View Full Version : Not sure if can trust Jake

03-14-2010, 02:22 PM
Short history. I am new to this forum but I do have a question. We have never owned a pyr before but our neighbor was building a house couple of years ago but had temporarily quit building. They had moved their great pyrenees in the yard chained with a dog house. Anyway, they came by every morning to feed him but he had no socialization whatsoever. He was chained in the back yard so he never got to be with anyone. Anyway after a year of this, we couldn't stand it (we would go up and visit him and give him treats) we adopted him. We brought him into the home and he got along great with the other two dogs. No problem there but one night we gave him a rawhide chew and my niece walked by and patted him on the head and said hi Jake and he started growling. She slowly walked past and he got up and if she (which she didn't know at the time) hadn't moved her hand, he would have bit her we think. Now, we are scared to let him among people because at times he acts aggressive and we have little kids around all the time. Most of the time he is a sweetheart but on rare occassions, he will act aggressive. I know that being left alone on a chain all that time has hurt him and I am not too sure if his previous owners didn't try to make him aggressive on purpose. My question is, what can we do? My brother in law is 67 and is the one that actually adopted him but I am afraid he is too much dog for him. He has a hard time controlling him on a leash. Any suggestions on what we should do? Should we look for him a home that can give him the kind of training and attention he needs? Thank you.

03-14-2010, 04:27 PM
I would talk to a behaviorist or a trainer that knows the breed and have them help you. Check to see if BarkBusters is in your area flufflylove likes them and she has tons of experience so that is my suggestion.

03-14-2010, 05:24 PM
A pyr that had not been socialized properly should NEVER be exposed to children without vigilent supervision. This doesn't just mean that the children and the dog can freely interact the same room/area so long as an adult is around. This means the adult MUST know how to read the dog's body language and be able to interpret whether the dog's attidutde toward the children is appropriate or not and correct or remove immediately as necessary.

Barkbuster is a very good idea if they are in your area, but it does cost. Except for VERY rare cases, dogs always give signs before they actually growl, or worse, snap. Unfortunately many people do not know how to read them. What you need is for someone to teach you how to read the dog's body language. A behaviorist like tsunibear suggests does just that.

One of my dogs does not tolerate children. He's scared to death of them actually. He's never been hit or abused by any kids but their herky jerky movements and high pitched voices make him extremely nervous, to the extent that he will growl and snap if that's what it takes to get away from the child. This is a dog that we've had since he was 8 weeks old. Our other dog loves kids and we've also had her since she was 8 weeks old. Each dog is different and you just have to learn their tolerance levels and handle them accordingly.

To properly socialize a dog that was not socialized young takes a lot of work, discipline and consistency. Only you can determine whether you want to undertake the task. You might want to start with talking to a behaviorist just to get a understanding and go from there. In the meantime please keep him away from children so to protect both the children and the dog.

03-15-2010, 08:34 AM
Thank you Jewel for putting it so nicely. I couldn't have done it better myself!

I LOVE barkbusters, however I advise you to DO THE HOMEWORK. Communicate with the trainer ALL you concerns. DO NOT HESITATE. IF you go with them (I did and my female is an off leash pyr) then use them to the highest extent. They have different trainers in different areas, it's worth it however the homework MUST be done or it won't work, like school work. :o)

It involves a lot of ignoring, lots with pyrs to build respect. Disiplin follows, however it's NOT physical. With a dog like this, I'd be really communicating everythign to the trainer. I've heard of them seeing the dog was not the right fit with people and they have helped rehome them. Not saying this is the case, but it happens.

www.barkbusters.com also has good tips on their site.

nick's spirit
03-15-2010, 05:49 PM
my only other suggestion...never give him another rawhide. I have only had negative reactions from my Pyr's whenever I gave them one.
and as was previously said, getting professional guidance to help Jake accept people and situations, and getting the knowledge of reading his body language will help him live a full and happy life.

03-16-2010, 07:52 AM
I am in total agreement with Jewel...this Pyr has not been properly socialized for children and no children should be allowed around him without supervision. While I commend your brother in law for being a good samaritan and trying to help this dog, it may not be a "good fit" if he can not find the dedication and patience it will take to reverse the damage that has been done. It will be a very difficult process with a very unique breed of dog. Do keep us posted on how things are going.