Aggression Among Dogs – Who Should Be Blamed? | DogExpress
Thursday , July 18 2024
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Aggression Among Dogs – Who Should Be Blamed?
Aggression Among Dogs – Who Should Be Blamed?

Aggression Among Dogs – Who Should Be Blamed?

Who to blame when a dog attacks? – Is it the owner who is supposedly irresponsible? Or the dog themselves? Some think that dogs are born good and are a blank canvas for pet owners to work with. Others opine that there are bad dogs. Then you have some people who blame it on a total breed of dogs for the actions of a few people.

Many people do not understand that the natural temperament of a dog plays a significant role in showing aggressive behavior. If dog aggression is the fault of owners, there would never be any such problem with dogs brought up by responsible individuals.

You must understand that dogs are not toasters rolling off an assembly line. There is a lot of variation in their particular world. So, you’ll need to look them over honestly whenever you get a dog. Every dog is different from the others in temperament and physicality.

You need to understand their personalities and find out what makes them tick. The thing with dogs is that nature gives them a starting point, and owners can influence what happens after. They can make things worse, or they can make it better.

In some cases, it is easy to work with any particular dog. While in some instances, it might be difficult and hence can take continuous effort and work on behalf of the dog owners. Some dogs tend to be aggressive and messed up from birth. We are sorry to present this information.

It is the truth. You would find puppies that would not let you touch them at all. Some others would growl, bite, and snarl – they would do this hard and with full intent. It is how nature intended them to be. The truth of the matter is that some of the puppies are seriously aggressive right from birth.

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What is the case with bad dogs?

Studies in the Netherlands have shown that the fault lies squarely with the owner if a dog is ill-behaved and aggressive. The researchers looked at aggressive dogs as part of their study – ones bad according to their parameters.

They investigated dogs who had gotten into biting situations involving other animals and humans where the biting was so severe that the dog in question was seized and confiscated by a governmental agency in the country. This study focused on previous such studies by focusing on the owners rather than the breed.

The way owners of aggressive dogs act

Most of the dogs studied were not first-time offenders. 64% of them had an earlier biting incident reported to the authorities. 22% of them had at least four such incidents against their name.

In the incidents studied, 63% of the owners did not provide any help when their dog attacked, like attempting to prevent the biting. Even more important than that, 20% of the dog owners were themselves aggressive and threatening & intimidating the victim.

How bad are these owners?

The study found that 29% of the owners had at least two incidents of antisocial behavior against them. As per the study parameters, this included the following:

  • substance abuse
  • owners intimidating or shouting at people in public spaces
  • criminal offenses
  • noise or disturbance incidents
  • domestic violence
  • child neglect or abuse
  • using the dog as a weapon of intimidation

22% of these owners had at least two cases of animal mistreatment behaviors against them. It included the following actions:

  • animal abuse
  • coercing the dog to live in isolation
  • letting them roam unattended or free

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Getting to know the dog properly 

If you want to train an aggressive dog, irrespective of age, you must get to know them properly. You might feel that you would defend others from your dog, but you must acknowledge that they must learn to make the right decisions in various situations.

So, if your dog is protective and someone is visiting your home for the first time, put your dog in another room. Your dog might get anxious, but you should know better – letting them loose in these situations is full of risks as they might make the wrong decision.

Read Also: Tips On How to Stop Dog Food Aggression?

Factors influencing dog aggression 

In a study conducted in Brazil recently, it was seen that the lack of aggression among dogs was 73% in the case of dogs with female owners.

The sex of the dog also plays a significant role in these cases. The study found that female dogs were 40% less likely to be aggressive with their owners than their male counterparts.

Angst among dogs and the role of their owners in that 

A study done in Finland on 13,700 animals in that country found that 75% of dogs were ridden by angst, and their owners were partly blamed for that. The researchers mainly blamed factors such as genetics and overtly cautious tendencies of the owners in these cases.

They say this problem is seen when dogs are adopted from shelters. Many may need to be more adequately trained, and the problems only increase when their owners become too cautious with them.

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The strange fact revealed by dog bite stats in the USA 

If you look at the USA (United States of America), you will find that the dog breed responsible for the maximum number of dog bites is not a demarcated bully breed. Instead, Golden Retrievers are supposed to be the ultimate family dog, according to the projections over there.

So, it is the breeders and the owners who are to be held responsible in these cases, according to experts. Psychology also plays a role, as aggressive individuals always go for aggressive dogs because that is what they like.

Read Also: The Aggression of the Small Dogs – Everything You Need to Know

The Role of Hormones in dog aggression 

A study done in the USA has linked the role of hormones to how aggressive a dog is or is not. Following an experiment, the researchers concluded that the dogs who reacted aggressively had higher levels of vasopressin in their systems, which led them to conclude that this particular hormone probably plays a role in the aggression shown by dogs.

The dogs who were calm during the same were found to have higher levels of oxytocin-to-vasopressin ratios and higher levels of oxytocin in general in their systems. It led them to believe that it could have a role in inhibiting aggression.


Humans have always wanted to manufacture dogs in such a way that it has been nothing short of shocking. It is evident with breeds such as Pit Bulls. People have always bred dogs in specific ways so that they can have their dream pet.

As a consequence of that, they need to consider the genetic deviation of the breed they are manufacturing thus. It is especially applicable in cases with the intensity of their aggression. That is how irresponsible breeders have produced situations where their inferior knowledge of dogs has made them marauding and mauling beasts.

Such reckless breeding of the past has created such faulty behaviors. Hence, the owners and breeders are to blame for the problems dogs face nowadays.


Question: Is it the owner’s fault if a dog is aggressive?

Answer: Some dog behaviors do get unchecked, but aggression must not be one of them. You would not want anyone to get hurt, and this is why as the dog parent, it is your responsibility your dog behaves everywhere.

Question: How should I correct my dog’s aggressive behavior?

Answer: The most effective and safest way to treat your dog’s aggression problem is to get a qualified professional and implement a behavior modification program.

Question: Should I punish my dog for attacking me?

You’ll need to avoid punishing them in any way in such cases. Your relationship with your dog would never get better if you scold, hold them down, or punish them in any other way for signaling their aggressive intent.

Question: How do I discipline my aggressive dog?

Answer: One of the best ways to train an aggressive dog to behave well is to reward them when they do so.

Question: Are aggressive dogs unhappy?

Answer: If a dog is aggressive, it is a clear sign that he is unhappy. Such a dog is a threat to humans and everyone else. Irrespective of the extent of aggression, it tells at least at that moment, they are not enjoying their lives.

Author Bio

Himani is a dog lover who works for DogExpress. She writes to provide advice and informative articles on everything about dogs, from articles on different breeds to extensive dog food reviews.
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