Rescue Dog Aggressive To Everyone But You? It May Be Resource Guarding

It is normal for a dog to pick one family member out of a home to love most but they generally still love the rest of the family. If you got a dog from a rescue and it is aggressive to everyone in the family except you, however, then you need to take care of this now. One thing that may be the problem is resource guarding. Below is some information about this so you can keep the dog in your home and have everything peaceful again.

Resource Guarding

Resource guarding is your dog guarding something like food, treats, toys, and even a room or a favorite chair or bed. This is normal behavior with dogs as it is natural for them to want to protect things that are theirs.

Your dog will likely growl if someone attempts to take their favorite thing. Generally, the dog will go on playing, eating, and quickly get over it.

It is not normal behavior, however, for a dog to become overly aggressive. For example, because your dog is resource guarding you, anytime someone gets near you the dog may jump on you as if to claim you as their own and growl and lash out at anyone that gets near you. If you have children this can be a dangerous situation. They may not understand the situation and end up getting bit on their arms, face, hands, etc. leading to serious injuries.

What Causes Extreme Resource Guarding

This problem could be due to many reasons. For example, because your dog is a rescue it may be older so you do not know how it was raised. If a dog is not socialized properly, such as with other people and dogs, they may display this aggressive behavior. The dog may have been kept crated much of the day and only let out for short periods of time. In some cases, it could be genetics.

What to Do

You can try to take care of this problem on your own at home. To get started, make sure you have a lot of treats available, and ask a family member the dog trusts to help you.

Put your dog on a leash to protect the family member. Ask the family member to sit approximately 10 feet away from your dog. Tell that person to approach you and as soon as the dog starts growling stop and throw them a treat. Your family member should then back up to the original position and go forward, again throwing the dog a treat when it starts showing aggression.

Continue doing this until they can reach the dog and let it take the treat out of their hand. This is an exercise that takes a lot of time so you must be patient.

If the problem continues, you should hire a behaviorist dog trainer that is experienced handling these situations.

Take your dog to the veterinarian, like those at All-Pets Hospital, to ensure it has no health problems before you do any training. If the dog is in pain, this may be causing the aggression.