On the whole dogs are not born aggressive. After all they are pack animals and usually quite sociable. Aggressive behavior in domesticated dogs is generally caused by a poor environment, lack of proper training or abuse in the pups formative years. However, as in humans there are also the exceptions to the rule and some dogs are just aggressive bad dogs.
Whatever the cause of aggressive bad dog behavior, it will be in your interest to manage this behavior in your dog. Aggressive dog behavior can be costly both financially and physically, sometimes with terrible consequences. This is why it is imperative to get a handle on this type of bad behavior in your dog.
Aggressive Dog Behavior- First 14 weeks
Within the first 6 weeks your pup should be well on his way to being socialised. If this is not accomplished early on, it could lead to aggressive dog behavior later on. This could result in your young pup biting people and behaving in a very anti-social way.
A good rule of thumb is to allow your pup to spend at least the first 8 weeks of his life with his litter. This will embed some instinctive social skills in your pup and lay a solid foundation for a more stable and balanced pooch later on. Always try and approach your young pup in a controlled and quiet manner. Avoid being loud, angry and abusive with the new young pup as this could instil fearful aggression in your pup. Just as with a new human baby, one needs to be gentle and calm around them. This will bring about a more confident and stable dog later.
By the time your young pup is 14 weeks old he should be well aware of his place in his new pack. Effectively, the young pup should be well socialised with humans as well as with other dogs. If these traits are not clearly visible, it may well mean that professional help may need to be sought to dispel any aggressive dog behavior. Bottom line is that you should use the initial few weeks with your pup to build a solid foundation for a stable and properly socialised dog going forward.
Aggressive Dog Behavior- Possible causes
There are unfortunately some other reasons for the onset or display of aggressive dog behavior.
If the dog is continually exposed to bad treatment and abuse it stands to reason that aggressive dog behavior will be the result. An abused dog will try and protect itself. It will lash out at its tormentor or any perceived threat. If you are not able to respect the dog’s right to proper decent treatment then perhaps it may well be better to forgo dog ownership. Dog’s are willing and trusting companions to man and this trust should not be abused.
Genetics also plays a role in the display of aggressive dog behavior. Some breeds are just more pre-disposed to being aggressive. It may be worthwhile to do some homework prior to selecting a pup to bring home to your family.
Dogs will instinctively try and assume a dominant role in their pack. This can be seen in the posturing and nipping that a young adolescent dog may display from time to time.
Just as with teenagers, the young dog is testing your resolve to assume the dominant role. This is when you need to ensure that your young pup understands that you are the Alpha Pack leader. If you do not get this aggressive dog behavior under control, it could lead to an uncontrollable and vicious mature dog down the line.
Aggressive Dog Behavior- Addressing the issues
There are very many professionals out there who could cost you an arm and leg to get your dogs aggressive behavior under control. Here are some basic ideas about how to accomplish a properly socialised and obedient dog.
Firstly, do some research and arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible as to ascertain the reasons for the aggression. Sometimes the aggression could be brought on by things that one may never be able to change such as genetics. So choose your breed well.
Generally, a neutered or spayed dog will tend to become more docile and aggression will become less of an issue with dogs that have undergone this treatment. This is not for everyone, and should not been seen as a cure for aggressive dog behavior.
Never reward your dog’s bad behavior.
By this I mean, you should never seem amused or show by means of your body language that you are pleased with him when he is behaving badly. Such as when he jumps up on you and barks at you when arriving home. This will just imprint in the dogs mind that his aggressive bad behavior pleases you.
Always be sure to get all people who interact with your dogs on a daily basis, to maintain continuity as far as the dogs training goes. There is no point in you maintaining a strict training regime with your dog only to have it undone by the kids are friends.
Certainly there are very many in depth studies and training programs which will assist in training your dog. If the issue is really dangerous or threatening, then it is always advisable to seek professional help. Yes, this may cost some money, but that is nothing compared to what a rampant ferocious and aggressive dog could do to other people or even your family.
Nobody wants an out of control pet. So spend some time in getting to know your dog and dog mentality in general. Remember a dog is a dog, no matter how human he may behave. Dogs will always revert to their instincts. Dogs are far more perceptive of your body language than your voice.
If given the chance your dog will want nothing more than to be your best friend. Please be his by getting aggressive dog behavior under control.