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This is a well documented problem with spaniels known as "cocker rage". my sister does agility work with cockers and her inlaws had a cocker from a baby that for no apparent reason became aggressive, it went from placid pet to being so aggressive they were unable to let it out of its crate in the mornings, these are people who just like any other loved their pet and it was in no way mistreated, they had to have it put to sleep on the advice of their vet

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=cocker+rage&oq=cocker+ra&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l3.7532j0j4&client=ms-android-h3g-gb&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8

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This is a well documented problem with spaniels known as "cocker rage". my sister does agility work with cockers and her inlaws had a cocker from a baby that for no apparent reason became aggressive, it went from placid pet to being so aggressive they were unable to let it out of its crate in the mornings, these are people who just like any other loved their pet and it was in no way mistreated, they had to have it put to sleep on the advice of their vet

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=cocker+rage&oq=cocker+ra&aqs=chrome.1.69i57j0l3.7532j0j4&client=ms-android-h3g-gb&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8

Now that's what you call responsible owners, least they did not pass it on to some silly do Good charity that think a sprinkle of Magic dust and re home will make everything good, thank good there's still people out there with common sense.

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Sorry to hear what happened and hope you both recover well, we got a sprocker from a rescue centre in Staffs and were told it was fine with kids and a keen worker, apparently from an ex gamekeeper, to cut a long story short it bit my daughters hand for no reason and was aggressive towards me while i put it in the kennel. After sorting my daughter out I took the dog to the vets and explained the situation and he put it to sleep. Now got a springer I bought from a breeder no issues soft as anything and a great worker, will never re home a dog again.

 

S

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What is happening with the spaniel Taxi driver? .

At the moment, as far as I know the dog is in the custody of the Police, being held at their approved contractors kennels pending a Police investigation and we are awaiting contact from the investigating officer.

 

Spaniel Aid have blocked me from their Facebook chat groups and from leaving comment on their public page (not that I'd really want to)

My wife and I are due back to the 'plastic surgery' dept at local hospital @ 9am Wednesday to have our wounds checked for infection and redressed.

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Me thinks the charity will now be getting rather concerned about any repercussions'.....not saying its anyone's fault per seh but if there paperwork RAMS etc isn't up to scratch....just saying.

 

Hope all goes well for you both tomorrow 👍

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At the moment, as far as I know the dog is in the custody of the Police, being held at their approved contractors kennels pending a Police investigation and we are awaiting contact from the investigating officer.

 

Spaniel Aid have blocked me from their Facebook chat groups and from leaving comment on their public page (not that I'd really want to)

My wife and I are due back to the 'plastic surgery' dept at local hospital @ 9am Wednesday to have our wounds checked for infection and redressed.

I

It's all such a shame. You and your wife have been injured and the dog faces an uncertain future. Whereas it should be a nice home with the dog out in the fields ect. I have heard about spaniel rage charge. Where the dog will stare at a target and suddenly charge. I suppose it is from the basis of spaniels being used as springers to spring the game up in the air to be shot at. Perhaps this tendency is heightened in some dogs and suddenly it becomes a dangerous incident. I don’t know what the legal ramifications are to the charity especially if it was a known cause of the dog being rejected from a previous home for being unpredictable and dangerous. I have seen TV programmes about dogs that have been trained to act as guard / attack dogs for the military having to be put down at the end of their service because they can't be issued to the general public because of the potential for an attack. Possibly you have been blacked by the charity because they fear some sort of legal claim for damages. Although they are doing good work in re homing, they have to bare responsibility for what they hand on to the unsuspecting general public.

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Taxi Driver, if i were you i would be looking into this further. I would at least want the police to interview the previous owners and to find out if the reason they gave the dog up was because of it being aggresive. If it was then the charity should of at least informed you. (although i do know of a similar case, where i knew the dog fairly well and for no apparent reason it intentionally bit a child (nothing serious) and was put down. i would not have believed it, had it not been the owner who witnessed the bite and told me the story!!)

 

Hope you and the wife have a speedy recovery.

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Some news today,

On the 12/4 I took the dog (Pudsey) to my local vet to begin his innoculations, have a check up, make appointment to have him neutered.

As a result, they took details of the dogs original vetinerary in Leeds and contacted them for his records.

Today I've been told that the records contain reference to a concern raised in January when the owner reported that the dog had been growling and snapping aggressively at his wife AND children.

It was suggested that he sought the advice of a dog behaviourist.

 

In light of this, and in light of Spaniel Aids response thus far I have given details to a

Personal injury specialist solicitor and asked them to look at wether there is case to answer.

