A study of purebred dogs claims that the factors that make a canine mate more likely to be aggressive include size, breed, sex, age and environmental influences. Among other things, searches indicate that we are afraid of the wrong species.
Furthermore, although breeding plays a role, it seems to be one of the less important factors in measuring whether a dog presents a danger. Hans Lohi, a professor at the University of Helsinki, surveyed thousands of Finnish dog-owners about the aggression of their pets towards humans, as measured by bites or frequent bites. Of the 9,270 usable descriptions, 1,791 (19.3 percent) met the criteria for high aggression.
In the scientific report, the study claims that owners ’reactions are the right way to measure aggression, but it seems credible that some dog owners may be more reluctant to admit some bad behavior than others. In particular, those who frequently describe breeds as dangerous do not want to adapt to their wrist stereotypes. Assuming that Lohi’s dataset is accurate, some very clear patterns have emerged. For one thing, aggression increases with age and male dogs are 72 percent more likely to show aggression than females.
Environmental factors also count; the first dog owned by someone is more aggressive than the next, indicating that human dog-handling skills improve over time. Dogs alone are 23 percent more likely to show human aggression than those living with others of their type, although the authors aren’t sure because people think they can attack dogs if they don’t have a mate. A Napoleonic complex – real or mythical in humans – consists of dogs. The paper found that small dogs were 49 percent more likely to be aggressive than large dogs and 38 percent more likely to be medium sized dogs. The difference between large and medium was not statistically significant.
Probably a factor as to why they’re doing so poorly. First author Salla Mikkola said in a statement, “One of the possible reasons behind this is that pain can be caused by a disease. Sensory impairment can make it harder to notice people approaching, and the dog’s response to sudden situations can be aggressive.”
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