Possible problems with my GP

Discussion in 'Precious Protectors' started by Itchysmom, Aug 12, 2010.

  1. Itchysmom

    Itchysmom New Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    I got my goats yeaterday and once they got settled in I tied my GP next to thier pen. She bonded with them almost immediately. I have to tie her anyway as she is a wonderer so the teing part is nothing new to her, just in a different spot.

    My problem is her with the other dogs. She has been getting nasty and fighting with my heeler for the past month. I was sort of assuming it was a dominance thing, plus she is now in season. I will get her fixed as soon as she is out of season. The Heeler is not fixed either, bith are females.

    Now, she will not let the Heeler anywhere near the goats. That in it's self is not a bad thing, but she growls then attacks the Heeler if she can reach her. OK, she thinks she is protecting the goats. I get that. But, she continues it in the house. She will not let it go. The house is nuetral territory for goodness sakes! I have to bring the GP in at night as my neighboe does not like her barking. She can stay outside with the goats as long as she is quiet. The Heeler does not want to fight and tries to get away.

    GP was letting the puppy, who is a 3 month old male, by the pen. Today she attacked him! I don't really know what to do about this. I would hate to get rid of her as I have had her since she was 8 weeks old and I love her. She is now almost 3yrs old. But, if she does not quit this fighting, I may have to. I was hoping that getting her fixed would stop this, but now that the goats are here, I don't know. Any suggestions?
  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    She's doing the job she was bred to do...now that she has something to protect she's finding it confusing as far as who's allowed near and who's not...the fighting with the pup and your heeler may be due to her being in heat, either way you'll need to train her by showing her it's ok that the other 2 are there.

  3. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    im not good with LGD's but I do believe that they are suppose to stay working all the time so by bringing her into the house she has decided the house is part of her "protection" zone and since the Heeler isnt suppose to near the goats in her opinion she feels that she shouldnt be near the house either. Just my observation of the situation.

    I think you need to talk to your neighbors about the barking -- thats part of the GP's personality and how they do their job. From what I hear they only bark when there is something out there needing to be warded off. Maybe if they know that she is protecting the livestock they will be less annoyed by it? Sometimes people just need to know the whys of things to be more accepting.

    Just my opinion but I think the outside inside thing is confusing her. She isnt sure how to shut off "work" mode since its built into her genetics basically.
  4. KW Farms

    KW Farms Moderator Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2008
    Wapato, WA
    I agree with Stacey. A LGD is supposed to constantly be working. It's not a good idea to treat her like a pet...like you would with most other breeds of dogs. If her job is to guard the goats, then she needs to stay in the pen with the goats...if it's to be a pet or part of your "dog pack" then she needs to be doing that constantly. Like Stacey said...it's probably confusing her.

    It really sounds like it's not the best set up for her since the neighbors don't like her barking at night. She really needs to be out there constantly. I don't want to sound rude or anything, but I would really consider rehoming her where she can have her guarding job and stick with it. She sounds like a good one.
  5. AlaskaBoers

    AlaskaBoers New Member

    May 6, 2008
    Wasilla Alaska
    i bet your neighbors will appreciate her when she's outdoors warding off predators. ;)

    i agree, bringing her in at night is confusion to her
  6. MissMM

    MissMM New Member

    Oct 22, 2007
    McGregor, MN
    If you need to re-home her, you are welcome to send her in my direction as it seems to me that she is doing her job perfectly.

    If you choose to keep her, you may improve her response to your other dogs by keeping the other dogs right next to you when you go near the goats and if the Gr Pyr gets agressive to those dogs, get down right mean. You will be showing her that those 2 dogs are part of the family, you are Alpha Dog, and she will listen to you. Maybe. But don't expect her to let the other dogs near the goats when you are not around because that would be contradicting her instincts.
  7. Itchysmom

    Itchysmom New Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    Thank you all for your replies!

    This has been my situation and it may shed some light on why things are the way they are right now. I lived on 10 acres two years ago. I got the GP as a present as I wanted one and the breeder knew this. At the time my Heeler was a year old. They got along just fine until my GP started coming into season this last time. Then the GP decided to assert her dominance. The Heeler could care less as all she wants to do is play. She (Mitzee) trys to stay out of GP's (Ginger) way and if a fight insues Mitzee tries her hardwest to either get away or just defend herself. So, this problem started before the goats got here.

    Two years ago I had to move into a house here in town...if you can call Chesaw a town! Close neighbors and lots of traffic, people and noise. Ginger was 10 months old at the time. I had no choice but to have her in the house. Knowing that she needed to be a LGD but I couldn't let her be. I had no livestock here. My closest neighbor has sensitive hearing and does not like barking dogs. Since Ginger's bark is very loud I try my best to keep her as quiet as possible. This again is not by choice as I never wanted her to be taught not to bark! I knew that eventually my situstion would change and she could do what she was bred to do.

    We have bought 40 acres and are building a house on it, altho it is taking some time. Once we get there, Ginger can bark her head off and no one will be bothered ( well, except me!). In the mean time, I have to be courtious to my neighbors, right?

    I was not going to get my goats until we moved, but the situation with the lady who gave them to me changed and I had to get them now. So, they are on this property temperarly. I was amazed at how fast Ginger bonded with them and she immediately decided to take her job seriously. I do not mind this. It just makes it harder as I still cannot leave her outside at night, she must come inside. She also is bonded to me and wants to be in the house with me at times. Also, when I am gone she needs to be inside. All this for my stupid neighbor and her sensitive hearing! So, it is what it is. Once we move, she can stay out all the time.

    Mitzee has learned to stay away from the goats and Gingers space. She does not want to fight. This morning, however, the pup was one one side of me and Ginger was on the other. Pup was next to the pen and Ginger attacked! Almost got my leg! I came down on her like lightening for it. Ginger and the pup play in the house all the time BTW.

    I am hoping that we move soon so Ginger can have her job with the goats and the other thing will settle down. Plus I hope that when she gets fixed it will make a difference. Is it OK to scold her when she comes in the house tho? I do not want her to continue her aggression when she is in the house. Normally it is when she is already pumped up...she continues it in the house. Maybe when she is pumped, I should just leave her outside until she calms down?

    I wish I could move today, but we at least another month out.
  8. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    I know a month sounds like ages but at least there is a light at the end of the tunnel for both of you.

    I dont know about how to train a GP but I do know that any bad behavior in any dog I own will be punished and I cant see why you shouldnt punish her for such.

    Hope things continue to work out smoothly so you can move
  9. Steph

    Steph Senior Member

    May 7, 2009
    I have a GP, Eva and she is wonderful! My vet advised me against getting another female GP as they would likely fight. Even if Eva is fixed she said that they will likely still fight. When we got Eva she had been a house/barn LGD and was a re-home. We have never let her into our house. She has always been in the barn with the goats. But, she often seems sad when we leave her, like she thinks she should be going to the house with us. She barks a lot at night and that is what they are suppose to do. GP are great LGD!
  10. farmergal

    farmergal New Member

    Jun 19, 2009
    Northern California
    I have heard from LGD breeders that some females will never tolerate other females... and you don't usually know this until they're full grown. (Since LGDs take so long to mature, it might even be that she is reaching that mature point even at 3 years.) I also agree with the others that the house is not actually "neutral" -- it is her territory now!

    If she isn't a no-female-dog dog, and she's just PMS-ing (lol), you could try introducing them with the LGD on a leash. (By introducing, I mean showing the LGD the other dog in a way that shows she is clearly yours and part of the family, and needs protecting.) That way if she lunges you can safely break up the fight without getting bitten... and the other dog isn't leashed so she can run away if necessary.

    BTW, there is a great "Working LGD" email list on Yahoo. There are tons of people who have worked with LGDs for decades... might be worth joining the email list to get their opinion too. Note -- I love TGS and value everybody's opinions here... it's just that most of us here are goat people first, and the email list has quite a few people who are LGD people first! At any rate, try and get as many opinions as possible before deciding what to do with her!
  11. MissMM

    MissMM New Member

    Oct 22, 2007
    McGregor, MN
    How's it going with your LGD? Are you in your new place yet? I'm excited for you to see how it works out.