Aggression in a dog is a behavior or behavior they display when they feel territorial, scared or fearful, stressed or anxious, or upset. Aggression can be as simple as growing, or it can mean barking non-stop. It can also mean attacking and biting or anything in between.
Every dog is different, and they will display aggression in their own way based on the dog’s breeding, personality, and situation. If a dog feels its food is being threatened by another dog, the Shih Tzu might growl to try and chase the other dog away and show It’s their food. If the Shih Tzu is cornered and feels its health and body are at risk of harm, it might try to bite the other dog or whoever is causing this feeling.
Table of Contents
- Are Shih Tzus Aggressive?
- What should I do if my Shih Tzu suddenly becomes aggressive?
- What are the signs of aggression in a Shih Tzu?
- Closing Points
Are Shih Tzus Aggressive?
Shih Tzus are not usually aggressive to anyone. This breed’s temperament and personality are sweet, loveable, and docile. Aggression in Shih Tzus is usually caused by an external factor that can be identified and corrected.
Breeding is the most important factor in making a dog who they are. It determines their personality, temperament, and other emotional and mental features and how they behave.
Breeding isn’t everything, though. Depending on the breeder, how the Shih Tzu was treated as a puppy with their litter mates and mother, and the breed background, they can be aggressive.
This is not the norm for this breed. Still, inferior breeding can affect any dog’s physical features and emotional state. For that reason, it is important to select a breeder that uses responsible breeding practices to ensure the Shih Tzu behaves like the breed standard.
Aggression can happen to any dog, of any breed, and sometimes without prior warning. Even the sweetest and most pleasing dog can turn aggressive in certain situations.
Sometimes a dog like the Shih Tzu may act aggressive, and it may be dismissed since they are small and never truly be addressed. This reaction to such behavior can cause the Shih Tzu to act aggressively again if they need to do that. Down the road, this can be a problem, and the aggression should be addressed when it appears.
Aggressive behaviors can happen to any dog, regardless of their breeding and who they are as a dog. Environment and what is going on around the dog can cause aggression. In some cases, a Shih Tzu might be aggressive because of what’s happening inside them if they are unhealthy.
What should I do if my Shih Tzu suddenly becomes aggressive?
If your Shih Tzu suddenly behaves aggressively, you should try to defuse the situation. It can mean that you need to offer a distraction for everyone, or you need to remove the Shih Tzu.
This action is done to prevent anyone from getting hurt and change the emotional environment between the Shih Tzu and whoever or whatever they are reacting to. Sometimes this will be enough to do the trick and stop the aggression.
You should always take your safety first. Therefore, if you find your Shih Tzu acting aggressively to another dog and doing the same, you might need to break them apart without hurting yourself or them and remove the Shih Tzu.
Once the Shih Tzu is removed or redirected, you can access the situation and make adjustments or changes to the Shih Tzus environment or life to prevent this issue from arising again.
If the Shih Tzu has been formally trained somehow, aggressive tendencies are less likely to happen, but they still do sometimes.
Some Shih Tzu may have triggers. Triggers can be anything they react to, things they don’t feel comfortable with that cause them stress, or anything that makes them behave badly out of discomfort, anxiety, or fear.
Knowing your Shih Tzu’s triggers, if they have any, can go a long way to modifying their behavior and preventing aggression. If your Shih Tzu doesn’t like that another dog goes near their food bowl, you can take the food bowl away when another dog visits and feed them separately.
These methods defuse the situation and reduce the chance of your Shih Tzu becoming aggressive because of that trigger.
Most Shih Tzu is not aggressive and gets along with everyone. Still, nothing should ever be assumed about any dog, regardless of breed or prior behavior. As with humans, anything can trigger a reaction, and defusing the situation or removing the Shih Tzu is the first line of action needed.
What are the signs of aggression in a Shih Tzu?
The signs of aggression in a Shih Tzu include growling or barking, which are often paired with showing teeth, staring intently, ears down and back, and stiff posture.
These behaviors don’t always mean your Shih Tzu is acting aggressive, as they can mean many other things. Ears back and down can mean fear and barking or growling can also mean they want to play. The best indicator of a dog’s aggression is to take in their overall behavior.
Watch their physical actions, eyes, how they are moving, what they are doing, where they are, and what is happening around them. Knowing your dog is also the best indicator of determining if they act aggressively.
Certain breeds can be harder to determine because they are bred for different things and act differently in certain situations. Still, with the Shih Tzu, it should be easier to determine.
They are normally sweet and loveable; therefore, noticing aggressive behavior may be easier. When in doubt, proceed with caution and find a way to defuse the situation and remove them from the environment if possible.
Aggression can happen to any dog, and some dogs are more susceptible than others. The Shih Tzu is not an aggressive dog breed. If they become aggressive, it may be easier to remove them from the environment.
Proceed with caution in a situation like this and finding the trigger can help prevent it in the future for everyone’s happiness, especially the Shih Tzu!