If you find that your dog is constantly growling, snapping, or trying to bite at other people or other dogs, it is evident that your dog has a pretty serious behavior problem.
When dogs become aggressive, it is one of the biggest reasons why dog owners consult professionals for help.
Most of the time, they consult a dog trainer or some type of dog behaviorist. Most of the time, it's not just for dogs that are larger in size either.
Dogs that are more of a dangerous breed are more likely to express aggressive behavior as well. However, any dog of any size and breed is capable of being aggressive.
It can be a pretty difficult experience to handle, especially if you have a dog that is usually very mellow and kind and suddenly starts to bark or growl or display very aggressive behavior. It might even bite someone that it has known for a while even though it wouldn't normally do such a thing.
It can be pretty hard to know what to do when your dog starts to show this type of behavior, especially since there is a chance that things will get out of hand.
Even though your dog's aggressive behavior cannot be easily swept away overnight, there are lots of things that you can do to control this type of behavior and help your dog behave better.
If you are concerned about your french bulldog acting aggressive, here in this article we will go over the steps that you can take to control it. Here are some ways that you can fix it.
Why is Your French Bulldog Acting Aggressively?
Usually, when your french bulldog is acting aggressive it means that the dog is either preparing for an attack or trying to defend itself against a potential attack.
Behavior like this usually involves the dog becoming very stiff and uptight. It will also start to growl, snarl, show its fangs and might even start to lunge or bite at the thing that is trying to attack it.
When you see this behavior, the first thing you should try to do is figure out what it is that is causing your dog to be so alarmed in the first place.
If someone is trying to approach your dog while it is eating on a bone or chewing on something it likes, it will probably growl at them. Most dogs will also act aggressively towards people that they don't know and children as well.
Sometimes when the dog is acting aggressive, it is not always toward a person. Most dogs will actually become hostile towards other dogs and other types of animals.
Some of them only act this way towards only certain types of animals. Perhaps it only acts hostile or aggressive towards cats, certain types of birds, or even certain objects like cars or broomsticks and sports balls.
What you need to remember is that until you know the reason why the dog is being aggressive, you won't be able to come up with a proper plan to dispel the hostility.
There are many types of aggression that a dog can have. Here are some examples:
1- Territorial Aggressive Behavior
This means that the dog is being aggressive because it is trying to defend either you, the home or something it possesses from a possible threat or intruder.
2- Protective Aggressive Behavior
This means that the dog is being aggressive in an effort to protect other dogs that it is related to or it is trying to protect the members of your family. This is especially evident in mother dogs.
They will be very protective of their pups and even act aggressively towards anyone or anything that approaches them.
3- Possessive Aggressive Behavior
This means that the dog is being aggressive in order to protect anything that belongs to it. For example, food, dog toys, any type of bone or anything other things that it is interested in.
4- Fear Related Aggressive Behavior
The french bulldog is afraid of something and wants to get out of a situation that is causing the fear. But it will proceed to attack if it is being cornered.
5- Defensive Aggressive Behavior
It is similar to fear-related aggression. The dog will attack something that is causing the fear in order to defend itself, before attempting to get out of the situation.
Dogs that do this will usually give off signs that they really want to avoid drama before they actually attack, such as looking the other way or moving backward.
6- Socially Related Aggressive Behavior
This usually means that the dog is being hostile towards other dogs in social settings. If your french bulldog has not been trained properly around other animals it is more likely to act aggressively towards other beings in social situations.
7- Frustration Related Aggressive Behavior
Dogs will also become more aggressive when it is in a frustrating situation, such as being locked up in a cage or tied onto a leash or in an area that prevents it from moving around.
When it is being restricted this way, it will show its frustration. Sometimes the dog might also become overly excited when it is going on a walk or doing something else and will bite.
8- Aggressive Behavior That Is Redirected
If there is a dog fight happening and your french bulldog is in the fight, it might redirect its aggression towards you if you attempt to try to break up the fight.
This can also happen if the dog isn't able to get to the animal that it wants to attack so it will become aggressive towards other animals that are nearby.
According to this article, it is true that aggression is dangerous for both the dog and other beings in the environment.
9- Pain Related Aggressive Behavior
If the dog has been injured or is in some type of pain, it will also show some type of aggression or hostility.
10- Sexual Aggressive Behavior
If there are two male dogs or female dogs trying to get the attention of a potential mate, they can become aggressive in an effort to compete with the other dog.
According to Science Direct, this is most common with intact animals, but this situation can be taken care of if the dogs get spayed and neutered.
11- Predatory Aggressive Behavior
Your dog might become aggressive when it is involved with a certain predator. Usually, when it is chasing an animal it will become aggressive because it sees the animal as a threat.
