Can A Dog Trainer Help With Aggression
Behavioral Training

Can A Dog Trainer Help With Aggression

  • October 15, 2021

Is training an aggressive dog possible?Of course you can work on basic training in your home, but serious effort will need to be taken to first identify what in your dog's environment makes him aggressive and then take steps to change your pup's behavior.Usually aggressive behavior will start as a warning, but eventually it may lead to an attack, which is why training an aggressive dog is so important.Reasons Dogs May Show Signs of Aggression.This is why letting him know that he is loved and creating a safe environment for him are so important.If your dog is acting hostile after getting hurt, he is most likely experiencing pain and when the pain is relieved, the aggression will go away.A territorial dog may show signs of aggression when another human or animal approaches the item he feels possessive of, such as a toy or even his favorite human.In this case, your dog will need to be trained to respect boundaries and that protection is unnecessary.Once you are able to identify why your dog is acting aggressively, you'll be better able to personalize his training.How to Train an Aggressive Dog.The first step to training an aggressive dog is to identify who he is aggressive toward.The other reason for not ignoring aggression could be of vital importance to your safety.Once you identify his trigger, you can work with him, as well as a vet or trainer to help you both learn how to reduce his aggression. .

Aggression

Aggression

Aggression

The term “aggression” refers to a wide variety of behaviors that occur for a multitude of reasons in various circumstances.Virtually all wild animals are aggressive when guarding their territories, defending their offspring and protecting themselves.Aggression encompasses a range of behaviors that usually begins with warnings and can culminate in an attack.A dog that shows aggression to people usually exhibits some part of the following sequence of increasingly intense behaviors:.Many times, pet parents don’t recognize the warning signs before a bite, so they perceive their dogs as suddenly flying off the handle.Learning the answers to these questions can clarify the circumstances that trigger your dog’s aggressive reaction and provide insight into the reasons for her behavior.If a coyote or a wolf who’s not part of a pack invades their territory, the resident wolves will attack and drive off the intruder.Territorial behavior usually appears as puppies mature into adolescence or adulthood, at one to three years of age.Dogs may show aggressive behavior when they think that one of their family members or friends is in peril.Pet dogs may show the same type of aggressive behavior when they think that one of their family members or friends (human or animal) is in peril.Likewise, a dog might first show protective aggression when her pet parents bring a human child into the family.While this behavior sounds appealing at first glance, problems arise when the protective dog starts to treat everyone outside the family, including friends and relatives, as threats to the baby’s safety.Like territorial behavior, protective aggression usually appears as puppies mature into an adolescence or adulthood, at one to three years of age.Expand to read more Dogs evolved from wild ancestors who had to compete for food, nesting sites and mates to survive.Even though our pet dogs no longer face such harsh realities, many still show the tendency to guard their possessions from others, whether they need to or not.These dogs might react aggressively when a person or another animal comes near their food bowl or approaches them while they’re eating.But some dogs will hide their cherished things around the house and guard them from unsuspecting people or animals who have no idea that they’re anywhere near a valued object.Some dogs will cower at the prospect of physical punishment but attack when a threatening person reaches for them.Dogs who are defensively aggressive exhibit a mixture of fearful and offensive postures.Canid species, including the dog, adopt a type of hierarchical order that influences which group members get first crack at food, the best resting spots and opportunities to mate.So rather than having to fight for access to valued things each and every time, those lower down on the totem pole know to wait until the higher-ups have had their share before taking their turn.This is why a dog might be perfectly trustworthy with one pet parent but react aggressively toward the other or toward young children in the family.An aggressive response is usually provoked by things that a dog perceives as threatening or unpleasant, such as: Taking food away.It’s important to realize that the complexities involved in social aggression are poorly understood and hotly debated by behavior experts.Over time, the dog can learn to associate restraint with feelings of frustration so that even when there’s nothing to be excited about, she