Anxiety can cause your pets to fight
Q: One of my dogs gets suddenly aggressive towards my other dog or attacks him seemingly for no reason. How do I get them to get along? Shivani Singh
Generally, most well socialized dogs strive to avoid physical or aggressive confrontation. Dogs that are not well socialized or have deficits either in their ability to interpret or communicate with other dogs are more predisposed to aggressive confrontations. As you do not seem aware of the reason for your dogs’ inability to ‘adjust’, I may advice you here that fighting between dogs within a household can have several motivations. Fights are most likely to occur over access to resources that are considered important to one dog more than the other. These might include food, resting places, territory, favored possessions or social interactions with the owners or another dog in the home. These fights occur most often between dogs of near equal ability and motivation and often, but not always, dogs of the same sex, and seem to be most severe between female dogs. Fights may occur when a younger, larger, more agile dog challenges an older, confident dog in an attempt to alter the existing pattern of resource division; a change in the household, routine, or family may lead to altered responses between the pets. This may result from underlying anxiety in one or both of the pets or an inability to adapt the change. Fighting of a younger dog toward a dog that is aging or ill may be a function of the inability of the older dog to respond with appropriate postures and signaling when interacting with the younger dog. This may lead to a change in their predictable relationship. If a pet’s responses, including aggression, are due to some disease, treatment and restoration of health may restore peace. Unfortunately many medical problems, especially those associated with aging, might not be able to be entirely resolved; in these cases, prevention rather than improvement might be all that can be expected. Then, fights can also occur due to underlying anxiety such as separation anxiety or noise sensitivities.
Q: My pet dog eats paper, will anything bad happen? Vandana Mishra
If a dog eats a newspaper, it could be bad because it can cause a huge blockage, it can absorb a lot of its body fluid and dehydrate the dog, cause massive constipation, and even the ink can be detrimental. If the dog eats a magazine, the glossy, heavier weight paper can retain its sharp edges and cut their esophagus, stomach or intestines. If it eats tissues or paper towels, again, it can block their intestines. These are life-threatening situations, and must be dealt with by a veterinarian very quickly, because the dog’s life can very well be in jeopardy. If your dog eats something that it shouldn’t, like paper or a sock, what many vets will recommend is to induce vomiting. But I would encourage you to always check with your vet, or an emergency vet clinic before doing anything yourself - better still, ensure that your dog does not have access to the things best avoided!
Q: How do I stop my dog from chewing its paws? How can I help my dog’s itchy paws? RK Tiwary
Your dog may have itchy paws caused by skin or food allergy. The most common food allergens in dogs include dairy, corn, wheat and soy. Dogs sometimes bite at their paws due to stress, fear or anxiety. Boredom may be another behavior issue, which may cause the dog to chew at his paws. Just by checking the skin, you can understand the cause. The medical cause in case of allergy can be dealt by your vet, and the others are natural causes and won’t really harm your dog.