How can i socialize my 5 year old abused Lab mix?

I adopted a 5 year old male black lab mix four months ago. He's a very cute dog but he has major behavior issues as nobody tried to socialize him before. He is quite aggressive with people who come in our home, he is growling and barking at them all the time. In walks he's better with people, he's not paying that much attention to them but he is barking at other dogs and is trying to get in a fight with them. By the way, i already had a female dog when i adopted him and he is getting along fine with her. I already took him to a trainer for basic training. He learnt how to walk on a leash and some orders but he still lacks of social manners. According to his rescuers, he was abused and neglected by his previous owners. What could i do to socialize him and improve all this bad behavior? Any help is very appreciated.

Asked by Member 1104046 on Apr 4th 2012 Tagged labrador, aggression, socialization, abused, behaviorissues in Socialization
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Having people invade the den can be very confusing! At some point, he may have been rewarded for acting like a guard dog or been hurt by intruders. Try to avoid the emotionally-charged scene at the front door. Have people call when they're outside. Unlock the door, then take the dog into the next room. Put him in a sit, give him a treat, tell him to stay, and then call out to the guest that he can come in. After the guest is through the entryway, let the dog come over and sniff the guest. Have the guest hold up a really delicious treat and give the dog a command to sit. If he does, give the treat and heaps and heaps of praise. If money's no object, you could even use pieces of steak for this. If he's growling and barking anyway, practice first with family members or people he knows. The idea is to create a strong positive association with people coming to the door, while keeping him calm enough that he notices your relaxed body language, and infers that the person is not a threat.

answered on Apr 5th.

Other Answers


Jax (earned her wings 5/30/12)

You can get the book "The Cautious Canine". It's a very thin book, but it's packed with tips. It helped me immensely with Jax when we got her. You can also post this on the behavior forum on this site. People can answer you back and forth there. We can only answer you here. Good Luck!

Jax (earned her wings 5/30/12) answered on 4/4/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


Poor baby!

Well, it depends on the severity of the Abuse. If he was abused badly, that should be very traumatizing. You should take him to a Trainer, and if that doesn't work out, take him to a more experienced trainer. If he's extrmley non-socible and afraid of the world, sad to say but, you MIGHT have to put him down. But from what you told me, I'm sure he doesn't need to be put down. (:

Member 1093784 answered on 4/4/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


well, I'm no expert, but I would say try to get him friendly with any friends or family one at a time, it's scary for them in a crowd. Try to make yourself appear smaller by crouching down. talk softly and friendly,rather not comforting as that tells it it has a reason to be scared try exciting. Feed it it's treats or get someone else to give t to him, this may build it's trust level also play with him lots and try to figure out his favorite toy/activity . As for trying to fight with other dogs Maybe bring something along that distracts him, or maybe just give him a light tap on the nose and say "no" firmly, don't shout it. Don't act excited when another dog is nearby in an attempt to distract him, in fact, try to ignore the other dog and his misbehavior completely, He will learn from how you react.

Blossom answered on 4/4/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer