Many Factors Play A Role in the Behavior of Dogs


OKTIBBEHA COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI) – Another dog attack sends one man to the hospital.

This time in Union County.

- Advertisement -

Sheriff Jimmy Edwards says a man was attacked inside his home by three dogs he was caring for Thursday morning.

The man received minor injuries and all three pit bulls were put down.

This is the second time in a week a pack of dogs has been responsible for attacking someone.

The recent attacks potentially shine more negativity on the breed, that already has a reputation for being aggressive.

“As far as aggression goes, really any dog has the potential,” says Mississippi State College of Veterinary of Medicine Assistant Clinical Professor of Behavior, Dr. Christine Calder.

Calder is an animal behavior expert.

She says there are certain medical conditions and emotions that could cause dog aggression more likely to happen, such as pain, discomfort, skin problems, and other diseases.

She also says dogs communicate with body language cues.

“We miss or we don’t recognize and our dogs tolerate a lot from us. There’s many dogs that really don’t like hugs and there’s many dogs that really don’t like kisses and it can be to a certain point where they will tolerate that, and then maybe, they have an ear infection, or they have a toothache, and so their irritability level is much higher and then they’re much more likely to bite at that point.”

The animal specialist says many different factors play a role in how dogs behave including, early learning experience, environments, socialization, and how they’re raised.

“I started learning where these dogs derived from, what they used them for, what temperament they had and these dogs were never meant to be mean towards human. A lot of stuff is caught and taught, so you have to be careful what you teach your dog, what they go through and what they see,” says Agape Kennels owner, Olando Ware.

Ware has owned Agape Kennels for ten years now, but his love for dogs and the Pit Bull breed has always been in his DNA.

Now, he’s passing that same care on to his daughter, who has been around dogs since she was born.

“Most of them are American Bully now, but Pit Bull Terrier is a part of our breed, so we stand up for our breed and we just want people to know that these dogs are good dogs and they want a lot of love and a lot of attention, so you have to be willing to put the time in it. Do your background, do your homework on these dogs to make sure this is a dog for you.”

Before Ware started the kennel business and got involved in showing his dogs for competition, he trained police dogs.

“The behaviors that you don’t want, you have to be able to stop. So training is very important at an early age, 6 weeks, 8 weeks, 10 weeks you need to start training. These dogs need socialization. You need to take them out, have them around different environments, so they get to know that everything is okay.”

Ware’s very first Pit Bull lived to be 19 years old.