Akita and Dominant Behaviour: Strategies for Managing Dominance

Dog owner question:

"My Akita dog, Hoshi, sometimes seems aggressive, especially when he feels his dominance is threatened. Although generally very friendly and affectionate, he sometimes displays aggressive behaviour towards other dogs and sometimes even family members. I would like to understand how I can manage this behaviour. Do you have any advice?"

Answer from a dog psychologist:

"Akita dogs often exhibit dominant behavior, which can be problematic if not managed properly.

Here are some tips on how to manage this behavior:

  1. Early and Ongoing Socialization: One of the best ways to manage dominant behavior is to socialize Hoshi early and often with other dogs and people. This will help him understand appropriate social behaviour and reduce aggression.
  2. Positive Reinforcement Training. This can help reduce dominant behaviour.
  3. Professional Help: If Hoshi’s behavior continues to be problematic, consider seeing a professional dog trainer or behavior expert. They may be able to suggest additional strategies and help with training.
  4. Consistency: Akita dogs are intelligent, but can be stubborn. It is important to be consistent in training and behavioral expectations.
  5. Patience: the dominant behavior of Akitas can vary and it may take time to understand and accept the desired behavior. Be patient and celebrate every little improvement Hoshi makes.

Hoshi, like all Akitas, has a unique personality and dominant behaviors can manifest in varying degrees. The key is patient, consistent training and socialization to help your dog understand and lead a safe, happy and healthy life.

All dogs – even the dominant Akita – need love, care and understanding. With constant attention, proper training and support, Hoshi will be able to manage his dominant tendencies and develop harmonious relationships with both family members and other dogs.

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Remember, your success is Hoshi's success!"