Having an aggressive dog as a pet is no fun at all. For one, the sweet, nice, obedient, well-trained pet that one looks to find in their pet dog, is shot to hell and it also makes it clear in the course of the training that a dog that has a lot of aggression in him makes for a very difficult target to train. Not only can you not train the dog effectively well but your entire set routine to train him or the decided goals of what you expected your pet to do are not fulfilled either.
In such a scenario, many of us will think of quitting and not going through the aggressive pet training at all. But that does not have to be the natural course of things. There are ways in which aggressive dogs training can be carried out and that is by using certain aggressive dog training tips. So, if you have an aggressive dog, training him will not be an easy task. Follow these pointers on aggressive dog training and you’ll have your answers in no time.
Aggressive Dog Behavior
Before getting into aggressive dog training, it is important to know what causes aggression in dogs. This will help you understand your pet better and lead to better dog care. Some of the reasons that lead to aggression in dogs are:
- Sometimes, the pet owner’s behavior to the pet dog will lead to aggression. These behaviors include, constant chaining, excessively punished or poorly fed dogs.
- Aggression can also come about as a reaction to other dogs and pets. This is because the dog wants to prove it’s territorial rights and be recognized as the alpha male.
- Being in an unfamiliar situation, surrounded by unknown people might lead to aggression in a dog.
- Dog health could be one of the other reasons for why you would require training aggressive dogs. Suffering from a disease or being affected by an ailment might cause the dog to exhibit aggression as a result of the pain that he is experiencing.
Aggressive Dog Behavior Training
These were some of the reasons that could lead to aggression in a dog. Once you realize that your pet dog has aggression, you will need some methods of aggressive dog behavior training. Here are some of them:
Does your dog seem to have an oral fixation? Does he want to put things in his mouth that he shouldn’t? Dogs chew objects for a variety of reasons. Puppies chew because they are teething. When an owner, family member, or other pet is gone, chewing may become a compulsive behavior due to separation anxiety. If your dog’s chewing is gnawing at your nerves, follow some of the suggestions below to curb the crunching.
1. Whenever possible, keep objects away from your dog that he finds fun to chew, whether it be your freshly washed socks, pieces of string, or ribbon from packages or gifts.
2. Spray bitter apple on objects, such as electrical cords, wires, computer connections, and other sensitive material to prevent your dog from sinking his teeth into them.
3. Rub favorite objects with scented oils that are unappealing to your dog, such as eucalyptus, cinnamon, or citrus. Of course be sure that the scent is something that you enjoy.
4. Spray a cologne that is not your scent onto objects to dissuade the chewer. Doing so will not be a welcoming sign to your dog since it is not “you” that he smells.
5. If your dog is teething, offer him a variety of chew toys and direct his attention to them when you observe him chewing something he shouldn’t. Rawhides are always an excellent choice.
6. Crate or kennel training may be the solution for a dog that chews on objects while his owner is away. Placing your dog in a crate while you are at work may save your home from being chewed up. Place your dog’s belongings, food, and water in the crate so that he will feel secure. Have a friend, neighbor, or pet-sitter walk and play with your pooch midday to give him some exercise.
7. If your dog engages in destructive chewing, especially if the target is a part of his own body, it could be a sign of boredom. Schedule regular play sessions each day so that your dog will anticipate them. Take your dog on regular walks instead of just letting him outside on a chain or in an enclosed yard to find something to do on his own. Make sure he has your complete attention during the play sessions and does not have to share you with the telephone, the television, or other disturbances around the house or around the neighborhood.
Destructive scratching is related to escape chewing, digging and jumping out of windows. This is a behavior that the dog normally undertakes when he has been confined and wants to escape.
To discover the causes of this destructive behavior, you must determine when and where the scratching takes place. Obvious causes of this behavior is when the female dog next door is in heat, or confinement because the dog is a social problem or is being punished, which are the usual causes relate to confinement alone.
One exception is the dog that scratches on the seats or cushions of furniture or through bedding or mattresses. These excavators are usually digging a hole for themselves to curl up in or are scratching in frustration at their owner’s anal and/or genital scents. When pillows and clothing are the target, the dog may be attempting to masturbate with them.
Scratching in order to escape can occur in dominant or overdependent dogs. In either case, correction involves the same methods as for destructive chewing. The owner must teach at least the “Come,” “Sit,” and “Stay” commands without the use of force. These commands should be used whenever the dog nudges for attention. The dog should be praised for desirable responses. If punishment has been used, this must be stopped immediately, as this is usually counterproductive.
To minimize the contrast between the owner’s presence and absence, all unsolicited attention, such as talking to the dog, petting him or playing with him in response to the dog’s attention seeking, should be stopped. Examples of these activities include tug-o’-war, wrestling, chasing the dog, and playing fetch when the owner must force the dog to give up the ball or stick.
In other words, interactions must involve the dog’s responding to the owner, rather than vice versa. Coming and going rituals must be avoided. It is also helpful to leave a radio turned on at a normal volume at all times to stabilize the acoustic environment and keep the dog company.
