Biting Owner After Many Years of Non-Biting

by Josh Hubbard

My name is Josh Hubbard. I have a purebred JRT who is roughly 8 years of age named Dooly. He has been a wonderful dog, one of the best I've had. Recently he has become aggressive, he has always been a little over protective of his bones and I have learned to leave him alone and not take his bones from him. Basically what he does is just a growl and a slight showing of his teeth when he has a bone and you become to close. Dooly also does not like to be moved when he is laying down, he is a bit overweight and I think It may hurt him to be picked up so I rarely do. However over the past few months he has been acting strangely. Sometimes when he is on my couch and I go to pet him he will begin to snarl at me and if I do not back away he will lunge at me and try to bite, though he has not actually bitten me yet. This also happens if he is laying on my bed. This does not happen all the time however. When he is on the floor he never does it(unless he has a bone) which I know not to do. At first when on the bed he would only do it when I pet him in a certain area, so I thought he may have a sore or something but when he is standing or laying down on the floor I can pet this area with no problems. Now when I pet him anywhere on his body when he is on the couch he gets aggressive. He gets this look in his eyes which is hard to explain but this look only happens when he attacks. It is a scary look, almost a blank stare and his ears go back. I allow Dooly to sit on my lap and he never nips at me, it seems to only happen when he is on the couch or my bed. Recently my mother's boyfriend moved in and Dooly gets along fine with him however her boyfriend thinks that Dooly likes it when he plays with him when Dooly has a bone. Her boyfriend tries to take his bone from him or make it seem as if he is going to. Dooly gets very aggravated and growls excessively but does not run away, he just stays there. I am not sure if he likes this or not. Is it play or teasing Dooly? I am wondering if this may have an effect on Dooly and this is why he is acting this way? If anyone knows of any reasons why Dooly is acting this way towards his owner(me), just out of the blue it seems, please give me some advise on what I can do, I am frightened the the dog may try to do this too someone else, a friend or girlfriend of mine and this is unacceptable. Please help me if you can thank you, Josh from Canada

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