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Dog Training/mini dachshund aggression


My 9.5 year old female mini dachshund, Emerald, began growling at me about 4 months ago when I move her while she's sleeping in my bed. She also barks incessantly when someone comes into my room. When our female cat, same age, comes onto the bed, Emerald comes out from under the covers to bark at her to keep her away. Last night when I moved her she went to bite me and I corrected her by grabbing her by the scruff of her neck and pinning her to the bed. She did not submit, just laid there baring her teeth, growling a bit, and resisting, trying to get out of my grasp. I picked her up and put her outside. She was only allowed back in after sitting and then I put her straight into her crate for the night. When I woke up this morning I let her out of her crate to pee but made her "sit" then wait for me to say "ok" before she came through the door to come inside.  I gave the "sit" command before putting her food bowl down. After eating she had another chance to go out to pee (she didn't) then back into her crate. I left for work and when my son got up he let her out to pee, also making her "wait" and "ok" before going outside and coming back into the house where he made her sit before offering water. Then back into the crate. She whined a while later but wasn't let out of the crate until she was quiet for ten minutes. Back outside to pee, sit,  wait before she went through the door to get outside. Now she's outside and barking and scratching to get inside. I'm not home so I told my son to wait until she's quiet for ten minutes before letting her come back into the house after sit, wait, ok. Then back into the crate until I get home. Am I on the right track? Do you have other suggestions?

Thanks for your question, Barb. If this behavior started just 4 months ago, make an appointment with your vet for a full physical. Sudden onset of aggression at this age is often related to medical issues. If the dog is feeling pain, she's growling to tell you that it doesn't feel good to be picked up, or possibly stepped on by the cat. If you ignore those growls and continue to pick her up, the only thing she has left to do is to bite to get her message across.

Keep the dog off your bed entirely. Put her in the crate at night, or get a soft bed for her on the floor.

Please let me know if you have further questions.

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Barb Gadola, CPDT-KA, KPA CTP


I can answer questions related to problem dog behaviors, teaching polite manners, puppy raising, and any type of training-related issues. My website page, offers a wealth of information on training and behavior issues as well.


I've been training dogs since 1989 and own and operate Distinctive Dog Training LLC in Keller TX. I specialize in providing practical and positive solutions for families through personalized training in their home.

Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner
Victoria Stilwell Positively! Licensed Trainer
Association of Pet Dog Trainers
Association of Animal Behavior Professionals
Truly Dog Friendly Coalition

BS in Education
Graduate work in Behavioral Psychology
Karen Pryor Academy Dog Training Program
Certified Professional Dog Trainer

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