How to Train a Rottweiler Puppy to Not be Aggressive

Medium
2-4 Months
Behavior

Introduction

For any owner of a large dog, knowing the strength and reputation of the breed is essential. While smaller breeds may lend themselves to the idea of a dog nestled in a purse and yapping happily all the way, a larger breed may offer a much more intimidating presence. Large dogs can be seen as dangerous, scary, or even aggressive, and though many of them are quite friendly, being able to maintain control over a large dog’s behavior may make all the difference.

Among the larger breeds known for an intimidating appearance, the Rottweiler stands out as the “bad boy” of them all. With a large head, dark colored fur, and powerful body, the Rottweiler can be a formidable companion. However, many Rotties, as they’re affectionately called, are loving family dogs when given the right training and socialization early on in life. To prevent a Rottweiler puppy from becoming aggressive, you must prepare for every situation to ensure that your dog grows to be happy and well behaved.

Defining Tasks

Some puppies may begin to show aggressive tendencies early on. Unlike smaller breeds which may not be able to do much damage if a bite occurs, a large dog can quickly become an issue if he begins to show aggression. Whether that aggression is occurring because of fear, resource guarding, or overexcitement, it should be addressed as soon as possible.

Aggression in Rottweiler puppies can be tackled in a variety of ways, though the best method is a combination of methods. Socialization and positive reinforcement should begin as soon as you bring your Rottweiler puppy home and continue for the first two to four months of his life in order to properly establish good behavior around people and other dogs.

Getting Started

Before targeting aggression in your puppy, ensure that the aggression is not a result of illness or injury. Have him checked by a veterinarian to rule out any health problems. Following that, you should gather up some tasty treats and toys in order to act as motivators for your Rottweiler’s training. The better rewards you can offer for good behavior, the more likely it will be that your puppy will respond well to your training.

Be sure to supervise any interaction with other dogs or small children, as a bite or a fight can occur very quickly and suddenly. Be prepared to remove your puppy from any stressful situation.

The Socialization Method

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Step
1
Start early
Your puppy should begin his socialization once he receives all of his vaccinations. The earlier you can begin, the more likely it will be that your Rottweiler will associate good things with meeting others.
Step
2
Meet friendly dogs
Start with meeting other dogs that are calm and well mannered. They will be less likely to overwhelm or frighten your puppy.
Step
3
Meet safe people
Allow your puppy to come in contact with all kinds of people of varying genders, races, and appearances. The more varied the people your puppy meets, the less likely he will be to show aggression to any one type of person.
Step
4
Explore public areas
When it is safe to do so, take your Rottweiler puppy to safe public spaces such as pet stores or to the park where he can observe and encounter other dogs and people. Be aware of possible stressful situations and be ready to remove your puppy if he becomes overwhelmed.
Step
5
Make every experience a good one
Allow for plenty of praise and rewards for good behavior around others. Offer your puppy treats and play time with different, fun toys throughout these encounters in order to associate good things with meeting new people and animals.
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The Manners Method

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Step
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Basic obedience
Begin by teaching your puppy basic obedience commands such as ‘sit’, ‘stay’, and ‘come’. These will offer her a strong foundation for more training later on.
Step
2
Asking permission
Get your puppy used to asking permission for things like being fed, playing with toys, or being let outside for a walk or run. Have her ask permission by sitting in front of you before you give her what she wants.
Step
3
Learning to ignore
Some other dogs and people may be poorly behaved around your puppy. Teach her to ignore these people or dogs by making yourself more interesting or working on obedience around them.
Step
4
Training on the go
Always be prepared to train when out and about with either treats or toys on hand for quick obedience training.
Step
5
Training in the home
Have treats available in multiple rooms of the house to be ready to reward your puppy for any good behavior she exhibits. Be ready to reinforce positive progress at any time.
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The Conditioning Method

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Step
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Use a motivator
Determine what encourages your dog the most. Some work well for treats and others work better for toys. Test some different rewards out with your puppy to see which he prefers or use both together.
Step
2
Get some help
Enlist the help of friends or family to help reinforce good behavior with your puppy both in the home and outside of the home.
Step
3
Have your tools available
Be ready to take your puppy’s focus whenever a possible issue may arise. Have your treats or toys on hand.
Step
4
Reward whenever possible
Always reward for good behavior around other people or animals, especially early on. Lots of rewards and affection will ensure a positive association instead of an aggressive or fearful one.
Step
5
Reinforcement
Reinforce positive associations throughout the training period and even well into adulthood. Your dog will love to be reminded of what good behavior earns him and can shape his behavior later on.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Zobia
Rottweiler
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Zobia
Rottweiler
9 Weeks

