Aggressive Rat Terrier

by Lisa M.
(Prior Lake, MN)

Yankee Doodle

Yankee Doodle

Yankee is 11 months old; we brought him home when he was 8 weeks old. After about 2 weeks getting to know Yankee, I realized he was deaf (although occasionally seems to hear VERY loud noises/barks).

From the very beginning, Yankee exhibited aggressive/vicious behavior, particularly with my now 9 year-old son. I have watched the two of them interact, and my son is not overly aggressive or mean to Yankee; yet, Yankee often growls, bites, and snaps at my son.

The worst behavior occurs when Yankee gets a hold of something that he shouldn't have, and I try to take it away from him. He almost seems crazy! He bit my thumb so hard a few weeks ago that I should have had stitches. I have come to learn that I need to trade something with him for the item he shouldn't have. However, my main concern is my son and his friends. He even tried to bite my mom when we were at her house a few weeks ago.

Yankee is very jealous when our 4 year-old (very well behaved)Beagle, makes any move toward me. He will B-line across the room and intercept with a nasty growl and a few snaps, just to keep the Beagle away from me. Riley doesn't exactly put up with it, he growls back and tries to correct him, but Yankee thinks it's a game. I'm sure because he can't hear him!

Yankee use to be very good about going into his crate. I would show him a treat, and make sure he watched me put it in his kennel. He would trot right in, no problem. In the last month or so, he hides under the chair or coach, and literally runs from me when he knows it's time to "go to bed." He WILL bite me if I try to pick him up.

Again, I have learned that if I am VERY patient, the treat eventually will work. But, I have to spend 5-10 minutes trying to lure him into the crate. It's ridiculous and I don't always have the time to play this little game.

There are many instances when I am afraid to reach for him or take something from him, without putting on my oven mitts first.

I have just recently started swatting him when he is biting, or table surfing. I hate doing that, but he can't hear me and I don't know what else to do.

Comments for Aggressive Rat Terrier

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Jun 14, 2012
Stop Rat Terrier Aggression
by: Adam G. Katz

Hi, Lisa:

You'll need to start by asking yourself two questions:

1. Does the dog understand that the dog aggression is unwanted behavior?


2. If he understands that he shouldn't be aggressive, then he's choosing to ignore me. In which case, you have a respect issue.

Get a prong collar and a six foot leather leash and learn how to correct your dog in a safe and humane manner. I can guarantee that you'll see an almost immediate, dramatic improvement. Check out to learn more. (You can click on the banner, at right).

And finally: Employ the "Nothing In Life Is Free" approach, so that your dog starts to view you as the "pack leader." If your dog doesn't see you as the leader, then your corrections will be meaningless. So, if you're doing subtle things (inadvertently) to undermine your leadership role around the house-- it will be counter-productive.

All the best,

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to My Aggressive Dog.

250 x 250