tends to react aggressively when restrained.This explains why some normally friendly dogs become aggressive when put behind a gate, in a cage or crate, in a car, or on a leash.Likewise, a dog who loves people can still show surprising levels of aggression when her pet parent lifts her up so that guests can enter or leave the home.Expand to read more An otherwise gentle, friendly dog can behave aggressively when in pain.A dog with a painful orthopedic condition or an infection might bite with little warning, even if the reason you’re touching her is to treat her.Some pet dogs show classic canine predatory behaviors, including chasing and grabbing fast-moving things.Expand to read more Dogs are closely related to wolves and coyotes, both of whom are large predators, and pet dogs still show some classic canine predatory behaviors, including chasing and grabbing fast-moving things.Some studies report that as many as 60 to 70% of all pet dogs bark threateningly at strangers and act unfriendly when around them.Not only is aggression toward children exceedingly difficult to treat because of safety concerns, the likelihood that a dog with this problem will ever become trustworthy is slim.A dog might be aggressive only with the veterinarian or groomer, or with the postal carrier, or with people in wheelchairs or individuals using canes and walkers.These factors involve the level of risk in living with your dog and the likelihood of changing her behavior:.Dogs who give warning before they bite allow people and other animals time to retreat and avoid getting hurt.Dogs who give warning before they bite allow people and other animals time to retreat and avoid getting hurt.How often your dog is exposed to the targets of her aggression can affect how easy it is to manage and resolve her behavior.A dog who’s aggressive to strangers is relatively easy to control if you live in a rural environment with a securely fenced yard.In contrast, living with a dog who has recurring ear infections and bites family members when they try to medicate her can be stressful and unpleasant.How often your dog is exposed to the targets of her aggression can affect how easy it is to manage and resolve her behavior.A dog who’s aggressive to strangers is relatively easy to control if you live in a rural environment with a securely fenced yard.In contrast, living with a dog who has recurring ear infections and bites family members when they try to medicate her can be stressful and unpleasant.If no one can safely enter the kitchen when your dog’s there because she guards her empty food bowl in the cupboard, that’s another story.If no one can safely enter the kitchen when your dog’s there because she guards her empty food bowl in the cupboard, that’s another story.The safest and most effective way to treat an aggression problem is to implement behavior modification under the guidance of a qualified professional.In addition to acute painful conditions, dogs with orthopedic problems, thyroid abnormality, adrenal dysfunction, cognitive dysfunction, seizure disorders and sensory deficits can exhibit changes in irritability and aggression.Geriatric dogs can suffer confusion and insecurity, which may prompt aggressive behavior.If your dog has an aggression problem, it’s crucial to take her to a veterinarian, before you do anything else, to rule out medical issues that could cause or worsen her behavior.If the veterinarian discovers a medical problem, you’ll need to work closely with her to give your dog the best chance at improving.A qualified professional can develop a treatment plan customized to your dog’s temperament and your family’s unique situation, and she can coach you through its implementation.Please see our article, Finding Professional Behavior Help, to learn how to find a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist (CAAB or ACAAB), a veterinary behaviorist (Dip ACVB) or a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT) in your area.Determine whether she has education and experience in treating canine aggression, as this expertise isn’t required for CPDT certification.In many cases, the only solution is to manage the problem by limiting a dog’s exposure to the situations, people or things that trigger her aggression.Pet parents are responsible for their dogs’ behavior and must take precautions to ensure that no one’s harmed.Even if a dog has been well behaved for years, it’s not possible to predict when all the necessary circumstances might come together to create “the perfect storm” that triggers her aggression.Dogs who have a history of resorting to aggression as a way of dealing with stressful situations can fall back on that strategy.Some were highly prized for their guarding and protective tendencies, others for their hunting prowess, others for their fighting skills, and others for their “gameness” and tenacity.Far better predictors of aggressive behavior problems are a dog’s individual temperament and her history of interacting with people and other animals. .

