|Barked: Mon Apr 18, '11 10:11am PST |
|From a fellow anxious dog owner:
Do not worry about training until trust is built. I WISH I had this advise when I started out with Bella. I so wanted to bond with her and was told training was how to do it by the people I knew at the time.
Really, she needed time (months would have been ideal for her) to just live in my house, learn my routine, learn I wasn't out to get her, and for her to be able to relax around me.
Honestly, I wouldn't ever force a dog like this into position. It is NOT how to build trust. You are teaching him that you can force him to do what you want-kinda like his abusers could kick him around when they wanted to.
I would continue to offer treats when he will come to you until he is coming happy and willingly to you for them. Then, I would try kneeling or siting in a chair. Then standing. I would not make direct eye contact and it will be easier of you sit at an angle towards him (and treat form your side) rather than the front. It is very difficult to get a timid dog to do frontal approaches right away, from the side is much easier.
After he is coming to you eagerly, you might want to try chin scratches. Don't reach over his head-rub from underneath. Give yummy treats for allowing the good contact.
Dog that are abused or undersocialized need special types of people-patient ones! I was NOT that person when Bella came into my life but I have had to learn that I can't rush her. When I try to-it makes her shut down and just sets us back.
Most of her training has had to be life lessons. Things like what a normal household does. We wash dishes, we cook, we go in and out of the house. The sitting/down/stay can come later and will be much easier if you take it slow to build a relationship right now.
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