Is My Dog Aggressive?

What are the most common signs that your dog is being aggressive?

Learning how to recognize the signs of an aggressive dog is a skill that’s important for more than just pet owners. It could help you avoid an injury someday if you have an unlucky encounter.

Canines, fortunately, have some characteristic patterns of behavior they display when being aggressive. If you can learn to recognize these signs, you will know when trouble is brewing. Dogs also have multiple reasons.

They might be aggressive. As a result, there are a few types of aggressive behavior to look out for. They will not all present themselves in the same way.

Learning the differences will allow you to also target the source of the problem. If you happen to be the owner of an aggressive dog, then you know how stressful that can be.

Knowing when your dog might act on that aggression will help you keep them out of trouble too. So really, no matter who you are, learning these signs is important. In this article, we will breakdown the different types of aggression and show you the signs to keep an eye on.

Now, are you ready to get started?

What kinds of aggression do dogs display?

To start us off, let’s take a look at aggression. What is an aggressive dog, and what types of aggression are there? An aggressive dog is a dog that will attack another person or dog. It does not matter why they are acting this way.

Unless they are acting out of self-defense, you should never tolerate aggression from your pets. It is unacceptable behavior, and you need to make sure they understand that.

Dogs will typically show aggression for one of two reasons. It can be used as a way to assert dominance. Dogs will also display aggressive tendencies if they are scared and panicked.

These two different types of aggression present very differently, but they both mean that things are dangerous.

Dogs who are mounting others are displaying dominance

Dominant behaviors like humping other dogs and leg mounting often lead up to aggression. This could be because a person or dog does not appreciate the behavior. When someone tries to stop it from happening, it is possible that your pup lashes out.

This is more common whenever there is a dog that has not yet been fixed. If you have a dog that is not going to be used for breeding displaying these types of behaviors gets them fixed. It is often the simplest and easiest solution that is available.

Charging and barking at other people or dogs

Another common sign of aggression is when a dog charges at someone or another pet. This is similar to when a dog is playing with another dog. There is a key difference, though. In this case, when your dog reaches their target, they will attack them.

If you see this type of behavior, you should probably bring in a professional trainer before someone gets hurt.

Aggressive dogs stand still with ears and tail stiff and erect

Of course, as with most other things, dogs communicate aggression non verbally as well. If you look at the way that a dog is holding themselves, you can tell how they feel.

If a dog is feeling aggressive, look at their posture, ears, and tail. Aggressive dogs will stiffen up till they are incredibly rigid. They will also be holding their ears and tail upright and stiff.

Submissive body language and tail between legs

Submissive dogs will lash out as a response to fear. You can tell if a dog is afraid through their body language as well. They will hold themselves down to the ground. They are doing this to make themselves as small as possible. Also, they will pull their ears down and put their tails between their legs.

They will urinate themselves in fear

When a dog is scared enough, they will actually lose control of their bladder. They will urinate spontaneously. This is called submissive urination.

If you have a dog that is so afraid they are urinating themselves, it is not far off from lashing out. The only reason a dog would do this is that they feel they have no other options.

They may even believe that their life is under threat. Be prepared for a dog that is erratic and out of control if you see the buildup like this.

If your dog is feeling this way, it is best to give them space. Walk away slowly and speak to them in a soothing tone of voice.

Aggressive dogs bark and snarl in a low register

When a dog is barking, they are doing it for a reason. Believe it or not, there are a few different types of barks too. They sound different, and the sounds have different textures depending on the purpose of the bark.

If your dog is barking, and it is a very low-register, deep-sounding bark, you should be worried. Especially if between these low register barks, there are snarls.

This is the sign of a dog that is either rabid or about to try and dominate something. Either way, violence is not that far off. At this point, you should be most concerned about how to get away with it by provoking the animal, even if it is your own pet.

Aggressive dogs make direct eye contact with exposed teeth with other dogs

Eye contact is one of the most powerful forms of communication across species.

If a dog makes eye contact with you or another dog, look at their body language. They could be trying to tell you they love and trust you. They could also be trying to intimidate and dominate you. The only way to tell the difference besides waiting to see what happens is body language.

If the dog is exposing their teeth and they have an unwavering gaze, they are probably feeling pretty aggressive.

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