I think my dog is prejudiced? Crazy dog lady here

posted 3 years ago in Pets
Post # 2
Member
6884 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2014 - A castle!

Dogs are super smart and have senses that humans do not. It wouldn’t surprise me if she knew the “scent” of a pitbull or something along those lines. My dog too, was attacked by a pit, but our situation was a lot worse and she almost died. Thankfully a cop driving by our house saw all the commotion out in our front yard and was able to use his taser to get the pit to let go of my dog’s head just in time. It was the most terrifying day of my life.

I think the only thing you can do is either stop taking her around other dogs (not ideal) OR try some gradual exposure therapy. If you could find a friend w/ a pitbull or pitbull-mix, have them meet up with you at a park (not at your house where your dog could be territorial), and then gradually introduce them to each other and give lots and lots of praise to reinforce that the dog is not a threat. I think with time and training your pup could get over her fear. 

You’re not crazy!!

Post # 3
Member
626 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

annb9:  We have two pitbulls that are completely non-aggressive, big babies really. We have a male and a female. The female HATES CATS. Like if she sees one, she’s gonna bolt and try to kill it. She used to LOVE them and was always affectionate with them. Then one day she got attacked by a cat and it clawed her face and eyes SO BAD and since that day any cat she sees she wants to attack. So no, you’re not crazy, our pets are smart and they remember. 

Post # 4
Member
2419 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Dogs are incredibly smart and also have an acute sense of self-preservation. Having said that, they don’t have the reasoning power of humans. So yours knows that she’s had a bad experience with a pitbull. What she can’t do is weigh up the situation and come to the conclusion that not ALL pitbulls are a scary breed that want to attack her. 

My Jack Russell Terrier had a very unhappy time with our younger JRT. Younger dog was not prepared to share the house with my gentler older boy. So he was repeatedly attacked and sadly, we had to rehome the younger dog before he seriously injured or killed my older one. All ended happily, the younger terrier has a wonderful “one dog” home and eventually, my older dog recovered from his ordeal. Having said that, he is no longer tolerant of ANY aggressive behaviour shown to him by Jack Russells. His fear is entirely breed related. 

What we’ve done is to make sure he has continued, careful exposure to all dogs and in particular other Jack Russells. Luckily we have friends with lovely JRTs who he has always known and liked and he’s getting ever more relaxed by these good associations. So I’d advise trying to gently introduce your Goldendoodle to good natured and reliable pitbulls. But if she shows any signs of not coping, conclude the encounter and try again another time.  

Post # 7
Member
560 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

I have nothing against pit bulls or any other breed of dog.

As long as your dog isn’t blind, of COURSE she can tell the difference between breeds of dog. They look different.

If some dude attacked me and had particular striking features, I would be wary of other dudes that walked up to me that had very similar striking features. It’s animal instinct to avoid things that make you fearful and to learn from past dangerous situations.

I’m sure if it had been a different breed that is easy to identify (like a big black/orange German shepherd) she would avoid those dogs too. 

Post # 8
Member
6884 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2014 - A castle!

annb9:  Yeah, maybe even try putting up an add on CL to see if someone w/ a friendly pitbull would be willing to meet up at a dog park for some socialization. My dog ended up extremely lucky, as the other dog bit her face RIGHT above her eye. A few mm lower and she would’ve had to lose her eye. They had to lance her face with thick leather and we had to squirt saline and antibiotics into her wounds. It was horribly sad but she was a fighter and made it through. The dog that attacked her was a neighbor’s dog from down the street that was an illegal fighting dog. Everything got brushed under the rug when they found out the owner was the city’s fire chief. Freaking disgusting but that’s a whole different story.

Good luck!

Post # 9
Member
7098 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

They can definitely tell the difference. I’d carry some treats with you, and when you see a pit enter the park, immediately get her attention and lead her away with the treats. If she will sit and watch the other dog while getting treats, even better. Don’t force her to interact with the other if she’s uncomfortable. Basically you want to use counter conditioning to teach her that pits = something good is going to happen (treat).

Post # 10
Member
1333 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

Maybe if there is a pit bull/ bully breed rescue group in your area, try contacting them. They tend to have super dedicated volunteers, many who are used to fostering and dealing with minor conflicts like this. And no doubt some will have totally lovey pitbulls. They might be willing to help.  Also, you say she was attacked for no reason, and also that she has always been really submissive. Sometimes the energy from really submissive dogs can set off dog-aggressive or high strung dogs. Not saying it’s her fault, just something to be aware of.

Post # 13
Member
6884 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2014 - A castle!

annb9:  Yeah it’s really sad. And it’s owners/breeders like that who perpetuate the bad reputation of the breed. How terrible.

Post # 14
Member
242 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

annb9:  Ha, I think it’s totally a real thing. Our adopted JRT goes INSANE if she sees a beagle, regardless of gender/age/creed/what have you, for no reason we know of other than she must have had a bad run-in with a beagle in the past. We asked her trainer and she said while it’s never been officially confirmed, she hears about breed-specific anger issues way too often for it not to have some substance.

Post # 15
Member
2581 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014 - UK

annb9:  My old dog (labrador) used to take umbrage at this beautiful big Rottweiller that lived down the road from us, who had flattened him once. He was too stupid to realise when that Rottweiller died and the owners rescued another one that it was a different dog. The poor new dog had no idea what my dog’s problem was. Whenever I saw them coming, I used to just cross over the road and tie him to a tree or a lampost until they’d gone past, because he was pretty strong when he wanted to be!)

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