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She has dementia and moved in with us, she brought her small dog. The problem is the dog constantly turns on my small dog. It's getting overwhelming for all of us. Is it cruel to ask her to get rid of the dog. She would go with a familt member but I'm concerned how my mother in law will handle letting her dog go. She feels like she's already lost everything.

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I was just thinking the same thing as another poster on the idea of some kind of classes for dogs. What I was thinking was an obedience class, very similar to helping the dogs to socialize. Meanwhile, you can teach your dog how to stand up for his or herself and not let any other dog bully them. Teaching your dog how to stand up for his or herself is actually a must, because what if you had to leave them both home alone? The last thing I would need is something to happen while you're away.
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I have 1 big dog thats about 8, i have 5 small, pom, which is 11, yorkie 6, maltese, 5 and 2 morkies 3. I would never have that many except my husband can't stand to get rid of his babies, lol. They arent bad just busy, her yorkie came in being ok but just started getting aggressive a couple months ago. So far with her gone things have been alot better. I hope it stays this way. Thanks for all the input
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Yorkies? OMG, I've got cats bigger than that. As I posted earlier, it's your MILs fault, not the dog's. If your daughter and the dog get along I certainly wouldn't bring it back, no matter what MIL says as she'll just continue with the holding, feeding people food etc. and you'll be right back to square one. And be prepared for manipulation in the form of begging, crying, nastiness, refusing to eat or co-operate ... just an act to get her own way.

Maybe giving her stuffed animal toys might help. In her last year my mother's dementia was full blown and she was convinced she had a cat, wheeling the NH halls looking for it, once reaching down to pet it in the dining room and over she went, wheelchair and all, and ended up in ER again. I took hr some plush stuffed animals and the phantom cat went away.
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Ignore that post - it's a cut/paste mistake of two completely different topics! Not sure how it happened. Sorry!
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Doggy Prozac?
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Wow! That's a lot of dogs. But if the five small ones are all Yorkshire Terriers I bet added together they about equal the one large dog. And here I was trying to school you on the ways of dogs - sorry! My two are Cavailer King Charles Spanials - good thing I had the boy Loneliness from losing a spouse and friends
Inability to independently manage regular activities of living
Difficulty coping and accepting physical changes of aging
Frustration with ongoing medical problems and increasing number of medications
Social isolation as adult children are engaged in their own lives
Feeling inadequate from inability to continue to work
Boredom from retirement and lack of routine activities
Financial stresses from the loss of regular incomeneutered before we got the girl dog or I'm sure we'd have as many as you - way too cute to have to give up!
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I think she acts like she does because she is always being held and looks down at my dogs. I have good dogs too. 5 small and 1 large. They dont fight amongst themselves at all
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I'm with you totally on this one. Its one thing for dogs to interact with each other in an aggressive manner while looking for pack order - it's totally something else when a dog bites a human. Since you said MIL let the dog get away with biting her - the poor dog obviously doesn't know better and can't decern which humans are okay to bite and whom not to. But that still doesn't make it okay. Only time I ever swatted one of my dogs was when he took at nip at me while I was getting something away from him he shouldn't have had. Perhaps after some time with your daughter the dog will learn some manners and its spoilt behavior will cease. Yorkies are so cute - theres a big burley manly man in my neighborhood who walks a Yorky, I swear that dog has more sweaters and coats than I do!
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I have put the dog on the floor, my mil picks her up and holds her. She feeds her constantly people food while my dogs dont get that. The two that fight are both yorkies, my dog has always been very submissive. The last fight mil dog flew across the bed and attacked my dog, caught her off guard. I went in after hearing my daughter scream, i picked her dog up and she bit me. Last straw. Mil wanted to come back after visit at her daughter and then sons house we took her dog to my daughter,. So far so good. My mil seems fine, interacting well with my dogs, if her health declines which is my worry, her dog is back and mine is gone. Not fair to my dog to be abused. But my mil is more inportant.
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Lela, my sympathies. Use a spray bottle or squirt gun on whoever or whatever needs it, whenever.
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Poor Lela, your thread has been hijacked by dog lovers! I have never been one to get physical with my dogs by way of discipline or punishment. But I do see merit in Ashlynnes method - the point being to get the dog in a submissive position as this will quickly establish top dog. And if done firmly but not roughly shouldn't hurt the dog. I do disagree with the post that suggested you can establish a top dog by treating one more importantly than the others and conversely treating one like a red headed step child to make it feel inferior. Dogs instinctly recognise who is a territorial threat and who isn't - treating one better than the other may only create dog jelousy and complicate matters. As with children, treat them as equally as possible - as their behavior allows. Set rules and expectations along with consistent consequences when rules are broken. We are liberal with treats when good behavior warrants a reward and use a strong deep voice when a reprimand is required. Our dogs are crated at night but serve as a "naughty mat" (remember that nanny reality show?). "Bad dog Charlie, no _____. Go to your house!" Several years ago we had two large dogs who had a large outdoor run with a doggy door into the garage where their crates were. This is where they stayed when we weren't home. Once in a while one of them would poo in the garage - hubby would just say "who did this" - pointing menacingly - and they'd both run into their crates.
I guess pet rearing is as individual as child rearing - but I say never hit your dog.
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Remove the offending dog and isolate it, do not give it free reign of the house and yard. Study videos online and on youtube about dog obedience, cesar milan, the dog whisperer does not have to come to your home. Some are against his teachings, like the neighbor down the street who will have to give the dog away, sadly. I understand why some would be against the dog whisperer, because he thinks the owners need training.
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My daughter has sheep, goats, horses, geese, chickens, dogs, parrot, and cat. She had to take a whip to one of the goats the other day because the goat jumped on her and cut her face so bad she had to have stitches. The goat was going for the feed bucket, trying to get there first. She let said the goat now remembers you don't mess with mom. For awhile she will carry the whip and everyone stays out of the way. You do as Ashylnne said and it should get better. When I married 15 years ago, my husband had a Chow cross that was starting to tear expensive plantation shutters apart trying to get at the mailman. He wouldn't stop her. I got her stopped doing that in 2 days. You HAVE to be in charge. I just ignored husband when he said she wasn't doing it. Tooth marks on shutters showed otherwise.
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Ashylnne has it down to a science. She is right on the money.
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You will have to discipline the dog. You should be the Alpha Dog in your family pack. Your MIL's dog needs to learn just who is boss. So, your MIL doesn't like it. So What? You might also, not instead of, keep your dogs out of MIL's room and keep her dog out of your bedroom. That might help some. Personally, in my house, I am the Alpha Dog and that is the way it is. Every time the dog starts in on your dog, step in. Make them set in a row for treats, in the same order each time with her dog getting the treat last. I would be all over that little dog the first sign of aggression, to hell with what MIL thinks. I know everyone I am "mean" but as I said, in my house, I am the Alpha Dog,
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Rain some dogs do become aggressive from mistreatment but in this case I think the dog's snottiness stems from MIL letting it do whatever it wanted and basically it became a total brat. When Sue came to live with me she was a waddling 28lb. My mother was always wringing her hands because Sue wouldn't eat her dinner. If you spent all day munching cookies and cakes would you? Sue is now a trim 18lb.