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First of all TD, I am so sorry to hear of your experience, but it really does not come as any surprise. Back in the early 80's I was a Police Dog handler, this was at a time when some Forces would take any Alsation cast off's they could get. The dog that I was allotted was a handful from the start. I had previous experience of training Gundog breeds, but never Alsations. After 2 weeks training the dog was expected to come home with the handler. A kennel with a collar and chain attached was provided, pending the delivery and erection of a kennel and run. I did not like the idea of a collar and chain, so the dog came indoors, with a bed in the porch. After 4 weeks training, I raised some concerns about some of the dogs aggressive behaviour, but this was just waived away as being MY inexperience. Remember that after a 10 weeks course, the dog was expected to be doing School visits. I felt that the dog liked Kids, but would struggle to eat a whole one ! So, one evening we had visitors and of course they wanted to see the dog. After we had eaten, I allowed the dog into the lounge and all was going very well. He really was on his best behaviour. After about an hour the dog was lying in the doorway to the lounge and we were sitting chatting, then WHAM. The dog launched himself at our Male visitor, snapping and snarling at his face. He managed to get his arm up and the dog latched onto that. I almost had to choke the dog to get him to release his grip. I was then able to drag the dog out through the now opened back door. Although snarling at me, he at no time bit me. Obviously the visitor attended A & E for stitches to his arm injury and I had to report the incident. The next day, at the Training Centre, one of the Instructors was telling me it was my fault and that the dog was doing OK. The dog was in the top cage of a bank of 5 in the rear of a Transit van. The Trainer went to the van opened the cage and was making a fuss of the dog, he turned to talk to me and that was enough. The dog clamped onto the left side of his face. An hour later the Instructor was in A & E and I was at the Vet where the dog was receiving the 'Big I' in his front leg ! So, ANY dog breed is a potential danger and when asked if my dog bites, my answer is always " I do not know" !

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I found this article online.>>>> Idiopathic aggression is (thankfully) quite rare, but also quite dangerous.

 

by Pat Miller

 

The term “rage syndrome” conjures up mental images of Cujo, Stephen King’s fictional rabid dog, terroriz-ing the countryside. If you’re owner of a dog who suffers from it, it’s almost that bad – never knowing when your beloved pal is going to turn, without warning, into a biting, raging canine tornado.

 

The condition commonly known as rage syndrome is actually more appropriately called “idiopathic aggression.” The definition of idiopathic is: “Of, relating to, or designating a disease having no known cause.” It applies perfectly to this behavior, which has confounded behaviorists for decades. While most other types of aggression can be modified and reduced through desensitization and counter-conditioning, idiopathic aggression often can’t. It is an extremely difficult and heartbreaking condition to deal with.

 

Canine Aggression

A behaviorist’s investigation will reveal discernible triggers and warning signs if a dog has a more common form of aggression; not so with idiopathic aggression.

 

The earmarks of idiopathic aggression include:

 

• No identifiable trigger stimulus/stimuli

 

• Intense, explosive aggression

 

• Onset most commonly reported in dogs 1-3 years old

 

• Some owners report that their dogs get a glazed, or “possessed” look in their eyes just prior to an idiopathic outburst, or act confused.

 

• Certain breeds seem more prone to suffer from this condition, including Cocker and Springer Spaniels (hence the once-common terms – Spaniel rage, Cocker rage, and Springer rage), Bernese Mountain Dogs, St. Bernards, Doberman Pinschers, German Shepherds, and Lhasa Apsos. This would suggest a likely genetic component to the problem.

 

Glimmer of hope

The good news is that true idiopathic aggression is also a particularly uncommon condition. Discussed and studied widely in the 1970s and ’80s, it captured the imagination of the dog world, and soon every dog with episodes of sudden, explosive aggression was tagged with the unfortunate “rage syndrome” label, especially if it was a spaniel of any type. We have since come to our senses, and now investigate much more carefully before concluding that there is truly “no known cause” for a dog’s aggression.

 

A thorough exploration of the dog’s behavior history and owner’s observations often can ferret out explainable causes for the aggression. The appropriate diagnosis often turns out to be status-related aggression (once widely known as “dominance aggression”) and/or resource guarding – both of which can also generate very violent, explosive reactions. (See “Thanks for Sharing,” WDJ September 2001.)

 

An owner can easily miss her dog’s warning signs prior to a status-related attack, especially if the warning signs have been suppressed by prior physical or verbal punishment. While some dogs’ lists of guardable resources may be limited and precise, with others it can be difficult to identify and recognize a resource that a dog has determined to be valuable and worth guarding. The glazed look reported by some owners may also be their interpretation of the “hard stare” or “freeze” that many dogs give as a warning signal just prior to an attack.

 

Although the true cause of idiopathic aggression is still not understood, and behaviorists each tend to defend their favorite theories, there is universal agreement that it is a very rare condition, and one that is extremely difficult to treat.

