Why do 8 week old puppies growl? Tips and Tricks

Can an 8 week old puppy be aggressive?

Everyone we talked to (experienced dog owners, our vet, trainer) said that it’s extremely rare for an 8 week old puppy to be aggressive. She was most likely playing, but never learned how to play appropriately.

Bite inhibition does not mean stopping the puppy from biting altogether. On the contrary, puppies must bite in order to learn bite inhibition. Bite inhibition means, learning to inhibit the force of the bites, so they no longer hurt or cause damage.

Some people appear to enjoy teasing, manhandling, or roughhousing with puppies. Puppies may find teasing and roughhousing to be positive and enjoyable, or unpleasant and frightening.

Oh, come on … try telling that to your veterinarian, or to your childrens friends parents. However, if you mean you want your dog to perform some protective function, thats a different matter. But surely you are not going to leave it up to a poorly socialized dog to make decisions regarding whom to protect, whom to protect against, and how to protect. Any good protection dog has first been super-socialized to the point of total confidence, and then carefully taught how, when, and whom to protect. Training your dog to bark or growl on command is a more than sufficient protective deterrent. Your dog may be taught to vocalize in certain situations: for example, when somebody steps onto your property or touches your car. Alarm barkers are extremely effective deterrents, especially if they do not bark when people simply walk by your house or car.

If you ever sense your puppy is even a little bit possessive or protective of any object, do something about it immediately. The requisite confidence-building exercises have all been described above. If you think the problem is beyond your control, seek help immediately while your puppy is still a puppy.

With male dogs, object-guarding is more common among middle-ranking insecure male dogs. In fact, nothing better advertises insecurity and lack of confidence than object guarding — definitely not “top dog behavior.” In fact, true top dogs are usually confident in their position and are often quite willing to share a bone, toy, or food bowl with lower-ranking individuals.

Is it normal for a puppy to growl?

Most puppies aren’t being aggressive. Some puppies growl more than others. But growling is natural puppy behavior. In order to determine whether the puppy’s growling is natural, it’s important to determine why he’s growling.

Growling can seem aggressive, but it is simply one way that puppies and dogs communicate. They let you know if they’re uncomfortable, afraid, or upset about a certain situation. Growling is also a warning. It is your puppy’s way of saying that they might bite.

Aggressive Puppy: Biting, Growling, Towards Owner and Other Dogs

It’s rare, but even at a very young age, some puppies have an “edge” to them. As a dog behavior consultant who’s worked with thousands of dogs, I’ve only seen one or two puppies that I would even consider classifying as truly “aggressive” (we’ll talk about one of these pups later).

Nevertheless, I get several calls or emails per week from owners who worry that their puppy is aggressive.

So, how do you differentiate the signs of an aggressive puppy from puppy rough play that’s within the range of normal? We’ll focus today on answering that question for dogs less than 6 months old. Then, I will give some suggestions as to what you can do if you do have an aggressive pup.