Ever wonder why your dog became a biter?

If your calm, gentle dog becomes suddenly aggressive, there’s probably a reason. It happens sometimes. Dogs remain happy and pleasant for years. You treat them like family and they love you in return. Then one day they growl at you or they bare their teeth at your child. They attack your neighbor or they become a biter when you least expect it.

Why did my dog become a biter?

It’s not your fault. While some people train their dogs to be vicious, most pet families give their dogs nothing but TLC. There are several reasons why your dog might act more aggressively or become a biter despite your love and care.

  • Personality changes due to aging
  • Illness or pain
  • Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (similar to Alzheimer’s in humans)
  • Changes in your family structure (divorce, new child or pet)

When aggressive events occur, you want to believe that they’re temporary behavior shifts. Before you accept that theory, you must make sure. Sudden behavior issues are often a sign of a bigger problem. If they continue, your pet could injure you, your family members, or your friends and neighbors.

Aggression at home

When dogs perceive themselves as your protectors, they often behave aggressively toward outsiders. If your dog displays aggressive behavior toward you, it could signal a change in the way they perceive you. Your dog could feel endangered by your presence. He might feel that he has to protect his food, toys, or personal territory. Whatever the reason for a behavioral change, you must take it seriously, especially if your dog has become a biter.

An aggressive dog that bites can cause significant damage. His teeth are perfect for tearing flesh. If he has an untreated bacterial infection, it takes only a scratch to pass it along to you. When a dog becomes aggressive, children are usually the most vulnerable targets. Their injuries are often severe for several reasons.

  • Children are small. They’re on the dog’s level and easier to attack.
  • A small child’s face, throat, and head are easy to reach.
  • Children are often too weak to successfully defend themselves.
  • They are frail. A dog bite often causes deep puncture wounds with injury to skin, muscle, and bone.
  • Small children often play with dogs inappropriately. They pick up their toys and pull their tails. They make loud noises that frighten dogs.

When your dog becomes a biter, children aren’t the only targets

Aggressive dogs are also a problem for Postal Service mail carriers. Each year the USPS publishes their Dog Attack National Rankings. It lists the cities and states with the most recorded mail carrier dog attacks. It’s their way of letting the public know that aggressive dogs are a problem. A mail carrier can refuse to deliver to your home if they have an unresolved problem with your dog.

Under Connecticut statutes, a court can declare your dog a nuisance because of “…vicious disposition or excessive barking or other disturbance…” If your aggressive dog injures a person or damages property, in most cases, you become legally liable.

Contact your veterinarian

When your dog becomes a biter or acts aggressively, it should be a concern for everyone in your family. You must contact your veterinarian immediately to get him the care he needs.

Contact Hebron Veterinary Hospital

If you have questions about your dog’s aggressive behavior, visit our contact page call us at (860) 228-4324 to schedule an appointment. We’re also available for regular checkups and examinations.