Hi all! My name is Lexia and I am the proud adopter of Luna, a blue colored 16 month old APBT and red nose 6 month old Winnie, whom is actually a Shar-Pei APBT mix. I am from Wisconsin and drove to Chicago for them. I fell in love with this breed when I volunteered at my local humane society during my teen years. I grew up with dogs ever since I can't even remember, one being a boxer/APBT mix. I'm now 23 and have adopted two of my very own!
Luna is VERY sweet, mellow and affectionate. She adores kids of all ages. She struggles with separation anxiety from me and is nervous around unfamiliar dogs, though. She is about to graduate her advanced level obedience class with Petsmart, having already graduated intermediate!
Winnie is a goofball. She's dorky, friendly, playful and NOISY! (her bark AND her snore...) She just graduated puppy class but struggled keeping it together around the other dogs, barking and pulling towards them but only in a playful manner. She's a very excited one. With the help of the magical head harness she has much better manners around other dogs!
I have joined here in hopes of finding some suggestions of help with a couple issues I have been struggling with, mainly with Luna. She is very territorial of our home. She barks like crazy at strangers walking by or coming to the door, or coming in the home to the point where I have to put her in a separate room because I can't calm her. Like I said, she's very anxious. Seems to be very high strung and alert to every odd noise. In public, she is great. She loves the attention from other people and loves to say hi to anyone, especially kids. Has zero issues with strangers coming up to her anywhere else other than our property, or someone else's property that she feels at home at such as my grandmother's house and my aunt's as we spend a lot of time visiting. A few months ago, I paid for an hour long personal session with a trainer at Petsmart for some insight on these issues. She ultimately suggested I get Luna into the next intermediate class to help her socialize more. At this point I was taking her out into public weekly into pet stores or parks to socialize her, as well as her already being socialized regularly with my dad's lab and a friend's dog then eventually Winnie with no issues. The classes have definitely helped and I regret not getting her into puppy classes. But there has been one incident with another dog not taking a liking to her for no particular reason (the dog has barked, lunged, snapped at her as well as others) and it has made her fearful of other dogs ever since. She acts so excited to see another dog, but is still polite about it, and wants to say hi but the closer the other dog gets to her and sniffs on her, the more uncomfortable she gets and she curls her lip and sometimes will snarl if I don't get her out of the situation fast enough. She is also very protective of my bedroom/bed in particular. As soon as she hears the door move, she's growling at it and as it opens, she's jumping off the bed and barking at the door/person there. Depending on who it is, she will turn around and get back on the bed if it's my sister in law. If it's my brother or my father, she will continue and has even gone as far as jumping up and nipping at them. (She has had an issue with men in the past before I adopted her, but hasn't had any specific issues with my dad or brother.) Sometimes though, they will ignore her and move past her to get onto my bed just to lay and talk and then she will stop barking and lick on them, roll onto her back to show her belly in submission, and want to snuggle. I'm thinking she associates someone coming into my room (unwelcome) as something I do not like, because I have gotten mad/yelled at whomever for just letting themselves in. She is very sensitive and I'm sure picked up on my unhappiness at that and I think is just trying to protect me. But it needs to stop and I'm not sure how to go about it.
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