Sissy, The Aggressive Springer Spaniel
by Andrew Amason
Sissy is a 6 year old healthy springer spaniel.
She up until the last 6 months lived at my girlfriends mother's house with 5 other almost entirely outdoor dogs. We choose her out of the other ones because of her problems with the other dogs.
We first noticed a problem arising when my girlfriends roommates said that she would wine and howl for as much as an hour or more after we would leave. I believed that this was because of my girlfriends lack of rules and coddling of her. However the behaviors quickly escalated until about a month ago she growled at her roommate only a quick low rumble and stopped. About a week later a friend of ours young son of about 6 walked into my girlfriends bedroom and Sissy growled and even barked at him despite being very familiar with him. And now actually last night while sitting on the bed talking with my girlfriend she actually very quickly went from calm to a growl, to lunging and if i hadn't quickly moved I would have been bitten.
We got a crate and have planned to move her out of the bedroom and keep her in the crate overnight from now on.
I've done a bit of research and so I'll mention some other behaviors I've noticed she does seem to display some dominate behaviors she has been really bad about pressing us when we don't give her attention. and she only listens to our commands when we force her. She has also been really bad about crawling on top of us while watching movies on the couches.
What are some ways we can stop this behavior and what will it take to get her under control. She is a dear member of our family but this behavior must be stopped.