Dog food aggression is viewed as one of those dog behavior challenges. It just doesn’t seem to make sense to us that our dog would feel threatened by us taking his or her food. I mean we gave him the food to begin with so logically we are givers, not takers.
Let’s look at it from a dog’s view.
When a dog glares and growls and puts himself between his food and us, he’s saying “this is my food and you are going to get hurt if you come any closer to it”. He’s basically telling us he is the leader or alpha dog in the home.
Dog food aggression (often called canine possession aggression) is a dominance problem.
It needs to be handled when you see it as it will not disappear on its own.
Even though people often find it funny the first time they see their dog do this, especially if it is a puppy or a small dog, realize that allowing your dog to continue this behavior is sending the wrong message to your pet. It says that he/she is, indeed, the alpha dog and with that message, the behavior can escalate out of control.
I’ve seen unchecked aggressive behavior cause a dog to harm his owner, badly. It started with dog food aggression that the owner ignored.
Why Does The Dog Display Dog Food Aggression?
Canine possession aggression is caused by any number of reasons. Here are some of the more common ones:
- Your dog is eager for his food, and is being greedy about not sharing it. He shields or guards his food like he might have performed inside a pack in the wild.
- Your dog is in a multi animal or child home and gets food taken away from him or is teased while eating.
- The behavior started in another place (your dog was an aggressive dog when you got him) and you don’t know the cause.
Dog food aggression is usually part of a general confusion regarding whom the leader is within the owner – dog relationship. If you observe it once and don’t address it, chances are you’ll see it continue and get worse.
Often the dog doesn’t even know his dog food aggression is unacceptable behavior. It is important that you let him know this behavior will not be tolerated.
General Rules For Correcting Food Aggression In Dogs
If the dog is directing his aggression towards other dogs the best solution is usually just to separate their feeding areas. Either separate rooms or each in their crate is a good way to do this.
If the dog is aggressive toward humans and no other animals are around, become stern and
Make it clear to the young puppies which it’s good to have folks about whenever they are eating. If you do this from day 1 you’ll virtually absolutely prevent dog food aggression issues.
If you encounter dog food aggression it is actually a wise decision to feed a dog once you and your loved ones eat. This again is a throwback to the dogs pack attitude where the alpha dog or leader of the pack (that is you) consumes initially – a dog may recognize this technique.
Don’t allow a dog “win” the food from his growling, this might reward the behavior you’re striving to eradicate. Don’t bully or intimidate the dog though, it’s better to create him really like having we about at meal time (follow the strategies under to achieve this).
Never reply to canine possession aggression with aggression of the own. In essence what this does is to lock we plus the dog into a battle of wills. The dogs upcoming move might probably be to step up his amount of aggression to countertop the action.
Dog Food Aggression Training Techniques
Firstly, be cautious. If you believe the dog poses any real bodily risk to we or family members I’d advise getting specialist aid. Speak to a pro dog trainer or animal behaviorist.
Below is a list of training techniques that can assist a dog overcome his dog food aggression. Remember all these techniques are created to function towards reconditioning a dog to enjoy having we about anytime. Mix it up, show a dog that is boss.
Hand feed a dogs, even stick the hands into a dogs bowl whilst he is eating.
Stroke plus pet the dog whilst he is eating at the same time speak to him inside a calming tone. All you may be doing at this point is showing the dog it is a wise thing for we to be about.
Stand at a distance your dog is comfortable with, then slowly lower this distance over time. You are able to flick a some treats inside (or near) the bowl because we gradually lessen the distance.
Put the dogs bowl down with nothing inside it, the dog can look back at we because though you may be crazy. He’ll then virtually beg we to come over plus fill his bowl.
Feed a dog because usual nevertheless hold back a limited pieces of his meal. Whenever he is completed licking the bowl, he’ll look back up at we, then you are able to come over plus provide him the remaining food.
Drop a limited of the dogs very favorite treats into his bowl every time we walk past it. After a while of the the dog might acceptance the sight of we approaching the bowl.
Whenever the dog is eating, call him over to you, whenever he gets to we reward him, create it value his while then allow him back to the food bowl.
While you’re preparing a dogs meal put him inside a down-stay or sit position, just release him from a control when you have put his bowl down. By carrying this out you may be controlling meal time plus establishing (or re-establishing) the part because a dogs leader.
Work with another relative about this technique. Put a dog inside his collar plus leash plus have him sit with a helper whilst we make the food. If you are willing launch the dog plus let him his food. Again you’re controlling the condition.
Try the “Trade Up Method”. What we do is remove the food or toy the dog is guarding, plus substitute it with anything greater. You are able to employ an obedience control including “give” or “leave it” to motivate a dog to release the valuable resource he is guarding. We then take this resource (the food or toy) plus give the trade up item to the dog. When a dog has completed with all the fresh item, you are able to then provide back the resource we took away. This technique proves to the dog which he’ll get anything great for offering anything up, it usually recondition his thinking.
Every time you may be with a dog have him inside a pinch or prong collar with a leash attached. When he shows any signs of dog food aggression we immediately administer a correction to the dog by snapping found on the leash. What this does to the dog is build a bad organization to the act of his food guarding antics.