How To Manage Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

Does your Rottie growl, lunge, or bark at strangers too often? If so, your pet is no exception when it comes to exhibiting such aggressive behavior, as aggression is natural in dogs. Considering strong guarding instincts and self-assured disposition, aggressive Rottweiler behavior is more noticeable than in any other breed. However, aggression in Rotties, known for their wait-and-watch approach, is not without a reason. Irresponsible ownership too plays a role, turning the dog into a challenging pet. With proper socialization, training, and corrective steps, you can help your Rottweiler overcome his aggression.

Tips To Manage Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

Photo by Gregg/Flickr

Causes of Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

There are some common factors contributing to aggressive Rottweiler behavior. These may include:

  • Territorial aggression because of strong guarding instinct.
  • Possessive aggression, as guarding food often leads to aggressive
  • Dog aggression when your Rottie sees another dog (when lacks social skills).
  • Protective aggression when a Rottweiler is subject to harsh behavior or punishment.
  • Fearful aggression toward different looks or conditions due to the lack of socialization.
  • Dominance aggression challenging the owner’s actions.
  • Unstable and disturbed home environment, causing anxiety and apprehension in the dog.
  • Threat perception may also result in aggressive Rottweiler behavior toward someone or in certain conditions.
  • Disliking for someone or certain conditions causes the dog to become aggressive.
  • Sexual maturation may lead to aggression.
  • Puppies often harshly treated become hostile when they turn adults.

With his strength and temperament, an unfriendly Rottie may turn terrifying for guests. In the long term, the dog could be dangerous for his family members too. It is vital that you learn to rein in your dog’s hostile nature. The following tips may come in handy to help you manage aggressive Rottweiler behavior.

Find Out Triggers Causing Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

Rottweilers are not instinctive or easy to become excited. They are watchful and confident and prefer to wait and judge a person or situation before turning friendly or hostile. Aggressive Rottweiler behavior often stems from the perceived threat or fear. It is important to remember as a dog parent that your Rottie has strong guarding instincts and his hostile display is a form of territorial aggression. He may see a person or condition as unsafe and, therefore, may react to alert you.

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So, it would help to identify the triggers that turn your Rottweiler aggressive. Observe how the dog reacts to various stimuli.  Find out if he turns hostile to people of a particular age group. Check if the dog is not ready to coexist with other pets. Try to find out if the behavior of any family member annoys the dog, forcing him to display aggression.  Is there any loud noise causing your dog to bark? Does the dog become more aggressive when there is a delay in feeding him? Or is it when you fail to notice his ramblings?

You can identify triggers causing irritation, fear, or threat perception in your dog. Also, watch his body language to decipher what causes uneasiness, prompting your Rottie to react.  Awareness of such triggers and signs empower owners to address, prevent, or avoid issues that lead to aggressive Rottweiler behavior. Manage the environment and put down his feeling of insecurity and anxiety.

Neutralize Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

  • Make efforts to neutralize your Rottie’s aggression as soon as you come across it. The Rottweiler does not like feeble ownership. Exhibit that you are in control of the situation and never allow your dog to become anxious and concerned, which may only worsen his aggressive behavior.
  • Start socialization as early as your Rottweiler puppy is 6-week old. Expose him to people, kids, pets, sounds, and diverse situations.
  • Let your dog experience different environments. Introduce him to animals, sounds, humans, and other pets. Increased familiarity enables the dog to inculcate social skills, understand others better, and avoid hostile reactions. A part of the socialization process, such training must start at the earliest.
  • Ensure a calm and favorable ambiance at home to reduce aggressive Rottweiler behavior. A routine dog life helps your Rottweiler to overcome his unease and apprehension.
  • Controlled exposure to triggers also helps put down aggressive Rottweiler behavior. As your dog becomes familiar with various situations, he develops a better understanding of that. Rotties are observable dogs, and controlled exposure helps them become less reactive.
  • Consider incentives for passive behavior by your Rottweiler. Praise him, play with him, and give occasional treats whenever the dog turns passive obeying your command.
  • Make sure your presence endows your Rottie with a calming and secure feeling. This helps your pet to adjust to new situations without being apprehensive or aggressive. Try to understand the root cause of aggressive behavior by your Rottweiler. Is it meant to alert you or communicate something? Hug gently or hold lovingly to calm down the irritated or disturbed dog.
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Pay Attention To His Health and Comfort

Try to learn your dog’s body language and ensure that he remains comfortable. A comfortable dog is less prone to aggression, as he feels secure and content.  Proper obedience training is also a good way to prevent aggressive Rottweiler behavior.

Spaying or neutering your Rottie reduces also cut down the risk of aggressive behavior when he or she becomes sexually mature.

Rotties with neurological disorders, hypothyroidism, or vision problems tend to be more aggressive. Pain and impaired hearing also contribute to making a dog aggressive. When you are unable to find out any specific behavioral trigger, health problems may be a cause of aggression shown by your dog.

Avoid Triggers Responsible for Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

If your Rottie is not comfortable going to a crowded park or walk on a road with traffic, change the place. Prefer a better and more suitable environment.  Make the daily routine of your dog free from any irritant or exposure to aggression triggers.

When aggressive Rottweiler behavior is beyond your control, try distracting the dog. Take him for a walk or give him a treat. If your dog has a disliking for a particular guest, shut him in a room during his visits.

Regular workouts also help keep a Rottie passive. A muscular and athletic dog, the Rottweiler loves activities. Make the best use of this. Play with him or take him for a walk. A tired dog with less energy level is unlikely to show serious aggressive behavior.

Don’ts While Managing Aggressive Rottweiler Behavior

  • Don’t confront the dog
  • Never behave harshly to force the dog to become passive
  • Don’t hit a threatened, agitated, or upset dog
  • Do not punish the dog, as Rotties react to such actions
  • Avoid harsh disciplinary measures to control puppies older than 8 weeks
  • Don’t encourage aggressive Rottweiler behavior
  • Never miss early socialization
  • Avoid selecting dominant puppies, as they are more likely to be aggressive adults
  • Never allow stress to impact your dog, as it may worsen aggressive behavior of your Rottweiler

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