What are the reasons for why my dog growled at me for the first time?
It’s a unique question and it’s not an easy issue to deal with. Most dog owners are surprised when their otherwise well-trained dog starts growling randomly.
It might seem odd, out of place, and uncomfortable, but it can happen with almost all breeds. The goal is to figure out what’s going on as soon as possible.
The reasons can include:
- Protecting Food
- Feeling Territorial
By taking the time to find out what the main cause is, you are going to have a far easier time implementing change in your dog’s behavior.
Growling isn’t normal and it shouldn’t become normalized in your household. In fact, you have to nip this problem in the bud before it worsens!
This detailed guide is going to help figure out why your dog is growling for the first time at home. You will also learn how to deal with a dog that is suddenly growling.
Best Treats For Growling Dogs (EDITOR’S CHOICE)
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The Milk-Bone Dog Treats are perfect when it comes to getting your dog to stop growling. These treats come in multiple flavors (beef/chicken) and are ideal for dog owners that want to control their pet moving forward.
The treats are loved by all dog breeds, soft, and chewy making them a great fit for keeping your dog happy.
With the appropriate use of these high-quality dog treats, your dog will stop growling within a few days. It’s all about learning how to use dog treats wisely and making sure you are using the right ones such as these.
Tips On How To Stop Dog From Growling At Me
Tip #1 – Use Dog Treats
The main weapon in your arsenal against a growling dog will be treats.
Yes, it may seem odd but you are going to want to use dog treats to stop a dog from growling. The idea is to incentivize them to stop and calm down.
The average dog that growls isn’t looking to stop, but with dog treats they will realize you are not a threat. This is especially effective with dogs that have started growling randomly. Dog treats will get them to tone things down a bit.
The benefits include:
- Easier to Convince the Dog
- Quick Results
- Easy to Implement
A lot of dog owners don’t know what to do when their dog begins to growl. They panic.
Don’t let this happen to you!
You want to be patient and make sure to use dog treats whenever the dog begins to growl. In essence, you are going to use the dog treat to get them to focus on something else.
Since dog treats are delicious, your dog will forget what it was growling about. Eventually, they will begin to trust you again and forget about growling entirely.
Remember, this will take a bit of time but when done right, the results will come.
Tip #2 – Don’t Overreact
It’s common to overreact and assume you have done something wrong.
Unfortunately, this is the wrong mindset to have! You need to realize, dogs will have these ups and downs during the course of their lives and it’s okay as long as you know what the triggers are.
Once you figure that out, you are going to be okay.
The only time things worsen is when you panic and start to yell or overreact. This isn’t the right approach to take and isn’t going to be as gentle as it needs to be. In fact, your dog is going to gain further affirmation that growling is the way to go when you pose a threat to them.
Plus, in some cases, your dog may just be in pain.
If you start yelling at them to stop, it may not bode well for their health. It may cause them to start hiding in corners due to the pain.
Your main priority should be to analyze what is causing the dog to growl suddenly. Every situation has reason and that is what you have to figure out.
Tip #3 – Figure Out the Triggers
This is the most important tip because it focuses on the root cause.
Too many people don’t think about triggers and that leads to inefficient results. You can’t think about a potential solution until you know what is going on!
In general, dogs don’t start growling randomly. There is going to be an underlying cause and that is what you have to uncover. There are certain triggers that start to cause the dog to growl. You will even start to notice these patterns when you pay attention.
The triggers can include:
- Food-Related Possessiveness
- Territorial Issues
- Underlying Pain
Continue to focus on these triggers and then come up with a plan.
For example, let’s assume your dog is just possessive when it is eating. If so, you want to start to find ways to get them to eat around you. This can even be something as simple as giving them dog treats out of your hands.
They need to realize, you are not going to get in their way when they’re eating.
Some dogs won’t be possessive at first, but can start to develop this trait later on. It is common in households where dog owners aren’t at home as much as they need to be (i.e. work/school).
Tip #4 – Reduce the Dog’s Stress
Your dog is often stressed, which is why it ends up growling in the first place.
Whether the dog is in pain or becoming territorial, they are doing it out of fear. They don’t want you in the area and this is their way of showing it.
As a result, it is also a great reason to help calm them down. You want to come across as a non-threat, which is going to help ease their nerves around you or anyone else. It can happen with certain dogs when they start becoming protective of food or spots around the house.
Dogs will react differently when it comes to rising stress levels.
It’s not an easy situation to be in, but it’s one you need to pay attention to right away. The goal is to figure out what helps the dog calm down.
Is it dog toys? Dog treats? Perhaps a dog camera to toss them treats when you are at work?
The goal is to figure out what works best for the dog and then implement it right away. Anything that is going to de-stress the dog will go a long way. It is going to save you quite a bit of trouble later on and the dog will stop growling.
Tip #5 – Be Proactive
It’s important to be proactive in situations such as these.
If you are not vigilant, your dog is going to regularly growl at you, family members, and other pets. It can become disconcerting to continually have to deal with this.
However, this is why you have to be as proactive as possible!
By taking the opportunity to get out in front of the problem, you will have a far better chance of getting the dog to stop growling at you.
The benefits of being proactive include:
- Making Sure the Dog Isn’t Startled
- Long-Term Plan
- Keeps Your Eyes Open
You want to make sure to be aware of potential triggers and then prepare for them. A good example of this would be a dog that is only possessive when it is eating.
In these situations, you want to make sure to be around the dog when they are eating. You want to treat them nicely and almost not pay attention to their food.
It’s about getting the dog used to you being nearby when they are eating. Once they build this trust, the dog is going to stop growling.
These are the main reasons for your dog starting to growl suddenly.
It might seem odd and uncomfortable, but it’s a wonderful opportunity to rebuild your bond with the dog. It’s about understanding what’s going on, what the main triggers are, and how to make sure the dog feels better.
Is it going to happen overnight? Unlikely.
You will have to continue to use dog treats to get a dog to stop growling. In some cases, it can take a while to figure out what is going on and only then you can find a good solution.
Follow the tips listed here, so you can get started down the right path.
For more on training your dog at home, look through these guides – tips for blowing a dog’s coat, great omega 3 supplements for dogs, how to get a dog to stop biting clothes or furniture, advice for disciplining a puppy.