We have all gone somewhere in our lives where an aggressive or nervous dog lives and had to deal with the comfortableness of the whole situation. For the actual dog owner this can be very stressful and embarrassing.
Below is some advice from Oscar E. Chavez, DVM, MBA and a Member of the American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition:
“Aggressive dogs, if truly aggressive, usually require professional behavior modification, and the attention of a trainer or professional,” says Dr. Chavez. “This doesn’t mean you need to work with them at all times, but it does mean that they need to be a part of the behavior modification program.”The key when dealing with aggressive dogs is to identify which type of aggression your dog is exhibiting, and then develop an appropriate strategy to reverse it. “This process can take days, weeks, months or even years,” says Dr. Chavez. “But if done right, it can be effective over 90 percent of the time. Truly ‘evil’ dogs are rare, and most of the time it’s poor socialization or training during puppyhood that leads to problems.”
When it comes to training, the key is to ignore bad behavior (provided it’s not immediately threatening), and reward good behavior with attention. “Negative attention is still attention, so yelling and shouting your dog’s name when it’s lunging and growling may only fuel the problem,” says Dr. Chavez.
If your dog’s aggressive behavior worries you, Dr. Chavez suggests checking out The Animal Behavior Network as a great place to start for advice.
Do you have any other proven techniques that help taming an aggressive dog?