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Aggression towards one particular person..

by Joe
(Florida )

Hello, My name is Joe. I am 20 years old and I picked up a Parson Jack Russell a little over 2 weeks ago.
I did a lot of research into what breed of dog I wanted and I was decided months ago on a Jack Russell. What drives people crazy the most is what I was most looking forward to which is a very active dog that could accompany me fishing, running, and biking. (I am an athletic trainer and live a very active lifestyle)
My friend works at a shelter for dogs and informed me that there was a great looking Jack Russell who was a female and 1 year old. They had taken possession of her that same day and she was formerly a stray but was in excellent health and was house trained so in other words couldn't have been a stray for long.
I took her in and it was clear she was a great dog but needed some discipline and someone to be firm and in charge with her. I applied many of the techniques I read online for training Jack Russells and she responded remarkably. Even my parents were blown away by her intelligence and how quickly she became well mannered and disciplined. She is well exercised as I take her out everyday after work. In addition, she spends about 1-2 hours a day free roaming our + Acres of land and doing as she pleases. (hunting, digging) I am thrilled with her so far, the only thing that I haven't been able to fix is her on/off aggression towards my dad.
When she first came she did not like my father. She would bark and growl at him, she even tried to bite him a few times. I have firmly scolded her and disciplined her for these actions and she has improved quite a bit. However, there are still times (maybe 50% of the time) when she sees him that she will growl or bark and go up to him to sniff him. Sometimes she's satisfied with the sniff and will play around, other times she will act agressive and even try biting him. If I see her bark at him I give her a firm "no" or "stop" and she instantly retreats and will sit down and for the rest of the time together she will play with him nicely. That is, until he leaves and comes back, then its like she forgot all over again. My dad is convinced she is just trying to play, but combined with the growling and barking at him it makes no sense. She does not act this way towards me, my mothers, or my sisters. It concerns me because there are times I'm not home but my father is and I would like her to be able to behave during these times. I have had my father walk her, play with her, and give her treats, and during these times she is well behaved and even playful with him. But during the next encounter she will have forgotten and starting acting aggressively again. At this point, she also shows no symptoms of being dominant or thinking shes the pack leader. Does anyone have any advice for me? Thank you in advance

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Feb 21, 2014
Jack Russell aggressive towards one person
by: Frank

Thanks for taking rescuing this little one! It sounds like you are doing all the right things with her! Because you don't know about her background before you got her, there is a chance that she had a bad interaction with a male and now associates bad things with men. You have done what I would have suggested which is having your Dad play with her, give her treats. Maybe he can take it to the next level and feed her and work on commands with her. Also, whenever he interacts with her he should be on her level and always wait for her to come to him and sniff him first. Working on commands would help build trust. And then in non practice situations he could have her "sit" and "stay" if she were to start barking or trying to bite. Worst case scenario is that you hire a pet behaviorist to help you at home if things were to get worse. But honestly I think this is just going to take time for her to completely drop her guard. Keep doing what you have been. It doesn't sound like anyone is any danger so that is good.
Good luck!

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