Why Dogs Bite
dog training
 

Why Dogs Bite


Dogs can bite for a wide range of reasons and in a wide range of different situations. By learning more about dogs and why dog bite occurs, you can greatly decrease the risk of being bitten by a dog. You can also pass on the knowledge to your family – that is usually the best way of protecting loved ones from being attacked by dogs. We have compiled a short list of answers to the common question: Why Do Dogs Bite?

Q: Why dog bite?

A:  Because the dog wanted to establish dominancy. A dog that wish to establish dominancy can for instance bite a person who tries to take a toy from it, remove its food, lift it up or disturb the dog in any other way. This type of dog bite is often inflicted upon family members, people that the dog knows well and considers a part of its pack.

Q: Why dog bite?

A: Because the dog became frightened and bit you to protect itself. This type of dog bite can be inflicted on anyone who frightens the dog. Some dogs are more easily frightened than others. The reaction to being frightened will also vary significantly between different dogs; many dogs will rather flee or show submissive behaviours than bite when someone or something scares them. 

Q: Why dog bite?

A:  Because you assaulted it, or did something that it perceived as an assault. A dog can naturally bite someone to punish them for kicking the dog or abusing it in any other way. This type of dog bite is closely linked to the defensive dog bite that happens when the dog is frightened by someone or something. Unfortunately, dog owners frequently have to do things to dogs that the dog perceives as an assault. You may for instance have to lift an injured dog even if it inflicts pain upon the dog. If you are not the dog owner, the risk of being bitten is even greater when trying to handle a sick or injured dog since it does not know you and may see you as an assaulter rather than a helper. 

Q: Why dog bite?

A: Because the dog is ill and/or in pain. As explained in the answer above, dogs can bite when you do things to them that cause pain. A sick or injured dog can however become very protective and defensive, and it is therefore possible to receive a dog bite even in situations where you are not actually inflicting pain upon the dog by lifting it, handling it etcetera. You might for instance only be venturing close to the dog when it bites you, because the pain or the disease has made it extra irritable and defensive. 

Q: Why dog bite?

A: To protect a person, an animal or a territory. Dogs have been selectively bred for thousands of years to guard and protect persons, livestock and territory. Depending on breed, personality and training, this tendency to guard and protect will be very strong in certain dogs and almost nonexistent in others. This type of dog bite is typically aimed at strangers who the dog perceives as a treat. A dog can however also a attack a person they know well, for instance a neighbour who, in a playful manner, wrestles with one of the kids in the dogs’ family. The dog sees this as an attack on one of its family members and bites the neighbour to protect the child.

Q: Why dog bite?

A: Because of predatory aggression. Dogs are predatory animals and their hunting instinct can be triggered by fast moving objects, e.g. a small child on a bicycle. This type of dog bite is especially common when several dogs are playing together, probably because their wild ancestors hunted together as a pack.

Q: Why dog bite?

A: Because you were unfortunate enough to approach it when it was upset about something completely different. A dog that was just kicked by another person may for instance attack you if you come near, because it is so geared up from the recent assault. It can also be unsure about your intentions and assume that you will kick it as well.

Dog Bite Articles

Child Dog Bite - An article about what to do if your child get bitten by a dog.
Dog Bite Infection - An article about infections in dog bites.
Dog Bite Injury - An article about how to treat dog bite injuries.
Dog Bite Law - An article about the legal aspects of dog bites.
Dog Bite Lawyer - An article about dog bite lawyers and how to find one.
Insect Bite on Dog - An article about insect bites on dogs and how to treat them.
Snake Bites in Dogs - An article about snake bites in dogs and how to treat them.