Local Trainers Talk About Preventing Dog Attacks - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Local Trainers Talk About Preventing Dog Attacks

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There have been two dog attacks in Central Texas over the last two weeks.

One involving a German Shepherd put three children in the hospital and a Pit Bull mauled a little girl to death, but local trainers say these attacks can be prevented.

Dog owner Sara Dolan's has a Mini Australian Shepherd named Sophie. She's well behaved, but it took some hard work. 
    
"Dogs can be violent and kind of unruly and rowdy if they're not trained real well," Dolan said. "We had a problem with her jumping, so that's why we originally took her to get trained."

Training stops annoying habits like jumping and keeps your dog from becoming dangerous. 

Gina Bujalski, owner of Quail Creek K-9 Services says dogs of any breed can become aggressive, so it's important to socialize them early.

"Once they've gotten all their shots and they're vaccinated, get them out socializing at the park," Bujalski said. "Take them to the outlet malls, get them around other people, take them to the grocery stores."

This helps dogs get used to noise and activity, so they don't become anxious. 

Some of the most dangerous dogs are tense because they've been chained in a back yard.

"They've built up this layer of frustration and they've also built up this layer of what they think is territorial...and that's their little area there," Bujalski said. "When they go out and become social, they don't know how to react."

It's also important for parents to talk with their kids about how to deal with dogs.

Trainers says the best way to approach a dog is from the side. Gently pet them on the back and never stare directly into their eyes.

For Sara Dolan, training and socializing has made Sophie a great dog for kids.

"We have a two-year-old niece she just loves and a close friend has a five-year-old she absolutely loves," Dolan said.

Trainers say any dog can be gentle, but it's up to the owners to make it happen.

If you have a dog that shows signs of aggression like growling or biting, trainers can do "Behavior Adjustment Training" to analyze the dog's tension and change the way they respond.

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