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Help for your Fearful Dog – Part 1

This is an all too common problem and most owners instinctively try to push their dogs towards the things the dogs are scared of.

Whether your dog runs into another room when you have visitors, hides behind you when out on the street, or barks and lunges at other dogs or strangers, these behaviors all stem from fear. The first 2 are obvious but the 3rd behavior, while it may seem agressive, is most likely your dog trying to tell the scary thing to go away.

We like to call these dogs ‘reactive’ vs. aggressive since they are reacting to what they perceive as scary. It may be other dogs, kids, certain people or even things blowing around outside. Whatever causes this reaction we’ll call your dog’s “triggers.”

There are behavior modification techniques you can practice when you spot your dog’s triggers. The first thing to take serious note of is – how far away or close can the trigger be before your dog ‘reacts’. This is is your dog’s “threshold.”

Our goal will be to work under your dog’s threshold (ie, far enough away from the trigger so your dog does not react). Our goal will also be to prevent these reactive outbursts from occuring as we are trying to change them.

Check out www.fearfuldogs.com for more information and I’ll will provide more instructions for you in my next post.

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