Attacking people at the end of the Lead

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Attacking people at the end of the Lead

Post by SchnauzerFosterer »

I am looking for some words of wisdom, suggestions, opinions on an aggression issue specific to Schnauzers.
I have a 6 year old neutered male. Background unknown except that he was 'too aggressive' He has been with me for a month, He just had extensive Dental and I thought that would calm him down a bit...but no !
When the 2 of us are alone he is Schnauzer perfection. perfectly house trained. Zero separation anxiety if I leave him home alone. Makes himself at home on my couch. Not a food guzzler. sleeps on my bed (his preference as he has a dogbed right next to) home the only issue, which doesn't have to be an issue, is that in a month he hasn't mastered climbing stairs.

I take him to the offleash dogpark and he sniffs and socializes with the other 4 or 5 dogs that are usually there, and he has never approached any of the dog owners, he chases balls and has a good old sniff around...calm no aggression !

The problem begins when we leave the house for his walks, He is on a 2m lead with harness. Usual Schnauzer stubborness.. "I will sniff and pee until I'm ready so back off" Then here comes a person with another dog on a lead ...he perks up when he sees them and goes into full foaming at the mouth, well not actual foam, but his growling sounds like it. Lead is reduced to very short and by time others are parallel he is standing on hindlegs still going nuts. I have not been able to get any reduction in his behaviour in a month. He also does the same craziness when he meets the same people he has seen multiple times, as in neighbours.
I hate to admit that I've been fostering Schnauzers for 8 years and have no idea how to sort him out. I'm thinking it was very poor socialization when he was a puppy

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Re: Attacking people at the end of the Lead

Post by Dawnspell »

It could be hes had a bad experience in the past with either another dog or person while on a lead. Being on a lead in the first place and coming across something that makes them anxious can make them even more anxious because they feel trapped with no escape route.

When you see something coming that you know is going to cause the reaction I would try and get him away from it before he has the chance to react. In effect you provide the escape route for him. If you have a harness with a front clip and a top clip it is much easier to maneuver a dog in a different direction. Heres a link to explain how to train the maneuver its easier than me trying to explain.

I know the type of behaviour you are describing there is no way to distract them out of it with food, toys or verbal cues they're too hyped up. Jasper used to be like this when he saw another dog and wanted to play. He still is like this with little people as he finds them unpredictable. With dogs I can now get him a distance away preferably where he cant see the dog anymore and get him to then focus on me and get some calm behaviours. Now we are getting to the point where the vocals have stopped and the bouncing on back legs has stopped when we get another dog approaching.
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Re: Attacking people at the end of the Lead

Post by zeta1454 »

I agree with above advice. I would add that a 2m lead is far too long given that your schnauzer is having this kind of reaction when seeing another dog on a walk. You need to be able to keep him close to you or bring him close to you very quickly when you see someone approaching with a dog on lead and often there is little time between seeing them and having to bring him back from 2m ahead is going to be very difficult if he is hyped up with adrenaline.

You can also get leads and harnesses that spell out a warning to other dog walkers that your dog needs space for whatever reason. If you search online I am sure you can find several different ones but there is a link here to show what I mean: ... y/nervous/

If this dog is a foster dog that is going to be re-homed to another household and this is his only form of ‘aggression’ you will need to try and find someone experienced with managing dogs with fear reactions to other dogs on lead so they understand the particular issue and can manage it positively and with understanding.
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