My Bulldog is Aggressive Towards Children

Dear Dr. Kraemer,

My three-year-old English Bulldog is very aggressive towards children. He has attacked four times; one needed stitches.

aggressive biting English bulldog

He hasn’t been neutered. Our vet very nonchalantly advised us to put him down.

I asked if they could run blood tests to see if there was anything medically wrong with him. She said there is nothing medically that would cause him to be that aggressive that frequently.

Should a Bulldog Who Is Aggressive Towards Children Be  Euthanized?

Being a specialist, I am sure you have seen this before. Is there a way to contain the aggression? Is there anything we can do to help him? I can’t put him down until I know all avenues have been exhausted.

I love him too much and would never forgive myself.

Thank you so much for your time. I look forward to hearing from you!

1 Answers
Dr. Roy Kraemer Staff answered 6 years ago

Answer to Bulldog Aggressiveness Toward Children

Dear Autumn,

We understand your challenging situation, and it’s indeed a difficult dilemma.

Our hearts go out to your family and you.

kids and bulldogs love story image

 

Bulldog behavioral problems: signs:

One type of behavioral issue seen in bulldogs and French bulldogs is aggression, often manifesting as biting.

In many cases, your bulldog will display preliminary signs before resorting to biting, such as

  1. Baring teeth
  2. Growling
  3. Body language: ears, hair, tail, and muscle tension
  4. Stiff posture
  5. Direct stare

Proactive measures, such as removing triggers before the dog escalates to the “red zone,” can prevent these types of bites.

Bulldog Behavioral Problems Early Start:

Mitigating aggression issues in your bulldog entails grasping canine behavior, identifying possible warning signals, and engaging in responsible interactions.

Similar to humans, establishing structure and a code of behavior is most effective when initiated early in a bulldog’s life.

Here are some guidelines to help you steer clear of dog bites:

  1. PERMISSION: Always ask the owner before petting
  2. BOUNDARIES: don’t force interaction
  3. DESIGNATED SPACE: for your bully to safely retrieve into
  4. EATING: bulldogs can be protective of their food
  5.  SLEEPING: avoid awakening them abruptly
  6. KIDS: supervised play with your pets is advised
  7. EDUCATION: educate yourself and your children
  8. EYE CONTACT: avoid direct eye contact
  9. ROUGH PLAY: can lead to an aggressive response
  10. TRAINING: basic commands like “site,”  “no,” and “stay.”
  11. SOCIALIZATION: to kids, family, strangers, and other pets
  12. POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT: with treats and praise
  13. EXERCISE: provide sufficient play time and activity

Preventing a dog from biting requires training and supervision.

Bulldog Aggression to Children Causes:

Behavioral issues in bulldogs and French bulldogs can manifest diversely, exhibiting varying intensities influenced by factors such as location, the physical condition of the dogs, and their age.

AGGRESSION TOWARDS OTHER PETS

For instance, aggression may arise towards other dogs during

  • park visits
  • walks
  • when entering their territory (such as home or yard).
  • shared food or toy
  • etc

bulldog suffering deep dog bits

AGGRESSION TOWARDS HUMANS

Similarly, aggression towards humans can vary. Among other factors, it can be:

  • strangers
  • fear
  • territorial instincts
  • possessiveness of items
  • protective instincts towards family members
  • etc

This aggression may be directed based on gender, age groups within the household, provocation, or situational triggers.

bulldog possessive of his toy

Aggression Triggers in Bulldog and French Bulldog

Possible triggers of bulldog aggression include

  • fear,
  • dominance
  • territorial instincts
  • anxiety
  • genetic predisposition
  • underlying medical conditions
  • possessiveness: especially regarding items like food and toys
  • pain (chronic or acute)

Bulldog pain relief for corneal ulcer and abnornmal eyelash

Answer for Bulldog’s Aggressiveness Toward Humans

When the aggression is against family members or other people, you must make their safety your first priority.

Answer for Bulldog’s Aggressiveness Towards Children SOLUTIONS:

  1. NEUTER: Male bulldogs should be neutered.
  2. DOG TRAINER: At times, collaborating with a reputable dog trainer can help
  3. PAIN CONTROL and ANTI-ANXIETY
  4. FACE MASK

aggressive French bulldog face mask

Nonprescription Bully Relax and Comfort Therapeutics

For pain, discomfort, anxiety, and stress

therapeutic for bulldogs in pain

Prescription Medication (RX) for Pain and Anxiety

For others, prescribing anti-anxiety medications might help.

Examples of anti-anxiety medications are:

  • Xanax
  • Prozac
  • Clomicalm

Examples of pain relief medications are:

  • NSAID’S
  • ANALGESICS: Gabapentin, Tramadol

Answer for Bulldog’s Aggressiveness Towards Children: RESCUE SOLUTION

If all else fails, consider contacting a local bulldog rescue group.

Answer for Bulldog’s Aggressiveness Towards Children: SAFY FIRST

Again, the safety of your family and your local community should always be your first priority.

Sincerely
Dr. Kraemer Vet4Bulldog

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The information provided on this platform is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian regarding any medical condition. It's important to always consider professional medical advice promptly and not to delay seeking it based on information you've read on this platform. Any reliance on the information provided here is entirely at your discretion.

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