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Old 03-17-2017, 07:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Aggressive Beagle when something is in his mouth

We have a Beagle named Benji. He is really nice and friendly and couldn't wish for a better dog! he is nearly 4 years old.

He has always wanted to pick things up in his mouth when on walks, like most Beagles do. However in the last 6 months when he has picked something up and we have gone to taken it out of his mouth he has got really aggressive and will not drop the object. He has shown his teeth, his hair on the back of his neck has stuck up and even gone to bite the person trying to take the object away from his mouth. I have read in previous posts people experiencing the similar problem. However this is not nice to see him do this as 99% of the time he is perfect. I would appreciate any advice on how we can approach this in future?

Thanks!
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome to you and Benji.
Have you used the commands...LEAVE IT! and DROP IT!! I'm big on those and really comes in handy when you need it. I play tossing toys and when she brings it back I don't touch the toy until my dog follows my DROP IT command. If my dog goes for contraband, I say LEAVE IT! Try these commands while incorporating the use of a clicker. It's going to take consistency.
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Old 03-17-2017, 10:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Good advice Cassie! I have to chime in as mine will do this from time to time with food she gets, usually in the yard, sometimes in the house. She will get snarly like that. Mine will bark and growl but I can open her mouth and get whatever out. I'm not afraid of being bitten, therefore she can't scare me with her tactics. I will tell her NO! LEAVE It. It's kind of like I'm giving her a heads up, knock it off you're not having that. In the Winter mine will try to grab ice chunks as we walk, and she used to find poop and try to eat that. I have gotten good at watching her so diligently and any time I see her head going towards anything I will pull the leash and say LEAVE IT. I have only been barely bitten when she was younger and was still learning this. She still will snarl but won't bite me, she will show her teeth as well. I tell her NO! I just think Beagles get snarly around food, and something they really like. Hold your ground and start redirecting. Good luck!
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Old 03-17-2017, 11:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supercoop View Post
We have a Beagle named Benji. He is really nice and friendly and couldn't wish for a better dog! he is nearly 4 years old.

He has always wanted to pick things up in his mouth when on walks, like most Beagles do. However in the last 6 months when he has picked something up and we have gone to taken it out of his mouth he has got really aggressive and will not drop the object. He has shown his teeth, his hair on the back of his neck has stuck up and even gone to bite the person trying to take the object away from his mouth. I have read in previous posts people experiencing the similar problem. However this is not nice to see him do this as 99% of the time he is perfect. I would appreciate any advice on how we can approach this in future?

Thanks!
Have you had Benji for his entire 4 years? Has anything changed in the past 6 months that may have triggered his behavior? When did you first notice it and what have done to try to correct it? And what is he generally picking up that you need to remove from his mouth?

Benji is not an aggressive dog. Benji is resource guarding. I agree with Cassie, to work on the drop it and leave it commands. In addition, when working with resource guarders, you always need to trade for something of higher value. For Natty Boh, my resource guarder, that would be food. Something he can actually eat is ALWAYS better than a stick, acorn, pine cone, etc.

On walks, carry treats with you - even pieces of kibble. Drop it! Give treat. Leave it! Give treat. You can practice at home with a toy, or anything else Benji may be apt to hold. Really reinforce those commands. Trade him a treat for the toy. I also agree with Autumn's Mom. You cannot be afraid of him.

Natty Boh is snarky. When I got him, as a 12 week old pup, he resource guarded everything - his food, his toys, his space. He growled up a storm. But I have never been afraid of him. We have built up a mutual respect. He has learned that I will not take his things. I won't pick him up, unless I have to. I won't push him past his threshold, without a good reason. I can and will take something out of his mouth, if I need to. He knows this. I think there is also a part of him that realizes I am the Queen Bitch around here and he best not even think about biting me. I think he knows that if he ever bit me I would punt him into tomorrow.
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Old 03-18-2017, 12:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Today, I was attaching the legs to a small table I bought out on the patio(some assembly required thing). Of course I managed to drop a screw and Cassie dove for it like it was some piece of chicken. I shouted DROP IT!! and moved right at her..she dropped it immediately...lucky? Maybe she followed my command.
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Old 03-18-2017, 12:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cassie View Post
Today, I was attaching the legs to a small table I bought out on the patio(some assembly required thing). Of course I managed to drop a screw and Cassie dove for it like it was some piece of chicken. I shouted DROP IT!! and moved right at her..she dropped it immediately...lucky? Maybe she followed my command.
Absolutely! Those commands are lifesavers.
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Old 03-18-2017, 08:30 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thank you for all your replies. We have had Benji since he was 12 weeks old.

He only seems to pick up paper or mucky bits of paper on walks. When he was younger we were able to open his mouth and take it out. But now when we try he goes to bite us. He is fine with his toys and will play with you and he will drop the toys but when we will tell him to drop the paper he will not.

We have used the LEAVE IT and DROP IT commands and this works with his toys but not when he has paper in his mouth. We will start to make sure we have treats with us at all times on walks and see how we get on.
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Old 03-18-2017, 11:24 AM   #8 (permalink)
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It can be tough on walks when they grab things. I would work with the drop it command just in general and then carry treats on the walk and try to get him to drop what he picks up. My beagle Vazzle gets very snarky when she is chewing on a stick or something I don't want her to have. She's my tough case. She's a rescue that used to be a hunting beagle so I think she used to have to fight other dogs when it was time to eat and she was used to the hunt.
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Old 03-18-2017, 04:19 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Welcome to Beagle World!
I would suggest taking a few tasty treats along with you on walks to re inforce the drop it command.
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