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Rage Syndrome

I know a friend through a forum, they bought a mixed cocker spaniel puppy, love him and raise him as their own kid. Now the dog just turned one year old, and started to show rage syndrome, attacking the owner for no reason. The bite was quite bad (they showed me the injury picture)...and this is not the first time attack.The young couple was thinking of giving up the dog for adoption.

I personally think it is not easy to find a good home for him, as the adopter has to be very experienced in handling this kind of rage syndrome dog. But to euthanize the dog also very cruel too...any other suggestion?


veterinary clinic

They might check out Cesar Millan's tips on Aggression

"Depression and aggression is often really frustration. Discharge the energy first; let the dog wear himself out".


Or you can go to a qualified animal behaviorist.  They have several years of veterinary school and additional training.  Most vet schools or well staffed vet clinics should have one.

Cesar Millan has very few qualifications and some of his practices have been shown to be harmful.  His training is not even based on any real research or scientific evidence.  The Veterinary Medical Association, the Humane Society and many veterinarian schools have come out against him.


A vet told me once that spaniels are prone to rage and that it was a type of seizure.  That's all I've heard about it.


Some people think it's a type of seizure, but there are mixed reactions to anti-convulsants - some dogs are less aggressive, some aren't. : /
I think "rage syndrome" was particular to English springer spaniels rather than cocker spaniels or all spaniels. It might just be a manifestation of dominance aggression, but... I haven't really read anything definitive.
Either way, a behaviorist is the way to go. Just leaving the dog be and chalking it up to a "syndrome" won't help... at least you give the dog a chance with a behaviorist.


Honestly, there are tons of dogs being euthanized all the time, so I feel that rescue resources should be triaged.  I think the best thing would be to euthanize a human aggressive dog, though it would not be a happy occasion of course...

Edit:  That is IF a trainer or behaviorist cannot help.


This thread is a little old now, but I'm new to the forum, and wanted to know how this worked out.  Any news?

I'd read that cockers are prone to rage syndrome, which is so sad.  I hope the owners were able to find some help.

I used positive reward-based training to work through dog-aggressive behavior with a greyhound we adopted who started attacking first our other male, then any strange dog he saw on walks or other outings.  While his behavior seemed to stem from fear, NOT rage syndrome, some of our experience might still apply.  We used a DAP collar for over a year, and I believe it helped, along with the positive reward training.  I strongly recommend using ONLY positive reward training, ever, but particularly with a dog that is already on the verge of attacking at any moment.  Pushing such a dog's buttons would very likely result in an attack reaction! 

Best of luck to this poor dog and his/her owners!


i think the OP was a spammer, so no likely update.

and yeah, give something a "syndrome" name and you can label lots of behaviors with it. I'm glad to hear things worked out with your greyhound. so often people brush off bad behavior as the animal being "bad" and that's it.

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