Pygmy Antagonizing Dog Q's lol

Discussion in 'Goats' started by rio002, Dec 20, 2006.

  1. rio002

    rio002 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    459
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2002
    Location:
    WA
    Hi all, 3 months ago we got 2 Nigerian Dwarfs (Buck and Crumpler) brothers-practically twins and a Pygmy (Peaches) she's 2 years old and is like a big Mama to the boys, keeps them safe etc. But yesterday they finally found the porch and came up to visit. Odd thing is, as soon as she saw my husbands' dog D.O.G. an old Schipperke she lost her ever lovin' mind lol! Now she's seen all the dogs and ran the property with them since we got the goats--the dogs aren't new to her. But she would get right his face (and no he doesn't chase them or anything) stomp her feet, constantly flicking her tongue in and out at him, snorting and barking at him and then she'd back up, turn sideways to him and puff out one side of her stomach and start the whole process over. Dh and I almost died laughing watching this through the sliding glass door. She never tried to hit him, or come up on her back legs like our old goat used to do, and every once in awhile she would turn around and push the boys down the stairs to keep them away from the dog. Twice D.O.G. charged her and she would back down for a sec. but she always kept him cornered and after 25min. of this I finally just let the dog inside because she wasn't getting bored with him lol. She started doing the same thing this morning in the driveway (I let the goats out to run everyday since they're in a dog kennel for the winter 'til the barn gets rebuilt) and I finally had to walk over between them and help D.O.G. get to the house. Do you think she's just trying to get his goat (sorry for the pun lol)? and if so why just that dog--we have 8 to chose from? Is this typical agression like territory marking for a Pygmy? Our old Nubian didn't do this whole song and dance, he'd just come up on his back legs and whack'em a good one if the dogs bugged him too much. Any ideas?
     
  2. Idahoe

    Idahoe Menagerie More~on

    Messages:
    2,045
    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2006
    Location:
    It won't stop raining
    Just an idea . . . my pet dogs aggravate my goats, but one doe discovered that headbutting the dog SCARED the dog, who ran yipping away. Now, she always takes the aggressive stance with the dogs, who continue to reinforce it by dodging her or just backing off.

    Since your dog submitted to the goat, it reinforced her behavior. In other words, it worked!

    It's just basic behavior theory. If a goose comes at you and you run, the goose will keep on chasing you whenever it sees you because it "worked" the last time. If you throw out your arms and chase the goose yourself, or ignore him (if possible), the desired result isn't achieved and he's less likely to up the ante on you, not that he won't try.

    DH hung the goat pen gate wrong at first and it opened out, not in, so my five foot body was often tossed aside while the goats had their way getting out. So I started using the heel of my hand to give a push on their heads where they would have had horns and say NO!. Since they hate their heads touched up there and I yell at them, they have learned to chill out, but the reinforcement of getting out and perhaps even getting into the chicken yard for some yummy scratch or feed is there, and goes away slowly. It takes them multiple trials to "unlearn" a reinforced behavior, and ONCE to learn it.

    I'm new to goats, and they have memories like elephants. I'd not stop the goat and dog scenario, the dog will change his ways and avoid the goat. I'm pretty much on the side of the herbivore or 'prey' in these conflicts, as in truth there is little match between a vicious or overly playful dog and a vegetarian without a matching set of teeth OR horns.
     

  3. rio002

    rio002 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    459
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2002
    Location:
    WA
    Thanks! That sounds practical, I let her have at him for 45min. today, still never got bored lol. The dog didn't get worked up over it but she sure did. I called an end to it when I saw her tongue had went from bright pink to a greying blue--apparently she's the one getting too worked up LOL Checked her later and her tongue was back to normal, it's kind of like having a goat with OCD (obsessive/compulsive disorder) the way she goes on and on with D.O.G. :)