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Alfie – 5 year old male Shih Tzu

Alfie is a 5 year old male Shih Tzu. He came to us via a trusted rescue friend of ours when his adoption placement broke down and his adopters were no longer able to handle him. It was agreed that Alfie needed a specific home finding so he was signed over into our care. Alfie is incredibly confrontational but is essentially a complete nervous wreck who acts out when routine or structure changes. He has always been snappy and difficult initially when he is unsure but picks his people who he loves and those people can do anything with him. His previous placement had him for 4 years; Alfie loved them and they could do anything with him but unfortunately their circumstances at home have changed which has escalated his anxiety and has caused him to bite suddenly when he was asleep on the sofa and the lady covered him over with a blanket. The family didn’t feel they were able to cope anymore.

Alfies behaviour is a learned behaviour from even previous to his last placement where he has learned that if he is not comfortable with a situation aggression will make it go away. Unfortunately this has manifested in him being very volatile when told he cannot do something and having extremely aggressive outbursts. The further he pushes things the more he gets away with stuff which validates this behavior more for him. Alfie can put on quite a show, growling, showing his teeth and even biting. He bit his last owner and did break the skin, can be quite frightening when he wants to go. He doesn’t jump straight to biting though and gives a fair bit of warning however it is definitely not out of the question for him.

Alfie’s behavior is manageable and has improved drastically since initially coming into rescue 4 years ago. He is much less confrontational and can be redirected out of this behavior a lot easier. The key with him is to be incredibly firm. He needs a very dog savvy home who can read body language. He needs strict firm boundaries. He must not be allowed on the beds or sofas or something level to you and if ever you need to remove something from him it must be swapped out with something higher value, trying to take it off of him may cause him to bite. He must not be pandered to and in the event that he starts his growling, teeth showing etc a slip lead must be quickly placed on him and he must be removed from the situation and placed outside or in a separate room to calm down. That’s all it takes. However, as previously mentioned, the main cause for the aggression is things changing in his home environment. With a stable routine he actually very easy.

Alfie is good with dogs but would be better with female to keep him in his place. Alfie is actually perfect 90% of the time. He’s very sweet, animated and an affectionate little chap. He enjoys attention and loves a belly rub. He knows basic commands, is housebroken, crate trained, non destructive in the home and happy to be left for reasonable durations of time. He is really lovely when he is managed correctly and knows he can’t push boundaries. Alfie finds grooming incredibly stressful so will need muzzling at the groomer and a firm confident handler. His previous owner used to do it herself but to limit his stress would completely shave him down. This is what he currently looks like.

Alfie needs a home that is experienced with reactive outbursts and will not be bullied by him. Adopters need to stand their ground and deal with the situation quickly and calmly in order to not exacerbate his outburst further and deter him from thinking that this behavior gets a reaction. Adopters will also need to continue with the training the rescue has put in place here so that Alfie is set up to succeed in his new home. Due to his temper tantrums and the fact he has a bite history we cannot accept applications from homes with visiting or resident children under 13. He is a sweet boy who loves people and having a belly rub, he really has found the whole process of coming into rescue incredibly stressful and we are certain in the correct home he will really flourish. Alfie will benefit from a home that is active; he loves to walk and when he’s regularly exercised his outbursts improve dramatically. A tired dog is a happy dog we always say.

Alfie is neutered, vaccinated and microchipped. We require an ??????????? and ????????? ?????? we can arrange for applicants to meet Oscar on an ??????????? ???? basis. Minimum adoption donation applied.

from Dogs for Adoption –

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