Q:

Are some dogs inherently more vicious than others?

A:

Quick Answer

Some dog breeds are inherently more aggressive than other dog breeds. Genetic and hereditary factors, however, are not the only aspects affecting dog aggression. Some factors that may affect dog aggression include medical issues, lack of training and socialization, bad breeding practices, and traumatic experiences.

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Full Answer

Dog breeds that fall into the “pit bull” category, such as the American pit bull terrier, American Staffordshire terrier and Staffordshire bull terrier, are bred specifically for fighting. They came from a line of bull-baiting dogs that originated in the United Kingdom. Bite inhibition against their handlers was an encouraged trait through selective breeding. Like most domesticated animals, pit bulls are loyal to their masters but may not be suitable dogs for households with other pets because of their predominant aggressive genes against other dogs or animals.

German shepherd, Rottweiler and Doberman pinschers are usually trained for police and military purposes and are prized for their protective and guarding tendencies. They are confident and self-assured dogs that require consistent and assertive handling. Even though most dogs of these breeds are fun-loving and gentle, they still carry the traits innate in their ancestor’s genes and may show signs of aggression, especially when frightened or hurt.

Some dogs that are not innately aggressive may show viciousness or aggression towards humans and other animals due to traumatic experiences. Many dogs have experienced abuse and neglect before being rescued. This kind of aggression may be tempered down or gotten rid of through behavior modification training and plenty of love, care and affection from their handlers.

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