Here's why dogs suddenly turn aggressive
Does your dog suddenly turn aggressive towards you sometimes or start growling upon seeing other dogs? There are several reasons why dogs can suddenly start running after a vehicle, or start growling. Understanding the reasons behind your dog's aggressive behaviors is the first step to raising a well-behaved dog. Here is a list of several factors that trigger aggression in pooches.
Your dog might be experiencing fear
Being afraid can elicit sudden aggression in them. This may be the reason why your dog starts growling when a guest comes in. The pupper is simply reacting to a perceived threat. Though meant as friendly, many human behaviors can seem threatening to dogs. So, approach dogs carefully, or better yet, let them approach you.
The dog's predatory instincts have kicked in
It is a natural and instinctive behavior that dogs have inherited from their ancestors. In some dogs, sudden movements or high-pitched sounds can trigger their predatory instinct. They may react by stalking, chasing, running after, and trying to grab fast-moving things such as vehicles on the road. It is not actual aggression, but rather a biological drive to hunt for food.
They are being possessive
Your furry friend might claim possession of specific objects or territory. It is quite natural for dogs to become aggressive when you try to invade their area or take their object away. Give your dog a favored treat or reward that is even more appealing than the object in its possession. This way your dog learns to let go of its possessions.
Your dog might have incurred an injury
An injury can induce sudden aggression in dogs if they are in pain. Experiencing discomfort can decrease their tolerance, causing them to become aggressive. Check your dog's body to look for any swelling, cuts, insect stings, or torn paw pads. If you suspect that the dog is behaving aggressively out of pain, it is always wise to consult a veterinarian.
They are displaying dominance
Sometimes, aggression in dogs can just be a display of dominance, often directed toward other dogs. When they feel challenged by other dogs, they may resort to aggressive behaviors such as growling, snapping, or biting. Use the classic counter-conditioning to train your dog to be calm in such moments. It involves rewarding your dog when they look at other dogs and does not react.