Here`s another great article:
TL/DR: neurotic cocker spaniel needs to not kill my parent's spoiled cavalier spaniel over Christmas. Advice welcome. Sorry this is long.
I'm heading to my parent's this Christmas for about two weeks. My rescue cocker spaniel will be tagging along. I've had her for 5/6 months so her training is ongoing. She's a typical cocker, with added separation anxiety and resource guarding (mostly guards me, tries to hoard her toys but is getting better at drop it/leave it). My parent's cavalier is sweet but spoiled. She's also bit my dad and snapped at him a few times which makes me think she too has a tendency to resource guard. I'd love for them to be more proactive about training her (and stop hand feeding her ffs) but she's not my dog. . .
My previous visit a few months ago did not go well. The cavalier sulked the entire time, growled a few warnings at my dog when she got to close to her toys. Totally expected. My dog was her usual shy/nervous self as she usually is around new spaces and people. However on the last night my dog lunged at the cavalier. I was sitting with my dog on the couch, the cavalier jumped on to the adjacent couch, and my dog jumped over me at the other dog. I grabbed her before she got to the cavalier, who was shaken up but not hurt. I separated them and never reintroduced them as I left the next morning.
My dog resource guards me, especially around couches and beds. I have a better handle of her triggers now, and know she doesn't like other people or dogs trying to share comfy spaces with her person (me). I've had her around other dogs and people in triggering situations to try and desensitize her/work on her ability to follow my commands when she gets excited. I haven't ruled out a behaviorist/medication but she's proven to be very trainable so far so I've been holding out to see how far she gets without more drastic intervention. Aside from lunging at my parent's dog, she's never actually bitten anyone/dog, but I'm more than aware that she's capable if she feels provoked.
She's better but still I'm worried that if she misbehaves this trip she will be permanently banned from my parent's house. I'm honestly surprised they are letting her come with me. Any advice on what I can do to make sure I'm giving both of them the best chance to coexist semi-peacefully would be much appreciated. I realize that as they are both female dogs of similar size and breed, and each have a general tendency to resource guard and be jealous, there's only so much I can do short of getting my dog a muzzle (which I actually contemplated).
My current plan is:
day care most days for my dog. I figure the less time they spend together the better
introduce them on a walk outside before I even bring my dog inside.
only bringing tennis balls for my dog to play with. They're her favorite toy and luckily enough are too big for the cavalier's mouth.
I'll be sleeping with my dog on a separate floor and bedroom that the cavalier doesn't and won't have access to
I also plan on feeding her in a different room than the cavalier, and in her crate. She also won't be allowed on any couches with me. And obviously I won't leave them alone unsupervised.
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