If your pet is regularly growling, snapping, and biting to you or any other pet within your house, you've got a serious behavior problem on your hands.
Aggression towards people or other pets has become the major reason dog owners take their dog to a professional trainer or veterinarian behaviorist. Aggression is not just seen in large dogs or those deemed dangerous; any dog could be aggressive under the right circumstances.
Aggression cannot be cured overnight, and there's no magic one-size-fits-all treatment. You will find steps you can take to help stop these aggressive behaviors and keep your pet calm.
This article will show you what can attend the root of dog on dog aggression in the home and just what you can do about this.
What Causes Aggressive Behaviors in Dogs?
Aggressive behavior is any behavior that may turn into an attack.
Growling, snarling, showing teeth, lunging, nipping, or biting is recognized as aggression.
The first step to stopping these behaviors would be to figure out what causes them. Some dogs will growl should you approach their food, plus some will growl at children or strangers. Some dogs are even aggressive to particular objects such as a mop, mower, or ceiling fan.
You cannot start to fix your dog's aggressive behaviors before you know what is triggering them.
These are some of the most common kinds of behaviors that could cause your pet could be aggressive:
- Territorial aggression: A dog who is territorial aggressive will defend their space or your home from what think is an intruder.
- Protective aggression: Some dogs are protective aggressive and will protect members of their “pack” or family from another animal or a person. Mother dogs will also be extremely protective of the puppies. They might become very hostile toward anybody who goes near them.
- Possessive aggression: Some dogs are extremely possessive of the things. These dogs will protect their food, chew toys, bones, or other object they value. This can be also called resource guarding.
- Food aggression: Some dogs are extremely aggressive over their food. They may attack you by trying to take food from their bowl or maybe another animal or child compares to them while they are eating.
- Fear aggression: Some dogs are aggressive when they're afraid. If your dog is afraid and attempts to hide throughout a scary situation if they get cornered during this time, they may attack.
- Defensive aggression: This is extremely similar to fear of aggression. Your dog may attack since they're frightened of something rather than attempting to hide first. These dogs will often give a hardly any other subtle hints they desire to be left alone before they bite, for example turning their head from you.
- Social aggression: Your dog may react aggressively to other dogs in different social situations. If your dog is not socialized properly along with other dogs and people, they may also show indications of aggression.
- Frustration-elicited aggression: Some dogs behave aggressively when they're continued a leash or perhaps in a fenced yard. These dogs usually have been stimulated and cannot act with that stimulation and may act up. A dog can become very excited before a stroll and nip their owner.
- Redirected aggression: Some dogs will get aggressive towards an individual who tries to split up your dog fight. They may also bite once they cannot get to the target of the aggression, such as a neighbor's dog on the other hand of the fence. This kind of aggression is most commonly observed in smaller dogs. When the owner is holding a little dog, they may get bit because they cannot reach the person or dog they want to bite.
- Pain-elicited aggression: Your dog may show aggression when they are injured or in pain. Often, you can obviously see that your dog is within pain and they are limping. Other times this pain may be simple things like an upset stomach as well as other internal problem.
- Sex-related aggression: If you have two male dogs or two female dogs, they might become aggressive when competing for the attention of a mate. Normally, this is only observed in intact animals and can be prevented by spaying and neutering your dogs.
- Predatory aggression: These dogs usually behave aggressively without any warning when they show predatory behavior. This can be seen when they're chasing wildlife. This behavior may become very serious when they're playing with a young child. It might begin as an innocent game, but a dog with predatory aggression could quickly turn on your child and possibly bite them.
If you see any of these behaviors inside your dog, you need to start training them that these behaviors aren't acceptable.
Signs That the Dog Can become Aggressive
Any dog can have aggressive behaviors. Sometimes you are able to notice these behaviors starting and cut them off prior to them getting out of hand. It is very important to look at for a pattern of danger signal, such as:
- A dog who's overzealous and pushy when greeting friends or strangers
- A dog that has exaggerated, or fearful reactions to new people or stimuli
- A pronounced and unyielding demand for affection
- A prolonged stare is used in an attempt to control unpredictable or wild members of the family or situations
- Raised hackles and fur standing on their back and tail
- An arched body
- Walking stiff
- Their tail is lifted over their back or under their legs
- Quick tail wagging, indicating panic when the tail is tucked low, or imminent attack if raised high
- A Slow sweeping tail wag implies that a dog is analyzing the situation
- Ears pricked forward ears or lowered back
- Bared teeth
- Growling or snapping
- Avoiding eye contact
- Cowering and tucking their tail
- Eyes open very wide, so that you can begin to see the whites of their eyes
Not most dogs who show this kind of behavior are aggressive. Many of these are simply warning signs that may also indicate that the dog is anxious or scared.
