Dogs

How To Calm A Dog Down

How To Calm A Dog Down

How to calm an aggressive dog

Every dog has a different personality with their own unique quirks. Some are soppy or calm and others can be shy or aggressive. Either way, knowing your dog’s personality traits is key when you’re their puppy parents.

Having a dog that is showing signs of aggression can be worrying and stressful at times, particularly if you’re not sure what is causing these outbursts. There are many reasons your pup may be displaying signs of aggressive behaviour, sometimes aimed at other dogs, humans or other triggers; loud noises, anxiety or foreign objects.

Trying to keep aggression to a minimum can be difficult at times, particularly when the trigger is something you can’t control. And, unfortunately, there isn’t one reason your pup may be acting aggressively… So, how do you calm your dog down?

Aggressive Dog: The different types of aggression

The cause of this negative behaviour may be due to the following;

  • Frustration
  • Social aggression
  • Learned aggression
  • Fear
  • Protective/territorial aggression
  • Genetics

Take a look at some different ways you can help reduce aggressive behaviour in your pup. Some of these may take some time and patience, so it is wise to seek extra support if you find that your pup is making little progress.

Have an anxious dog? Check out our 5 Simple Steps To Calm Your Anxious Dog

Aggressive Dog: How To Calm Your Dog Down

How to calm a dog down? Exercise

Just like us humans, your pup can have a lot of energy and tension build up inside them and without a way of expressing these, it could result in aggressive behaviour due to this inability to release the energy. As we find that exorcize releases positive hormones, the same applies to our fluffy friends. [1]

Take your pooch for regular walks; once or twice a day – the more energy they burn, the better their state of mind and emotions will be. If they’re lacking energy, they will find it difficult to become aggressive and irritable.

How to calm a dog down? Socialise them

Ideally more beneficial when your dog was a puppy, introducing them to other dogs could seriously help the way they react when meeting a new dog…or human for that matter. Creating regular encounters with different new people or dogs is extremely beneficial. Dogs are pack animals naturally, which means they are incredibly sociable. When deprived of this innate behaviour, it can cause issues such as aggression or vulnerability towards other dogs.

If you notice your pup becomes tense and angry around other dogs, the best thing to do would be to slowly introduce them to other pups. A simple walk around the park with other dogs should do the trick.

PETLAB CO. PRO TIP: A great way to get your pup to socialise is to take them to a training class. That way they will be surrounded by other dogs on a regular basis.

How to calm a dog down? Use high quality supplements

Rewarding good behavior is extremely important when trying to teach your pup new skills and lessons. The more you praise the good the more likely they’re to continue to want to act in a certain way – a very simple and easy idea. When the cause of aggression and stress is anxiety, it can be hard to find ways of keeping your pup relaxed... You could look to natural calming aids made for dogs that are tailored to help calm nerves and reduce stress. The happier your dog feels, the less likely they are to become aggressive.

How to calm a dog down? Attend behavioural classes

The cause of bad behaviour is difficult and sometimes can take years to find out what triggers your pup’s aggression. If you have adopted or rescued your dog, it may be the case of a post-trauma that is causing the change in calm to anger. Taking your pup to a few behavioural classes could be the answer…

A class or a training camp will help you learn how to support your dog correctly and will also benefit your pup by learning around other dogs – will help them social like said above. The tools that both yourself and your pup will learn will create the foundations for better behaviour in the long run.

How to calm a dog down? Try the muzzle

You may think a muzzle is cruel and restricting, but sometimes it is the best option for you, your pup and others around you – humans and other animals. It may take some time for your canine companion to get used to the rubber cage around their mouths, but they will eventually find it normal. Combined with a harness, you will have more control over your pup if they begin to show aggressive patterns; barking, snarling or jumping.

PETLAB CO. PRO TIP: Practice makes perfect! Pop the muzzle and harness – better than a lead as you will have more control over their body – on your pup for 15 mins each day. This will help reduce any stressed the change may cause which could result in more negative behaviour.

How to calm a dog down? Stay calm!

It is incredibly important that you, as their puppy parent, keep calm when they’re showing signs of aggression or distress. When you begin to tense or show stress, your dog will sense these negative emotions and may end up causing them to react more. You may or may not realise, but your dog will rely on you and your body language when dealing with a new, different environment [2].

If your pup shows aggression to other dogs when you’re taking them out for a walk, try to keep yourself calm and centred. The calmer you are, the less likely your pup will start to become tense and distressed. If you’re expectant of this behaviour, you may find that you being to worry and tense when another dog approaches, which will only exacerbate the situation.

How To Calm Down A Puppy

If you're after a calm puppy, this all comes down to training if they're particular hyper or nipping. As well as making sure they’re being stimulated with exercise and socialising, getting on top of their training and keeping them in a routine will help calm your pup enormously. Read our blog with our beginner tips to training your dog here!

Final thoughts on how to calm dogs down

It is very easy to worry and become stressed when you’re living with an aggressive dog – their anxieties and behaviour can, in turn, cause you to feel anxious and scared. Dogs are very powerful and when acting out of aggression can be rather threatening and concerning. The key? Try to stay dominate and calm! Your dog will also react to your emotions, so the stronger and more relaxed you are, the easier it will be to keep them from turning the aggression onto you. If you follow these simple steps, you will notice some real changes in your pup’s reactions to different triggers.

Have an anxious dog? Check out our 5 Simple Steps To Calm Your Anxious Dog

Sources

Cesars Way

Shiba Shake

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