Nothing can be more nerve-wracking and terrifying than dealing with your neighbour’s aggressive dog. This makes it difficult for us to get out and do our usual morning jog or simply walk down the street with the lingering fear of being chased by an aggressive dog. Luckily, we’re here to help you with that sort of problem.
In this blog, you’ll learn about the numerous ways of “how to deal with an aggressive dog”. You’ll also get to know other related topics such as the signs of an aggressive dog and if the breed has something to do with the severity of a dog’s aggression.
Here’s How to Deal With Your Neighbour’s Aggressive Dogs:
Below are the following tips on how to deal with your neighbour’s aggressive dog:
- Be gentle.
- Talk to the dog owner.
- Don’t be mean to the owner and the dog.
- Consider why the dog behaves that way in the first place.
- Consider your role regarding the dog’s aggression.
- Document the dog’s behavior.
- Conduct a meeting with the neighborhood.
- Contact authorities as a last resort.
We’ll be tackling more of these in-depth as you read along.
What is Dog Aggression?
The first thing that comes to our mind when we hear the words “aggressive dog” is a dog who barks at people and exposes its fangs that indicate that they’re about to bite another dog or person. In reality, this isn’t always the case. There are aggressive dogs who are actually lowkey and only exhibit signs of aggression by growling, then there are other dogs that express their aggression by attacking dogs or people.
Moreover, it’s imperative to note that there are external factors that contribute to their aggression in the first place. Both you and the owner must take the responsibility to know the underlying cause of the dog’s aggressive behavior in order to prevent further accidents from happening, and at the same time, the owner will know how to treat their dog.
Signs of an Aggressive Dog
These signs will help you identify which behavior actually classifies the dog as an aggressive one. This will also prevent you from filing a false report on a dog who isn’t actually aggressive at all.
Here are the following signs of an aggressive dog:
- Stiff body posture
- Intensity of bites
- Baring teeth
- Ears that are pinned back
Do these signs classify your dog as mean? Of course not. Dogs that display these types of behavior are simply trying to adjust to their environment. However, if this continues to be neglected and not addressed, then this will cause trouble in the future. The owner must teach his dog coping skills or else the dog will act out.
A skilled animal behaviorist may solve the behavioral issues of your aggressive pooch. This will increase your chances of managing, controlling, and saving your relationship with your beloved dog.
Does the Breed Have Something to Do With Aggression?
We all know that the majority of the big dog breeds out there are our first suspects when it comes to showing aggressive behavior. However, those German Shepherds, Rottweilers, and the like have nothing to do with aggression at all.
According to a well-known dog trainer, Caesar Milan, “remember, these dogs don’t dream of being in the news when they grow up. Bad dog behavior and dog problems are not premeditated. Bad things happen when powerful breeds (or mixes of powerful breeds) live with humans who like the breed but don’t understand and fulfill the animal in the dog. Many people consider the look or popularity of a breed before thinking about whether the dog works for their lifestyle. This is a recipe for disaster.”
How To Deal with Aggressive Dogs?
- Be Gentle
Don’t come rushing into your neighbour’s face all flustered and telling him to control his aggressive dog, the owner will be on his guard and be defensive. You also have to understand the situation of the owner and not just yourself. The owner won’t be able to change the behavior of their dog overnight, so as much as possible, be patient.
- Talk to the Owner of the Dog
Ensure that you confront the owner of the aggressive dog during a non-aggressive time so you won’t risk yourself getting hurt. Converse with the owner regarding the concerns you have with his dog who is clearly showing signs of aggression. Alert the owner via text, call, or e-mail if their dog crosses the line and ends up hurting you or other dogs and people.
- Do Not Be Mean to Both the Owner and the Dog
Never leave offensive and hateful notes on your neighbour’s doorstep or mailbox. This is not a healthy and effective way of reaching out your concerns to your neighbour who owns that aggressive dog you’re scared of. Instead, you should just approach the owner and initiate a conversation and send a clear message regarding your issue with the dog.
