Discussion in 'Behavioural science and dog training philosophy' started by Sue 1222, Sep 30, 2015.

  1. Sue 1222

    Sue 1222 Registered Users

    Sep 30, 2015
    My boy is 4 I've had him since he was 7 mths. His behaviour was appalling but over time he's improved 100%. However, although h e isn't aggressive, if I allowed him to approach another dog he would show aggressive behaviour, growl and bark. The noise understandably frightens owners and I find it easier to make him sit quietly to allow other dogs to pass before continuing our walk. Is this behaviour a result of not being socialised as a puppy by his previous owners?
  2. kateincornwall

    kateincornwall Moderator Forum Supporter

    Mar 4, 2012
    Hi Sue and welcome . I also have a rescue dog , she has been with me for two years and is reckoned to be about 10-12 years of age . I do believe that lack of socialising can play a massive part in shaping a dogs character , it was certainly the case with my girl . We dealt with this by getting her interested in a tennis ball , I carry one in my pocket at all times as it is guaranteed to get her attention focused on me and not other dogs . Most of this behaviour is fear based , they weren't socialised and so are afraid of other dogs , its a case of " I`ll tell them off before they tell me off " most of the time . So , with my girl , every time we saw another dog coming towards us , I would give her the beloved ball , whereupon she would ignore the dog . Put simply , the ball was far more precious to her than another dog ! Slowly over time , I played a game of Russian roulette, sometimes she got the ball , sometimes she didn't, but it still kept her focussed because she thought she might get it ! It also changed her mind set , so that eventually she saw other dogs as a route to something good happening ( the ball ) and now , she is happy around all other dogs , no fear, no issues at all . Millie hasn't ever shown aggression, just fear , but it sounds like your dogs aggression is fear based . I don't allow Millie to have the ball in our house or garden, keeping it very special indeed .
  3. jojo

    jojo Registered Users

    Oct 13, 2015
    Hi Sue,
    I have a rescue, Rocco. He's 6 now and we've had him since he was 4. He wasn't socialised, had been beaten, and was made to sleep on cold concrete. When we got him he didn't know how to play or chase a ball, and used to submissively urinate if my husband so much as looked at him. He has always been comfortable around the children. With a lot of patience and calm and consistently and the help of my friend Joe and his choc lab Jess, Rocco has become a happy well adjusted dog. He allows my husband to pet him and ruffle his ears without collapsing in a heap on the floor, and he now chases a ball and is rather good at agility!! He still has occasional leash reactivity to some male dogs, but when this happens I go back to basics and within 2 walks he's back to normal. With a lot rescues you take on the damage some human has inflicted on them, whether it be lack of socialisation, or abuse or both, like Rocco. But it CAN be overcome xx

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