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How should fear aggression be handled?

  • Work with the dog with the help of a professional behaviorist

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Euthanize the dog - he/she is too much of a liability

    Votes: 0 0.0%
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There has been a lot of debate on here about fear aggression (whether to work with the dog or have it PTS), and I'm curious what the concensus is. Should fear aggressive dogs be given a chance, or should they be PTS because they are too much of a liability? Or, is dealing with fear aggression not so black and white?
 

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Leeann.Bella.Remy said:
There has been a lot of debate on here about fear aggression (whether to work with the dog or have it PTS), and I'm curious what the concensus is. Should fear aggressive dogs be given a chance, or should they be PTS because they are too much of a liability? Or, is dealing with fear aggression not so black and white?
IMO it depends;

1. Is the dog agressive to people or dogs?
2. Can you see in the dog's body language when he's about to act out or is he hard to read.
3. Are you willing to take on the task of retraining an agressive dog?

Paula
 

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I don't think that life is that black and white....I think that there are times that a dog must be put down becuase there is just no hope.....For example, those crackhead [email protected] that chain a dog to it house and rarely feed or give them attention to make him aggressive or when they breed in human aggression from obviously unstable dogs, then that in my O is when its neccessary to put a dog down & Any type of child aggression....But if my dog growls at an adult I have to look at what was going on...What was happening? How was the person behaving? What was my demeanor? Was I confidant and in control?Was I nervous and never should have put my dog in that situation to begin with? etc......I don't think a dog should be put down just bc it growled at someone. I think that as owners sometimes unknowingly put our dogs into bad situations...I think that a professional should test the dog and make the final call
 

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The options up the top for the poll are a little too different i wouldnt put my dog to sleep right away if it showed fear, and it would depend on the serveity of the fear. It also depends on its recovery, but if it was a fearful nervy stressed out critter, i would prolly put it down to give itself a break
 

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I think it should be put to sleep especially if its a bully breed. They already have enough bad rap, they dont need more reports of crazed dogs turning on owner or trainer.
 

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I've seen dogs come in the rescue that show so much fear and actually act on it by bitting someone. Do we put them down right away? Never! We strongly believe that every dog deserves a chance. We have groups of professionals we can call for advice and for them to come out and personally work with the dogs.

We only put down a dog when there is really no hope for them. Sometimes it's better to just put them to sleep and let them be at peace.

Some people are quick to throw out PUT HIM TO SLEEP! But I believe everything deserves a chance. I had a dog who feared everything, even her own shadow. She was a dog that would've probaly hurt someone if they cornered her. We worked with her for months and she turned into a great companion.
 

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angie7349 said:
I don't think that life is that black and white....I think that there are times that a dog must be put down becuase there is just no hope.....For example, those crackhead [email protected] that chain a dog to it house and rarely feed or give them attention to make him aggressive or when they breed in human aggression from obviously unstable dogs, then that in my O is when its neccessary to put a dog down & Any type of child aggression....But if my dog growls at an adult I have to look at what was going on...What was happening? How was the person behaving? What was my demeanor? Was I confidant and in control?Was I nervous and never should have put my dog in that situation to begin with? etc......I don't think a dog should be put down just bc it growled at someone. I think that as owners sometimes unknowingly put our dogs into bad situations...I think that a professional should test the dog and make the final call

Good thoughts, Angie, and I agree with you. There are too may issues that need to be studied and should be studied before making a decision that would end a dog's life. However, there would never be any doubt in my mind that a dog should be put to sleep if I could not trust it not to fight to the death. If a dog bites out of fear, I do believe that can be worked with, but there is no returning a dog to a family state if it will kill.
 

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It's always tough to have to make such a call. Obviously we have to look at the seriousness of the matter and make a good evaluation of the dog.

However, I think with the bullies we have to be even more careful than with other breeds because of the BSL. Bullies should be confident in nature and not overly suspicious of people; therefore if a bully is showing fear of people I think in many cases in would probably be best to put the dog down. Of course I would not put a dog down because it ONCE looked at someone suspiciouly or backed away from someone or whatever (have to use common sense) but I think we have to err on the side of caution with these dogs. Bulies can do alot of damage (even if its just a little fear bite nip) and the last thing we need is these guys on the front page of the paper. Alot of people say they should all be given a chance but with some dogs the problems are so obvious that there is really no point. The shelters are already full of wonderful, stable minded animals, why try and save every potential fear biter that comes through the door? Dogs are going to be put down anyways regardless (because of pet overpopulation), it may as be the ones who post the most risk to society.
 

