By Karen A. Soukiasian
The reason most dogs snap at adults and children, is because of the way they are approached.
They snap because they feel threatened.
The following are most often the causes of what make your dog feel fearful or threatened:
· Moving quickly, or erratically…especially raised hands
· Speaking loudly
· Loud noises
· Towering over them
· Being teased
· Disturbed while resting – startled
· Disturbed while eating
· Over protective about items
· Cornered – no escape
· Direct eye contact
Any snapping should be considered an aggressive behavior. It is unacceptable, even if done out of fear.
Things to do, to help your dog overcome this unacceptable behavior:
Bottom line: By correcting your dog immediately for snapping, you are showing as the Alpha member of the pack, YOU will not tolerate their behavior. If there is trust and respect between you and your dog, they will want to please you.
Massage your dog for a few minutes a day, to help release some of the tension they feel. By doing this, it will not only help relax your dog, it will desensitize them to touch, and reinforces being touched is a good thing.
Never force your dog to be around people who make them feel uncomfortable! Allow them to warm up to new people at their own pace. PRAISE, PRAISE, PRAISE them when they behave appropriately.
Socialize your dog as much as possible. Be patient. There are those, who take longer than others to modify their anti-social behavior. A few never change. The fear is too embedded.
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