Dog Trainer Advice on Dealing with Aggressive Behavior

Dog Trainer Advice on Dealing with Aggressive Behavior

Dog Trainer Advice on Dealing with Aggressive Behavior

Aggressive behaviors like these are the reason many pet owners seek out the services of a professional dog trainer.After visiting a veterinarian to rule out medical problems that can cause or worsen aggression, working with a dog trainer is the recommended course of action.If you’re concerned about or feel threatened by your furry friend, contacting a professional dog trainer is the best step you can take.Dogs rarely act aggressively for no reason – and the key to stopping canine aggression is to understand the cause.Social aggression, or behaving assertively toward other animals and people who are considered to be a lower status.What You Can Do to Help an Aggressive Dog.Contacting a professional trainer – like the team here at The Driven Dog –is in your best interests. .

How to Stop Aggressive Behavior in Dogs

How to Stop Aggressive Behavior in Dogs

How to Stop Aggressive Behavior in Dogs

When your dog regularly growls, snaps, or bites, you have a serious behavior problem on your hands.This includes becoming still and rigid, growling, snarling, baring teeth, lunging, and nipping or biting.Your first step toward stopping this behavior is to figure out what is causing your dog's aggression.Some dogs growl as someone approaches them while they're eating or chewing a bone, for instance.The key thing to keep in mind is that you can't come up with a plan to modify your dog's behavior until you know the reason behind it.Territorial aggression: The dog defends its space or your home from what it deems to be an intruder.Possessive aggression: The dog protects food, chew toys, bones, or another object of value to it.The dog is fearful and tries to retreat in a scary situation, but then attacks when cornered.These dogs have generally given other, more subtle, indications that they want to be left alone before biting, such as turning their head away.These dogs have generally given other, more subtle, indications that they want to be left alone before biting, such as turning their head away.This applies to intact animals and can be avoided by spaying and neutering dogs.It may start out as an innocent game, but dogs with predatory aggression may quickly turn on and possibly bite the child.Any dog can pick up aggressive behavior, and it's important to track a pattern of warning signs, like:.Not all dogs who exhibit this behavior are generally aggressive—many of these warning signs are also an indication of anxiety or fear.If your vet has ruled out a medical problem, it's time to call in a professional dog trainer or animal behaviorist.A professional can help you figure out what's causing your dog's aggression and create a plan to manage it.Then, reward with lots of treats and praise as you gradually decrease the distance between your dog and the stranger, continuing to use positive reinforcement.Ideally, your dog will begin to learn that strangers equal treats and you'll see a reduction in its aggression.If you punish a dog for growling, he may not warn you the next time he gets uncomfortable, but may simply bite.It's important to understand that a dog experiencing fear, stress, or anxiety is incapable of learning new things. .

Understanding Dog Aggression

Understanding Dog Aggression

Understanding Dog Aggression

Breed and Dog Aggression.I want to help you understand the causes of dog aggression, so you can overcome this dog problem.Bad things happen when powerful breeds (or mixes of powerful breeds) live with humans who like the breed but don’t understand and fulfill the animal in the dog.To control a powerful breed of dog, you need to become the dog’s pack leader and establish rules, boundaries, and limitations.With dog on dog aggression, your dogs are asking you to step up as the pack leader.It is important to understand that red zone dogs are usually frustrated dogs.To control a powerful breed, you need to master the position of pack leader.When dealing with red zone dogs, I start by working with the owners, explaining how to establish themselves as the pack leader and to understand the animal in their dog. .

A Trainer's Guide to Managing an Aggressive Dog

A Trainer's Guide to Managing an Aggressive Dog

A Trainer's Guide to Managing an Aggressive Dog

The root cause of your dog’s aggression isn’t that they’re naturally “bad” or “mean.” Most likely they’re fearful of or insecure with a particular environment or stimulus.Illness, pain or dementia in a senior dog can cause him to exhibit aggressive behavior, as well.Punishing a dog for their fear is likely to create more anxiety around frightening or unfamiliar situations.Responding to that trigger by snapping or biting is your dog’s attempt to defend or intimidate in order to ensure their personal safety (and sometimes that of loved ones or “valuable” resources).In many cases a dog may be satisfied with the display of an aggressive behavior if it results in the perceived threat moving farther away.Helping a dog to overcome their aggression is a difficult task; changing a negative emotional response to a positive one always is.A Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT-KA) trained in positive-reinforcement techniques can help you to establish realistic goals and reach them via a process of gradual desensitization and counterconditioning.Once you’ve identified it, your first goal should be to prevent your dog from getting close enough to their trigger to elicit aggression in the first place.Once you’ve figured out how much space is needed, you can begin to gradually help your dog to build positive associations with their trigger—ironically, by assuring that it predicts that wonderful things happen.Though muzzles look scary and restrictive, they’re essential tools to providing an uncertain or unpredictable dog with additional freedom.A dog properly desensitized to a muzzle shouldn’t have any trouble wearing it as long as you select the right style.To your dog, the doorbell rings and suddenly four puzzle toys filled with the best stuff ever appear.If your dog has bitten someone, it’s important to get help immediately from a qualified positive-reinforcement trainer, never someone that uses punitive methods or techniques rooted in outdated and disproven “dominance” theory. .

Why Your Dog's Aggression Isn't Improving

Why Your Dog's Aggression Isn't Improving

Why Your Dog's Aggression Isn't Improving

Why doesn't your dog listen to you when he's barking, lunging, or in the middle of some sort of aggressive response?Trying to punish away the behavior.Obedience and aggression are unrelated; even the most perfectly "trained" dog can still be aggressive, and teaching a dog an excellent "sit" and "stay" will not resolve aggression.Dogs that bark, lunge, nip, bite, etc.But by punishing the symptoms, we have done nothing to eliminate the underlying emotional issue causing the symptoms.So the real danger is in what happens next time, especially if the punisher isn't present as a threat.You might find that your dog doesn't bark, lunge, or growl at the threat (we've punished away those options); instead, he skips the "symptoms" that have been punished and bites.Truly modifying aggressive behavior is best done with a behaviorist or dog behavior expert who truly understands animal behavior.When utilizing the above techniques, it's critical that you are working "under threshold," meaning your dog is not barking, lunging, or overly fixated on the threat.Many well-meaning pet owners try accurate techniques, but try to move too quickly or work too close to the trigger your dog is bothered by.It's why your dog ignores you when he's in the middle of an aggressive response.If you're wondering if your dog aggression problem is fixable, here are a few indicators of the likelihood of success:.Fixing dog aggression is not quick or easy in most cases, but with the right dog training expert, it can be done. .

