Very frequently I do come across people looking for large or medium dogs as family pets. Since most of my peeps know me as a German Shepherd Dog keeper, almost every weekend I receive loads of phone calls from people wanting to adopt German Shepherd Dogs, but they are worried about the nature of the breed. The first question I am usually hit with is "How can I make sure that my puppy will grow up to a safe member for my family?" People express their love for large dogs, but at the same seem to be too confused with the stories of dog attacks and dog bites. So today I planned to blog on understanding the dog attacks and how to prevent them.
Well, although in fact dog aggression depends on breeds and even on bloodlines , but it depends mainly on your way of up keeping your puppy. All you need is to understand why actually dogs attack and what causes them behave in the way they do at times. Its only after you get a sound understanding of these whys and whats, you can prevent dog attacks.
Selective Breeding: My first suggestion is to look for a responsible breeder, if you are planning to buy a dog. Dog breeding is a scientific art! A knowledgeable dog breeder puts special emphasize on temperament of the dam and sire while picking specimens for breeding program. Remember, structurally sound dogs do not necessarily make good pets. Steer clear of the breeders who deliberately combines over-tempered specimens.
Instincts: Most of the dog attacks are instinctive. Be it a stray dog or a pure breed, under a given circumstance a dog reacts according to what his instincts make him behave the way he does. Two most effective ways to override this basic problem are to start socializing him at the very early age - about 8 weeks or so, and then putting him into a consistent training session to teach him what are goods and what are bads. CHECK OUT WHY DOGS BECOME AGGRESSIVE!
Provocation: This is one major reason for dog bites and dog attacks, although a not a huge number of dog bites has been reported due to provocation. Provocation in this case is defined as instigating the dog to lose cool on you. Its pretty hard to understand how actually you provoke your dog to get aggravated. Let me try to make things easier for you to understand the dog bites and dog attacks due to provocation. If you are a dog lover or if your child loves dogs too, you both might want to approach him to give him a pat. The dog may not like to be patted or be approached. He will express his displeasure with a slight growl, which most children overlook. If don't hold your child back, s/he would be provoking the dog to bite. Certain expressions of displeasure are so subtle that they usually go unnoticed, making the dog behave in the way he should not. These expressions are some forms of warnings. When you approach a stranger dog with love, he may stiffen up himself, which is an indication that he doesn't want to mingle with a stranger like you. When you stretch out your hand towards a dog, and if he constantly notices at your hand with his body slightly stiffened, instead of at your face with his tail wagging, it's also a kind of warning. Overlooking this dog behavior means provoking the dog to bite you.
Growling is not the only one signal that a dog may warn you with. Growls are usually delivered when these subtle strokes of warning are not heeded carefully. But even if a dog delivers slight growls, a child may not understand what it was meant (lack of ability to recognize the warning) for and he keeps trying to grab the dog which makes the child a victim of fatal dog attacks. Sometimes dogs just walk away when you approach him. Remember, when a dog walks away without responding to your actions, it's a kind of warning that you must be aware of. If you make a second trial to approach him you will provoke him to behave in a way that's not expected.
Cynophobia: Cynophobia is the clinical name for an abnormal fear of dogs, which is again another reason that makes a dog attack. Wondering how? when a Cynophobic patient faces a dog s/he behaves irrationally and screams loud, which irritates most of the cool tempered dogs too. This makes the dog pounce on the person, which can end up with unexpectedly unpleasant incidence. Read HOW TO ELIMINATE CYNOPHOBIA.
So how can you prevent dog attacks? Simple! Don't provoke him; don't make a dog attack you. Understanding the dog attacks and dog bites finds its importance here. The owners' responsibilities can't be denied hereby. If you are a dog owner, train you dog by a professional dog trainer. Socialize your dog at the the early age. You can also consult a canine behaviorist about how to become an alpha member. Make your dog realize that you are the boss and he has to obey your command. If you are a dog owner, please read HOW TO DEAL WITH DIFFICULT DOGS.