• Michael D'Abruzzo

    July 10, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Hi lots of good info there, but will require a lot of troubleshooting that requires going through the whole “triangle” to make sure we don’t miss anything.

    We have to start with step 1 “knowledge” to make sure we completely understand the problem and go on from there.

    This is what I get so far from the info (and please let me know if you feel differently or am misinterpreting):

    – Moxie has an assertive type “A” personality
    – Moxie seems to be insecure with his relationship with Bubby but not Pacer
    – Moxie has a strong prey drive
    – Moxie IS capable of getting along with another dog (pacer always and bubby for a few weeks)
    – Moxie does not obey if he is distracted/excited/rather be doing something else.
    – Moxie shows little inhibition once a situation triggers an aggressive response (does not do least amount necessary)

    What this means to us is that:

    – Moxie’s issues are mainly genetic (personality/inhibition/etc), so be sure not to blame yourselves, Moxie, or past owners. Moxie’s breeder can be the one to blame if need be, since these are traits that can be passed down through generations of not selectively breeding for temperament.

    – Because of this (especially Moxie’s tendency to show little inhibition once triggered) we have to consider him a special needs dog and get real technical to set him up for success.

    – Triggers and inhibition are two different things for our sake of troubleshooting. For instance a dog may have a lot of triggers to show aggression but may just pass off as being “grumpy” if he shows a lot of inhibition (minimum amount). But, even if a dog has few triggers but shows has low inhibition when triggered (moxie) he is more likely to get into trouble.

    Questions for you:

    What is Bubby’s relationship like with Pacer (who seems to call the shots)?

    Do any of the dogs show aggression toward people for any reasons? even a growl?

    Pay attention to all three dogs body language when they are interacting with eachother. Eye contact, posture, etc.. Anything noticeable? Do any try to get the attention of the others but get ignored?

    Your input will help us troubleshoot and move along. We’ll chip away. In the meantime if you feel there is possibility of a dog fight, seperate in those situations or manage by keeping them on leashes or basket muzzle on Moxie. Whatever is most reasonable for your situation.