Dog Aggression Stopper in Seattle, WA

Dog Aggression Stopper in Seattle, WA

Dog Aggression Stopper in Seattle, WA

Over the years, I have trained hundreds of aggressive and reactive dogs to a full recovery or manageable state.In my experience, most truly aggressive dogs are primarily aggressive or reactive on the leash.I do not use food for behavior and I do not separate a dog from other dogs because of his or her reactions.How can you modify behavior if you aren’t allowed to work with your dog?I have heard of trainers charging hundreds of dollars for an “evaluation”—and then recommending a full training course.As long as you work with your dog every day, it is very likely that you start seeing improvement from the very first lesson.We offer modification for all forms of aggressive behavior including:.Food aggression.Health-related aggression.Unique and unusual aggressive behavior.Breed-specific aggression.How does it work?The other issue with “positive” approaches is that clicker/marker training needs to have absolutely perfect timing, which the vast majority of people (including many trainers) don’t have.But when trying to work on aggression or reactivity many people end up reinforcing the wrong behavior.My clients have such a dramatically high success rate for one simple reason: they train and work hard every day, which builds a solid bond.We do NOT charge more to work with aggressive dogs and we never will.Our pricing is the same for Level 1 obedience training, with a slightly higher evaluation cost (this is to cover insurance).Your personal and private information are secure and we promise to never disclose identities or behavioral issues unless faced with a court order. .

What is Dog Aggression and How to Stop it.

What is Dog Aggression and How to Stop it.

What is Dog Aggression and How to Stop it.

It frequently passes the point of simply being worried about coming home to a wrecked living room or having an overly yappy pooch.In this guide on canine aggression, you’ll find out what causes this type of behavior, how it usually manifests, and, most importantly, how to handle and prevent it.Some canines keep their aggression toned down and never act out more than the occasional growl, while others can attack other dogs or even people.There are many different reasons why a dog might be aggressive and knowing what the underlying cause is will make treatment easier and more efficient.Most often, the main culprit is a lack of proper socialization and training, but there are other causes that can contribute to this issue.Once another person (or a pet) approaches their belongings, possessive aggressive dogs will immediately react.Depending on the gravity of the problem, the reactions can range from just growling to a full-on attack that includes biting.Because they will react only when they think that there is no other option but to defend themselves, these dogs won’t growl, bare their teeth or snarl before they nip at their source of fear.If your pooch is friendly and calm for most of the time, but starts lunging, barking and trying to bite as soon as you put on their leash, it’s a clear sign your dog is leash-aggressive.Commonly directed at other dogs, this type of aggressive behavior stems from the fact that your pooch is feeling restrained and frustrated by their leash.Dogs are social animals who function in packs, meaning that there is a strict hierarchy in the household, even if you’re not aware there is one.Other pets might be lower in status, so a dominant dog will “remind” them who’s the boss every once in a while by displaying aggressive body language.If you notice your older dog is starting to act aggressively out of the blue, chances are they are experiencing discomfort, pain, or even have an illness.There are dangerous breeds, such as Pitbulls, Dobermans or Rottweilers, who are specifically bred to be bloodthirsty and aggressive.The only factors that contribute to aggressive behavior that are biological in nature are a dog’s age and sex.For example, a dog that is poorly socialized, unneutered, and becoming sexually mature, might be more prone to aggressive outbursts than, let’s say, a spayed female of the same species.The key to preventing dog aggression is good socialization, proper training, and lots of love.There is no “easy fix” or an overnight solution that will turn your pooch into a well-behaved canine, especially if their aggression is in the severe stages.If you nip the problem in the bud, you’ll save yourself the trouble of correcting a major issue down the road.Most aggressive dogs tend to display early signs, which, when noticed on time, can be solved.Depending on the specifics of your problem, here are some effective solutions that will transform a grumpy pooch into a calm pup.Solution: Understanding how to stop dog aggression toward strangers starts with pinpointing the situation in which the behavior begins.It might be leash aggression, which requires lead training, or it can be a past trauma or abuse that they connect with a certain type of people.In both cases, positive reinforcement training and a gradual desensitization to the stressor are what leads to the best results.In households with multiple pets, both canines and felines, having a pooch that gets agitated around cats can be a major issue. .

The 10 Best Aggressive Dog Trainers Near Me (with Free Estimates)

The 10 Best Aggressive Dog Trainers Near Me (with Free Estimates)

The 10 Best Aggressive Dog Trainers Near Me (with Free Estimates)

If you do decide to hire a pro to train your dog in person, limit any physical contact with the trainer. .

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