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Re: face biting JRTPosted by: Marie Evans
Posted on: December 12, 2001 at 14:07:56
In Reply to: face biting JRT
: Not a question, but a response. It took me a bit to catch onto the face biting thing, but I finally did. I have a granddaughter who has a genetic condition that leaves her speechless. She communicates lots with her eyes and also can hold a deep gaze for a long time. My peace-loving (and child-loving) JRT Ace has snapped at her twice, both times when she has leaned down to gaze into his face (it's a way she shows affection). Ace finds her face and her gaze totally intimidating. He will not bite her, but he has snapped those two times. Other than those times, he has spent hours playing with her and protecting her. Dogs do not always see our faces as communicating love and kindness, especially close up. And a steady gaze is a challenge.
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Yes you are right, dogs are very uncomfortable with being stared at. They do perceive it as a challenge and if a dog is very alpha will see it as a threat to their status and will usually get aggressive.
That's one reason why it is advised to never stare-down a dog, especially an aggressive one. If you do happen to get into a stare-down you have to make sure that the dog breaks his stare before you do, otherwise he will think you have shown that he is indeed alpha.
Thanks for offering your experience.