How do you know if you have an alpha dog on your hands? When scientists talk about this role they speak in terms of dominant and subordinate, however most people use these terms to represent behavior. That means they are adding a label that represents the dogs aggressiveness, its ability to connect as well with others and confidence. Once thing as well that is important to understand is that these characteristics have nothing to do with whether or not the dog would be dominant in a social group. Quite often in wolf packs you will see that the alpha is not usually the most aggressive animal and that means that there are other things that make one dog more dominant than another.
The term Alpha for example being used to describe a personality of a dog is not accurate and it gives the dog a bad name. That means usually that those dogs cause trouble and they are headstrong. Whether or not a dog has a strong personality has nothing to do with whether or not that dog will make a good or a bad pet. When it comes to choosing a dog many dog enthusiast always look for a dog that is full of spunk that represents a dog that will be enthusiastic and will not stress easily. A dog like this is fun for the whole family and also does not run the risk of taking over the home.
How to Have a Relationship With Your Dog
When it comes to what we have discussed so far, we have spoken about the structure among dogs, but what happens when the dogs see people as members of their pack? How does that affect everything or nothing at all in your relationship with your pet?
Ideas About Dominance and Dogs
There are many people who have had ideas that dogs do add people into their packs and that they are considered to be a part of the normal hierarchy of things. Here are the reasons scientists think this:
- Dogs consider people their peers is one thought, some see themselves as dominant as well over their human parents. This can lead to a variety of behavior issues.
- Dominance problems as well come when a pet parent is not strong handed with an animal and this leads to problems in the long term with their behavior.
- If the parent does not take the alpha role, the pet will do so by default. Sometimes this does happen.
- A dog has to know where it stands in the pack, whether that pack is with other humans or with dogs.
Many experts think that these beliefs are not true and that they can in fact damage the relationship between a pet and an owner.
What is Dominance Aggression?
Those who believe that a dog may think that he is dominant over his pet know that there are many kinds of aggression that show up when there is an inappropriate relationship. These forms of lack of discipline are known as dominance aggression. Here are a few of the signs that you may have a problem with aggression in your household.
- The dog comes to close when other animals have food or something else they are trying to consume and they will try to take it away from the other dog.
- The dog stands over and stares at another dog.
- You are handling your dog in an inappropriate way such as rubbing his belly, patting the top of his head.
- You are hugging your dog.
- You step over your dog.
- You scold and punish your dog.
How do You Know if These Ideas Are Valid?
Are you doing any of these behaviors with your dog? If so you may be challenging his or her dominance and that can lead to larger issues in the long term that will have to do with lack of respect as well as with being inappropriate to the dog. At the end of the day you want to understand if you are perpetuating these kinds of behaviors with your dog it is to be expected that at some point he or she is going to act out and for that reason, as an owner it is very important for you to be ahead of the curve and instead work with the pet to be a healthy member of your family without having to worry that dominance issues are in fact going to be an issue.