogs are my babies too & I don't think I can change my feelings about that. However, just like my children, I still want them to have manners. In my updates, I will try to remember to include a reference to how my relationship with Daisy changes with this training (if it does).

  4. Very Nice post with images, Thanks for sharing this useful information regarding Behaviour Training For Dogs

  5. Thank you for your comment. I am not a professional but I have had way too much experience with a reactive dog, thanks to my Daisy! Lol. However, with persistence & consistency, she continues to evolve into the dog I know she can be.


Thank you for your comment. I appreciate all feedback.