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Dr. John, Texas Veterinarian
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Aggressive Dog Behavior Problems

Aggressive dog behavior is a concern that all dog owners have. No owner wants their dog to have aggression problems, or even show signs of it, because for some owners they know that it ends the time of the dog with them. Is there anything that can be done for aggressive dog behavior? Below are questions about aggressive dog behavior that have been answered by the Experts.

What steps should be taken to find why a dog who is normally well mannered suddenly starts exhibiting aggressive dog behavior?

There are many different things that can about the sudden onset of aggressive dog behavior. The first step is to have a veterinarian do a thorough evaluation of the dog’s health, including a urine analysis and blood work. The dog’s teeth should be checked with care along with the bones. Dogs may be in pain without ever showing any signs of it such as limping; this is because dogs will often try to hide a weakness. Instead the pain can be manifested as aggressive dog behavior. If nothing comes of the physical exam of the dog, then the next step would be to speak with a behaviorist.

What are common causes for aggressive dog behavior in a middle age dog?

Aggressive dog behavior that occurs in dogs that are middle age is most commonly brought on by an event that was either emotionally or physically emotional to the dog. Another common cause of aggressive dog behavior in a middle age dog is chronic pain; while a dog may not show signs of pain such as limping they may have pain that is not visible.

What should be done for aggressive dog behavior from a mother dog with pups?

If a mother dog exhibits aggressive dog behavior after having puppies, this is often simply due to her being protective of her puppies. The aggressive behavior should pass in a few days when the mother dog realizes that her handlers are not going to hurt her puppies. If the mother continues to exhibit aggressive behavior, and the puppies are suffering from this, then the puppies may need to be removed from the mother and bottle raised. In the case that this does occur, the owner will need to monitor the mother to see if the aggression does being to settle down then it should be ok. If the mother continues to exhibit aggressive dog behavior well after the pups have been removed, then a vet will need to be consulted to see if there is anything else wrong such as an underlying infection.

Why is that in some dogs the aggressive dog behavior is directed only at other dogs and not people?

Aggressive dog behavior that is directed only at other dogs often spans from inadequate socialization as a puppy. Between the ages of six to fourteen weeks a puppy needs to be socialized. Since the aggressive dog behavior has started the best thing for an owner to do is to work on modifying this behavior. One way is start modifying the behavior is by rewarding the behavior that is wanted. One way is to take the dog to a place where it is able to see another dog but not interact with it. Make the dog sit and be calm, rewarding the calm behavior. Once calmest has been mastered at that distance from the dog, the next step is to move closer, continuing on and on. If the dog exhibits signs of aggression at one stage, then the dog has to move back to the last stage it was calm at.

When aggressive dog behavior is exhibited what is the difference between consulting a trainer and a behaviorist?

Aggressive dog behavior is often referred to a behaviorist. A trainer is not a behaviorist; a trainer is simply one who trains dogs. To become a behaviorist a veterinarian has to go through additional training that teaches them to deal with behavior problems such as aggressive dog behavior that may require a specialist.

Aggressive dog behavior is something that is feared by others, and makes owners saddened. There are things that can be tried when a dog exhibits aggressive behavior. A thorough examination by a veterinarian is a good place to start when aggressive dog behavior starts to be exhibited. The aggression may not be a behavior so to speak, but more of a manifestation of pain or possibly an underlying infection. Many owners who have dogs that are exhibiting aggressive behavior are referred to a behaviorist, who is a veterinarian with specialized training in behavior. Any questions about aggressive dog behavior can be asked of the Experts.

Ask a Dog Veterinarian

Dr. John
Dr. John, Texas Veterinarian
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 4084
Experience:  Over 12 years of clinical veterinary experience
11664588
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
characters left:
3 Dog Veterinarians are Online Now

How JustAnswer Works:

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    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
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Dog Veterinarians are online & ready to help you now

Dr. Debbie
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Satisfied Customers: 902
Companion animal veterinarian practicing for over 10 years.
Dr. Andy
Medical Director
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UC Davis graduate, emphasis in dermatology, internal medicine, pain management
Dr. Scott
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Satisfied Customers: 9550
12 years of small animal, equine and pocket pet medicine and surgery.

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