As with any dog breed, though, there is the potential for behavioral issues with your dog.
One behavioral issue in Dobermans is aggression. Having an aggressive Doberman may start as a minor, seemingly harmless problem like an occasional nip.
However if the behavior is not dealt with swiftly & effectively it could create a domino effect which could lead downright frightening encounters. Nipping can turn into biting, or in extreme cases, attacks. This could potentially lead to the injury of your Doberman, another pet, or another person.
What exactly should you do if your Doberman is Aggressive?
There are a number of ways to deal with the problem, but before we examine some prevention ideas & Doberman aggression solutions, let’s take a closer look at dog aggression signs more closely:
- The Warning Signs of Doberman Aggression
- What Causes Your Doberman to Be Aggressive
- How to Prevent Doberman Aggression Before it Starts
- Solutions for Existing Doberman Aggression
Doberman Aggression, The Warning Signs
How do you know if your dog is becoming aggressive? What should you look for? Some of the early warning signs can be quite clear. Initially, your dog may do the curled-lip, sneer which is usually a precursor to other actions.
Sneers progress to growling or even more aggressive barking. Other common signs of Doberman aggression would be lunging, nipping, or even biting. If you see any of these signs or a combination of them in your pet, they are telltale signs some form of aggression.
Causes of Doberman Aggression
Why does a dog become aggressive in the first place? There are several potential reasons. One cause could be genetic. Some dogs simply have a greater predisposition for anger and aggressiveness. Doberman Pinschers tend to be a slightly more naturally aggressive dog breed.
Aggression could also stem from changes in your Doberman’s environment. If a dog is in constant isolation, suddenly being around people can trigger bouts discomfort & aggression.
Yet another factor could be a traumatic experience or even injury. If a Doberman was attacked by another dog, or was constantly abused by a former owner, this could also trigger aggression. A dog experiencing physical pain may also tend to be more aggressive.
One other possible reason for the aggression could be that you have an alpha dog that is attempting to prove his dominance.
How to Prevent Doberman Aggression
The best way to prevent Doberman aggression is starting as early as possible, doing the right things during puppy hood.
Making sure that dogs are properly socialized (as early as six or seven weeks old) can be a key factor in getting your pet accustomed to being around other dogs and other people without barking, growling, or biting.
Also allowing a puppy to stay with its litter for at least 8 weeks after it’s born can make really make a difference in aggression levels.
During puppy hood be very careful about how you discipline your dog. Physical discipline can actually end up being counterproductive. Why? Because the physical contact may be a form of trauma to a young Doberman puppy.
As we mentioned before, trauma can trigger aggression.
Aggressive Doberman Solutions
If your Doberman has already reached sexual maturity and is aggressive, don’t worry, there is still hope.
Start off by establishing yourself as the master of your relationship, which will help reduce issues with dominance aggression. Be a firm, fair master when dealing with an aggressive dog.
Make a routine for your dog for everything from feeding times to exercise to rewards. This routine places healthy controls in your dog’s life, which will not only cement your place as the leader of the household, but it will curb aggression.
Another good idea might be to take your dog for a visit to a good vet. You can find out whether or not the aggression issues that your Doberman is having are physically linked. If the issues are not physically linked, your vet should be able to refer you to a good behaviorist which will help you get to the bottom of your dog’s problem.
Regardless of where the aggression is directed or how it comes about, getting to the root of the problem as soon as possible is crucial! The last thing any pet lover wants is to have their dog put down because of an episode that could have been totally preventable.