Suddenly Aggressive Dog

FeatherLace

Chirping
Apr 7, 2020
372
451
93
Waycross, Georgia
I have three dogs: a rescued 2 year old Miniature Pinscher, a 7 year old black lab we got from a show breeder as a puppy, and a 3 year old Bulldog/Boxer mix that was born here and raised with my other dogs. My neighbor also has three dogs: two red-nosed pit bulls, both around 4 years old, and a full-blooded 7 year old Boxer, who also happens to be my bulldogs daddy. My bulldog has grown up with all of these dogs around her, none of them are new and they've always played together as one big pack. My black lab is the most dominant one, always putting the other dogs in their place but she's never hurt them. But then recently, my Bulldog and her got in a fight, not just a play fight or quick dominance fight, but my black lab tore my bulldogs paw open in a few spots and my Bulldog was not backing down like usual, but was still trying to jump on my black lab with hair raised and teeth bared after we grabbed her and separated them. No food was involved and neither are in pain, they were just enjoying relaxing together until Emmi (my Bulldog) suddenly snapped at her. They had to be separated the whole day but finally calmed down and are back to sleeping together. Now I thought it was a one time thing, but the past three days I've been watching her outside and she's jumped on the neighbors dogs twice, and I believe she would've seriously hurt them had I not ran and pulled her off. The neighbors dogs both were minding their own business unprovoked and even remained in submissive positions when jumped on. Now this has NEVER happened before. My Bulldog has grown up with all of these dogs, and all dogs are fixed, etc. Shes not food aggressive or people aggressive, its only been her jumping, unprovoked, on the other dogs. I'd take her to the vet, but we don't have the money right now for if they have to do any expensive tests to just reveal nothing. There have been no other symptoms to show shes in pain. Her paw is healed from her fight, she isn't in pain when touched anywhere, she's not showing any kind of mental strain (walking, playing, eating completely normal), shes just all the sudden, after 3 years, become aggressive towards the other dogs. The only dogs she hasn't jumped on are my Miniature Pinscher and her daddy. Both are males, but they're fixed too.

Any ideas? Any advice?
My mom keeps on with the "Oh we will put a shock collar on her, that'll teach her for sure" but I keep on how that is a HORRIBLE idea. However, I am shipping of for the Navy in a month or two so I'm worried that if I don't find a way to fix this my mom will ignore my advice and get a collar anyways.

So please offer any help or advice you can, I appreciate it.

I included a picture of her
 

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Jmiller89

Chirping
Apr 20, 2020
121
113
98
Dog could be reacting to stress in the home from you and family. Lots of crazy stuff is going on in the world which can cause anxiety and you are also leaving soon which may add to it. I don’t know for sure but if she isnt showing signs of hurting and is a young dog then that would be my guess. Dogs read us very well and if we are stressed they pick up on it.
 

FeatherLace

Chirping
Apr 7, 2020
372
451
93
Waycross, Georgia
Dog could be reacting to stress in the home from you and family. Lots of crazy stuff is going on in the world which can cause anxiety and you are also leaving soon which may add to it. I don’t know for sure but if she isnt showing signs of hurting and is a young dog then that would be my guess. Dogs read us very well and if we are stressed they pick up on it.
Nothing in the home has changed except me leaving, but I'm more excited than stressed. And if it were stress, none of the other dogs are showing any signs of it. Man I wish our pets could tell us what's wrong..
 
Mar 18, 2020
110
272
113
Fredrick County, VA
Have the dogs been getting worked/trained? At 3 yo she's likely feeling pressure to step up and take over the pack if she doesn't see a clear leader. The good news, if it's that, is that some regular obedience training should be enough to reassure her that she's not the boss and settle her down. It doesn't matter much what she's learning, if she's doing things because you want her to she'll get the idea.
ETA- she's a beautiful dog!
 

FeatherLace

Chirping
Apr 7, 2020
372
451
93
Waycross, Georgia
Have the dogs been getting worked/trained? At 3 yo she's likely feeling pressure to step up and take over the pack if she doesn't see a clear leader. The good news, if it's that, is that some regular obedience training should be enough to reassure her that she's not the boss and settle her down. It doesn't matter much what she's learning, if she's doing things because you want her to she'll get the idea.
ETA- she's a beautiful dog!
I've worked a lot with my dogs. I teach them door manners (let me walk through the door first then they sit until I tell them they can leave through it), they have to sit and wait for their food and treats until I give the okay, not take any food without an okay but definitely not off of tables, all the things that they need to know for me to be the pack leader. They know I'm the alpha and have never questioned me, but my Black Lab is kind of the beta dog, she keeps all the others in line while still listening to me. But my Bulldog has never had any kind of dominance issues for me, and I find it a bit strange that she'd wait until she was three years old to challenge all of the other dogs, especially when she still looks at me as the alpha
 

cassie

Crowing
12 Years
Mar 19, 2009
6,896
3,885
461
The idea of a shock collar is a terrible one and is sure to make a bad situation far far worse. Something has set that dog off and I am certainly not qualified to even guess what it might be. What you really need is the services of an animal behaviorist. If that is not an option, I would suggest you do two things. One, you have an obligation to protect the other dogs from the aggressive one. Two, do all the research you can about this problem. The answer has got to be in a book or online somewhere.
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
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I know you said there isn't money for the vet, but that would be something I'd look into if you can't think of any other explanation for the change in behavior. Like hypothyroidism can cause a seemingly sudden increase in aggression.
 

FeatherLace

Chirping
Apr 7, 2020
372
451
93
Waycross, Georgia
I know you said there isn't money for the vet, but that would be something I'd look into if you can't think of any other explanation for the change in behavior. Like hypothyroidism can cause a seemingly sudden increase in aggression.
Its not that we don't have the money to take her, its that we don't have the money to take her and there end up being nothing wrong and the money be pretty much wasted. So I'm trying to rule out anything behavioral first. I haven't seen anything on hypothyroidism, are there other symptoms to it?
 

rosemarythyme

Scarborough Fair
Premium Feather Member
Jul 3, 2016
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WA, Pac NW
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Its not that we don't have the money to take her, its that we don't have the money to take her and there end up being nothing wrong and the money be pretty much wasted. So I'm trying to rule out anything behavioral first. I haven't seen anything on hypothyroidism, are there other symptoms to it?

I'm not too familiar with it myself, though my in law's old dog had it and it caused seizures. I think there may be some physical signs you could look for but probably best to look it up online for a better explanation than I could give, because it can manifest in multiple ways.
 

FeatherLace

Chirping
Apr 7, 2020
372
451
93
Waycross, Georgia
I'm not too familiar with it myself, though my in law's old dog had it and it caused seizures. I think there may be some physical signs you could look for but probably best to look it up online for a better explanation than I could give, because it can manifest in multiple ways.
I did a quick search online and I didn't find any symptoms that were incriminating of that disorder, as it mostly said lethargy, intolerance of cold, etc. The only symptoms that matched were the aggression (though shes only aggressive to other dogs and very randomly), and she has trouble losing weight. It said to be diagnosed it requires several bloodtests and an almost lifelong prescription for it.

Man my dogs always get in the weirdest vet troubles
 

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