Shy Dog

Discussion in 'Dog Behavior Problems' started by southerngirl, May 6, 2012.

  1. southerngirl Honored Member

    My Nana has a Jack Russel/ Chihuahua Shadow who is about 6-7years old who is very timid. His shyness is genetic, the owners of the parents said that the dad is the same way. He is suppose to be my cousins cause he is the one who begged for him, but he doesn't do anything with him. Shadow can not be walked because he refuses to, he also wiggles out of his harness. How could I get him to walk?, getting the harness on is not the problem it's keeping on. I'm hoping that if I start walking him when I come over and teach him tricks that it'll help him be happier. Anyone have any other suggestions to help him? I tried asking my mom if I could take him home just for a week to work with him, but she said no. I'll try again over the summer.

  2. Ripleygirl Experienced Member

    Is he treat or toy orientated? Is he people shy or dog shy? Do you think he trusts you and knows you enough to come out of his shell a bit in familiar surroundings?
  3. southerngirl Honored Member

    I'm not sure if he is treat or toy orientated cause he's not mine, but I think that he's treat. He is people shy. He has his days were he will want lots of attention and will be jumping all over me other days he will run and hide in his crate, I can't get him out when he goes in it. So it depends.
  4. Ripleygirl Experienced Member

    Have you introduced your dog to him and do they get on? If you can use your dog as a friend and ally to a shy dog this can really help as therapy. A shy dog at the age he is could sometimes be less of a challenge than one that is like that as a pup (basically because of the humans not the dog) because, naturally humans tend to pander to a shy dog because if they see cowering/submission etc they tend to play the 'saviour' (in the human's head) by either picking the dog up into their arms or trying (in a human way) to protect them like the dog were a child so the dog ends up from a pup thinking that being scooped up whenever they feel a slight bit of uncertainty is the norm. Make him work for any tiny bit of confidence that you see in him. Whether that be just moving towards you when he is acting 'shy' or anything bigger than this. I wouldn't try trick training until you see confidence around you and concentration on you despite if something else is going on around him. Gain trust by small, small things and then work on a harness and a walk. Get confidence in his home surrounding before trying to work outside of a comfort zone.
  5. southerngirl Honored Member

    No he has not meet my dog. He doesn't get picked up when he's cowering, my Nana just let's him be. What about when he is coming to me and begging for attention, can I work with him then or no? Also when he is in his crate how can I get him out? Thanks for your help.
  6. Tâmara Vaz Experienced Member

    Laika had/has the same problem... A genetic shy or a fearfull dog won't let to be it:cry: , but you can really make improvements on his behavior. I tried a lot of stuff and all helped a little...
    Never force him to get close to something he's fearfull, let him close in his pace(sometimes a really slow pace!).
    Try not to let he run off.
    If he's like crazy on leash wait him to calm down, if he doesn't calm down give up on that day: hormones of strees spends 7 DAYS:eek: on dogs body after a streesfull situation.
    Always use gentle leader/dog halter or a normal leash. That kinds that squeeze the neck just gets the dog more stressed!
    Let him sniff arround.It relax a lot!
    If you get on the point where he doesn't care for the reinforcement you must try to move farther away from the thing that it's causing fear. Ex: If he's afraid of the street(and don't eat on the steet) you can start next to the door then open the door then get out and get back...
    Don't let him get "what he wants" if the leash is stretched.
    Counter condition helped a lot, but to do it the dog has to be accepting the reinforcement.
    Reinforce when the dog is erect, not when he's all fearfull just touching the tip of the tongue on "the fearfull stuff".
    Ripleygirl likes this.
  7. Tâmara Vaz Experienced Member

    I think this was the vid I watched long time ago about that:
  8. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    Here are some videos that would be of assistance to you:

    Work on expanding his comfort zone. Get him comfortable in his harness inside first. Once he is completely comfortable with walking around the house on leash in his harness, move to the yard. Once he's completely comfortable in the yard, move a little further from the house. Once you are able to actually start walking, don't go very far and keep the walks relatively short. You don't want to overload him and you want to keep him safe. So if he feels scared at a certain distance from the house, stay within that distance until he can handle that. Don't push him too hard and let him work at his own pace. You never want him to think that he is going to be forced to accept something he is afraid of. If he is hiding in his crate and you need him out, don't reach in an pull him out. Sit out of his crate with treats or toys and convince him to come out that way. In my opinion, shy dogs need to be allowed to make decisions on their own, because it allows them to work at their own pace and I think it helps with their confidence. Hope this helps and feel free to ask for more details if needed. :)
    Ripleygirl likes this.
  9. Tâmara Vaz Experienced Member

    Going away from "the fearfull stuff" can work as a reinforcement. So if your dog is doing great keep a while on the same distance.
    Socialization helps too!
    If you have a safe place that you can let the dog off leash a long time I think that helps, because he can know new stuff on his own. (For example: farm)

    I took forever to dyscover the up stuff !!
    Laika is much better now , I can walk her on calm streets(ocasionally on busy streets).
    She doesn't like the halter anymore (don't know why!), but she has been great on the normal leash!;)
    This is a difficulty problem to solve. In fact it let me out of pacience lots of times:( !!
  10. southerngirl Honored Member

    Thank you for the video's and comments, they're very helpful. I can't wait to go to my Nana's so I can start working wit him. I really hope I will be able to convince my mom to let him stay at our house for a week during summer break cause I'm worried that with working with him at my Nana's house I don't know who spread out the sessions with him will be so what if he forgets about what we did the last time. My Nana has an anti pull harness for him it's like this one.
    Tâmara Vaz likes this.
  11. Tâmara Vaz Experienced Member

    Never used this kind!
  12. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    WOW, you have some great advice above already. Neither human nor dog bodies take an entire week to dissipate excitement hormonal responses, though, but, otherwise, this whole thread is chockful of awesome advice.

    //"Shadow can not be walked because he refuses to, he also wiggles out of his harness. How could I get him to walk?, getting the harness on is not the problem it's keeping on. "//
    The harness you link above looks pretty hard to get out of. Does the dog actually get out of that harness?

    I once saw a dog on tv with same problem---> would not walk on a leash. They got an entirely new, different leash,
    and began walk not by the dog's home, but instead, several houses away, so the dog's walking got him BACK to his home.

    In that case, that particular dog was okay to be picked up and carried, so they carried dog away from his home, and dog walked fine on leash to get back to his home. Overtime, the dog lost his big thing about leash walking, by walking back to his home.

    I'd think one could also drive a dog to a new area, and dog *might* walk on the leash in new area. There was some suggestion it is the leaving away from his home that was part of the problem, but, if leaving home is not part of equation, that made it easier for dog.

    ^BUT i don't know if those were shy dogs.And of course, all dogs are unique, what helps one dog, might not be quite as effective for dog#2.
    Dogster likes this.
  13. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    //" What about when he is coming to me and begging for attention, can I work with him then or no? "//

    Most dogs know the cue "sit". I'd ask dog for a sit, and then reward the sit!!:D I think it is okay to lure a dog who is not great at the cue "sit" into a sit with a treat, too. Then you can play with dog or whatever, as you are rewarding the sit, not the excitement.
    Dogster and Ripleygirl like this.

Share This Page

Real Time Analytics