Why Is My Dog So Aggresive?

by Diya
(Bangalore, India)

This Cocker Spaniel Doesn't Look Very Aggressive, Does He?

This Cocker Spaniel Doesn't Look Very Aggressive, Does He?

My cocker spaniel is just about to turn 1 year old. He started being very aggressive a few days ago. He paws at me and starts barking and biting for no reason.

Does anyone know why he should do this and what can I do about it?

Reply from Pauline (Web Owner)

Hello Diya,

This happens so often - I wish I had a dollar for every time I've been asked this question!

Many male puppies try it on when they reach this age, sometimes up to 18 months of age.

If you're certain your dog is okay and not suffering from any health problems, I recommend you give him as much obedience training as you can - even if you've already gone through it with him. Train him so that he responds to your 'commands' instantly and without hesitation.

It might be a good idea to read this article on the alpha dog and then introduce and practice all the recommendations as often as you can.

Giving your cocker spaniel plenty of exercise and training will help to stimulate not only his body, but his mind too and will help to tire him so that he becomes calm and settles.

If you don't see any improvement in a couple of months, or if his behavior gets worse, it may be that his testosterone levels are too high. In this case, I recommend you speak to your vet - he may recommend you have your dog neutered.

I hope this helps and good luck!

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Aggressive Dog
by: Anonymous

Your dog is trying it on and as he learns he can get away with it he will do it all the more. This behaviour needs to be nipped in the bud - quickly. There are too many dogs that end up in the pound, or worse, because of aggression problems that could have, and should have, been addressed much earlier.

Apart from that, he could cause serious injury one day.

I agree with Steven, go back to basics and teach your puppy obedience commands. Don't let him get away with not following your command as this will only teach him that he doesn't have to do as he's told.

If you can't handle it yourself, easily, call in the big boys and get it sorted - pronto.

Good luck.

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Aggressive Dog
by: Steven

You're right to be worried about this behaviour as it's not normal and is unacceptable.

It sounds like your dog is attention seeking and being just donwright naughty! There's plenty of help available on the internet (and also on this site) to help you train your dog. I would go back to basics and make sure he's corrected each time he misbehaves.

If you can't get him to stop relatively soon, I would recommend that you seek advice from either your vet or a canine expert.

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