How to Stop Beagle Aggression
One of the best-loved personality characteristics of beagles is that they are not, in general, prone to aggression. This does not mean, however, that there is no such thing as an aggressive beagle. Any dog can quickly turn aggressive for a number of reasons. If your beagle is suddenly and unexpectedly displaying high levels of aggressive behaviour it is vital that you figure out the cause of the aggression and take immediate steps to resolve it before the situation rapidly gets out of control.
Is There A Dominance Issue In The Home?
All dogs need to understand the hierarchy in their pack; for family pets, you are their pack whether you realise it or not. It is important that your dogs understand that you are the dominant pack member and it is important to ensure that one of your dogs does not make attempts to take on this role himself. If there is no clearly defined pack leader in your home, and you have more than one dog, you may find that each dog will start vying for the position of leader; this activity can rapidly lead to beagle aggression as he attempts to assert his dominance among other members of the pack.
Resolve issues of dominance by allowing your dogs to understand that you are the dominant pack member; this can be as simple as making them sit and wait before eating the food that you offer them. Basic obedience training is an excellent method of ensuring that you are viewed as the alpha pack member!
Aggression Begets Aggression
If you are faced with an aggressive beagle you should carefully review your own behavior towards him; have you been excessively harsh on him? Have you punished him by hitting him? Have you repeatedly yelled at him for minor behavioral issues? Many dogs, beagles included, will react to such behavior in an aggressive manner that is actually fear-based. Your goal should never be to get your beagle to fear you and fear physical punishment. Allowing your beagle to trust and respect you will help to establish a solid bond between the two of you – a bond that will keep negative aggressive behaviors out of your relationship.
Aggression Towards Others
If your aggressive beagle appears to be acting out towards others it may be that he perceive a threat to you and your household; ensure that your beagle has a firm trust in you and your abilities as his leader. Address new people into your home in a calm manner that will allow him to view them as welcomed guests; try to avoid over-the-top loud greetings that he may view as a form of aggression or fear.
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Although no one likes to think it, aggressive beagles may be acting that way due to serious medical conditions. Many dogs act aggressive out of fear and when in pain as a means of defending themselves from a perceived threat. Have your veterinarian examine your aggressive beagle to help rule out any physical or neurological reasons for his aggression.
If your aggressive beagle is proven to be in tip-top shape then his condition is likely simply behavioral; a behavioral issue can definitely be a challenge to resolve. However, with patience and affection you will be able to help your beagle and his aggression in a positive manner that reinforces his trust in you.