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Training Your Dog :: Territorial and Fear Aggression

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By Paul Reedy

This week in our series on aggression, I would like to talk about two of its most common forms.

Territorial and fear.

Let’s start with territorial aggression. What is it? If you have ever had a dog bark at you while inside its yard, then you enter that yard or the dog exits it and all of a sudden it’s your best friend.

That’s an example of territorial aggression. Some dogs will also display this behavior inside a car or when tied out to a tree or pole. This type of aggression is usually directed at strange or unfamiliar people and dogs. For most dog owners this behavior is not a problem. As a matter of fact, the reason that a lot of us own dogs in the first is because of their protective and territorial instincts.

What Do You Do If Your Dog Seems To Go Overboard With It?

Although we are discussing territorial aggression, keep in mind that other types of aggression could also be at work. For example, let’s look at human emotions.

Jealousy and hate are two different emotions but both can result in anger. In that same way fear, dominance, and dog aggression can all be at work in a dog that seems to want to kill anything or anyone who walks by his yard.

As I stated before no aggression is breed specific. However, we do know that there are many breeds that were bred specifically to protect. Dobermans, German Shepherds, Rottys just to name a few. In these breeds you may see higher levels of territorial aggression.

To help with this problem, start by taking your dog for a walk once a day if you are not already doing so. Many dogs that are territorially aggressive are not geetting the exercise that they need. Confine the dog to an area in your yard or a kennel away from pedestrian traffic. Also get obedience training. You will hear me say this a lot. Teaching your dog come, sit, down, and quiet can make a big difference.

NEXT WEEK: Fear Aggression.

Paul Reedy is a new Urban Chic columnist. He was in law enforcement from 1994-2001. He decided to venture out into the area of dog training and made a point to do everything in his power to increase his knowledge of dogs and how they think.

He attended Triple Crown Dog Academy and is certified as a Canine Behavior and Training Specialist. In December of 2001, Reedy attended Adlerhorst International for additional training as a police dog handler. For questions about your dog contact Paul at urbanchic@blackvoicenews.com

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