Lela I mentioned that Sue often bit my mother. She bit me once and discovered that wasn't a good idea. Every time she went for me I'd push her down on the floor and hold her down until she stopped struggling (thank god she wasn't a 100lb rotti lol). She got tired of spending time on the floor. It didn't hurt her and she quickly realized I was the pack leader, the alpha wolf if you like. If the brat is the one that starts it, try doing as I did. Say sternly "Hey", grab it by the scruff, push it down and hold it. Only let it up when it stops struggling. This may eventually solve the problem.

I'm no dog trainer but I've had big rescue dogs (3 together, 2 lab types and a bernese x, at one time) all my life. Yep, sometimes they were a challenge. One of the lab types, Jessie, was deaf and often incontinent and in the beginning the berner, Sara Jane, after my grandma who rescued every waif and stray animal, ate the doors but we survived. From an accident as a child I have physical issues and I'm not big or strong but with patience and perseverance (and banging my head on a wall from time to time) everyone got manners and got along.

These days I live in the country with Sue, Ashy Girl and the Mouse Squad: Charlie, 8, off the street when I lived in the city, Pixie, 7, inherited from my mother, Katie, 7 pulled from a horrible situation when she was little and Lucy, 1, found on one of these back dirt roads last year, so tiny she could sit in the palm of your hand, sick and starving. The person who found her was going to take her to a shelter but I knew they'd kill her immediately ... that wasn't happening, so home she came. She's the sweetest creature but, from such a poor beginning I guess, she's deaf so I don't let her out. Went off track but I know many here are animal lovers like me. Personally I prefer them to most humans.

Please let us know how it goes. In my heart I know it will all be fine in the end.
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Btw - either you never said or I missed it - but how long did you give it; letting the dogs work it out for themselves? I've had at least one dog almost everyday for the past 30 years - and I totally agree with the post that said most of what you're seeing is a lot of posturing. The bark being worse than the bite applies here. Dogs have strong instincts regarding pack order and mentality. As soon as it's settled who is The Alpha Dog, all the rest will fall in line. If you get a minute (I know, I know) Google body language for dogs - then watch the dogs next time they get into a territory dispute. I think you'll be reassured. Of course I'm no Ceaser (pssssst) and there really are mean dogs out there - but generally they become mean from mistreatment by humans, not each other. I hate to think of you having to give up one if your babies especially when I truely think it will all work out. Also just out of curiosity what breeds are involved? Some breeds are defiantly more social than others.
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Ah Lela, that's a whole other thread! Lol!
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We are trying to do this, my daughter is keeping her dog, my mil has been giving me mean looks since she came home today, it hurts and makes me feel uncomfortable in my own home. I love her very much, almost 36 years I've been in this family, I would let my daughter take my dog and bring hers here, even though that would kill me. If this doesnt work this week that is the next step. But what do i do about her being mean to my kids and grandkids, they cant go anywhere
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Lela - don't get me wrong, I do understand where your coming from. My mom had a cat - Kitty was allowed to do whatever he liked. This included slashing up the furniture and sitting on kitchen countertops and the dining room table. I like cats just fine - have one now. Kitty moved with mom from house to IL and to AL. When it came time for mom to move to a NH my brother and I looked for two months for one that was right for mom and for one that would take Kitty. We found one - an Adult Foster Home. Unfortunately this place would not have been able to give mom the level of medical care she needs. My mom was very unhappy to have to move without Kitty (understatement of the century). Mom knew Kitty would have to follow a few rules at my house so Kitty went to live with my brother - who has three other cats, two are litter mates of kittys. Believe me, I was relieved by this choice! My mom has been brutal in her resentment of having to give Kitty up. If your MIL has to give up her dog and gives you even 1/10th of the grief and anger she's given me - well, I'd say it would definitely be worth your sanity to move heaven and earth to get all the dogs accepting each other!
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You hit the nail on the head with "she let the dog do whatever it wanted and it has no manners". I inherited my mother's dog, Sue, a miniature pinscher x jack russell terrorist, when my mother went into a NH and yes she was a perfect little "terrorist" but it wasn't her fault.

