While Chihuahuas are not very big dogs, they can actually get quite aggressive.
If you have one of these dogs, it is important to know how why this is happening so you can put a stop to it.
Aggression can get an otherwise good dog in a lot of trouble, so you’ll want to take action.
Common Causes for Chihuahua Aggression
There are a number of possible reasons for your dog’s aggression, and it is important that you explore some of them. You won’t be able to tackle this problem effectively until you understand why it is happening.
1. Compensating for Size
One of the main reasons that Chihuahuas sometimes act aggressive is because they are making up for their relatively small size. This is particularly common when they are facing down another dog that is bigger than them.
If your dog comes face to face with a pit bull or a Rottweiler, there is a good chance that it will start barking its head off. It might even try to bite the bigger dog in a brazen act of aggression.
The more aggressive these dogs act, the more fearless they feel. It might seem a bit strange, but it’s not so crazy when you think about it. Just think of it as a really short person driving a really big pickup truck.
2. Lack of Exercise
Since Chihuahuas are very energetic creatures, they need lots of exercise on a regular basis. There is a chance that your dog has become aggressive because it is not getting the physical stimulation it needs each day.
If you only take your dog for one walk each day, you should seriously consider stepping it up to two. It is also a good idea to take them to a dog park once in a while to run around with others animals. If this is the only cause of their aggression, you shouldn’t have to worry about your pet doing any damage to other dogs at the park.
3. Improper Socialization
Some dogs that are not socialized properly from an early age can be overly aggressive at times. This is one of the problems with adopting a dog when you don’t really know its history. If your dog wasn’t socialized the right way in the first few months of its life, it could give you problems.
It is absolutely essential that dogs be exposed to lots of different people and other dogs from the time they are a puppy. This helps them understand how to play and take social cues, which is important.
If you have noticed that your Chihuahua has become aggressive out of nowhere, it could be due to sickness. Whether it is rabies or something much less serious, this is a possible explanation to consider. Some dogs that are ill become irritable when their owners try to pet them.
Some of the general signs that your dog might be sick include lethargy, lack of appetite, sudden and unexplained weight loss, diarrhea, and vomiting. If you notice any of these things in your dog, you should get them looked at by your vet just to be safe.
How to Put a Stop to Your Dog’s Aggression
You will be able to take quite a few different approaches when it comes to getting your dog’s aggression under control. The sooner you start doing this, the better off everyone is going to be.
Socialize Your Dog
If your dog is still fairly young, it is imperative that you take the right approach to socializing them. This means taking them into a variety of environments with different people and other animals on a regular basis. The more of these things they are exposed to, the less likely they will be to get aggressive.
Even older dogs can be socialized up to a point, but it can take a while. This is really something that needs to be done early on in the dog’s life. You can always try hiring a professional trainer. This might be a good idea, especially considering how stubborn these dogs can be.;
Offer a Reward
When it comes to putting a stop to aggressive behavior in your dog, positive reinforcement is definitely the key. You should give your dog a treat every time they obey you. This can translate into progress with getting your dog to stop acting this way.
The better your dog does with meeting your expectations, the more you should raise them. This is a good basic principal of dog training that you should follow. It is important to keep raising the bar for your pet instead of settling for the bare minimum.
Don’t Reinforce Their Aggressive Behavior
A lot of people end up reinforcing their pet’s aggressive behavior without even realizing it. For example, you should never try to pet or otherwise comfort your dog if they start barking at a person or another dog. You also shouldn’t try to shoo them away. Instead you’ll want to stand your ground and stay calm. If you start getting worked up, the dog will only become more aggressive.
- Chihuahuas are known for being aggressive if they are not properly socialized from an early age.
- One of the most common reasons that these small dogs act so bold is because they are trying to make up for their size. This behavior usually takes place when confronting a larger dog.
- Aggressive behavior can lead to biting, which can be a real problem for you and your dog.
- If you get one of these dogs as a puppy, it is important that you expose it to a variety of people, places and other dogs.
- You should always reward your dog for obeying you and staying calm with a treat and verbal praise.
- Never reinforce aggressive behaviors by making your dog think what it is doing is okay. This means not shooing it away if it starts barking at someone who comes over to visit.
- Make certain that your dog is getting plenty of exercise. A lack of physical activity could be the reason for their occasionally aggressive behavior.