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Aggressive behavior in dogs is undoubtedly common, but aggression towards another dog is the most common form of aggression. It is prevalent for dogs to become aggressive when they see an unfamiliar dog or when their owner brings another dog into the house. The dog shows aggressive behavior to protect his territory, but all aggressive behavior has limits, and dogs should not go further.
If your dog is overly aggressive in different situations with other dogs, he could put you and himself in very dangerous situations. He can be fatally injured, and if the situation gets out of control, even animal control can take your dog away.
But the important thing is to understand the behavior of dogs because sometimes what we see as aggression is the hyper energy of dogs or their curious nature. If you face dog-to-dog aggression, try to learn the reason behind these situations, what problem your dog is facing, and what you can do about it.
Causes of Dog-to-Dog Aggression
There are different reasons why a dog shows aggressive behavior towards another dog. For example, it may be that your dog has been abused in the past by that dog or that he has not received puppy socialization training.
Generally, dogs rescued by an organization from different fighting operations show more aggressive behavior towards other furry animals. Sometimes a painful medical condition can be the cause of aggression towards another dog. Dogs are irritated when they are in severe pain.
Signs of dog-to-dog aggression
There are different signs that you will see in dog-to-dog aggression, such as
- Biting or snapping
- Lip lifting
- Lunging towards other dogs
- Staring ferociously
In some aggression cases, you will see a submissive and fearful body posture, such as tucking of tail, crouching, and backing away.
How to deal with the dog-to-dog aggression problem?
If your dog shows aggressive behavior, the first thing you should do is take him to the vet. Your dog may have aggressive behavior due to any medical problem. Your vet will look for any injuries and perform different lab tests, such as urinalysis and blood chemistry tests.
If no problem is found on these tests, an MRI scan can help diagnose the problem, especially if your dog has a neurological or central nervous system disease.
If your pup doesn't have any medical problems on these tests, you can opt for different behavioral techniques and training programs.
How to stop dog-to-dog aggression?
Most new pet owners make a common mistake; they become tense and fearful when they see another dog. Dogs are very sensitive and can easily pick up on our emotions and fearful energy and trigger aggressive behavior. When you find yourself in such a situation, try not to pull aggressively on your dog's leash and don't pull if he's lunging forward. A calm behavior can prevent different problems.
Teach your dog to avoid situations
When you see another dog, the best practice you can do is avoid that situation and ignore another dog. Experts generally suggest that keeping your eyes ahead and walking naturally when seeing another dog will reduce this problem.
A harmful practice that is not good is to crowd your dog in such a situation. Dogs often become aggressive when they feel trapped and begin to behave aggressively.
Create Space or Block the Other Dog
The best practice to avoid negative encounters with other dogs is to leave the road, head to any driveway, and let the other dog pass. You can also take your dog behind any barrier, such as a car or a wall. If you don't find any barriers nearby, try blocking your dog's view with your own body. But according to experts, what works best is to create space and quickly moves to pass the other dog.
Protect your dog
Another thing you can do is protect your puppy from negative and weak energy people and dogs, for example, excited, fearful and frustrated energy. If you ever get in any bad situation, say hi and instantly leave that area.
You can also ask people with weak energy to go ahead and don't stop near your dog and tell them that your dog will become aggressive with negative vibes. If you find people with calm energy and demeanor, it is best if your dog meets them.
Create Neutral Experiences
When your dog meets another dog, try to create a neutral experience. Whenever your dog sees another dog and passes by, and nothing terrible happens, it is a good thing. In training your dog, be consistent with these neutral greetings, as they will help increase your dog's confidence. Your dog will also learn how to behave in such situations. Your dog will learn to stay calm because he is not facing any highly charged opponents.
Dog desensitization training
There are different problems in dog-to-dog training in everyday situations. If other dogs are around, their stimulus is so strong that they do not allow learning. In such a situation, the dog often gets overly excited and becomes hyperactive.
In the desensitization process of the dog, the training is done in a calm environment where there is no other stimulus or a very weak stimulus. It will help decrease their reaction to the stimulus and remain calm enough and learn. These weakening situations will also help train your dog to remain calm and relaxed when there is a dog around.
Be Aware of Aggressive Triggers
When you own a dog, you may started to learn the aggressive triggers that can initiate unwanted behavior in your dog. Naturally, some dogs are aggressive in appearance and appear dominant with their hair, ears, and tail turned up. Such an appearance will initiate aggression in your dog, and even conflicts that can lead to fights that will ensue. If you come across such a dog, you better move on (and be calm).
Dog-to-dog aggression is prevalent, but this situation can be prevented by diagnosing your dog's problem and teaching him how to behave in such a situation.