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HELP! Puppy is petrified of me

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Ryan Cherrington, Apr 26, 2019.


  1. Ryan Cherrington

    Ryan Cherrington PetForums Newbie

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    We recently rescued an 8 month old puppy (unsure of cross bread). It will occasionally wee inside due to excitement, he rarely wees for any other reason now. However once he does pee, he walks off cowering and looks petrified. If I even look at him he will pee more.

    Once he comes back inside afterwards he is still the same and cowering. I have tried to reach out and stroke him to make him realise I'm not going to hurt him but he still pees in fear.

    I'm at a loss as to what I can do to prove he doesn't have to be scared of me. He is absolutely fine and loves to be by me when he hasn't done something wrong. Seems like he was abused before in my opinion. He is only like it with me in the house, he won't pee when anyone else is by him or telling him off.

    Hope you can HELP!
     
  2. Rafa

    Rafa PetForums VIP

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    You seem to be describing a terrified pup.

    The World is scaring him and he really doesn't know what he should be doing.

    Don't try to pet him or approach him. Really, when you see him, simply say "good boy" in a very low voice and, otherwise, ignore him.

    In time, he will relax and become curious and then, in small steps, he will begin to come out of his shell and begin to approach you. I have dealt with a few dogs who were similarly terrified, and taking all pressure off him will pay off.

    I would take him outside every hour, teach him a command such as "wee wee" and, when he obliges, praise him a lot but, again, in a very low voice.

    Patience is the key with such a dog. He doesn't know he can trust you, but he will learn.
     
    Lurcherlad, Burrowzig and Calvine like this.
  3. lorilu

    lorilu PetForums VIP

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    Sounds like someone really messed him up in the house training department. Punished for accidents obviously, and probably pretty severely, poor little guy. He's going to need a lot of careful handling to overcome it.

    Most definitely you don't want to be reaching your hands at him, but I'l let the more knowledgeable experienced members help you beyond that.
     
  4. Jamesgoeswalkies

    Jamesgoeswalkies PetForums VIP

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    Poor little pup - it certainly does sound as if he has been punished for submissive urination (which happens when they are excited or a little nervous) which of course has made it worse (as he gets more anxious and then can't control it at all).

    You don't have to prove to him that he doesn't have to be scared of you, so much as build up his trust in you. And this takes time. Be consistent with your training, use lots of rewards and praise when he gets things right and stay calm when he gets things wrong. You say "he won't pee when anyone else is by him or telling him off" but I would advise that this little man has been told off in the past so 'telling him off' really isn't necessary or helpful in building up his confidence.

    Don't encourage him to get excited (ie; when greeting or playing) as this makes the weeing more likely. But if he does wee, completely ignore him, turn away, walk away, do not try to touch or approach him and then carry on as normal. And don't make eye contact. Trying too hard to explain things to him makes you seem confrontational and so he is panicking and trying to appease you.

    J
     
  5. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    All above.

    Nobody should be telling him off at all - dogs just don’t understand.

    If he’s doing something unwanted, redirection and praise for an appropriate behaviour works best.
     
  6. Ryan Cherrington

    Ryan Cherrington PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you all for the replies. He is an adorable dog and wouldn't hurt a fly, breaks my heart to see how scared of me he gets. It looks like it's going to be a long road ahead.
     
    niamh123 and Jamesgoeswalkies like this.
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