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Cautionary Tales of the Akbash

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Tags: Akbash Dogs, Behavior, Aggressive, Training

Amazing Cockapoos



Gap, PA

Cocker Spaniel

There are a few things that an owner should be aware of before he or she purchases a purebred Akbash puppy. For starters, the owner should know the breed's tendencies for aggression and how to curb these problems. The owner should be aware of and look out for any food-related issues the dog may have; food aggression is quite common in Akbash dogs, and the behavior should be dealt with accordingly. Dominance aggression is also a big issue for Akbash dogs, and the owner should watch for signs of this and immediately correct any related behaviors to prevent the furthering of the behavior and eventual canine dominance.

Food aggression is a huge problem for many dogs, but it is especially apparent in Akbash dogs. It is not known why the Akbash is more prone to food aggression than other breeds, but there are a few theories. Canine behavioralists often attribute food aggression to two different sources: if a dog was raised in an environment where he was not allowed to eat enough or where the submissive puppies of the litter were ousted from the food dish by the dominant puppies, an adult dog could hold on to the anxiety he felt over not being able to eat. This anxiety will often carry over into his adult eating behavior even if he has always had plenty to eat in his current home.

The other theory about the prominence of food aggression is breed-specific. It is possible that the Akbash, having been bred to work in an incredibly hostile environment, instinctually eats quickly and aggressively. If your Akbash is not a flock guardian, these behaviors must be addressed and curbed. Food aggression often manifests itself as fast, gulping eating habits, and anxiety when the meal is finished. Also, some food-aggressive dogs will attack other pets or even people when the dog has food and feels it is threatened by the animal or person.

For the problem of dominance aggression, it is not food that is the trigger as it is in food aggression, but dominance. The dominant behavior usually comes from the owner. There are two types of dominant aggressive behaviors, direct aggression, and re-directed aggression. With direct aggression, the aggressive behavior of the dog is directed at the dominator, in most cases the owner. In re-directed aggression, the aggression is taken out on another, submissive, animal or person in response to the dominance of the owner.

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