Very aggressive female!
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    Hi, I am new to this…I really need some help! We have 3 basenji's. An 11 year old sweet male (who is blind) and 2 females. We rescued the older female when she was 6 mos. old...she's 10 now. We bought our 5 year old daughter a female basenji puppy last valentine's day. The older female and the puppy got along great...until the puppy got older. Now the older female wants to KILL her. And I mean kill. We have to keep them separated at all times. We probably should find the puppy a new home, but our daughter is so attached to her. We don't know what to do. I would hate to get rid of the older female...she really is a sweet dog (just not to the puppy!)
    Does anyone know anything about medication that would help? Like prozac for dogs? It is extremely stressful at our home. The other thing we are considering is a muzzle for both females so we can put them together. Thank you for any input!

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    That's tough. I look forward to seeing other people's responses, but in my experience, once two B's "hate" eachother, there will be no reconciling between them–they must be kept separate.

    Just out of curiousity: Was there a fight, or one initial confrontation that set these two off?

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    I honestly don't know what happened. One day they were fine and the next that was it. We then tried to keep them together, and it would be good for a couple of weeks, then it would happen again. Just last week we were "switching" them from upstairs to downstairs and the puppy (she's 1 now) took off after the older female. I really think she still wants to play. Well, they fought, and for the first time the older girl got a little injured and the puppy was fine. I got bit in the process of breaking it up. We are obviously worried about our child, although she knows to get away if there is any kind of scuffle.

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  • I wish I had some good news for you…but sadly, I don't. We have a divided household here as well. It is not uncommon for the younger bitch to decide somewhere between 6 mos and 2 years that it is time for her to move up...and the older bitch decides she would rather kill her than let that happen.

    It is really unlikely IMO that you could get these two together again, but if there is a chance (especially since there hasn't been a large blood letting), you might look for a behaviorist that is familiar and practiced with dog/dog aggression. Positive reinforcement training only please, or it may make the aggression worse. It takes a lot of management, and a huge time investment. But, you are already doing a lot of management keeping them separated.

    One of my concerns would be what if your daughter accidentally lets them together, and one kills the other? I wouldn't want my child to have to bear that :(

    I really am sorry, I wish I had better suggestions for you.

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  • Is the young one spayed?

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    I have three females(all 3 spayed), two that are the same age (3 years) get along, but the other female(5 years) does not. We have two packs, the older female and oldest male in one pack and all the rest( two females/two males) in another. As much as I would love to have them all happily living together without restrictions…..I can not. We tried very hard to keep them together, but way to many dog fights, mostly the older female and the other alpha female from the younger pack. The size difference in the dogs made it such a mismatch we couldn't continue to let the smaller dog take that kind of punishment and we got bit ourselves trying to break them up.

    Please be careful with whatever you do, we don't have small children and if I did I'd have to think long and hard about my childs safety vrs wanting multiple dogs. We separate and every now and then things still happen, mostly through our error, but the danger still is there.

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    Thanks to everyone out there for your help and input. Yes, everyone is spayed/neutered. I have some tough decisions to make. I have never had to think about finding one of my dogs a new home before…of course they are like family. Does anyone have an opinion of who I should find a new home???? My husband thinks we should find the older girl a new home...he thinks she would do very well with a family w/ no other dogs and could hang out w/ her and take her for long walks. Thanks!

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  • Oh, I don't know…..it seems to me that the older girl should be allowed to stay in her home. It is harder for older dogs to adjust, and the younger girl is still very young...she would be easier to place, and easier to adapt. But it would probably need to be a home with no other female dogs, and maybe no other dogs at all. She might be okay with another dog added in as a pup, later...but she apparently needs to be the top status bitch in the house.

    I know it is tempting to "blame" the older dog (believe me, I KNOW)...but in reality the older bitch is probably just defending her place in the pack..not actually aggressing at the younger one randomly. The younger bitch is most likely the one creating the problem.

    If you are in contact with the breeder of the younger bitch, she should be happy to take her back if things aren't working out :)

    It is a hard decison to make. I wish I had a way to make everything work the way we want it to...I really do :(

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    I agree with you that the older girl (Gish) should stay at home…I've had her for so long, it would be hard to let her go. We have tried to have some one close to us help us out, so that we could at least see the dog that we let go. But, so far that hasn't worked, either.
    However, I'm trying to think of my daughter. She is an only child and thinks of these dogs as her brother and sisters. That's why we got her a puppy to grow up with (Allie). She and Allie play all the time, while Gish kind of just wants to be left alone. If our daughter hugs Gish, she kind of grumbles at her. But I know that Gish is the top dog and I love her very much and she should be able to keep her home in her senior years. That's why this is just so hard. Our daughter considers Allie "her" dog and gets so upset about the situation.

