Dog aggression is a serious concern dog owners should never ignore and must right away deal with. Aggression encompasses behaviors that usually starts with body language warnings and may lead to a dangerous attack.
A dog that exhibits aggression usually become still and rigid. They may growl and bark excessively, in a threatening way, and may lunge forward or charge. In extreme cases, dogs who show aggression may mouth or bite. Not all aggressive dogs show all these signs, but more often than not, they exhibit two or more of these behaviors. However, because dog aggression can pose danger and harm to other dogs, people, and the environment, it is very important to take appropriate steps to prevent and address the problem.
The first step to addressing dog aggression is knowing and understanding the reason why dogs are being aggressive. Dog aggression can be because of a lot of things. There are several factors that may contribute, and with each cause are appropriate steps and techniques to deal with dog aggression.
- Biological. There are breeds that are naturally more aggressive than others, because of genes and hereditary factors. This is one thing that is difficult to change or control, but certain steps to prevent and lessen aggression among dogs of these kinds of breeds can be taken.
- Socialize your dog.
- Train your dog to be gentle.
- Dispositional. When dogs are feeling fearful or anxious, stressed, or overly excited, hyper or eager, they tend to be aggressive. When you suspect your dog to be in any of these dispositions, immediately take necessary steps to prevent possible harm and destruction of other dogs, people, and the environment.
- Reassure and comfort your dog and put him in an environment where he feels safe and comfortable.
- Provide toys that he can distract himself with, and also things to chew on.
- Desensitize your dog. Slowly expose your dog to the things he fears of, in the goal of having him react less to or be less affected by it.
- Situational. There are many possible situations and contexts that trigger a dog to be aggressive. They may get aggressive when their space or territory is violated when they are being provoked, when something or someone unfamiliar appears, or when there feel like there is an imminent threat.
- The key to preventing dog aggression, in this case, is to socialize your dog so he will get exposed to a variety of people, places, and situations. In a way, he gets used to a lot of things, and will not always be in a “shock” as much.
- Another technique is to use desensitization.
- Environmental and history. The living conditions and how the dog has been treated is a big factor in dog aggression.
- Do not spoil your dog. Do not let him think that he is the master of your household and that he can just get everything that he wants.
- Do not isolate your dog from other dogs and people.
- Do not mistreat or overly punish your dog.
Dog aggression is not a hopeless case. With enough patience and effort, you can indeed prevent and address dog aggression.