Helping a Pit Mix Learn She Doesn’t Need to Guard Her Food

By: David Codr

Published Date: December 31, 2019

For this Omaha dog training session we help Maeby, a 3 year-old Boxer Pit mix who is guarding her food and toys and has some leash / dog aggression issues.

From the description I was expecting this to be a resource guarding problem, but after discussing it with the guardians, I think this is just a case of a dog who is growling to defend her stuff. Many people confuse a dog growling when it has food or another high value item as aggressive or resource guarding, but its actually a simple message to give the dog some space.

Teaching a dog who guards things the drop it and leave it commands is something all great dog behavior experts do. This gives the human the ability to prevent a guarding situation from happening with some maintenance and foresight.

I pulled out my camera to show the guardians how to stop a dog from guarding things in a force free way.

Its important to practice this procedure to stop a dog from guarding things frequently, while progressively decreasing the distance – all without the dog reacting. If done properly, the dog comes to feel comfortable with being approached due to lots of positive experiences. This is the essence of positive dog training; making the dog feel good about the situation by managing things, then practicing.

For many of my clients, issues outside the house stop when the changes inside the house are implemented. Im hoping that is the case with Maeby, but since one of her other issues is dog aggression, its possible we will need to set up a follow up session to work on that. I asked the guardian to reach out in a month or so with a progress report so we can determine if another session is needed.

To help the guardians remember all the dog psychology tips we covered in this in home Omaha dog training session, we filmed a roadmap to success video you can check out below.

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This post was written by: David Codr

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