New food possession? - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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New food possession?

My 4 month old puppy went to dog day care today. This is the 3rd time he has ever gone and it has been a month since the last time he has gone.

I gave him a bully stick tonight, one of his favorite treats. And when I went near him, he growled at me! Then he did it with my boyfriend. Now this is a completely NEW behavior as we have made a point from the day we brought him home to put our hands in his food, feed him from our hands, and take/give back his bully stick... Just to avoid any food possessions.

So now I am wondering if perhaps he has suddenly learned this possessiveness from dog day care? It it possible after just one day?

Once I realized he growled at me I put a bunch of treats in my hand, offered them to him, took his bully stick away, and then gave him back the bully stick once he ate all the treats. I did this 3 times. Is this a good method to help overcome possessiveness? I can't let this turn into "a thing" with him as I am planning to train him for therapy work.

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-21-2013, 11:28 PM
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Did the doggie day care give treats out during the trip?? That's the only thing that I could think of that would reinforce resource guarding. We're working through the book "Mine!" by Jean Donaldson (i think) and it has an extensive and time consuming process, but it's working for us.

Good luck! Just remember, that this can be overcome. Just be persistent and consistent.

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Hecate's Hellhound, Gypsy Magic - "Gypsy"
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 01:23 AM
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I don't think you need to panic and invoke the "resource guarding" menace quite yet - it's only happened the one time and he was fine with trading after that, right?
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-22-2013, 09:01 PM Thread Starter
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This is the only time it has happened. I did the "trade" with him 3 times, but wasn't entirely successful. He is a SMART puppy and figured out pretty quick what I was doing. On the third attempt he scarfed up the treats and jumped up to my hand, fast, to snatch the bully stick out of it.

That, too, is new. He has never tried to snatch something out of my hand like that before.

Honestly, I don't know if the day care gives out treats. It's something I'll ask them tomorrow as both my boyfriend and I are working 10 hour days and will be dropping him off there.
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