Teaching a Dog to Focus to Help His Humans Stop His Dog Aggression

By: David Codr

Published Date: January 14, 2019

For this Omaha dog training session we teach 5 year-old American Bulldog Scooby to focus and share tips to stop his aggression towards other dogs.

Scooby is definitely a low energy dog. He was very friendly and relaxed during the session as you can see from the videos below.

But don’t let Scooby’s relaxed behavior fool you, his guardians reported that he was aggressive to other dogs when they set up this in home dog training session. Without any dogs around, he was a sweetheart. But when he is around another dog, he gets tense, stiffens up and if gets close enough, is dog aggressive.

The key to stopping dog aggression is helping the dog learn to not react to the triggers that cause it to have an outburst. You do this by exposing the dog to other dogs in a controlled setting and provide positive reinforcement when it doesn’t react. You ensure it doesn’t react by adding in enough distance.

Once you have found the right distance, you need to cue the dog to look away from the other dog instead of acting aggressive when it sees the other dog. I showed Scooby’s guardians how to teach a dog to focus so they can eventually use this command to stop Scooby before he gets aggressive.

By learning, then practicing the focus exercise without any other dogs around, Scooby can develop a strong focus command. Only once that is in place, should the guardians follow the other steps to stop a dog from being aggressive towards other dogs.

Because he is such a powerful breed, stopping aggressive behavior towards other dogs with a non confrontational approach is key. Using the force and punishment based methods many Omaha dog trainers use would certainly increase Scooby’s dog aggression.

Best of all, the guardians don’t need to become professional American Bulldog trainers to stop Scooby’s dog aggression. If they practice often, go slow and keep Scooby from reacting by having the right distance, they will be able to help him practice not attacking other dogs. Once he does this enough, the other dog behavior tips I shared in this session should help complete the process.

I asked the guardians to stay in touch as they practice as its quite possible we may need to refine this approach or perhaps even do some BAT training down the road.

To help them remember all the tips I shared in this session, we shot a roadmap to success video.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Categorized in:

This post was written by: David Codr

Follow Us via Email