Does Neutering Help With Aggression In Male Dogs? – Explained

Dogs express aggression through growling, barking, lunging, snarling, snapping, and biting. Aggressive behavior in male dogs is usually developed over time.

If you own a male dog, this aggressive behavior can be very annoying, frustrating, and scary, especially if you have small children.

We’ve been receiving a common question in the comments and emails from our readers: “Does neutering help with aggression in male dogs?”

Does Neutering Help With Aggression In Male Dog

Please continue reading to learn more and understand better the issue and all the anticipated behavioral changes in your male dog after neutering them.

Does Neutering A Male Dog Help To Reduce Aggressive Behavior?

One of the reasons that dog owners neuter their male dogs is to reduce their aggressive behavior and calm them down supposedly.

Many veterinarians increasingly make neutering male dogs a routine suggestion when consulted by pet owners who seek help to stop the aggressive behavior of their dogs.

Although neutering is a safe process, you should expect various behavioral changes when taking your male dog home after the procedure.

These changes in your dog’s behavior include increased aggression, anxiety, clinginess, or even depression.

Although many veterinarians and behaviorists still claim neutering male dogs helps reduce aggressive behavior and calms them down, neutering has been cited for causing fear-related aggression behaviors.

These include anxiety and fearfulness, and increased aggression contrary to what is asserted by veterinarians and dog behavior experts.

Experiences Of Owners Who Neutered Their Male Dogs

So, is neutering a male dog the solution to reduce aggressive behavior, as some veterinarians and dog behavior experts claim?

Many pet parents of neutered male dogs report significant aggressive behavior after their male pet dog recovered from the neutering procedure.

These are dog owners who decided to neuter their male dogs after following the suggestion of veterinarians and behaviorists who claim neutering male dogs helps to reduce aggression.

When the pet parents got home after the neutering procedure, they noticed their male dogs exhibiting unacceptable behaviors.

Some dog owners who neutered their male dogs also claimed the changes in behavior also made training the neutered dogs more difficult.

Behavioral Effects Of Neutering A Male Dog

Hormone testosterone can encourage certain aggressive behaviors in male dogs. Neutering removes the hormone testosterone by removing the dog’s testicles.

As such, neutering only affects behaviors that depend on the sex hormones. These include aggression towards other male dogs and territorial marking sexual behavior.

Manifestation of these behaviors also takes time because of the differing time testosterones take to leave a dog’s body.

Is There A Connection Between Neutering A Male Dog And Reducing Aggressive Behavior?

There is no sufficient evidence that links neutering with reduced aggression. Some studies have also shown that positive behaviors expected after neutering dogs failed to occur.

The only behavior that will change when you neuter your dog is the ones controlled by male hormones. These hormone-driven behaviors will gradually reduce after you neuter your dog since the testes produce hormones.

Although neutering reduces reproductive problems, other behavioral problems remain. Most aggressive behaviors are caused by stress, frustration, and anxiety.

Aggression from these causes can be solved by addressing the dog’s stress or fear via training.

It is natural and expected if you are struggling with aggressive behavior from your male dog and want a quick fix to end it.

Unfortunately, many have fallen to misleading information about neutering as a solution that ends aggression in male dogs.

Many of these male dog owners get surprised when the aggressive behavior is not resolved after the neutering procedure has been done.

Some pet owners have reported that their male dogs developed more aggression after neutering them, behaviors that they did not have before.

Can Neutering Help With Aggression In Male Dog

Misleading Information About Neutering Male Dogs

Among the most significant challenge that pet dog owners face today is the false statements and information available on the internet.

There is a lot of false information about the effects of neutering male dogs, which dog owners commonly ask.

An example of such misleading information claimed by veterinarians and behaviorists is that the younger a male dog is neutered, the less likely aggressive behavior will occur.

It has prompted many studies to find out if there are any behavioral benefits and problems linked with neutering male dogs and whether the age at which a male dog is neutered makes a difference.

Recent Research Study Findings On Effects Of Neutering Male Dogs To Reduce Aggression

Recent research on whether neutering helps with aggression in male dogs found that neutered male dogs showed increased aggressive behavior.

Studies on neutered male dogs also found that the dogs showed fear-related behaviors.

Some of these behaviors were noticed when a stranger directly approached the dogs.

The dogs were exposed to an unfamiliar situation, approached, or barked at by a strange dog, or when they were taken to a veterinarian to be examined.

Again, the research suggests that these fear-related behaviors appeared the most on neutered young dogs.

A lot of people in Europe do not follow this outdated advice.

A study conducted in Sweden found that 99% of all the sampled male dogs were not neutered. In Hungary, it was found that 57% of sampled male dogs were still unneutered.

Another similar study conducted in Britain found that 46% of all the surveyed male dogs were still not neutered.

In some countries such as Norway, it is prohibited by law to neuter a dog unless there are convincing medical reasons why neutering of a male dog should be conducted.

Recommendation For Aggressive Dog Owners

Even with current research on whether neutering male dogs helps reduce aggression, many veterinarians and dog behavior experts today continue to advise their clients to use this outdated surgical procedure to address aggressive dog behavior.

If you have an aggressive male dog and planning to neuter the dog to reduce his aggression, I would advise you against the idea. What you need is behavior training and not a neutering surgical procedure.

There are many reasons to go for neutering your dog, but we can not advise anyone to go for it to reduce aggression-related behavior problems.

The pattern of findings from these most recent research studies on whether neutering helps with aggression in male dogs is crystal clear.

Neutering male dogs can make them develop increased aggressive behavior.

If you have a male dog exhibiting aggressive behavior, we recommend that you first consult your veterinarian about the behavior problem.

The veterinarian will examine your dog and refer you to a qualified and experienced dog behavior expert if the issue is behavior-related.

Conclusion

So, does neutering help with aggression in male dogs? At this point, I believe you now know the link between neutering male dogs and reducing aggressive behavior.

There is a lot of information on the internet today, misleading people about neutering. Neutering is not an easy fix to address aggressive behavior.

Most of these types of aggression are not caused by hormones but outside stimuli.

It is less likely that neutering will solve your dog’s aggression problem, but it will help reduce the puppy population and keep your dog healthier.