How to Manage your Dog’s Aggressive Behaviour

aggressive behaviours maternal aggression territorial aggression Feb 04, 2022
Terrier showing teeth

Many pet owners experience aggressive behaviour from their dogs for which there are many reasons. Canine aggression can stem from incorrect training methods. Some owners may not fully understand how to train their dog, and this can frequently lead to their pet developing aggressive behaviour traits later down the line. Without access to the correct dog training services, a dog may react to circumstances using their instincts. Before tackling your dog’s aggression, it is vital to understand the specific reasons behind it. Below are five common types of dog aggression.

  1. Social aggression: A dog may react aggressively to another dog in a social setting. If a dog has not been properly socialised with other dogs, then they may display aggressive behaviour.
  2. Pain-stimulated aggression: If a dog is in pain or suffering from an injury, then they may communicate their feelings through aggression by barking, growling, or biting.
  3. Sexual Aggression:  If a dog is vying for the attention of a mate, then they can display aggressive behavioural traits. This type of behaviour is perfectly normal and often displayed in many wild animals, especially larger canines, like wolves during the mating season.
  4. Territorial Aggression:  In this example, a dog will defend its personal space and environment from anyone they view as an intruder and a potential threat to their home.
  5. Maternal Aggression:  Similar to how wild wolves and foxes display aggression to protect their pups and fellow pack members from an intruder, a dog will act in the same way. Mother dogs can be extremely protective of their puppies and may display aggression towards a person or dog who goes near their litter.

How to Stop Canine Aggression

Visit your Vet

If your dog is not usually aggressive but has suddenly become so, then they may have an underlying medical condition. Certain medical problems that can cause aggression include hypothyroidism, painful injuries, and neurological problems such as encephalitis and epilepsy. It is advised that you speak to your veterinarian to decide whether this is the case with your pet. You may find that treatment or medication has a positive impact upon your pet’s aggressive behavioural traits.

Avoid Punishment

Punishment should never be used to train a dog. In fact, punishing your dog can usually intensify their aggression. Dogs should always be treated with love and kindness and never with punished, as this can only incite fear, anxiety, and aggression.

Speak with a Professional

A professional qualified dog trainer or pet behaviourist will be better positioned to help your dog. Canine aggression is an important issue that should not be tackled on your own.  If you are unable to meet a pet behaviourist face-to face, then an online professional dog trainer can help you understand the reasons behind your dog’s aggression and then help put together an effective plan.

Closing thoughts…

Did you find this article helpful? Hopefully this article helps answer any questions you may have regarding canine aggression and will help give yourself the best chance to raise a calm and well-trained dog.

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