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Am I doing this right? Training to like men

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by izzysmum, Jan 27, 2012.

  1. izzysmum

    izzysmum PetForums Newbie

    Jan 19, 2012
    Likes Received:
    Hi all,

    Izzy (3yr old staff) has improved with her house training as I have been taking a way more dominant role with her compared to her previous owners.

    She is still, however, not liking men. Men in general.

    Last night, I took her to the pub where there is often another dog or two, and obviously, men.

    Every man that walked past she started growling at. her body language was ears back, eyeing the man, but moving her head away every now and then, tail wagging stiffly but no hackles. This means she is more uneasy and fearful than properly aggressive yes?

    I got every bloke I could to give her some treats. She took them, but continued growling. Every man who has come into my house (I'm having phoneline work done) has given her treats and evenutally she sits by me and calms down. I also don't tell her off, just confidently tell her it's okay.

    I am going to keep doing this as I want her to be calm around everyone eventually, I have faith in her, she come on leaps and bounds!

    Any better tips for me please?

    J x
  2. smokeybear

    smokeybear PetForums VIP

    Oct 19, 2011
    Likes Received:

    First of all you cannot train any sentient being to LIKE others.

    You can however alter the CER (conditioned emotional response) and make her less reactive eventualy.


    you are starting WAY over her threshold at the moment.

    the way to systematically desensitise and counter condition a dog is to start WAY back before the dog starts growling.

    You are playing with fire.

    You are deliberately putting your dog into a position where it is extremely uncomfortable, under stress where her behaviour is likely to become more unpredictable in an attempt by her to control men.

    With animate objects you should NEVER invade the dog's space, the dog should be the one who approaches the fear object not the other way round.

    You really need some help with this, either by using a very good book or, preferably, with an experienced trainer or behaviourist who is used to this sort of issue.

    #2 smokeybear, Jan 27, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2012
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