How to Deal with Aggressive Dogs and Why It Happens

When do dogs become aggressive?

Understanding a dog's aggression helps you stop it. Few dogs bite without showing rising aggression. Depending on the trigger, a dog may growl, snarl, show aggressive body postures, or reveal its fangs without biting.


Aggressive dogs can be fearful. When assaulted, most dogs get violent to defend themselves. Your rescue dog may have been abused, neglected, traumatised, or not properly socialised as a puppy.

Rescue dogs need socialisation from an instructor who specialises in teaching abused or unsocialized canines. Handle unfamiliar dogs carefully to avoid aggression. Socialize and train your dog to prevent fear.


Dogs may bite or attack strangers on their property. Dogs who "hate the mailman" or bark at anybody outside the property often do this. Possessive dogs guard their territory. 

Pet aggressiveness is a result of resource guarding. When other animals come near their food, bed, or toys, some dogs become aggressive and may even bite or snap at them. Aggression is context and breed dependent.

Manifestation of Dominance

Canines who demonstrate dominance may act aggressively toward other dogs to signal they're in charge. Dogs growl, snap, or bite when they feel threatened.

Regrettably, many people incorrectly attribute aggressive dog behaviour to a need for dominance. Dominant aggressive behaviour occurs far less frequently than other types of aggressiveness.


Redirected aggression is sometimes called barrier frustration. It happens when a dog can't reach something and takes out its frustration elsewhere. Aggression is prevalent in dogs who spend a lot of time chained

Misconstrued dog animosity. Before assuming your dog's hostility, rule out health or fear. Corrections could compound the issue. Canine aggressiveness specialists can assist you understand your dog's behaviour.

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Dangers of Illness and Harm

Medications make dogs aggressive. A dog who has never been violent may growl, snap, or bite due to a disease or illness. Pain makes dogs aggressive. Before addressing unexpected, unexplained aggressiveness as a behaviour problem, consult your vet.