My one-and-a-half-year-old Beagle is lunging at strangers and children who are not known to him. Face mask is scaring him more, each time someone enters home in a mask, he goes in a frenzy to bite. Please help.

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The two most common manifestations of aggressive behaviour toward humans are fear biting and dominance-related aggression. Fear biting is most commonly seen in a dog raised without appropriate human contact during the socialisation period of growth. Such an animal fears people who are unfamiliar to him and he may attempt to bite when feeling threatened. The more he gets outside and encounters lots of other people and unfamiliar things like people with mask, the less likely he will be to act aggressively around people. So, provide your dog with a chance to socialise with people with mask and children. A combination of controlled exercise, increased pet parent control, pet obedience to commands, and behaviour modification usually resolves the problem.

Question by – Ruchi Puri, Ahemdabad

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