 

Theories

A variety of studies and testing over the past 30 years have failed to produce a clear cause or a definitive diagnosis for idiopathic aggression. Behaviorists can’t even agree on what to call it! (See sidebar)

 

Given the failure to find a specific cause, it is quite possible that there are several different causes for unexplainable aggressive behaviors that are all grouped under the term “idiopathic aggression.” Some dogs in the midst of an episode may foam at the mouth and twitch, which could be an indication of epileptic seizures. The most common appearance of the behavior between 1-3 years of age also coincides with the appearance of most status-related aggression, as well as the development of idiopathic epilepsy, making it even impossible to use age of onset as a differential diagnosis.

 

Some researchers have found abnormal electroencephalogram readings in some dogs suspected of having idiopathic aggression, but not all such dogs they studied. Other researchers have been unable to reproduce even those inconclusive results.

 

Another theory is that the behavior is caused by damage to the area of the brain responsible for aggressive behavior. Yet another is that it is actually a manifestation of status-related aggression triggered by very subtle stimuli. Clearly, we just don’t know.

 

The fact that idiopathic aggression by definition cannot be induced also makes it difficult to study and even try to find answers to the question of cause. Unlike a behavior like resource guarding – which is easy to induce and therefore easy to study in a clinical setting – the very nature of idiopathic aggression dictates that it cannot be reproduced or studied at will.

 

Treatment

Without knowing the cause of idiopathic aggression, treatment is difficult and frequently unsuccessful. The condition is also virtually impossible to manage safely because of the sheer unpredictability of the outbursts. The prognosis, unfortunately, is very poor, and many dogs with true idiopathic aggression must be euthanized, for the safety of surrounding humans.

 

Don’t despair, however, if someone has told you your dog has “rage syndrome.” First of all, he probably doesn’t. Remember, the condition is extremely rare, and the label still gets applies all too often by uneducated dog folk to canines whose aggressive behaviors are perfectly explainable by a more knowledgeable observer.

 

Your first step is to find a skilled and positive trainer/behavior consultant who can give you a more educated analysis of your dog’s aggression. A good behavior modification program, applied by a committed owner in consultation with a capable behavior professional can succeed in decreasing and/or resolving many aggression cases, and help you devise appropriate management plans where necessary, to keep family members, friends, and visitors safe.

 

If your behavior professional also believes that you have a rare case of idiopathic aggression on your hands, then a trip to a veterinary behaviorist is in order. Some dogs will respond to drug therapies for this condition; many will not. Some minor success has been reported with the administration of phenobarbital, but it is unclear as to whether the results are from the sedative effect of the drug, or if there is an actual therapeutic effect.

 

In many cases of true idiopathic aggression, euthanasia is the only solution. Because the aggressive explosions are truly violent and totally unpredictable, it is neither safe nor fair to expose yourself or other friends and family to the potentially disfiguring, even deadly, results of such an attack. If this is the sad conclusion in the case of your dog, euthanasia is the only humane option. Comfort yourself with the knowledge you have done everything possible for him, hold him close as you say goodbye, and send him gently to a safer place. Then take good care of yourself.

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Finally heard from Essex Police today.

Both the Sergeant who called and the Pc he tasked to handle the investigation were horrified at the pictures of the extent of our injuries and at the same time disgusted with the people we fostered for.

Both of them stated they will be pressing the dog warden and the dogs owners to have the dog euthanised given the original owners having had an issue in January with the dogs aggression and its subsequent attack on ourselves.

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I really do feel for you, what kind of charity passes on a dog like that given it's previous history with the original owners shocking, if I were you I'd make substantial claim against them as it's them that need schooling not the dogs.

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Finally heard from Essex Police today.

Both the Sergeant who called and the Pc he tasked to handle the investigation were horrified at the pictures of the extent of our injuries and at the same time disgusted with the people we fostered for.

Both of them stated they will be pressing the dog warden and the dogs owners to have the dog euthanised given the original owners having had an issue in January with the dogs aggression and its subsequent attack on ourselves.

But did the original owners inform the charity truthfully about the dogs history, they could just as easily said the dog was wonderful, great with kids and other pets.

I really do feel for you, what kind of charity passes on a dog like that given it's previous history with the original owners shocking, if I were you I'd make substantial claim against them as it's them that need schooling not the dogs.

Do you know for a fact the charity was negligent and fully aware of its history.

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But did the original owners inform the charity truthfully about the dogs history, they could just as easily said the dog was wonderful, great with kids and other pets.

 

Do you know for a fact the charity was negligent and fully aware of its history.

Try reading the thread of TaxiDriver you might just enlighten your good self.

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Try reading the thread of TaxiDriver you might just enlighten your good self.

Perhaps you can enlighten me, I've read it but I can't find the bit where the original owners told the charity about the dogs unstable history can you point me to it.

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