9mth old puppy scared and then aggressive towards some other dogs(5 Posts)
Hi! I have a lush poodle lab cross (he's small), 9 month old. We've had him since he was 13 weeks. I was very aware of socialisation and he met lots of dogs and people when he was small with no problems although he was a little timid. He's not scared or agresseive ever towards us or strangers at anytime. In fact he can be occasionally be overly boisterous!
However, recently he's had a couple of episodes where he's felt intimidated by other dogs where he's been on the lead (as we were in sheep) and 2 other dogs (off lead) have run at him in a pincer movement and whilst it wasn't aggressive, he felt intimidated. Anyway, the last few days he's started growling at the odd dog on the street and then today lunged at one when it passed him although it wasn't interested in him.
What can I do? I've started training him to watch me and give his full attention, then reward and increase the time he watches me. Obviously this isn't secure yet although I've started doing it outside. Anything else I can do?
Sorry not sure what to advise other than contact a trainer/behaviourist to nip it in the bud so to speak.
Bumping thread in case others have had similar issue and can advise.
I'm not an expert but I think that sort of behaviour is def something that needs to be nipped in the bud.
Find a really good trainer
We've had some success with our dog following Ian Dunbar's techniques for building a positive association when seeing another dog. We live in a touristy village so I'd walk round it saying 'Ooh doggy!' in a really happy voice and showering him with treats every time another dog came into view.
You need to let him see the dog first and keep a bit of distance at this stage. Focus on teaching him that Dog = Treat and make sure you use really high value food, and only when the dog is in view. Dunbar says it's like 'Sweet shop open, sweet shop shut' - so the dog learns that anther dog on the horizon is something to be welcomed not feared.
It didn't take long before the second ToffeeDog saw a dog he'd look expectantly at me, and then you can start to edge towards treating when your dog is calm and reacting in the way you want.
The other thing that helped us was sitting our dog so he was stationary while the other dog passed. For some reason he is calmer like that, and these days I use a biscuit which gives him a good few seconds of crunching rather than bolting a piece of cheese and then lungeing / barking anyway! It's taken a while but then the problem was already established when we got him (at 5 months) and I think given your problem has only started quite recently you should see good results quite quickly. Good luck!
Thank you so much for your tips. Yes I'm aware it needs immediate action so I shall give you advice a try and ask a professional too. I'll make sure to bring some tasty high value treats on our walk tomorrow.
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