My mother used pee pads but often put them upside down so the pee ran into the carpets and Sue learned to go on carpets as well. She also often bit my mother. Three years have passed and with proper handling she's changed, becoming a "real" dog with manners. I leave pee pads down overnight but in waking hours she goes out to potty with Ashy Girl, a black lab, 9, who came from rescue a couple of years ago.

I like the idea of crating or maybe a baby gate, though that might make things worse - sometimes, feeling braver, they're more aggressive behind a barrier. I would suggest the dogs have their own personal sleeping spots and eat separately, in different rooms if you can. The majority of dog spats are just a lot of noise and posturing and I don't step in unless someone is getting hurt. They will sort out the pack order themselves in time. Dog Bless and Woof!
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Same issue with my MIL when she went to AL. Since she could no longer give proper care to the dog, it was not fair to the dog. Big fears that my MIL would just go rapidly downhill without her dog. That was just our emotional response and it didn't happen. We just bit the bullet and did the right thing for the dog and found it a new home. We gave MIL a stuffed dog similar to her real one. Within a day or two my MIL was just fine.
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Have you thought about putting them in a crate alternating throughout the day...or at least at night. The new dog may be lashing out because it has not really established his or her own "nest" in the new house. As you already know, house dogs all have their own spot that they nap or go to for comfort. Maybe try a doggie bed in front of a sunny window....away from where your pooch likes to be.
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I dont want the dog to go because im afraid my mil health would decline but i can't have a dog running my house either.
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She would never go to a shelter, we are a family that loves animals. No one wants to separate them, but as i said i love my dogs too and they are aggressive at all, she is a sweet dog that my mil has let do whatever and the end result is no manners at all. You can't discipline her because my mil gets mad but the dog has to follow the same rules mine do.
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I have two four legged babies right now. We had one for about a year when I decided I needed another one - both for me and for the existing dog - dogs are pack oriented and I personal think they are happier with one of their own around. Anyhooo - for the first three months the first dog would absolutely have nothing to do with the new puppy. He would sulk and treat hubby and I like we betrayed him. Now, three years later they are insepratable - sleeping curled up together in "dads" chair at this moment. In fact the first dog lost his hearing recently ( poor thing is only four) and the other dog acts as his hearing ear dog. Please give it time, I'm sure they'll work it out. I know you said MILs dog would go to a family member - but be sure that if that happens they understand the dog may develop behaviors due to the change. Its so terribly sad to see an older dog separated from its long time human. You see these poor older dogs at shelters - after years and years with their human "mom" or whomever passes or has to go to a facility and these poor creatures get taken to a shelter. Few people want to adopt an older dog. It breaks my heart.
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Easier method: find some dog forums and post on them. I'm guessing others have had these kinds of problems regardless of whether an elderly person is involved.
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Long shot: contact the Caesar who's the dog training and problem solving specialist and explain the story. Perhaps he'll come to your home and do a show on teaching the dogs how to get along.

Short and more realistic option: Research to determine if there are any dog obedience training classes in your are so your MIL's dog can learn to be social.

There might be some turf issues such as MIL's dog needing to establish her role in the hierarchy already existing between your 2 dogs.

Last shot: get some dog obedience books from the library and search online for dog obedience training.
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I know what you are saying but she has been here about 3 months and its getting worse. I dont want to do anything to upset my MIL but i love my dogs too and have had them along time 2 are my dogs babies never lived anywhere else. They dont start the fights, her dog does and its frustrating. I know she loves her baby and im afraid to do anything to make it worse for her. We are trying to figure things out.
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How long has it been? Once the dogs determine pack order the conflict could easily go away. I'm sure MILs dog is also feeling confusion in moving, new people, other animals etc. perhaps a vet could give the dog something for its anxiety. Please don't make MIL give up her dog - her life has been up-ended and having to give up her dog could easily cause her to become more difficult to deal with. I bet her four legged friend provides her comfort along with unconditional love. The dog may be one of the few things that feels familiar to her right now.
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