What caused dogs to attack their owner?

Oct 2013
6,153
Planet Nine, Oregon
#22
My mother adopted a dog that had been badly abused. For a long time the dog seemed friendly, but later it became clear that he was just being submissive and no longer trusted people; he later attacked my mother and father on two different occasions, drawing blood, and had to be put down. Sad. I'd love to get my hands on folks who hurt dogs and other animals..
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
32,474
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#23
That may be at least part of it. The owner's father was lax in his care and the dogs may have been underfed. But the two dogs seemed to work together. They didn't attack at her father's house, but only later in a wooded area where she had walked them. The attack occurred there. Her body wasn't dragged there. The dogs apparently had no history of violence but they were probably mistreated by the father and decided to take it out on her. The two dogs seemed be working together when the police arrived. It's as if the two dogs agreed to a plan. Very strange.
And they'd have gotten away with it too, if it hadn't been for those pesky kids.
 
Apr 2017
676
Lemuria
#24
As someone pointed out, this could be due to a mental illness or it could have been a dominance fight for the dog to assert itself as pack leader. The woman didn't understand the dog body language and the dog exploited her weaknesses.
Some dog breeds are more prone to violence, more obstinate and more resistant to pain.
We know wild wolves don't change their mind easily once a thought forms in their mind. This is why sometimes you will see a wolf hopelessly trying to kill a prey for hours, when a more reasonable predator would have given up after a few minutes.
 
Jun 2012
7,121
Malaysia
#25
My mother adopted a dog that had been badly abused. For a long time the dog seemed friendly, but later it became clear that he was just being submissive and no longer trusted people; he later attacked my mother and father on two different occasions, drawing blood, and had to be put down. Sad. I'd love to get my hands on folks who hurt dogs and other animals..
Yes. That is probably the most likely explanation for what had happened in this case. A once abused pair of dogs, just submitting to & tolerating their former human master for as long as they had to, then turning on her as soon as it became safe for them to do so.
 
Jan 2015
3,244
Front Lines of the Pig War
#26
You are only safe because your cat is small. I suspect cats are less domesticated, too:
Oh I don't doubt that either, if I was small and she was big I'd be her next meal.

Dog attacks are more common, but so are dog rescues and cases of dogs protecting people. How often do cats protect their owners?

.
More often than you think

Guardian.com cat-saves-boy-from-dog-attack

CBSnews Alberta cat bit its sleeping owner to alert her to house fire

Beloved Cat Saves Long Island Family From Fast-Moving House Fire « CBS New York
 
Oct 2013
6,153
Planet Nine, Oregon
#27
Cats are great too. Animals are wonderful, as long as they aren't eating you. Though Timothy Treadwell took things a bit too far; made the mistake of doing a Google image search for him; he looked happier before the bears started to eat him. :)
 

Lowell2

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,541
California
#28
they weren't raised by her from birth. one was obtained at about 8 weeks and the other was obtained much later, despite apparently being a sibling. https://nypost.com/2017/12/20/trainer-reveals-why-dogs-may-have-mauled-owner-to-death/
Friends told the news station that Stephens got Tonka when he was 8 weeks old and rescued Pac-Man from an abusive home.
There's plenty to indicate problems here. the dogs were rescues, which means that no information was available regarding what the breeding program was for the parents (if there was any) and therefore while these specific dogs hadn't been bred for dog fighting, it's unknown if they were bred to be "guard dogs" (a lot of people tend to believe that the more aggressive a dog is the better it is as a guard dog). She
Dogs Who Mauled Virginia Woman: Sheriff Releases Details | PEOPLE.com Deputies watched dogs 'eating rib cage' of Virginia woman, 22, during mauling, sheriff says | Fox News. we have a vague reference to "an abusive home" which can mean a lot of things, including early imprinting and training for violence. The dogs were originally her house dogs, but somewhere along the line she took them to her father's and left them there. The dogs were relegated to being outside dogs with her visiting (apparently only for walks) 3 -4 times a week. That's a radical change in situation -- from pampered house pet to unwanted and underfed (per the article they were indeed underfed) yard dogs. There's a lot of things that could have triggered the dogs -- she could have done something as simple as trip over them or they may have started to fight between themselves and she tried to intervene. They may have then turned on her. Once stimulated to attack, she lost control of the dogs. That they then started eating her is indicative to me of much bigger problems underlying these dogs -- a lot of dogs will kill but not eat prey animals and they are even less likely to eat a "pack member" if given an option. You might read Scott & Fuller's books on genetic basis of dog behavior Genetics and the Social Behavior of the Dog, Scott, Fuller and https://books.google.com/books/about/Dog_Behavior.html?id=J1-otwAACAAJ - despite being written in the 1965 period, the study still is a landmark showing triggering thresholds and aggression thresholds.

While there is still speculation that something started it, so far there's no evidence of any outside issue. It may have been as simple as one of the dogs starting after a cat and objecting to her trying to stop it. There's no evidence, despite the assertion she was a "trainer" that she had actually trained these dogs to any particular level of obedience and compliance.
 
Sep 2012
947
Tarkington, Texas
#29
Certain dog breeds are prone to attacking humans. Pit Bulls are one of those breeds. Dogs will also attack and kill young children that live with them when a strange dog come around. Never leave small children alone with large dogs.

Pruitt
 

Lowell2

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,541
California
#30
Certain dog breeds are prone to attacking humans. Pit Bulls are one of those breeds. Dogs will also attack and kill young children that live with them when a strange dog come around. Never leave small children alone with large dogs.

Pruitt
you can say the same thing about people. the largest cause of infants being killed are relatives killing them.
 

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