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Question about dogs who are nervous of other dogs

(17 Posts)
Puzzledconfusedandbewildered Sat 03-Sep-16 08:41:01

How do you tackle this?

Also how do you deal with the age old dog off lead "oh he's really friendly" dog who will inevitably come bounding over to say hi to the nervous dog?

Can you ever get a nervous dog used to other dogs?

MoogBoov Sat 03-Sep-16 08:48:26

My dog is a bit nervous too... I've found she's happier meeting other dogs when she is off lead. Apparently in their heads they're more relaxed when off lead as they aren't 'attached' to you... But yes they do get better, if you constantly introduce them to new environments and other dogs.

MoogBoov Sat 03-Sep-16 08:49:49

If they really are nervous, also, you can get yellow or red tabard things that are meant to indicate to other owners how nervous your dog is and therefore if they should stay away. They aren't to widely known yet but most people should recognise them

MoonlightMojitos Sun 04-Sep-16 15:02:19

I hate that when other people let theirs come running over. I have to them pick mine up (lucky he's small!) As he gets really nervous and will snap at them if they get in his face when he's on his lead so can't get away. And they're like 'oh don't worry he/she's friendly' like I'm picking him up because I'm scared they're not. I'm sure they are but mine isn't, in these situations. Mine is now 9 years old and I can't see him getting over it now.

doghairinmytea Sun 04-Sep-16 15:09:20

How about trying him at a dog socialisation class? It worked very well with our nervous dog- he would put the brakes on and refuse to even enter the field if there was another dog in there. It wasn't very expensive (about £3 a session). Unfortunately he's now the one bounding up to nervous dogs!

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:12:05

wide open spaces are easier than narrow paths, and also a treat for my dog, also a ball, in hand, to distract her.

MakeItStopNeville Sun 04-Sep-16 15:16:55

One of my dogs hates other dogs (except for our other dog). Other dogs have sensed this from when he was a puppy so that has excacerbated it as they would growl at him.

Tbh, i just don't take him to places I know are going to have dogs off leash. We walk in local woods where we rarely see anyone and around the neighbourhood at quiet times. If we pass other dogs, I tend to just cross the street and give him a reward for ignoring them. It's a bit of a pita though as I also have to take my friendly dog for a second walk or to the dog park so he can have his dog playtime.

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:19:16

my dog likes some but not others, she doesnt like fluffy bouncy dogs, in particular puppies.
most owners are ok by her growling though.

i often think if we let dogs just sort it for themselves they are better.

read the body language, if they turn their face away, they dont like the approaching dog, and there are other signs as well

Puzzledconfusedandbewildered Sun 04-Sep-16 15:19:34

Thanks for the ideas. We've been advised (she's a rescue dog) that she's a never around other dogs dog as the previous owner tried behavioural training the old fashioned way (water to the face and choke chains) which made her even worse

I'm more afraid of dealing with owners of bouncing uncontrolled dogs than I am of my dog (she's all snarl and no bite with a hefty pull unless the other dog goes in for a bite)

Other than this issue she's the perfect pet

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:21:15

just let her snarl at the bouncy dogs and they should back away, owners should get them back sharpish?

Puzzledconfusedandbewildered Sun 04-Sep-16 15:22:50

Sadly they don't seem to especially retriever types who imo just make a complete nuisance of themselves and won't take the hint, they're usually the ones whose owners can't be seen for dust too

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:23:48

I agree, their owners just as daft,

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:24:12

would she be distracted?

Puzzledconfusedandbewildered Sun 04-Sep-16 15:30:10

It's something we are working on. If it's a sudden appearance we get her to sit and reward her for keeping eye contact with us until they pass or an owner appears or if we clock it soon enough we let her register the dog then gently turn away from it. She's getting better but it's a very very long road and although she's very much a people dog she loathes other dogs with a passion. They clearly stress her out poor thing.

She's not off lead so we can't distract with a ball and tbh she's not a dog that likes toys. Food and attention hold her for a while then a fly zots by and she's wanting to catch it....grin

NoahVale Sun 04-Sep-16 15:39:47

sounds good op

Greyhorses Sun 04-Sep-16 18:28:23

Puzzled it sounds as though you are on the right track! It does take a very long time and it really is one step forward and two back at times. I did find that with my fearful dog even interactions with friendly dogs weren't helping as she was so scared so I just limit who she meets now.

One thing I would be wary of is over socialisation or trying to force her to be 'friendly' to others.
This is something that took me a while to figure out. It's okay for your dog not to like dogs in her face or bouncing up to her, as long as she is happy walking past them then that's fine! I work my dog at a distance as she can't cope too close and its been fine, the majority of people are understanding when I explain she dosent like other dogs. I keep her on lead and block the strange one just incase if it's approaching her.

We have also attended classes where dogs are on lead, to teach her to focus on me even when other dogs are around.

What we do is let her look at the other dog, treat for looking calmly, ask for sit and watch me, treat when dog passes, allow her to move on. It's taken about 9 months but she eventually has stopped lunging unless a dog stares her hmm

Good luck!

WyldFyre Mon 05-Sep-16 08:33:53

I have a lead cover and bandana from YellowDog UK.
It's a project for any dog that needs space for any reason - nervous, old, ill, in training etc...
Both have "I need space" on then.

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