Zobia is usually a pretty calm dog. But whenever she wants something, whether she's hungry, thirsty, has to go to the bathroom, or just bored, she bites. And it hurts. With her being a Rottweiler, we NEED her to be docile almost all the time. What should we do to train her not to bite?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
242 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hanna, Check out the article that I have linked below. The biting that you are experiencing now is normal puppy biting. She is biting you to get attention the way she would with litter mates. It is completely normal, but puppies do need our help to learn how to control their mouths. From the article linked below follow the "Bite Inhibition" method. This will deal with her doing it to get attention also. Go ahead and start using that but also be teaching her the "Leave It" command at the same time because around four months of age you will switch to using Leave It. Once she knows Leave It and can do that command, you can use the Pressure method from the article to gently disciple disobedience to your Leave It command. It's important to teach Leave It first though or she might think you are just rough housing when you use the Pressure Method - the command helps her understand what you want her to do. The article mentions Shit Tzu's but the training is the same for all puppies in this case. Puppy biting article: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite You should see gradual improvement with the biting if the training is working. It takes puppies several months to learn complete control though - especially while they are in the teething and jaw development phases where the need to mouth and chew it strong. Stay consistent. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Champ
Rottweiler
11 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Champ
Rottweiler
11 Weeks

We have the usual puppy biting and nipping but sometimes Champ will bite at your face if he is mad at you for taking something away or removing him from where he wants to be. We just bought him a new chew bone and he guards it fiercely. He growls if you try and take it. Just a little concerned about his aggression so far. He sits, lays down and is learning off. He is already crate trained and very smart. Do you feel he is so young and still learning or do we need to be overly concerned?
Thank you!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
242 Dog owners recommended

Hello Erica, You absolutely need to hire a professional trainer with experience in resource guarding and and possessiveness to come to your home and work with you. The mouthing and play biting is normal, but the resource guarding needs to be stopped right away or will get very dangerous. Every time he does it and is left alone or has a bad experience, it is likely getting worse and can lead to serious issues as he ages. He probably has a strong personality and is a dog that needs a lot of structure and boundaries. Look for a trainer who uses boundaries, structure, fair corrections, and positive reinforcement. Many of these trainers call themselves balanced trainers. Look for reviews online or ask for client referrals. Not all trainers are skilled at dealing with aggression properly. You need someone who can show you how to lead him, show him that possessiveness will not be tolerated, but also build his trust and make you approaching him when he has something a pleasant experience for him when he is tolerant. Essentially, you need to build both trust and respect, not just one or the other. Check out Shaun O'Shay from the Good Dog Training online for some examples of what using positive reinforcement, implementing structure, and using fair corrections can look like for an older dog too. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Zeus
Rottweiler and American Bulldog
8 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Zeus
Rottweiler and American Bulldog
8 Weeks

Hi! Recently my puppy Zeus has become what I would call aggressive. Nothing over the top, but certainly more than play biting or nipping. There are time when we go to pick him up that he growls and begins to bite us. Secondly, he has started to react to corrections. If we take a toy away or touch him while we tell him no then he gets mad and begins to bite. At first this was only happening occasionally, but it has become more frequent now that he is getting older. How can we put a stop to this? Any advice or help you could provide would be much appreciated.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
242 Dog owners recommended

Hello Shay, If he really is reacting out of aggression and not just playing, then I suggest hiring a professional trainer right now. Aggression that young is unusual. Look for a trainer who uses both positive reinforcement and fair corrections with structure, but who will use positive reinforcement most at his age. Also, check out the free PDF e-book download "AFTER You Get Your Puppy" on my website: https://www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Lucie
Rottweiler
2 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Lucie
Rottweiler
2 Months

Sir my pet is too much aggressive and even start fight with me . I was the only best care taker of it , even though it comes on to me and bites hard . As it's tooth were too sharp it hurts me a lot. If it bite others in another month it causes severe problems . Please Help me to reduce its aggressiveness and calm down.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
242 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sainath, At two months old puppies normally bite because that is not they interact with other dogs to play and communicate, and how they learn about things around them. They have to learn during puppihood not to bite people. This can take around three months to teach even when done correctly. Check out the article linked below and work on the Leave It method. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite If the biting continues past seven months of age, it is time to get professional help, because biting in an older dog is more likely aggression. At two months of age it is normal puppy biting though and typically done as play or a tantrum (like toddlers sort of) and is not true aggression, so it is treated differently than aggression. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Training Success Stories

Success
Rex
Ridgeback
4 Years

I bought my dog when he was 2 years old. He didn't know any tricks or so. After some time I thought why cant i teach him . My parents are always bragging about how good their dogs are, but 1 things for sure that they are only good at being lazy. So I taught my dog how to sit. Every time I say sit Rex is always sitting. I just kept saying sit. In the beginning if Rex didn't obey my orders I would just hit him on the butt not to hard( like a friendly hit) then he understood what I meant.

11 months ago
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