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Monday Mischief: Resource Guarding & A Good Chew

26 Jun

Charles loves a good chew. Every night I gather up all the dog toys and put them in the toy basket and every day he takes them out one by one. He is very partial to anything that Louise prefers. I think it is important for all dogs to have time each day for a good toy chew. Charles’ daily gathering of soft toys to chew on isn’t a problem but marrow bones, antlers, nylon bones, high-value treats, and of course, dinner, needs to be carefully orchestrated or things get snappy and dangerous very fast. Keeping the peace when you have multiple animals and multiple resources guarders* is a challenge.

*”Resource guarding refers to a dog displaying behavior (growling, snapping, etc.) intended to convince other dogs or humans to stay away from a particular treasure or “resource.”  The resource can be food, treats, toys, a place (a bed or favorite chair), or occasionally a person.  Basically, a resource is anything that is considered by the dog to be of high value.” –YourDogsFriend

Separation is the key with 7 animals. The cats and dogs have always been separated at the zoo when it comes to where they eat but now it is more important than ever. Sofie charges cats near her toys or food, but it never got dangerous until Charles came. The cats usually just laughed at Sofie and jumped up on the counter where they eat. Since Charles and Sofie get into scary dogs fights over resources the cat charging has escalated. This is a concern and something I am dealing with.

Louise has no problem around food or other resources (she’s so easygoing in the house). And, in almost 7 years together, Louise and Sofie never fought over food, toys, or bones (though Sofie has been known to stare/whine at Louise until she gives up just to shut Sofie up). I can pick up the food bowl while they are eating or take any toy or bone from them without any trouble. I trained them this way since they were puppies. But Charles is new here (and almost 9 years old) and he came with some bad habits so now dog separation is a must.

Both Sofie and Charles have resource guarding issues. Sofie has attacked him several times around dinner or treat time, even before I started preparing anything. I think she starts it, but he won’t back down either and fur flies.

My answer – keep as much distance between them when food or treats are involved.

Charles only gets his meals and his snacks in his exercise pen. He is not allowed out until the other animals finish eating or having their treats. Charles has charged the cats from the other side of the room, especially if a human is eating and he is in proximity. I now have strict rules about feeding him outside of his pen because he is just too unpredictable.

As I said, separation is the key around here. As long as there is space, gates, and doors, everyone can have a good chew.

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
19 Comments

Posted by on June 26, 2017 in Dogs

 

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19 responses to “Monday Mischief: Resource Guarding & A Good Chew

  1. easyweimaraner

    June 26, 2017 at 01:43

    I agree that can become a challenge…. and with more than one pet, efurrybuddy needs his “security-distance” … I remember a cookie- fight of our two huskies, where we learnt this lesson… they shredded my book while wrestling on our bed… it was ‘Crime and Punishment’… at least that gave the annoying event a touch of comedy…

     
    • dogdaz

      June 26, 2017 at 06:52

      Haha. Fitting crime, fur sure. But scary all the same.

       
  2. Genevieve Petrillo

    June 26, 2017 at 05:25

    That sounds like a good plan that you have down pat. Good thinking. Mom only has me to think about and I am easy going like Louise.

    Love and licks,
    Cupcake

     
    • dogdaz

      June 26, 2017 at 06:53

      It would be nice to just have Lulu. But, alas we have Zoo.

       
  3. Me

    June 26, 2017 at 09:28

    I have four pups; one is a BIG resource guarder (guards food, toys, fluff, a bit of cardboard etc from other dogs; used to guard food from humans and still would if the person was being stupid), one is a mild-moderate resource guarder (growls and snaps when the cat or another dog goes near if eating), one is a mild resource guarder, and one doesn’t RG. Managing all of them around toys, food etc can be difficult to put it lightly!!

    Kasper has thankfully gotten much better than he used to be, but there’s still a ton of management involved. Luckily we’ve never had a fight. As ab added bonus, Kasper always eats in his crate, and it’s raised off the floor so he can’t be bothered whilst eating!

     
    • dogdaz

      June 26, 2017 at 15:33

      Did you raise the crate so he could not see other animals? Interesting idea. Fights brake out usually when they are thinking about food, we don’t even get to the eating stage. So I don’t even hint if I can help it until I have them apart. One good bite and little Charlie would be a goner

       
      • Me

        June 28, 2017 at 06:19

        We raised it so our smallest wouldn’t stress Kasper / get barked at as they ran through the room. Kasper got into the habit of loudly barking and lunging anytime the other dogs were near; sometimes this would be barrier frustration, sometimes RG…raising it has helped SO MUCH, and the other pups can walk by even as he’s eating now 🙂

         
  4. speedyrabbit

    June 26, 2017 at 11:49

    Just have to do what work for your furfamily,xx Rachel

     
  5. Miss Harper Lee

    June 26, 2017 at 13:49

    It’s so important to know your pets and to come up with a plan that works with them and for them. Bravo to you for a job well done! Happy Monday!

     
    • dogdaz

      June 26, 2017 at 15:36

      Thanks. Sometimes I think I am out of mind to try and manage all these special needs. But when all my special needy little animals are happy, I’m happy.

       
  6. The Island Cats

    June 26, 2017 at 16:37

    Definitely never a dull moment at your house!

     
    • dogdaz

      June 26, 2017 at 19:50

      What fun would be if life was dull? I guess I will never know.

       
  7. tippysmom2

    June 29, 2017 at 09:22

    Sounds like you have everything under control. My Tippy has a slight issue with “resource guarding,” which I am working on when an event comes up. It is mostly with really high value items – like a dead rabbit or squirrel or fresh bone. I guess I can understand, but I don’t want her to get in the habit of growling and nipping at me.

     
    • dogdaz

      June 29, 2017 at 14:57

      You absolutely need to control it from the start. If she is growling then the bone needs to go. Bad behavior becomes worse behavior each time they get away with it.

       
      • tippysmom2

        June 29, 2017 at 15:00

        Yes. I work on it every time it happens. She is getting a lot better. Still, when she finds the occasional dead thing, I know we are in for a lesson in manners.

         
        • dogdaz

          June 29, 2017 at 16:08

          I have had to put my hand in Louise or Sofie mouth to pull things out. Charles would bite my hand off. You need to protect yourself first. Good luck.

           
          • tippysmom2

            June 29, 2017 at 17:01

            I have put my hand in Tippy’s mouth before and she didn’t bite. But, I wouldn’t try it with a rotting rabbit, even if I wanted too. Yuck! LOL

             

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