If the cause of destructive scratching is known, that cause should be eliminated, if possible. If a confined male dog is scratching because a neighborhood female dog is in heat, the use of some medication for the female dog in heat has proved to be successful, providing her owners are willing. If not, and if the problem is recurrent with a male that is not to be bred, castration has proven helpful if combined with the other steps outlined here. If the dog is unruly or shut away as punishment for some other behavior, the basic behavior problem should be corrected.
Once your Poodle advances in years, how can you best care for your aging pet every day? “Give your Poodle whatever she wants to keep happy,” suggests one aging Poodle owner. “She deserves it for being such a loyal and loving companion.”
You can start by giving your Poodle a softer place on which to rest her aching bones and joints. Perhaps in her youth she was content to nap on a hard floor, but in old age a comfy bed is in order. Stiffness from osteoarthritis is made worse by sleeping on cold, damp ground or hard surfaces.
You can purchase a soft bed at a pet-supply store or make one yourself with thick foam rubber (easily found at thrift stores) covered with a machine-washable, snug blanket. Place the bed in a dry, draft-free area of the house. Older dogs are sensitive to the extremes of heat and cold. Additionally, reduce stiffness by drying off your Poodle if she gets wet.
Dry her thoroughly after bathing or an outing in wet weather. Make sure she doesn’t get wet and stay damp.
An arthritic Poodle may find it difficult to bend down to eat and drink from bowls on the floor. Consider buying an eating table (a neck-level table with special cutouts for food and water bowls) for her. This will be more comfortable for the senior Poodle who is hesitant to bend her neck due to the stiffness of arthritis.
While an arthritic Poodle may wish to avoid activity because it’s painful, there’s nothing more beneficial to an older dog than a regular exercise program. Exercise improves muscle tone and strength, keeps joints moving, and keeps weight on target. The veterinarian can prescribe medication to reduce arthritic pain to make exercise possible.
Activity is essential, but you’ll need to protect your arthritic Poodle from injury by modifying exercise and not allowing her to overdo it. Avoid jumping and other activities that wear down the joints more. Lift your olden poodle in and out of the car. Avoid stairs and rough play. Let her choose the pace she wants.
The aging Poodle needs more rest than she did in her younger years. If the Poodle is exercising on a regular basis and wishes to nap more, allow that. Just make sure you have a comfy bed handy.
The older Poodle is a creature of habit. She is not likely to appreciate sudden changes in routine, bed placement, food dishes, and activity. Keep such changes to a minimum, changing only what you must.
If you’re planning a vacation, consider hiring a pet sitter to care for your Poodle at home rather than take her to a boarding kennel. Older dogs don’t tolerate drastic changes in their routine such as being away from home in a boarding kennel no matter how nice the place is. Keeping your old Poodle at home while you’re away in the care of a trusted pet sitter is often your best option.
About half of dogs that dash out of doors do so because they are frustrated by captivity. The others are often leader types and either trying to get into the house to socialize with their owners or to continue their social contact by attempting to leave with the owner.
Whatever the basic motivation, the act can be both financially and emotionally costly. Such door-dashing has seriously injured children and elderly people, caused premature birth in pregnant women, resulted in injury and death of the dog and, in many cases, causes an automobile accident when a motorist swerves to miss the dog.
When the problem involves a dog that dashes merely to get out there to run about the neighborhood, avoiding its owners’ pleas to return, the pet is usually unruly in other circumstances as well.
These cases often involve an independent, self-oriented (spoiled) dog. Other factors may involve an early history of unrestricted outdoor activity, followed by restriction because of some problem that has arisen outside (fighting, car chasing, etc.).
Some cases involve continuous frustration relative to neighborhood activities, such as the dog’s “fretting” behind a gate or at a window.
Depending on the excitability of the animal, it may develop the same type of stereotyped behavior seen in fence-running dogs.
Simple freedom-dashing may be tension relieving in itself, or the escaped dog may have a frustration target, such as passing cars, playing children, mail carrier or other animals.
Correcting The Problem
1. Approach the door or gate. (Of course, the door-dasher will be close by.)
2. Given an inward-opening door, abruptly open it no more than 2 inches and abruptly close it. An outward-opening door should be opened no more than an inch and then closed very quickly, or the dog may push through or get a pinched snout.
3. As the door is closed, the owner must abruptly move away from it at least 8 feet and praise the dog for following, after which the owner should be encouraged to remain still for at least a minute. If the dog remains at the door, steps 1, 2 and 3 must be repeated until the dog retreats along with the owner.
4. Step 3 must be repeated until the dog stays away from the door when the owner approaches it and when the door is opened. When this occurs, the door should be opened a full foot. If the pet dashes, the door should again be slammed shut and Step 3 applied with this larger opening.
5. Step 4 is repeated until the door can be opened to its normal exit width, with the dog staying at least 8 feet away from it. When this is accomplished the owner must stay inside, close the door, return to the dog and praise it quietly. Then the owner should remain in the house, going about some other activity for at least half an hour before repeating the procedure.
6. When the dog stays away from the door on the initial approach, the owner should then proceed outside, close the door and stay away for at least 15 minutes, after which she should return as nonchalantly as possible
If this method is applied daily for a few days, most dogs begin to ignore the comings and goings of their owners.
Dogs that are extremely tenacious in their efforts to dash through a door ahead of people often have a long history of frustration about barriers, or are highly motivated by a strong stimulus on the other side of the door.