Individuals often welcome dogs into their families for companionship, while others do so for protection. In the case of the latter, all dogs are innately fiercely protective of their owners.
There are some common attributes to look for in dogs that may send a message for you to steer clear of them. You may find it helpful to learn what those are and the breeds that more commonly exhibit these behavioral characteristics.
Common reasons why dogs react aggressively
Dogs have good and bad days just like humans do. They may react aggressively when they’re:
- Anxious or scared: Concerns over physical violence or a change in the dog’s environment, including a recent relocation or introduction of a new family member, may cause them to become anxious.
- Sick: A physical or mental illness can cause them to become less of their joyful, loving self and cause them to snap instead.
- Frustration: Canines can act out like children when they don’t get their way, or either a human or other dog showers them with too much of the wrong attention.
- Trying to be protective over their pack, things or self: Dogs tend to take ownership of their possessions such as toys or food and not want to share them with anyone else. Dogs may become aggressive if someone encroaches on their territory or threatens to take what they have.
Might some dogs act out more aggressively than others?
The American Temperament Test Society (ATTS) tests dogs to determine how likely they are to exhibit unprovoked aggression, strong avoidance tendencies or panic. They ranked the top three most aggressive breeds as follows:
- Chihuahuas: They are generally scared of strangers and also fiercely loyal to their owners. They may bite anyone who draws too close to their owner out of jealousy.
- Dachshunds: These dogs generally suffer from a grandiose complex due to their small stature. They may try to overcompensate for that by putting up a larger-than-life attitude. These dogs can struggle to get along with children unless socialized early on.
- Chow chows: These dogs are generally domineering and assertive. They can benefit from receiving socialization skills early on, though. They are vulnerable to being startled due to their lack of peripheral vision.
Many dogs struggle with striking a balance between play and aggression and bite someone in the process. Texas dog owners have responsibilities. You can hold them accountable when they fail to uphold them.