- Consider Why the Dog Behaves that Way in the First Place
Let’s be real here, no dog just randomly lashes out for no reason! There’s surely a cause behind their aggressive behavior, so before you rush into a decision and report your neighbour and tier dog on the spot, the best course of action would be to know what causes the aggressive behavior of the dog.
For instance, there are numerous external factors that trigger the aggressive behavior of the dog and these could be children who pass by or other animals that aggravate the dog.
Don’t be too quick on putting the blame on your neighbor, rather, look for solutions that will remove the cause of the dog’s aggressive behavior instead of getting rid of the dog on the spot.
- Consider Your Role in This
You may not be aware of it, but you may be the cause of the dog exhibiting aggression in the first place. Take a look at your surroundings and see if there are factors that trigger aggression in your neighbour’s dog.
Here are some factors:
- You have children who may be teasing the dog without you knowing
- There is a presence of wildlife in your backyard
- If you own a pet, maybe they’re doing something that agitates your neighbour’s dog?
- Document the Dog’s Aggressive Behavior
Once you’ve talked to your neighbor about the issue, give them enough time to correct their dog’s aggressive behavior. Surely this won’t happen in a blink of an eye, still, you must carefully observe the dog’s behavior and spot changes—if there are any.
If you don’t see any changes, then the best course of action is to document the dog’s behavior as this will serve as an important piece of evidence later on. This is a precautionary measure in case you contact the authorities. So the moment you see that your neighbour’s dog is acting up again, take a video of it as proof.
- Conduct a Meeting with the Neighborhood
It’s a good idea to discuss the aggressive-dog-issue with the neighborhood because there’s a good chance that they experience the same problem as you. Do talk to your neighbors about the issue and get to know if they feel the same way. Jot down incidents wherein you, along with your other neighbors, have experienced regarding the dog’s behavior.
Inform the owner about this as well. If all else fails, report it to the authorities and let them handle the situation.
- Contact Local Authorities as a Last Resort
If you’ve done all the things you can possibly do to solve the issue at hand and your neighbour is unresponsive, or worse aggressive, then it’s high time you contact both local authorities and animal control in your vicinity.
The outcome of this action may lead to your neighbor paying a fine or, if the issue still remains, it would be brought up to court. This may be a tedious process but it has the power to prevent further accidents from taking place. Just make sure to present the evidence you’ve gathered.
Of course, you must know that this action will sever any ties you’ve had with your neighbour. But if the issue is truly causing a problem, then you don’t have to feel guilty about contacting the authorities and animal control.
Other Issues of Aggressive Dogs:
There are a number of reasons as to why dogs bark, whether it’d be excessive barking or not. Here are some examples:
- Territorial Barking
- Alarm Barking
- Attention-Seeking Barking
- Greeting Barking
- Compulsive Barking
- Socially Facilitated Barking
- Frustration-Induced Barking
- Illness or Injury
- Separation-Anxiety Barking
All dogs bite, the reason behind why a dog bites depends on varying circumstances. As humans, we tend to associate biting as a sign of aggression. This thinking is wrong because for dogs, this act is completely normal and it’s their way of communicating and defending themselves.
Now there’s this thing we call “bite threshold” for dogs and this varies per breed. There are some dogs that have a higher bite threshold and it’s going to take a lot of stress to trigger this type of dog to bite. Some stressors include pain, anxiety, fear, and arousal.
How to Train Your Dog to Not Be Aggressive
- Identify Who Your Dog is Aggressive to
Find out what stresses your dog out so much that it makes him aggressive. These could be other animals that they encounter, your friends, and other family members. So what you need to do is you have to look at his environment and find out what causes him to be aggressive.
- Work with a Dog Trainer
Now that you’ve finally identified the stressors that trigger your dog, it’s high time that you consult a professional dog trainer. If you’re unsure of how to contact one, you may pay your local vet a visit and ask them to assist you.
