A while back, I had written about our pets being outright assholes. Teemo has exhibited this in the flesh for the past 2 days. Every couple of months or so, he gets into a funk. We have yet to figure out why this is. It doesn’t stem from being left alone for too long. It’s not like he has a lack of attention, but for some reason, he always turns into a huge asshole.
The last couple of days he’s felt the need to exhibit his dominance. He’s biting Luna’s legs, tail, and snout. He’s terrorized the cat, and generally he leaves her alone. They have their play time, but most of the time when the puppy starts going after Miss Sophie Anne, he’ll drag Luna off of her.
For the last 3 hours, he’s been downright mean. He’s gone after Luna in the middle of chowing down on his food, he dragged the cat around by her neck, and he continually bites Luna’s face to the point that she yips. I scorned him. I swatted his butt. I yelled his name in anger. He’s generally such a good dog. We don’t abuse him. He eats more than a sufficient amount of food. So why does he continue to act this way?
Is it just because we rescued him from a shelter? We already came to the conclusion that his previous owners were abusive. Even last night, he got in trouble and ran to Mommy, like all three of our animals do, but it didn’t change his attitude in the least. We’ve done a pretty good job at training him and a bulk of the efforts go to my husband. We weren’t married or living together when we got the dog, so he had Teemo 24/7.
I’m just wondering if we need to take him to the vet. If there’s a deeper issue, something medical, going on with him that we don’t see or know. Just now, when I got on him for picking on Luna, all I did was look at him, and he knew he was in trouble. He knew he was in trouble before I looked at him because he cowered before I could get the word “Teemo” out of my mouth. I told him “kennel” and he sat on the edge of the couch. I pointed at him again, he snarled, and as if scolding a child i said “Ooh, dog, you fucked up.” He put his ears back, hopped down and went to the “time out kennel.”
We’ve deemed the smaller kennel, which originally was and still kind of is Sopaipilla’s kennel for travelling purposes, the “time out kennel” because it’s small. It’s confined, there’s next to no room to do anything other than lie down. Its their version of a child’s “time out corner.” It works, they do something undesirable, like peeing in the house, they go in there for a maximum of 15 minutes. We never latch the door, they generally come out on their own, and then go suck up to which ever one of us put him or her in there. They don’t dread the thing. In fact, they use it as a play thing. It’s almost their club house. They take turns going in and out of it, they hide from each other in there, they protect it. Maybe that’s the problem. We don’t enforce it all the time as a punishment corner. We allow them to play with it. Should we not be doing that?
Back to Teemo. He’s the most jealous dog, right next to my mother’s oldest Shi-Tzu. Whenever Luna is getting attention, even though he’s off somewhere else doing his own thing, he has to butt in and push her out of the way. He was really accepting of her from the get go, he will cuddle with her, to an extent he protects her, but he constantly finds himself in a need for affection when he’s nowhere near us. He’ll approach us on his own and ask for attention, but there have been multiple times that he pushes Luna out of the way to sit on my lap.
As I type, he’s currently sticking his head out of the time out kennel, sulking.
So what training step did we miss? What do we need to do to stop his food aggression? What do we need to do to stop the jealousy? I want to take care of all of this BEFORE we have a real baby. I want him to be more mellowed out so that when our future little ones decide to play with him, he doesn’t get defensive and snap. I want to keep him for the rest of his life, not have to put him down, or give him to a shelter because we can’t trust him anymore.
He generally is a good dog. He actually just rejoined the world, and as usual, is lying next to me, licking my face and sucking up.
Anyway, does anyone have any suggestions? Do we need to take him to obedience training? If you asked me to list all the issues he still has, we’d be here for hours. This is the only big one though. The rest of them are easily avoided with distraction or redirection. I’m mostly just concerned about him asserting his dominance all the time.