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Dogs Walked by Men Are More Aggressive

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A recent study shows that Dogs Walked by Men Are More Aggressive. This is probably due to fact that dogs are very attuned to their masters, and men definitely show aggressive tendencies more openly than women. A study by Professor Petr Rezac and his team at Mendel University in the city of Brno, Czech Republic studied close to 2,000 dog-dog interactions on owner-led walks held. The study has been accepted for publication in the journal Applied Animal Behavior Science. Some of the findings were written up in this article on the Discovery News site:

Dogs Walked by Men Are More Aggressive

Dogs being walked by men are four times more likely to threaten and bite other dogs and dogs on a leash are more likely to act aggressively than dogs off the leash.

These are just a couple of revelations about dog walking behavior from an extensive new study that examined how a dog’s age, sex and size, as well as the owner’s sex and use of a leash, affect how canines act on their walks.

The study, accepted for publication in the journal Applied Animal Behavior Science, surprisingly found that the sex of the owner had the biggest effect on whether or not the dog would threaten or bite another dog.

“We propose that the occurrence of threat and biting in dogs on a walk may have some connection with aggressive tendencies and/or impulsivity in people,” Petr Rezac and his team wrote, adding that “dogs are able to perceive subtle messages of threat emitted by another dog. Simultaneously, dogs are unusually skilled at reading human social and communicative behavior.”

Rezac is an associate professor in the Department of Animal Morphology, Physiology and Genetics at Mendel University. He and his colleagues studied close to 2,000 dog-dog interactions on owner-led walks held in the city of Brno, Czech Republic. Observations were made in the mornings and afternoons at 30 different areas of the city where owners frequently walk with their dogs.

By far the most frequent interaction of dogs of all ages in public places was body sniffing, which should not come as a surprise to most dog aficionados. Other expected conclusions: males sniff females more often, males and females prefer play with each other than with members of their own sex, adult males mark the most, puppies play together more than twice as often as adults and 11 times as often as seniors, and dogs prefer to play with similarly sized individuals.

The presence, or not, of a leash can make a big difference.

Dogs off a leash sniffed one another more often than dogs on a leash. They also threatened each other twice as often when on a leash.

“This is most likely a reflection of the frustration dogs feel when the leash prohibits them from expressing normal greeting behaviors,” Inga Fricke, director of Sheltering and Pet Care Issues at the Humane Society of the United States, told Discovery News. The problem, she said, even has a name: “leash frustration” or “leash aggression.”

Lisa Peterson, spokesperson for the American Kennel Club, said dogs prefer to run around each other when they first meet.

“They can’t do this run-around behavior when on a leash and they likely feel more threatened,” Peterson said. “They are also more inclined to resource guard, with the owner being the resource. It’s as though they are communicating, ‘He is my owner. I don’t want you to have him because he feeds and cares for me.'”

We can confirm this behavior in our own household: when my wife walks the dog, he shows very little aggression toward other dogs. When I walk him, however, he emits a lot of “warning” growls when other dogs come near.

Have your experienced similar behavior with your dogs, where their behavior may confirm that Dogs Walked by Men Are More Aggressive?

Read the entire story here, and share this finding with friends below.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Of Doug H

    Doug H


    I have a different view.
    – Men smell different from women and have testosterone. Dogs’ primary sense is smell, not eyes.

    – Men are less likely to handle a dog kindly. Men demand and jerk the leash and intimdate the dog. Women are more understanding of a dog as a lower creature and are less likely to ‘bully’ any creature.

    – Virtually all dog trainers and ‘rescue’ volunteers are women. I did dog rescue for 3 years steady every weekend and ‘safehoused’ as well as taking 3 of my dogs through the CGC certification and basic classes. In class, easily 8 of 10 students are women and girls. In rescue groups it’s 9 of 10 are women and teenage girls.

    – ‘A woman is dog’s best friend’ if you conider who rehomes dogs, trains dogs, and referees the kids from annoying dogs.

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