Dog Training > Training for Dog Problems > Aggressive Dog Training

Aggressive Dog Training

If you have an aggressive dog, don't minimize the seriousness of the situation. Standard training techniques will probably prove ineffective with an aggressive dog. One-on-one help with a professional trainer may be required to see results with aggressive dog training.

Aggression in your dog could have resulted from a combination of genetic and learned factors. Some dogs are born with aggressive tendencies, and their environment either encourages or doesn't discourage this bent toward aggression.

The first step in aggressive dog training is recognizing the aggression problem. Has your dog ever stared you down--a glassy-eyed stare with stiff legs and raised hackles? Does your dog growl or show his teeth when you do certain things--like taking a toy or getting too close at mealtime? Has your dog ever bitten anyone, for any reason? If you even suspect that you might have a problem, seek the advice of an aggressive dog training professional as soon as possible. You should also consider getting a full medical exam for your dog before starting any serious aggressive dog training. There may be pain or a medical problem that's causing your dog to behave aggressively.

There are actually several types of aggression in dogs that aggressive dog training may need to address. Dominant aggression occurs when a dog attempts to dominate members of his human family and any strangers. Some dogs are aggressive out of fear. Some dogs display a territorial aggression, taking on all comers who violate their space. A related need for aggressive dog training is possessive aggression, which comes into play when anything the dog considers his is threatened. Maternal aggression, seen in female dogs that are nursing pups, is usually temporary and rarely requires any type of aggressive dog training.

Most of the strategies for dealing with aggression in dogs are preventive in nature. They involve researching breeds, allowing for lots of socialization with other dogs and people when your dog is a puppy, and good obedience training early.

If things have deteriorated to the point where you need to seek professional help, don't hesitate. This is a serious situation and will require an extraordinary intervention. Aggressive dog training often takes place in a kennel environment. This closed area makes it possible to socialize an aggressive dog and makes it easier to work with him daily.

Whether or not a professional will help with aggressive dog training often is related to how many times your dog has bitten people and how severe the bites were.  As the severity of the bite increases to the level of requiring medical attention, you'll find fewer and fewer trainers willing to take on aggressive dog training with your dog.

You should keep in mind that you are legally accountable in most locations for your dog's behavior. If he bites someone, you may lose your homeowner's insurance. You may also lose your dog. If your aggressive dog is around children, you should be especially concerned. Children under age 10 are the most likely bite victims.

Even with professional help, aggressive dog training may not be successful. It's possible that neutering a male dog may have a beneficial effect. Eight out of every ten dog bites in the U.S. are inflicted by male dogs. Unfortunately, if your dog is out of control and represents a danger to you and to others, you may have no alternative left but to euthanize the dog. With this prospect looming as a final result of aggression, it's clearly best if you shake yourself out of denial early, and get aggressive dog training immediately upon any sign of true aggression.

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