A friendly dog, that otherwise has no history of aggression or bites, may be much more likely to be involved in dog bite incidents if it is ill. According to the results of a new study, approximately 50% of dogs that were involved in dog bite incidents and other behavioral problems suffered from an undiagnosed medical condition which caused the animal great pain, and left it feeling aggressive and impulsive. These dogs were much more likely to bite without warning.
Every Thousand Oaks dog bite attorney has come across this person - a dog owner who is baffled by why his friendly dog suddenly attacked a little child. The dog may have had no history of viciousness, and may have no history of being involved in such attacks. According to the research which was published recently in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior, friendly dogs who are in pain, may respond to the pain much differently from aggressive dogs.
A friendly dog will become impulsive, and will bite without warning when it is in pain. Aggressive dogs, on the other hand, are much more likely to growl before the bite. There may be a number of reasons for this difference in behavior. Owners of friendly dogs, for instance, may be less likely to exercise caution in their dealings with other animals and human beings. That's because these dogs are friendly, and not likely to bite, at least that's what their owners think.
However, owners of aggressive dogs are likely to be much more cautious when their dog is around other human beings. Besides, friendly dogs are not able to communicate their discomfort with being touched, as aggressive dogs are able to do. An aggressive dog is used to growling or baring its teeth when it feels uncomfortable or threatened - behaviors that a friendly dog is not familiar with.
Therefore, there are behavioral differences when such dogs are suffering from muscular pain, joint pain or other symptoms of their illness.