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Female Collie, weird aggressive behaviour to other dog - Help!

Discussion in 'Dog Behaviour and Training' started by GunnerBill, Nov 6, 2018.

  1. GunnerBill

    GunnerBill New Member Registered

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    So here's the pack

    1 x male neutered collie X 13 yrs old
    1 x female speyed collie 10 yrs old
    1 x male neutered Black Lab 2 yrs old

    All healthy, well fed, watered and walked. We live in a spacious home, large garden next to fields.

    The female Collie has always been a bit odd, staring at nothing in corners, licking the furniture and the wifes suede boots (ewww!).

    Up until a couple of months ago everything was fine as far as the interpersonnel relationships went.

    Then the female collies started to snarl and pull faces at the male collie if he went near her. By which I mean just near, no intent, not sniffing her, just moving past or something.

    Now the female collie will just go up to the dog (say he's lying down asleep or resting) and just start snarling and bearing her teeth at him... so she taken to just following him about and doing this all the time until told to sit. She could be somewhere else relaxing, there's nothing forcing her in proximity to the collie.

    Totally fine with the Lab. Not aggressive to us or the cats.

    Really puzzled. Any ideas???
     
  2. JudyN

    JudyN Well-Known Member Registered

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    The first thing I'd suggest would be a thorough vet check of the male collie. She may sense something wrong with him which causes her to react like this. Though she would probably warrant a health check herself as anything that makes her feel uncomfortable will make her more reactive in general to anything 'not quite right' in her environment.
     
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  3. GunnerBill

    GunnerBill New Member Registered

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    Thanks, that's a thought that's been tickling at my subconscious for a few days too. Good to have it backed up.

    Male seems in good health but a dogs nose has been proven as a keen measure of this kind of thing.
     
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  4. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife Well-Known Member Registered

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    .

    I would second the suggestion of vet exams for both dogs - but given her age, plus her prior Hx of spacey behavior, the male dog may be her latest OCD trigger. :(

    Keeping them separated except for supervised shared space with the F on leash ( so he chooses to interact, & can walk away immediately if she’s snippy) would be a good protocol to start now, as it can prevent their relationship being poisoned.

    I would also suggest a 5 way or 6 way thyroid panel for the F, because subclinical hypothyroid can have none of the physical symptoms, but the dogs show behavioral changes or ongoing irritability; the lack of thyroid hormone lowers their threshold of tolerance, they get “cranky” for no apparent reason.

    It only requires a blood specimen, but WHO does do the analysis is crucial.
    There are 2 labs that receive specimens from around the world daily, the vet labs at Michigan State University, & HemoPet. // My personal preference is MSU, as they have the world’s largest breed specific database of thyroid values.

    My experience via my clients is that many if not most vets will counsel “save money” by skipping tests, or by local analysis. They are false economies; free & bound forms of T3 & T4 are floor & ceiling, one is useless without the other, as the measurement between them is the needed #.

    Having the vet analyze the sample with a tabletop device, or the local hospital run the sample, is again no help; simple numbers won’t provide answers, but specialized knowledge will.
    U’re only doing this once- wring every precious bit of data out that U possibly can, & use expertise to help U do it. ;) Shipping the specimen is worth every penny, IME.

    If her results are “borderline low”, i’d be ready to ask my vet about a trial run of low dose thyroid supplement. If her behavior improves, that’s reason enuf to keep her on the Rx for life - once the dose is adjusted, the meds are very cheap. // About 3 weeks of low dose hormone should give clear info on whether she needs the Rx. :)

    Secondly, it’s also possible she’s developing k9 dementia, or that her existing OCD tendencies are intensifying.

    If she were my dog, I would test thyroid 1st, get a referral to a vet behaviorist re a possible anti -anxiety or other med (SSRI or other), & then, if her symptoms add such quirks as an inability to recognize familiar persons, or getting lost inside her own home, there’s a Rx drug that slows k9 dementia’s progress, & often reduces symptoms markedly. It’s not a cure, but can give a dog relief for months or even a few years, allowing them to function & stay with their families. :)

    All digits crossed,
    - terry

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  5. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife Well-Known Member Registered

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    Just in case:
    If U absolutely cannot swing the cost of shipping for analysis, U could get the thyroid panel (5 tests, free & bound T3 & T4, TSH, & possibly ANA, anti-nuclear antibody) done locally, & then e-mail the numbers to either MSU vet-labs or HemoPet , for an expert analysis.

    It won’t be as good as having them run the specimen, but it’s better than any info U might get from a GP vet or a generic source. :)

    All my best,
    - terry

    .
     
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