How To Stop An Aggressive Cockapoo

Cockapoos that growl, lunge, bite, or are otherwise aggressive are frequently referred to as “bad dogs” by people. The truth, however, is a lot more complicated.

A dog’s behaviour, including aggressive behaviour, is influenced by various circumstances. As a dog owner, you should be aware of the “triggers” that can cause your pet to become afraid. It’s also crucial to be mindful of the warning indications that dogs exhibit when they are going to bite or lunge.

The good news is that these warning signs are easy to spot most of the time, making them easier to control. Treatment of aggression should begin as soon as the first signs appear. Recognising the trigger and closely monitoring a dog’s behavior is critical to successfully managing dog aggression. Speak to your vet or a professional animal behaviourist if you have any serious concerns.

Types Of Cockapoo Aggression

Fear-Based Aggression

A Fearful dog is the main reason for most dog aggression. Dogs, like people, have unique fears that only they understand. Other dogs, crying babies, clumsy children, strange humans, and even a visit to the vet are all common triggers of fearful behaviour in dogs. 

Fearful dogs will lunge, growl, snap, and perhaps bite to get away from anything that causes them to be afraid.

Territorial Aggression

Your dog’s aggression may stem from a boundary, something as simple as the garden fence, the door to your house, or even the car windows when you are out in the car.  

Dogs have an instinct to guard their territory. However, if a dog is too territorial, it can lead to aggressive behaviour. It all depends on what the dog views as personal space; it can be the while your dog is on the lead or the dog’s personal space when you take them somewhere. 

Resource Guarding

Your dog is protecting what they see as a valuable item with resource-guarding. Resources that your dog is prepared to fight for, such as the sofa, food, their favourite chew toy, a ball,  a dog bed, or even a pair of your socks, are known as resource-guarding triggers.

 If a dog is resource-guarding an object, simply taking it away from them is not the way to deal with this issue. Click here if you would like to learn more about Cockapoo resource guarding.

Play-Based Aggression

Dogs with play-based aggressiveness become extremely excited while playing and engage in aggressive actions such as mouthing or grabbing. This behaviour may seem harmless fun to the dog, but they may get hurt nevertheless.

Dog-On-Dog Aggression

In this case, dog-on-dog aggression refers to dogs living in the same home and fighting with each other.

Dogs may be more likely to engage in aggressive behavior because of their past experiences. Fear-based hostility toward dogs they don’t know, for example, may develop in a dog who another dog previously bit. 

Except for dogs who have experienced past trauma, no specific dog breed is more likely to be aggressive than any other. It’s a widely held belief that a dog’s breed dictates its propensity to engage in aggressive behaviour; however, this is not the case.

The likelihood of aggression in a dog is unrelated to its breed. Dogs, like people, have a predisposition toward aggressive behavior that can be genetic. However, no evidence links to a specific breed of dog.

Warning Signs Of Dog Aggression

It’s crucial to identify the telltale symptoms of dog aggression. When a dog is exposed to something that triggers aggressive behavior, it usually goes from low to high. Aggression in dogs is often the result of a dog’s stress or fear in response to a particular stimulus or environment. An aggressive dog is probably trying to express its discomfort given certain circumstances.

The canine aggression scale can be a helpful tool for gaining a better understanding of this. At the lower end of the scale are more subtle tension indicators, such as lip-licking, stress-yawning, body rigidity, and avoiding eye contact. 

Because of his fear and inability to escape, a dog may show signs of moderate stress levels, such as growling, barking, snarling, snapping, or lunging in an attempt to defend themselves.

Eventually, if what is stressing the dog continues and the dog truly believes it’s in danger, the dog will escalate the situation to a bite.

How To Manage Cockapoo Aggression

It’s essential to realise there is no such thing as a cure for dog aggression. Aggressive tendencies in dogs require careful handling and can only be managed. It’s also crucial to recognise that aggression is a behavioral issue, not a matter of obedience.

There are three stages to help manage your dog’s aggressive behaviour.

  • Alter your dog’s experience of the trigger.
  • Help by changing your dog’s reaction to the trigger. 
  • Medications can help relieve your dog’s stress and fear.

Aggression management requires desensitization to the trigger. This method entails praising your dog for calm behaviour in the presence of the fear-inducing aggression trigger. 

Give your dog a very tempting food, something they love, such as a tasty piece of cooked liver, when they confront the trigger without showing any signs of aggression, even if you and the dog are a distance away from the trigger. Still, you have experienced adverse reactions, and you know what will happen.

You convey to your dog that something enjoyable happens when they cope with the fear trigger.

Final Thoughts

It’s not easy to live with a Cockapoo or any dog that shows aggressive behaviour, especially if you have young children and you’re afraid for their safety. However,  it’s also not the end of the world. 

It is a behavioral condition that you may remedy with the correct amount of socialization and behavioural training. Underneath the snarling and snapping, your dog could be a terrified, poorly socialized puppy. If given the proper management, any aggressive or fearful dog can improve.

For Cockapoos with less severe aggression issues, a simple change in routine or working with a professional dog behaviourist may be all that is necessary. It doesn’t matter how you end up managing your dog’s aggression, remember that it’s an effort that will be worth it at the end of the day.