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On leash aggression?

asked 2017-02-23 11:49:11 -0500

My dog has recently started being aggressive to other dogs but only when he's on leash..... Nothing has changed in his life so im slightly confused.

And i have no clue how to break this habbit so any help would be appreciated

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answered 2017-02-23 11:58:52 -0500

Leash aggression is SO common (unfortunately). If your pup is treat motivated or food motivated, I would try positive reinforcement and counter conditioning. Clicker training really helps as well! It can take time and patience, but it can definitely be worked on. Your pup has a certain "threshold" that he/she will tolerate on leash when he sees a pup. It would be great if you have a friend that can walk their dog across the street. Every time you notice your pup recognizing the dog, but not yet freaking out, give a command and treat. This creates a positive association between other dogs. It is hard to verbally explain how to do this so I recommend watching this video (look up positive reinforcement and counter condition on Youtube). Here is also a link to great behavior resources! http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/vmth/small_animal/behavior/newsletters.cfm (http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/vmth/sm...)

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answered 2017-02-23 12:45:19 -0500

My other question to you to clarify would be the age and training status of your dog.

It is a little peculiar that the leash aggression would be sudden. Leash aggression in itself though can be common if dogs feel too restrained or frustrated or uncomfortable.

Can you evaluate how your dog walks simply on a leash without any stimulus around? Does your pet pull?

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answered 2017-02-23 12:39:25 -0500

Leash aggression is when a dog feels it's fight or flight instincts. When restrained by a leash, the dog is left with the feeling it needs to fight to keep other dogs at a distance. The great way to reduce this behavior is to socialize your dog with other dogs. By keeping dogs leashed and at a comfortable distance away from each other, you'll be creating a safe environment for you and your pooch. The next step is just to walk your dog till they calm down while at a safe distance away from the new dog. This distance varies dog to dog. Once the dog is calm and ready, he can be slowly introduced to the other dog. This can be done by just walking in a parallel path at some distance to each other. As time goes on, you can gradually get closer and closer to the new dog.

This exercise shows that the other dog isn't an enemy and instead a member of the pack on equal ground.

The more socialized a dog is, the more accepting they are of new dogs in their space. The best way to create a safe environment is to have plenty of space and to accurately read dogs body language for clues on when to advance and when to create more distance.

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answered 2017-02-23 13:28:50 -0500

One tip I tell people with dogs who are either aggressive or just bark at other dogs/people while on leash is this: When you see a dog or person coming, at the moment your dog sees the other dog or person, treat your dog immediately. This will take practice, but make sure you do not treat your dog if they have already started barking or reacting to the other dog. The key is to have your dog see a dog/person and then look to you for a treat. Eventually they will associate the other dog/person with something positive (the treat). Hope this helps!

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