How do I stop my chihuahua puppy’s aggressive behavior?
I have a 8 month old Chihuahua, we have had her since 8 weeks. She has always been a lover until recently. She comes to my gift shop with me everyday, so she is around peoples constantly. She has just started barking at everybody that walks in the door. And one day she lets everybody pet her the next she snaps and tries to bite. She has also recently bit my husband twice and my daughter once. What can I do to stop this behavior before it gets to the point where I can’t take her to work and my daughter gets to be afraid of her? Please help!!
Your chihuahua is developing a dominant personality. You must nip it in the bud asap or it will get worse. I had a puppy that was very sweet in the beginning and then gradually got more and more assertive and aggressive around 8 or 9 months. It wasn’t until he bit a stranger that I got the wakeup call that I had to do something, but by then he was almost 2 years old and the pattern had already set in. Since this is just the beginning, I think it’ll be relatively easy to change.
Your chihuahua is around people constantly, but it doesn’t mean that she’s interacting with people the right way. Since you work in the store, she probably senses that you have some authority in that space and she has taken that cue from you. Also, your close relationship with her (being with her day in and day out) has made her feel very territorial towards you. Do not hold her while she’s interacting with people, let her stand on her own so she is not concerned with protecting you. Everyone who comes into the store is potentially a danger to you and she’s trying to protect you. You must teach her to give up the defensiveness. You are in charge, not her. You can do this with basic obedience. I suggest that you enroll her in a puppy obedience class as soon as possible and teach her some basic commands such as sit, stay, heel, and down. After she learns this, whenever a customer comes into the store, you give her a command and let her concentrate on that task instead of the customer. If you want, you can give a treat to the customer and ask them to give it to her if she does a “sit” for them.
She must learn that everything you’ve allowed her to do is a privilege. Going to work with you is a privilege, eating is a privilege, getting on the couch is another one, and so is sitting on your lap, getting a toy, a treat, going outside. Before she does any of those things, she must get your permission. This means, you should ask her to do a “sit” before you allow any of those things. If she jumps on the couch without doing a sit, you put her back down on the floor and ask her to do it again. If she’s sitting in your lap and she snaps at your husband, then she has lost that privilege and must be put in her crate. Your husband and daughter have to follow this too. All of you must establish that you are leaders of the pack. Ask your husband or daughter to do the feeding and ask Lucy to complete a command before giving the food to her.
This will not be easy at first and change will not happen overnight, but I am confident that your chihuahua can be trained.Share