How can I do grooming session for an aggressive dog smoothly and safely? That is a question that will probably be the most worrying and concerning issue for pet owners. Having an aggressive dog can sometimes make you worry that you cannot groom it well.
Moreover, you cannot always get to the pros. Therefore, you should find out why the dog is aggressive with grooming and knowing how to treat your dog will help you feel more comfortable to groom them.
The Reason Why A Dog Becomes Aggressive
There will always be a reason when your dog becomes aggressive when you touch them for grooming. If you patiently learn about and understand this, grooming your aggressive dog will no longer be a scary experience.
Painful or scary experience
Your dog will be aggressive and sometimes react to you because you are hurting them, or they have been injured or has painful memories in the past. For example, in the past, they have been shaved or because of an unhappy time of nails cut. Other experiences may involve grooming, such as being forced or being used by someone. These bad things also make them react strongly to grooming.
Haunting a place
A dog can become more aggressive when being led to a place or a veterinary clinic that has previously been hurt or has a bad grooming experience. This issue is like a human being; we tend to fear or hate somewhere that we had unhappy memories. In this case, these dogs will aggressively attack anyone they feel intending to touch them for pruning.
The fear of strangers or a strange place
A dog will tend to be afraid of a new groomer or a new area of grooming. For example, you usually trim the clip and cut them at home, but one day, you take them to the clinic. The air pressure in the clinic with devices that emit noise will make them more stressful. Plus, the new stranger groomer will further stimulate their aggressiveness, and they can bite anyone. What you need to do is control their dominance and not allow them any chance to control you. You have to be confident and sometimes not tolerant because this will make them more favourable, and your next steps will become more challenging.
Dog breeds’ characteristics
These dogs bring characteristic of aggressiveness, and you will be challenging to control and appease them. They can bite whenever you make them feel uncomfortable. The most typical breeds as Chow Chow, Siberian Husky, Dalmatian, Rottweiler, Jack Russell, German Shepherd, Terrier, American Staffordshire/Pit Bull Terrier,Doberman Pinscher.
Dogs have been obsessed with violence.
For dogs that have undergone the process of being violent and obsessed with this, they will tend to be more aggressive and can attack anyone as self-defence. Or if they can compromise you to do the grooming jobs, but then will bite you as an act of revenge.
The Tools Can Help You Cope With Aggression
For aggressive dogs, you need to have more tools than healthy dogs. You should prepare for the following pieces of equipment, it will be helpful for you when facing your aggressive dog.
Grooming Tables and Restraints
The tools will be top priority devices as it will determine the precise position for the pruning jobs rather than you will hold a trimmer and chase your angry dog. It is best to choose a grooming table, having a non-slip surface to help your dog grip quickly. The grooming table will allow you to locate the dog and manipulate it easier for both you and the dog. It also ensures your safety. Mounting restrictions in the position of the hip and neck is very useful in controlling the ferocious of dogs. However, when using restraint in the neck, you should pay attention not to harm its respiration.
Use the muzzle to avoid being bitten by the dog. However, you should use it as little as possible to avoid making your dog more stressful. You should pay attention not to hurt the dog’s mouth and make sure that your dog is always natural to breathe. While moving from the tub to the table, you can cover the dog’s head with a blanket instead of keeping the muzzle.
Long-handle Combs and Brushes
The use of this great tool is to keep your aggressive dog from biting your hand because these devices have very long-handled. You can use them to manipulate the dog’s body without fear for your hands because they are out of striking range.
Usage Of Medication
The dogs can become aggressive because of anxiety or fear of grooming, from which they can not control the behaviour and cause a strong reaction. To soothe or solve this problem, you can take medication to alleviate the anxiety of the dog.
However, in this way, we recommend that you be the last step if your dog reacts so outrageous to you or that anyone cannot control them. There are also a lot of drugs that can alleviate anxiety in dogs. However, we do not recommend self-prescribing, you must have the guidance of a veterinarian, as they will prescribe with appropriate dosage and be able to guide you with cases where side effects may occur. Common used types such as Benadryl, Melatonin, Dog-appeasing pheromone.
Besides, the medication will take effect after a while, so make sure that you give your dog in the right time. It is best to have drugs before you prepare to implement grooming works, do not wait till they start to fear.
Things To Note When Grooming An Aggressive Dog
Be patient and calm
You should maintain regular grooming sessions, so your dog is accustomed to grooming and creating a grooming routine for them. You must not end the grooming when the dog shows the ferocious because it will make them feel that they can control you when they are getting furiously, you will stop doing this again. Be patient and help them calm back to continue the grooming.
Recognition of grooming clipper
Using a quietest dog clippers will help you a lot, so make sure to find the best one. You should introduce these dogs to the clipper you will be able to use to grooming them. This act makes it recognizable and restricts the fear of seeing you using these tools on their body.
Avoid direct eye contact with a dog that you are not familiar with
Eyes are the organ that expresses the best emotions of both humans and dogs. Therefore, you should try to limit your direct eye contact with the dog you are trimming, because they can sense a particular threat even though you mean it or not.
If it is an unfamiliar dog, you should not have direct contact with them from the front or tap on areas that considered as private parts of the dog such as the head, neck and shoulders. This phenomenon seems to happen more often in the clinic.
Location of contact with dogs
The first step to contact with the dog, you should take the hand touching below their chin and gently rub its breasts before you go around other parts. You should not stand from the front and pull them because it can make the dog bite you or threaten you.
Also, when handling the back or hip of the dog, you can squat down and wrap your arms around their legs to lift if you want to raise them. This way limits the close contact between the dog and your face.
Having an assistant when performing
If you put the dog on the table and perform a nail clipper first, the assistant can help you hold the dog’s elbow. Or when you handle the mats on the face, the assistant can gently hold under the dog’s chin, making your operation more manageable.
Questions And Answers
What should I do after grooming performance for my aggressive dog?
When your dog is cooperative and docile while grooming instead of getting angry, you should reward him/her with tasty food and encouraging words. This treat will help him/her develop a positive habit of grooming, and next time he/she will be more voluntary.
How to disperse the dog’s attention on clipping jobs?
It would be hard if you let your dog always take care of the grooming tasks. Instead, you can give them look out the window, turn on a gentle soundtrack so that they are associated with the peace, or you can use scents to make them more pleasant. You should also maintain a pace of talking gently with them throughout the grooming session to disperse their concentration.
Should I punish the dog when he/she snarls or reacts violently?
You should never punish your dog when he/she growls, which is the most common signal when he/she is angry or about to attack a person. It will be difficult to predict if he/she is silent and then attacks you. Punishing gives them a worse impression of grooming. Instead, patiently wait for them to calm down and continue the grooming session.
If I look to specialists, how does it not get aggressive right at the first time?
You should not let he/she be grooming right the first time visiting the clinic because it will make them more scared and find a way to react. Try to help them get acquainted gradually by doing the grooming tasks divided into several times. For example, for the first time, the pros can only bathe and clean the ears, the next will be nail trimming, and the last time will perform grooming jobs. Thus, they will have more time to adapt the equipment in the clinic and air pressure there.
In general, dealing with an aggressive dog is not an easy problem in a short time, you have to take the time to find out their causes and try to fix it. Your dog should be treated gently and rewarded after every grooming session to give them a better grooming experience.
Using medication is also one way, but you should consider and ensure the health of your dog is the most important. If you can not control them because they are too aggressive, then looking to the pros will be the most effective way. Hopefully, with the above suggestions, you will have a better overview of how to handle your angry dog.