You love your pooch and every minute you spend with him is full of playfulness and fun…that is until he decides to bite. While you may think this is normal behavior, your pet may be biting due to a specific reason that needs attention.

The last thing you want is for your four-legged friend to bite a friend or family member. Why is your dog suddenly having biting episodes and what can you do to help? At Valley Animal Hospital in McAllen, we have the information you need.

It can often be difficult to help your pup through a behavioral issue, but don’t worry, Valley Animal Hospital is here to lend a helping hand.

Warning Signs and Causes

A dog bite can be something very dangerous and painful, so it’s highly important to recognize the warning signs of a potential dog bite to help you back off and stay safe. When a bite is about to occur, dogs will generally:

  • Pin their ears back
  • Raise the hair on their back
  • Show the white parts of their eyes
  • Show their teeth
  • Freeze when touched

While it’s important to recognize when a dog bite is imminent, it’s even more important to understand the reasons why your pooch will feel inclined to bite in the first place. Some of the most common reasons include:

  • Possessiveness – Dogs, especially guard or herding breeds, will protect their property or owner until they’re driven to bite. Training them early to minimize possession can be extremely helpful.
  • Fear – Fear of unfamiliar faces can be one of the main reasons why a dog will bite. To avoid a bite, don’t approach a stranger’s dogs and train your own pooch at a young age to help them remain sociable in different circumstances.
  • Pain – Any human will become irritable when in pain, and a dog may resort to biting. If you suspect your dog may be injured, handle them with care and seek attention as soon as possible.
  • Mother’s love – Even the friendliest dogs will take a bite out of anyone to protect their pups. The best thing to do to avoid a mother’s wrath is to be cautious and ask children to never approach a puppy if their mother is around.
  • Prey drive – Perhaps you’ve had first-hand experience with a dog chasing you as you jog or bike along your neighborhood. This prey drive can potentially lead to dog bites, so be alert at all times, stand tall and avoid eye contact if they give chase.

Stopping the Bite

Some causes of dog bites are instinctual and can best be evaded if the situation is avoided altogether. However, some causes are behavioral in nature and must be given professional attention as soon as possible. At Valley Animal Hospital, we want to help your pooch through any aggression or biting issues with our behavioral counseling services. If you have any questions about our pet care services for your best friend, give us a call in McAllen today.

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