This is important to keep in mind because it can happen with children as well. Dogs that often show predatory aggression may end up biting the kid even if it is an innocent game.
How to Stop Your French Bulldog's Aggression
When your french bulldog is being aggressive, try to keep a record of everything that led up to it being hostile.
This will be very helpful for you when you are trying to figure out the next step. You won't be able to come up with an effective resolution is you find out the reasoning or cause for this behavior.
According to Science Direct, you can also try to get a behavioral test done in order to get more information about the dog's aggressive behavior.
This behavior is just one piece of the whole problem. There are many ways that you can take control of this and help your french bulldog react in a more positive manner.
However, remember that this is going to take time and dedication. You might also have to consult a professional after a while as well.
To get more information on how you can take action against aggressive behavior, check out this video for more.
Here you can learn steps to take control of the environment.
1- See a Professional Veterinarian
If your dog is usually pretty calm but starts to act aggressive or show hostility and negative behaviors, it can be a sign that there might be a medical problem going on.
Some of the health problems in dogs such as brain problems, hypothyroidism, and very painful wounds can result in this type of behavior.
Try getting in touch with your veterinarian to see what could be the problem. You may be introduced to a variety of medications or treatments but this is what will improve the situation.
2 Consult a Professional
After seeing the veterinarian, it might be even more helpful if you go ahead and get in touch with an animal behaviorist. This is a serious problem that your dog is facing and is most likely something that owners cannot fix on their own.
A professional will get things straightened out and help you find out what is causing this problem and how you can prevent it in the future. You can probably get referrals from your veterinarian.
This article suggests that behavior rehabilitation might also be something that you can go over with a professional in order to help the dog behave.
3 Come Up with a Plan
When you get in touch with a professional animal behaviorist or a dog trainer, they can help you come up with a plan that will help better manage the dog's hostility.
Most of the time, you can try to carry out positive reinforcement in an effort to introduce the dog to a new way of behaving.
For example, if your french bulldog is usually pretty uptight or hostile toward strangers, try distancing yourself from anybody that your dog is not familiar with.
Make sure that are far enough away so that the dog isn't ready to start growling. Once you see that this is working, start giving the dog treats and slowly get closer and closer to the person until there is no hostility. Remember to continue to be positive to the dog and let it know that this the right thing to do.
Once this happens, it will start to realize that unfamiliar people will help it get treats and it will slowly become less and less aggressive toward strangers. You can use this same method in any situation.
4- Don't Punish the Dog
When your french bulldog is being aggressive, it makes sense to try to punish the dog for acting out. However, this can usually backfire and make the situation much worse.
If you become aggressive in an effort to eliminate the dog's aggression, it might feel like it needs to defend itself and might even attempt to attack you.
Avoid hitting the dog, yelling at it, or doing anything else that triggers aggressive behavior. Doing this can also make your dog want to attack or bite other people that are around, even though they didn't do anything.
For example. If your dog is growling at other people in the area it is trying to say that they are making it uncomfortable.
5- Try Different Medications
Maybe you've worked with both a vet and a professional behaviorist and you find that you're still having the same problem. At this point, you might need to look into getting your dog medication in order to help the problem.
One of the biggest things you have to keep in mind is that if a dog is constantly under some sort of stress or fear or anxiety, it won't be able to properly learn anything that you are trying to teach it.
6- Take Control of the Environment
Make sure that your daily routine or environment can be changed in order to avoid inevitable situations. If your french bulldog is always being hostile around children, you might have to make pretty big changes if you have kids.
Or you might have to come up with a way to find a new home or a new area for the dog so that only adults are ever around it.
This study confirmed that certain things in the dog's environment can contribute to its fear, aggression, stress, and many other things that can result in bad behavior.
7- Give the Dog Rewards
Don't be so quick to take away the dog's favorite toy or bone. You should instead try to bring new things to the dog that it might like even more. New toys, new bones, and other things.
If it is holding it, playing with it or guarding it, you can probably get the dog to drop that item and give it a new item in exchange.
Once the dog has stopped guarding the items and gets the new one, you can continue using this method time and time again.
Once this routine has been effective for a while, the dog might begin to realize that there is no need to be so aggressive in an effort to keep valuable items in its possession.
8- Keep the Dog's Favorite Items out of Sight
When you're first starting the treatment, you need to make sure that you're keeping your dog's most desired items locked away somewhere. This will prevent the dog from taking them while you're not paying attention.
As a freelance pet writer and blogger, Shannon is passionate about crafting knowledge-based, science-supported articles that foster healthy bonds of love and respect between people and animals. But her first and very most important job is as a dog auntie and cockatiel, tortoise, and box turtle mama.