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    also…any thoughts on medicating our older girl? She has always been a little anxious/nervous...the vet gave us a script for prozac. We have not filled it as of yet...I just don't know. Our other thought is to keep them separate...which is not fun, but for the most part works, and to get the girls each a muzzle, so when the warm weather FINALLY comes around, we can all be outside together. I wouldn't leave them alone unattended, even w/ the muzzles. It's a little easier when it's nice outside, and someone can be out all the time...in the winter it has been HARD! Of course, they want to be where the other is...the grass is greener sort of thing. They will sit at the top of the stairs at the baby gate, right next to each other...each on an opposite side. Then all of a sudden they will start growling at each other. It's like a love/hate (mostly hate) relationship.

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  • i dont think muzzling is the answer. your boy will no doubt "help" one of the ladies out of theirs. way too risky!

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    @stacie:

    They will sit at the top of the stairs at the baby gate, right next to each other…each on an opposite side. Then all of a sudden they will start growling at each other. It's like a love/hate (mostly hate) relationship.

    Our house looks like a prison with all the gates. The gates really help, but aren't the solution to end all.

    Just this week, I had the young group downstairs in the early morning before we leave for work, wife was upstairs getting ready for work. The two older B's sleep with my oldest son and they where in his room with the door shut…......or so I assumed.
    We have this routine down like clockwork and at about 6am I lead the young group upstairs so I can get ready to go to work, we keep them in our room(baby gate at door), I shower, the wife is done in the bathroom and takes over watching them as she does whatever she does in front of that mirror in our bedroom:confused:

    So at 6am I open the gate to let them go upstairs and at that exact moment my older son get's mad at the two older dogs apparently because they where scratching at his bedroom door, and he let's the two older one's out.:eek: :eek:
    I'm standing at the bottom of the stairs watching the younger group go up the stairs and suddenly at the top appears the two older B's....:eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:
    One of the young females got into it with the older female and luckily only minimal damage. I really think the younger female Penny went after Cleo to protect her group.......good thing....... Raven has seen enough of Cleo and Penny is better suited to take Cleo on.

    Things happen so fast.

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  • Yeah..for the most part we keep one group crated while the other group is out. We do have a few other options, but with a three year old, the risk of the wrong door being opened is high. So it is safest to be crated. But, one time I was away, and Tim accidentally put the wrong girls together..outside, after he had just grilled a steak!!! The were all checking out the grill, for like 30 seconds before they went "Hey, I HATE you! What the H–- are you doing out here with me!!!" And then the fight began, and Tim was like 'what is going on out there'...then realized he had made a mistake. So he opened one door, and the 'good' dog shot in. He closed that door. He went out and grabbed the two 'bad' dogs and pulled them apart. There was actually very little damage thank goodness...but it does happen.

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    We actually got out Gish's crate (the older female) to try to prevent accidental encounters…she's not that happy about it, but I'm trying to do my best here! I'm also not happy about the damage she is doing to the woodwork at the gate at the top of the stairs. It is good to hear that there are people out there like me who are struggling just to keep all of their animals. Most people think I'm nuts!

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    @stacie:

    Most people think I'm nuts!

    I've said it once, and I'll say it again: We're all at least one fry short a happy meal for being so dedicated to these miscreants. But, non-basenji owners will never understand what it's like to have a dog that can communicate the myriad of feelings that a basenji can, or experience the happiness that their little wagging curly tail can transfer. They are a dog like no other, and until you own one, you just won't get it.

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  • I seriously doubt that medication would help…. sounds exactly like the younger bitch is trying to "up" her place in the house. I have had that also, my one bitch at 5 months decided that my oldest bitch was the one to challenge and the older she got the worse it was. Believe me the best for all is to place one of them and like the others it should be the youngest to go... that is what I did, the oldest was there first.... And I did find a great home where all are happy.....
    As others have said especially with children in the house accidents can happen and someone will get seriously hurt....

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    Thank you again for all of your input…it looks as if maybe Allie (the little girl) may have to go. I would miss her so much and would only want to place her with a basenji friendly good family. She is like my baby...she follows me around like I am her mother. I am willing to try to work it out here, but again like everyone has said accidents can happen, although my daughter (she's 5) knows to get away if there is any kind of scuffle. She is very aware of the situation. Right now it's actually kind of easy w/ her, b/c I always know where she is (my daughter, I mean).

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  • You really might look into having a behaviorist look at the situation. It is almost impossible to get an accurate picture over the internet. But behavior modification will take a lot of commitment, and work, and still may not work…but you sound like you are willing to go a long, long way to try to make it work. It might be something to think about.

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    Can you recommend anyone? Thanks!!!

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  • Stacie, can you send me a private message with what general area in PA you live in? I will try to locate someone.

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    I live in Northeast Pa. near Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton, close to the Pocono's. Thanks so much! I definitely think the person that we would work with would have to be basenji friendly!

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