It is always upsetting and shocking when your dog starts showing symptoms of aggression. This aggression may be directed at other dogs, or other individuals are even yourself, it is essential to take care of it as soon as possible. Dogs are incredibly powerful creatures that can create a huge amount of harm and injury. The very last thing you need as a dog owner is for your dog to attack out of control, causing serious injury or perhaps even death.
Curing dog aggression should start by first identifying the actual cause. There are actually typically two reasons that dogs lash out: they may have an excessive amount of energy or they lack a definite pack leader. Let’s take a good look at these two scenarios.
An Excessive Amount Of Energy
Dogs — some breeds particularly — require a great deal of exercise to get rid of their excess energy. If they are cooped up for hours on end with nothing more than a quick walk plus just a little bit of playtime, this energy actually starts to build. Eventually, it reaches a tipping point where it spills over and manifests itself as aggression.
The easiest way to take care of this can be by finding strategies to give your pet dog more exercise and stimulation. Try interacting with them on a regular basis, taking them on long walks, and even taking them to dog parks where they are able to play and eliminate steam. You might even want to investigate signing them up for dog agility training or doggy daycare. This will keep their minds working, reducing boredom while burning energy as well.
Absence Of A Definite Pack Leader
Dogs are pack animals. Their instinct is usually to depend upon a pack leader to help and protect them. When you have not established yourself as the pack leader, they will likely make an effort to fill the role. Oftentimes this simply means lashing out aggressively at people or dogs who seem like they pose a threat.
Overcoming this challenge begins by clearly establishing yourself as being the leader of your pack. There are many ways to accomplish this, and it is not an overnight process. However, after your dog has gotten the message that they no longer need to defend the pack, their aggression may naturally fall away.
Finally, an aggressive dog is just not something that ought to be taken lightly. Schedule an appointment with an animal behaviorist or qualified trainer right now to start addressing this problem before it is actually far too late.
Is There Hope For My Aggressive Dog?
Simply put the answer is YES, usually, most of the time, but not always. Is that answer confusing, if so keep reading? The odds of the success you can have with rehabilitating a dog are good enough that you certainly need to give your dog a chance.
Can all dogs be rehabilitated, again the answer is a simple NO? There are some dogs that just can’t be rehabilitated just like there are human beings with mental illness that are in institutions and cannot walk the street with the rest of us because of their illness and in some cases their aggression.
The question from the owner of an aggressive dog is always can my dog be rehabilitated and become a loving member of our family again? That isn’t a question that we can answer by simply looking at a dog.
The only way to tell if a dog can be rehabilitated is to try. That’s right you need to get started with training and behavior modification. For best results, you want a canine behavior specialist that has a bunch of experience with aggressive dogs.
Simply relying on the trainer at the local big box dog store is a sure-fire way to failure. Yes, training is part of what your dog needs however there is more and we call that more, behavior modification.
So what is behavior modification? Behavior modification comes in many different colors and flavors and each dog could need something a little different than the last dog with a similar problem.
The behavior modification for your dog could include one or more of many different things including but not limited to:
- More exercise
- Getting the dog off the furniture
- Feeding the dog after you, the ALPHA eats
- Eliminating treats
- and more than we can list in this article but you get the idea
A question that I hear quite often is “how long will it take to rehabilitate my dog” and that is a difficult question to answer. I have some dog owners say that they see a difference in their dog after just a week. Other dogs will require weeks and sometimes even months to solve the problem.
If your dog is important to you and your family it is worth the effort to see if you can help solve the problem. Your dog will appreciate it and thank you for the effort.
Is Your Dog Showing Aggression?
If you have a dog that is showing aggression you need a Canine Behavior Specialists because we have the expertise that you and your dog need to solve these aggression issues.
The typical dog trainer has been trained to do exactly that, obedience train dogs. Most dog trainers do not have the training or the experience to help with aggression issues.
I mention this because so many of our clients have spent hundreds or even thousands of dollars with dog trainers with no results before finally finding us and solving their problems.
A Canine Behavior Specialist is an individual who has participated in extensive training to understand the behaviors and associated actions for dogs of all breeds. Rather than just train an animal to respond to a basic command, these individuals get to know the dog, try to understand how his past might have contributed to his current actions, and assist owners in working through these behaviors so the dog can develop new, more acceptable skills and better acclimate into the family unit.
When aggression becomes an issue with your dog, you need a Canine Behavior Specialist. You would not go to a general doctor when you had cancer; you would seek the expertise of an expert like an oncologist. The same is true for aggression you need a specialist, not just a dog trainer.
We offer a Rehabilitation Program for aggressive dogs that is twofold. The first area that we concentrate on is Obedience Training.
A dog that has not been obedience trained will assume the position of the protector of the pack. By obedience training your dog, you will assume that position and relieve your dog of that burden.
The second area we work on is Behavior Modification. When you decide to work with us, we will have you fill out a form that gives us a history of your dog from the day it came into your life until today.
This information will allow us to look for triggers, the things that are creating the aggression. With this information, we will be able to make changes in how you interact with your dog so that it begins to understand its place in the pack.
Your dog should be at the bottom of the pack with you and other family members at the top.
Most people are concerned about costs, and I want to assure you that this program is very affordable. We even have a 6 month 0% interest option if needed.
Let me ask you some questions.
- Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to go for a walk with your dog without it acting like Cujo every time you see another person or dog?
- Wouldn’t it be nice to go to bed this evening without worrying about your dog and the liability it is creating for your family?
- Have you considered finding a new home or even worse, euthanasia for your dog?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you owe it to yourself and your dog to contact a Dog Behavior Specialist.