Moreover, it’s actually stated by the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) that a dog acts aggressive towards other people and animals because of health concerns.
So please do have your furry friend checked at a vet so that you’ll know whether your dog is healthy or not. That would ultimately help you identify health issues that are the root cause of your dog’s aggressive behavior.
- How to Train Your Dog to Stop Biting
As the dog owner, you have the responsibility to train your dog and have him under control as much as possible. Whatever behavior your dog shows and does, you’re responsible for it. So it’s important to know how to stop one of the most common things that some people associate with aggression—biting.
Here’s how to stop your dog from biting:
- Put your dog through a basic training program.
- Start socializing your dog at a young age. This will train them to keep calm once they encounter other people and animals.
- Learn the body language of your dog. This would help you identify if your dog is about to bite.
- Never harshly discipline your dog.
- Keep your dog in a short leash or fence as much as possible.
- If you’re aware that your dog is aggressive, warn people before they approach your dog.
- Regularly visit your vet and have your dog checked-up.
- How to Train Your Dog Not to Bark
Here are some helpful tips to help you stop your dog from barking. However, do take note that results aren’t going to show up after a good night’s sleep. Keep on practicing these with your dog and you’ll fix the barking issue in no time.
Here are some techniques to help you stop your dog from barking:
- Remove the triggers that cause their barking. For example, if your dog barks once it sees an animal outside, close the curtains and block his view.
- Ignore the barking. Sometimes dogs bark for attention, so try to ignore it.
- Keep your dog tired.
- Reward your dog when it encounters external stimuli.
So to sum it all up, this blog has answered the question of “how to deal with your neighbour’s aggressive dog”.
There’s always a reason behind a dog’s aggression. A dog wouldn’t simply act out of line without something triggering them. The owner shouldn’t be the only one taking responsibility for the behavior of their dog by training them because you must also recognize what triggers the dog.
For instance, you may be the cause of the dog’s aggression because of your kids who like to tease the dog or you may have pets that seem to irritate them. It takes a combined effort for both the owner and yourself in order to fix the aggressive dog issue. Just remember to openly communicate and discuss the matter with your neighbor before consulting local authorities.
Another thing you have to remember is that it’s never the dog’s fault that they’re showing signs of aggression. I would like to reiterate that the breed of the dog has nothing to do with aggressive behavior. So don’t be misled by the common misconception that big dogs are scary and more likely to snarl at people and other dogs.
And with that, feel free to comment anything about the content of the blog or you may ask questions in the comment section below.
FAQ’s: How To Deal With Your Neighbour’s Aggressive Dog
How do I complain about an aggressive dog?
Don’t make a rash decision by calling animal control on the spot, instead, opt for calling your local animal shelter or the police. If you call the animal shelter, there’s a high possibility that they will contact an animal behaviorist and help the aggressive dog. However, if the situation is really out of hand and the dog is being hostile, then it’s best to call the cops.
Can you calm an aggressive dog?
If you have your dog on a leash, it’s best to distance him from people and other animals so they don’t get more agitated and end up hurting them. This will allow some time for your dog to calm down and recover from the external factors that trigger him.
Should I give away my aggressive dog?
Re-homing your aggressive dog is not the smartest choice to make. The act of passing your problem to another person is not ethical at all, and if you can’t handle your dog it’s most likely the new owner won’t as well. Moreover, re-homing is a stressful event for dogs, so there’s a high chance that they may get more scared and aggressive.
Is there any medication for aggressive dogs?
There are several common medications for treating aggressive canines and Fluoxetine is one of the most successful drugs in treating aggression in dogs.
What causes the dogs to become aggressive?
If the dog in question has previously never shown any sign of aggressive behavior, then it’s most likely the dog is feeling some sort of pain or they may have an illness or disease. Pain is mainly associated with the root cause of aggression in dogs, some of these pain include bone fractures, arthritis, internal injuries and the like.