How To Prevent A French Bulldog From Resource Guarding

How To Prevent A French Bulldog From Resource Guarding

French bulldogs can often develop behavioral issues like aggression towards their owners, other dogs, or other people. This aggression can stem from fear or insecurities. These behavioral issues can sometimes make our French bulldogs cease to be sources of amusement and begin to look like an issue that needs resolving. 

It is not unusual for your French bulldog to find a couple of things valuable. And it can be anything, from food to a spot on the couch, to your favorite hoodie. But it starts to become an issue when your Frenchie begins to growl, lunge, stiffen or bite whenever you go near these things of apparently high value. 

It can be annoying and frustrating, but you would have to do away with the frustration to handle the situation effectively. Here are some tips on how to discover and discourage this behavioral issue. 

What Is Resource Guarding? 

Resource guarding is when a dog tries to defend and protect any valuable resource like food or a toy. In mild cases, your Frenchie may only stiffen up at your approach, give you a look or simply turn his head, but in severe cases, your French bulldog might give you whale eyes, lift his lips, bare his teeth, growl or even bite. 

This can be very chilling and honestly quite alarming. Resource guarding can also happen if there are other pets around. Sometimes, your dog may resource guard you against the other pets. Resource guarding can also be called "possessive aggression," and the "cuteness" wanes very fast. 

Until a dog starts exhibiting signs of resource guarding, one may never know for sure if they are capable of it. Resource guarding is not confined to any particular breed of dog, neither is it limited to any sequence of occurrences. It all depends on the individual dog. 

Resource guarding poses such a problem because most dogs who behave in this manner do not differentiate between who is coming to take their valuables and those merely walking by. To them, the only thing that matters is what they think might be a threat. 

Many owners have often wondered why their dog seems to eat faster or guides his toy when they approach. It can be a wonder, but any dog resource guiding isn't mainly focused. They are just responding to the trigger and not the actual action. 

If you have kids, you especially cannot overlook or ignore this behavior. Resource guarding plays a considerable part in the statistics of reasons why dogs bite children. Your Frenchie may feel very sorry and remorseful, but the harm has already been done. 

Signs Of Resource Guarding In French Bulldogs 

Resource guarding is a natural and invaluable instinct for dogs who live in the wild. It helps them to survive on the limited means they have to hunt for. For a domesticated dog, however, it is not a great instinct. 

Resource guarding often starts long before we begin to see these visible signs. To prevent accidents from occurring, you should keenly observe your dog for anything that may seem amiss. This would help you to nip it in the bud before it progresses to the apparent signs of growling, lunging, biting, and being generally terrifying. 

You should lookout for some of the more subtle signs if your dog freezes when you approach "my precious," if he moves the item farther, if he braces himself over the thing, if he generally seems to watch you intently. You should pick up on it and begin to discourage it. 

Sometimes, we need to reassure our Frenchies that there are more than enough resources available to them. We need to institute an understanding that removing an item will most often result in giving him something equal or better than what he had.  Anytime your Frenchie gives up something willingly, or in obedience, it needs to be rewarded so that resource guarding does not become an issue. 

When our canines begin to resource guard, the first human instinct might be to punish the attitude out of them. This only results in more resource guarding. That is why it would be better to speak to a professional trainer and get their thoughts on the next step. But below are some helpful tips. 

How To Handle Resource Guarding? What Not To Do

There are some knee-jerk reactions to resource guarding that just do not help. And while it is understandably frightening and embarrassing, the goal is to discourage such behavior, not make it worse. Here are some things you shouldn’t do. 

#Don’t Punish Your Frenchie For Growling 

It is possible to punish the growl, but the only thing you have done is teach your dog to go straight for the bite next time. If your Frenchie realizes that his growls of discomfort at your approach will only result in some sort of punishment and the loss of his valuable item, the next time you approach, he is more likely to skip the growl and go straight to biting. 

It is pretty similar to our reactions as humans. If you keep reaching for my stuff and you ignore my warnings, you've got a smack coming your way, buddy. The point is, you shouldn't take away the vital signs your dog uses in communication with you. Your Frenchie can't explain to you that this is your last warning; growling is all they have, don't take it away. 

#Don’t Mess With Their Food Or Toys 

Experienced dog owners and people who know dogs usually know not to disturb the canine while he is eating or enjoying a toy. Some might not mind, but others mind the disturbances very much. 

Sometimes, you might want to form a habit of taking away your Frenchie's food or chews to show them that you are their lord and savior. This may work on some French bulldogs, but it generally breeds resource guarding. This is because constantly taking away their stuff will only annoy your dog and teach them that you are here to take away when they see you. 

This is not the impression to form in your Frenchie. they should always associate your presence with fun things. There are other ways to be firm and put your feet down; you should habitually do it with their food and toys. 

#Don’t Leave Out Any Items Your Frenchie Might Guard

If your Frenchie begins to have a fondness for a particular item, it might be a great idea to remove that item from their constant view. If it’s the laundry basket, take it out of sight. Pick up his food bowls after he’s finished eating and has walked away. Generally, don’t leave anything around that he may guard, 

 If you introduced a new chew and noticed he's beginning to growl, trade that chew for something else. This tip, however, will only work for mild cases of resource guarding. 

How To Handle Resource Guarding? What To Do

The best thing is to start training and socialization early to prevent resource guarding against developing. But if you rescued an adult dog from a shelter or inherited one from a family member, this point is moot. 

You can handle resource guarding in your Frenchie by desensitizing him to your presence. This usually takes time, involves a lot of steps, and requires a lot of patience. Suppose you cannot afford to take much time; you should speak to a dog behaviorist about your options. 

If your Frenchie suddenly develops resource guarding, you should visit the vet. A change in behavior or sudden aggressive behavior may be signs of an underlying health condition. You must handle the situation in the right way, don't ignore it. Face it heads on along with your vet and animal behaviorist. 

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