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Lisa said:
It's always tough to have to make such a call. Obviously we have to look at the seriousness of the matter and make a good evaluation of the dog.

However, I think with the bullies we have to be even more careful than with other breeds because of the BSL. Bullies should be confident in nature and not overly suspicious of people; therefore if a bully is showing fear of people I think in many cases in would probably be best to put the dog down. Of course I would not put a dog down because it ONCE looked at someone suspiciouly or backed away from someone or whatever (have to use common sense) but I think we have to err on the side of caution with these dogs. Bulies can do alot of damage (even if its just a little fear bite nip) and the last thing we need is these guys on the front page of the paper. Alot of people say they should all be given a chance but with some dogs the problems are so obvious that there is really no point. The shelters are already full of wonderful, stable minded animals, why try and save every potential fear biter that comes through the door? Dogs are going to be put down anyways regardless (because of pet overpopulation), it may as be the ones who post the most risk to society.
Some good thoughts to consider.
 

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I have to agree with Lisa. If Boss became fearful of people, I really don't know if it would be a good idea for me to keep him alive. It would absolutely break my heart if he became fearful and I had to put him down, but I don't think I want to keep a dog that can't greet my guests with a wagging tail, and that can't be friendly when he is approached by strangers. Obviously it does depend on the severity of the fear-aggression. If it's directed towards people, I would have to say the dog should be put down. I think that's part of being a responsible owner. You're ensuring that your dog will not become a headline and further destroy the reputation of these breeds.

I did vote for work with the dog, because I do think attempts should be made to see if the fear-aggression can be kept under control. If not, then it needs to be put down.
 

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IMO it depends on how bad the fear aggression is, and how well equipped the owners are to deal with it. Good poll tho!
 

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Definatly would go with a "every situation is different" p.o.v.

But, Id say in a 99% that I'd most absolutly seek help, and resort to PTS as a last option.
 

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I don't think there's any definitive way to answer that. It all depends on the situation. In any case, I think the dog should be professionally evaluated before a decision is made. The average pet owner could easily mis-interpret behavior, so I think it'salways better to get a professional opinion. Every dog deserves at least that much.

If he is found to be a fear biter, I do think the dog should be put down. It's sad, but I don't think it can be cured or worked out. I had to do it with one of my dogs several years ago (a ridgeback). He got more fearful and vicious with age, and when the vet refused to see him (even muzzled) because he was so vicious, I knew something had to be done. Fear biters are too unpredictable, and every incident only adds fuel to the fire (particularly where bullies are involved). In a perfect world, only qualified breeders would be producing dogs, and we wouldn't have such an influx of BYB's and unstable dogs.
 

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Lisa said:
The shelters are already full of wonderful, stable minded animals, why try and save every potential fear biter that comes through the door? Dogs are going to be put down anyways regardless (because of pet overpopulation), it may as be the ones who post the most risk to society.
I agree with this statement. If I owned a dog, especially a bully breed, that continually growled at humans, I would humanely put him/her to sleep. In my opinion, this is what a responsible person would do.

I think about all of those stories I have read about pit bull attacks and killings, and I understand that part of the problem is the lack of training and possibe abuse by the owners. I think, however, the biggest problem in these cases is iresponsible behavior on the owner's part. I do not believe that the majority of dogs just attack out of nowhere. When someone's dogs has attacked or bitten someone, it is always "well they have never shown aggression before" or something like that. I think that is crap. The dog most likely has shown human aggressive tendencies before, but the owner did nothing about it, and worst of all, may have even encouraged it. A responsible person would put a human aggressive dog to sleep. Like what Lisa said, there are so many dogs out there that also deserve a chance.

Also, I believe that it is different if your dog displays some mild fear behavior--like I have read that some dogs are fearful of males or something in particular like that. I think those things can be worked out.
 
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