Aggressive Behavior: What's Making Your Pooch Moody?

Does your dog act aggressive, bark excessively, or chew everything in sight? Just like humans, dogs have feelings and there may be many reasons for aggressive or moody behavior. Any dog is capable of becoming aggressive, especially if involved in an abusive situation or bred from other aggressive dogs. Another common cause of aggression can be from a medical condition or disease. Consult with your vet in determining what the cause may be.


Once you have consulted with your vet and a medical evaluation determined your dog is healthy, the next step is to narrow down the cause of the aggression. Sometimes while a dog is eating, they will growl or try to bite someone who approaches the food which may be a learned or bred behavior. You might also find they snarl or show teeth to strangers and children. Once you have determined what angers your dog, try to remove them from the situation.

If that’s not possible, it’s time to think about more training to help them behave better in these situations. A professional dog trainer can help you develop a plan and start a training process.

Excessive Barking

Although barking is a normal behavior for dogs, excessive and annoying barking can be a behavior problem. It is common for a dog to bark when someone is at the door or passing by on the street, but when it is constant, it is no longer normal. Many dogs bark continuously from anxiety or boredom. Once you determine the cause, you can begin to take control of the situation. Yelling at your dog to stop barking will only encourage them to be louder, try clapping or whistling to distract from the situation. Avoid leaving your pet alone for long periods of time whenever possible. 

Destructive Chewing

Chewing is common for a teething puppy, however, destructive chewing can be a behavior problem no matter how old your dog is. Destructive chewing may be caused from too much energy, anxiety, or boredom. If this behavior becomes a problem, remove the source, replacing it with a proper chew toy. Consider crating your dog when you are not home, and teach them the proper things to chew. If you find your dog has ingested something toxic, be sure to seek medical attention from your vet immediately.

Always be sure to reward your dog when they have done something positive. Plenty of exercise will help alleviate extra energy and boredom causing some of the aggression. If you notice changes in your dog’s behavior, be sure to seek advice from your vet or MontClair Veterinary Hospital to avoid a more dangerous situation later. 

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