2 months, 3 weeks ago Dave PageParticipant
Since whatever scares, or makes a pup feel threatened in the first fear stage, will effect them later, I think I need to do some reverse engineering.
Or does it only apply if a dog gets attacked?
Ace is in his fear stage.
I wrote in his journal of him barking and growling at one woman in the waiting room at the vets office. (I normally wait until they’re through the fear stage to take them out into such tight quarters, but had to take him to the vet) I thought it was a fluke. However, a friends wife, who looked a lot like that woman, came over to see us a couple days ago (same hair cut, same build, complexion and hair color). He was barking and growling at her as she walked up. Hair standing on end.
I was surprised, since she was talking my wife, I was more focused on Ace’s reaction than her, called him into a heel beside me but he left heel to go behind me. Tail low. Tried to take off once. Very much unlike him and only time he has Ever acted scared.
To contrast: Her husband came over the next day with no issues. Ace never barked, growled, nothing. But her husband was raised around dogs, knows not to stare, and to ignore our dogs.
I couldn’t understand why Ace felt so threatened until she spoke to my wife about Ace’s eyes and face. She was apparently looking at him hard. Thinking back, the woman at the vet’s was apparently doing the same from her reaction when I looked to see what he was barking and growling at.
Wholly my fault for not watching people at the vets office and telling them not to stare at my pup. I guess she was a cat person and didn’t know any better. 🙂
How can I go about remedying this now to avoid any repercussions in the future.
I’ve thought about desensitizing by inviting her over, before getting out of his fear stage, have her completely ignore him, and me engaging him until he is comfortable, ignores her and no longer acts threatened to counteract future problems.
Would such work or am I concerned about nothing?
2 months, 3 weeks ago Kim JamesParticipant
Mate i’d say the dog is just figuring it out, and has a healthy appreciation for direct eye contact which can obviously be a confronting behaviourism.
Don’t stress… he’s learning would be my call.
Its great that your awareness is so fine tuned just don’t let anything from you be a cue to him that something weird is going on, maybe in the future if you anticipate that reaction is about to occur engage with that particular person or thing (in a welcoming way) just before to provide a level of assurance that the situation is all good and there is no need for fear.
Great subjects Dave I’ve been following along and you’ve raised some great questions and conversations in the forums!
2 months, 3 weeks ago Dave PageParticipant
I will have them over again soon to make sure there is nothing to be concerned about.
I try to watch my pups like a hawk to see if there is anything needing addressed so I don’t have to have another dog, or I, go through reversing processes like one several years ago (Only hard on him as he missed out on a lot of life, as for his safety, if we weren’t home, instead of enjoying the yard I put him up. Too many solicitors and proselytizers ignoring posted signs.). I didn’t challenge, test or supply enough stressors/socialization when he was a pup, and at a year old if somebody moved too fast around us, got ahead of us… Thank goodness only drew blood twice, once because guy was trying to help me acclimatize him, and got too close too fast (bought that guy a pair of pants), another when I was helping neighbor get his cows off my place and didn’t see my dog head at him. I’m just glad he always listened.
He was dangerous people who didn’t know dogs for he would only bark a couple times to let me know some one was here, and then just stand on the porch silent, tail up wagging stiffly. No more barking or growling after those initial barks. When he attacked there was no sound.
Took about a 1-1 1/2 years of gradual acclimatization and obedience training to get him where he wouldn’t nail someone as long as they were acting normal, didn’t step on our porch without me there; was actually able to take him around a lot of people at a cookout, and only time he reacted was when one jumped beside us, but he just warned instead of biting. Sure do miss him.
2 months, 2 weeks ago Maria LivingstonParticipant
I’m not a trainer by any means but I’ve worked with a lot of rescue dogs and raised a couple of pups. I think your instinct is right on – I wouldn’t necessarily work with that person, but I’d say socialize, socialize, socialize. Anyone he has that response with, give them treats and have them work him some. Some dogs are naturally more suspicious and fearful, and it’s important you catch it early and work on their confidence. i didn’t and yeah, there were consequences. Just my 2cts.
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