my Springer Spaniel has started to growl at everyone

by Donna

I got chester at 8 weeks old from a lovely lady. we have never had any issues with him, he got on really well with my 17 year old collie mix but unfortunately we had to have him put to sleep due to age related problems.

Chester just moped around for weeks so we decided to get a new springer puppy to keep him company. both dogs get on great. Chester is now 3 and Ozzy just over a year old. Our problems started about 6 months ago every time anyone walks in the room he growls loudly, not a regular growl its like there is a ogre in the room with you.

It started with my 13 y/o daughter but now he does it to everyone, he growls whilst wagging his tail expecting to be fussed but he scares everyone as they think he may bite them.

He has never shown me any aggression what so ever. he also will not obey my kids or husband. its not all the time its just now and then, for example if I go to bed before them he will not leave the living room and goto his bed.

He will just sit and growl. Can I also stress he never shows our other dog any aggression. Any ideas what could have prompted this behaviour??


Is his Castrated? This may help ease the aggression. You may also want to lok at how your enforce the pack order in the home. So for example you need to ensure that Chester sees you as the
Springer Spaniel Pack Leader and that he feels part of the
Springer Spaniel Pack.

If that doesn't help then I would seek proffessional advice.

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Sep 05, 2011
by: donna

Chester and Ozzy both have a trainer for gun dog training. When they are outside with any of us they are the most obedient dogs in the world, its just at home that he does it. I have actually considered having him castrated but was hoping to find a different solution. As for pack leader like i said they both know im the boss (leader) and do anything i tell them instantly.

Sep 05, 2011
by: Michele

Is there anyone or anything new or different in your home? Sometimes new people or new routines can cause dogs to become upset and protective.

As the others said I would definitely look into some training. Your Springer should behave and respond to every member of your household, not just you. He's the low guy on the totem pole and all people are ahead of him. When he realizes that the growling will probably stop. And as Anna said, sometimes neutering helps.

Look for an obedience class in your area. Your Vet can likely recommmend one to you. If not, see if you have any type of dog club in your area and give them a call. Often dog clubs have obedience training and if they don't they know who does! Stay away from classes given at the pet shop....that's strictly my personal opinion based on some things I saw at the obedience class I took my Springer to.

Do this soon! Dogs that are allowed to growl without discipline usually become more aggressive.

Good luck!

Sep 05, 2011
Get help!
by: Anonymous

I agree - this is a situation where a good trainer can help you restore confidence and order within the pack. the kids and husband have to be part of the leadership or you will not be able to keep your dog and family safe. Best wishes.

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