Your dog may start to show these signs as early as a few months old.
When they're little, they're trying to puzzle out what's acceptable and what is not. You shouldn't allow your puppy to bit you if it is just playing, as this can lead to much more aggressive behaviors later.
How to prevent Dog on Dog Aggression within the Home
Look at why you have your dog to be aggressive and what's going on when these aggressive behaviors happen. This helps determine your next steps.
You have to first cope with the main cause of the aggression. The aggressive behavior that you are seeing is really a cause of the underlying problem.
There are many ways in which you can correct your dog's aggression and enable them to stay relaxed. This can take some time and a lot of patience. You have to be in line with their training and sometimes even seek the help of the professional dog trainer or veterinarian.
These are a few things to think about when you are training your dog to not be aggressive.
Ask Your Veterinarian for Help
If your pet isn't usually aggressive and then suddenly begins to show signs of a hostile behavior, they may have a fundamental medical problem. Health problems that can cause aggression inside your dog are hypothyroid or neurological problems like encephalitis, seizures, or brain tumor.
If your pet has hurt themselves, they might also become aggressive, because this is their method of suggesting that they are hurting.
Ask your vet to help you determine when the aggression that you see in your dog is due to a medical problem. In these instances, medication can help your dog feel far better and improve their aggressive behaviors.
Get in Touch with a Professional
If the vet has eliminated this being a condition, then it may be time for you to call a professional dog trainer or animal behaviorist.
Since aggression can be a very serious issue, you should not try to fix their problem on your own. A professional trainer will help you figure out what causes your dog to become aggressive and create a intend to assist you to correct these behaviors.
Some veterinary behaviorist or trainer can come to your house and help you train your dog. This is especially helpful in case your dog only shows aggression in their own home.
Create a Training Plan
A behaviorist or trainer will help you figure out the easiest method to manage your canine's aggressive behavior. Most of the time, you will use positive reinforcement training to show your pet these new behaviors. You will give them a break when they are not acting aggressively in a few instances.
If your pet is aggressive towards strangers, begin by standing a long way away from someone who your dog doesn't know. You need to be far enough away that the dog doesn't growl their way.
You will reward these good behaviors having a treat or praise. You'll then continue to obtain a little closer. Every time you reward your dog by providing them a treat and praising them.
Eventually, your pet will become familiar with that seeing a stranger and not growling means they get a treat. Your pet will learn not to be aggressive towards strangers by doing this. Positive reinforcement can be employed in almost all situations.
DO NOT Punish Your Dog for Bad Behavior
If you punish your dog for dog on dog aggression in your home or other bad behavior, it will usually have the alternative effect and can even make the aggression to become worse. If your reaction to your dog growling is to hit, yell, or use some other punishment, your pet may feel like they need to defend themselves and bite or attack you.
By punishing your dog, they may also feel that they must bite individuals that are yelling unexpectedly.
If your pet growls at children, this is their method of warning you and also them that they're uncomfortable for the reason that situation. Should you punish them for growling the next time, you might not obtain a warning sign before they simply bite the child.
Consider Giving Your Dog Medication
Sometimes only using positive reinforcement training isn't enough to stop dog on dog aggression in the home.
If your dog is aggressive because it is afraid, they may take some anxiety medication to help manage their problems. If your dog is afraid or stressed, they are not in a position to learn something totally new or perhaps prosper with training. Medication might help your pet remain calm, overcome their fears, and learn something totally new.
Most dogs will only need to take this medication just for a tiny bit while they are understanding how to not be aggressive, you'll be able to slowly wean them business medications.
Your veterinarian can discuss all of the medical options along with you. There are also some supplements that you can use to help with anxiety.
How to Handle Unavoidable Situations
You need to look at what your dog is aggressive towards and consider your lifestyle.
If you've children and your dog is always barking and growling at the kids, you have to realize that it might be impossible to have your pet around kids.
Usually, in these cases, you may want to rehome your dog to a person who not have any children. Your pet shouldn't need to constantly reside in anxiety about your children, as well as your kids don't need to live in fear that the dog is going to attack them.
If your dog is starting to show dog on dog aggression in your home that they have never shown before, first, call at your veterinarian to make sure that there is nothing medically wrong with your dog. In case your dog is good, you can start with positive reinforcement training.
If dog training on your own is not helping using the problem, it is advisable to seek out a professional dog trainer or a veterinary behaviorist. Also, trying anxiety medication to help keep your dog calm during training may be needed for a while of time.
Many times, with many different training and a bit of patience, you are able to train your pet to not be aggressive. The sooner you begin this learning your pet, the quicker and the outcome.
Depending on the circumstance causing your pet to become aggressive, it is sometimes best to rehome your pet to a person who can manage the dog's aggressive issues.