Dog Leash Aggression, Reaction and Lunging
Ideally, dogs should walk on a loose leash or in a “heel” position. If they see something they want, they can indicate a desire to go in that direction, but they shouldn’t lunge or pull you. Lunging and pulling can hurt their necks, windpipes and backs… and it can injure your back as well! If they are lunging in an aggressive manner, then there’s even more danger. If they get loose, they can hurt or be hurt by the animal or person they are going after. It’s important to work with a qualified behaviorist to get your dog to be peaceful and calm on leash.
Dog leash aggression is a very common issue within a crowded urban area where it’s almost impossible to go out without running into other dogs. Because of the embarrassment or fear of injury, most people end up taking fewer walks or only going out when they think other dogs won’t be around. They even search for places to walk where no other dogs ever go.
But working around the issue isn’t going to solve it… In fact, it only makes it worse since under-exercised dogs just get more anxious and reactive, and undersocialized dogs become less comfortable and get no chance to practice greetings or learn that they can be safe and calm in the company of other dogs.
But what causes dog leash aggression?
Leash aggression can be caused by several different things. Often, it’s just fear manifesting itself as aggression. Sometimes it’s built up frustration. It also can be because the “flight or fight” response has kicked in, and the leash takes away the flight option.
The most common cause is that a dog did not learn polite greeting skills when he was younger. Without knowledge of how to interact, a dog doesn’t develop confidence and then, as an adult, that lack of confidence starts showing itself as aggression. So, ensure your puppy or new dogs gets instruction and exposure to other dogs both on and off leash, so they learn proper greetings in both situations.
If your dog has issues, we will help you understand the reason your dog has been reactive on leash, explain what your dog is experiencing and, ultimately, we will help you fix it.
We have helped people with all types of leash aggressive dogs. We have stopped poor reaction to:
- other dogs
- squirrels, cats, birds, etc.
- skateboards, motorcycles, bikes, cars, etc.
Whatever your issue is, we can help!