Aggressive Dog Breeds – Nature Vs Nurture
By Colin Pederson
Aggression in dogs does, and will continue to raise controversy in the ongoing ‘nature’ vs ‘nurture’ argument among dog owners and critics alike. Many people have misconceptions about what breeds aggressive and what ones aren’t. As a general rule, aggressive dog breeds are behave instinctually, using aggression as a means to assert dominance and intimidate others around them. Dog aggression issues are often one of the first aspects of a dog’s nature that you’ll notice, whether it’s a welcoming, content dog, or hostile and aggressive. The growling, snarling, biting and lunging are the main signs that you’re dealing with an aggressive dog.
Most people don’t really expect to be attacked or bitten by a family dog, but unfortunately it does happen. Why is that then? Well, a big part of these un-expected attacks is when people buy into the belief that some dog breeds are extremely vicious and aggressive – like pit bulls, and that these vicious dogs are the only dogs that attack. But did you know that the breeds that are more likely to bite are the ones people rarely think about – like the cuddly poodle or the terrier.
The truth about aggressive dogs is, all dogs are potentially aggressive, and all dogs will attack if abused. There’s no such thing as a “bad” breed. Practically all kinds of dogs are trainable. Allowing dogs to socialize with other dogs also helps in turning them into creatures that are much more civilized and more tolerant of other dogs and people.
Dog owners have a responsibility to care for and train their dogs (no matter the breed) to follow basic commands like come, sit, lie and stay. Subjecting dogs to some sort of dog-training or obedience-school represents one way of effectively preventing future aggression.
Here’s a look at the various dog breeds that are considered potentially aggressive.
– Chow Chows are one person dogs that often strike without any warning or provocation.
– Old English Sheepdogs are very protective of their masters and can become aggressive when somebody gets close, or possibly threatening to its owners.
– A Llasa Apso often becomes agitated when among excitable children.
– Rottweilers are extremely protective of their masters, often at the center of aggression incidents.
– Chihuahuas – although small, they can become very snappy when around children. They’d rather be with adults than play around with tots.
– Toy Poodles are known to bite people and other animals out of self-defense. Poodles will often perceive your playful behavior as threatening and strike back.
– Dachshunds aren’t known for their patience.
– Giant Schnauzers are a very dominant breed. They will often challenge their owners or others.
– The Pekinese isn’t all that tolerant.
– Miniature Pinschers have aggressive tendencies, because they’ve got this “big dog-little body” mindset going on.
Here’s a rundown of breeds that are known to be aggressive breeds, but are generally a good family breed.
– Boxers are very comfortable around, and affectionate toward children.
– Bulldogs like to be interacted with and are very gentle.
– Great Danes, while considerably large in size, happen to be kind and affectionate.
– Mastiffs are especially quiet and docile.
– German Shepherds prove to be a good family dog.
– Rottweilers are also capable of tenderness and affection.
Most pit-bulls aren’t really aggressive by nature. They tend to be loving, gentle and playful. The Pit Bull’s aggressive reputation comes from abusive, irresponsible owners, raising vicious, aggressive dogs. Such pit bulls tend to be more aggressive toward other animals than people. Aggressive pit bulls often have a history of being abused or neglected. Pit bulls that have been mistreated are obviously unsuitable as a family pet.
Whether you’ve got a puppy or a full-grown dog, what’s important is that you give it the attention and care it deserves. Recognizing and heeding the warning signs of potential dog aggression problems will make it easier to deal with them at an early stage. When in doubt about something dog-related, consult with a qualified veterinarian and/or animal behaviorist.
If you are concerned about your dog’s aggression issue’s and are ready to take action right now. It is your obligation to see the signs of aggression in your dog, and to take action, for the sake of your family, your neighbor’s, and for your family pet itself.
It is a sad statistic that every year the number of fatal dog-attacks steadily rises in this country. Dog attacks lead to expensive law suites, dis-figuration and even death for unsuspecting victims.
About the Author: Colin Pederson is a self-confessed ‘Dog Fanatic’ residing in California with his wife and black Lab Casey. Colin runs ‘Dog Obedience Advice,’ offering free advice on dealing with Dog Aggresssion, and other issues all dog owners face.