|Barked: Wed Nov 30, '11 5:39pm PST |
|As far as the barking/growling at strangers - Depending on how old Oakely is this may be a fear period, or it may be a reactivity issue that just hasn’t reared its head until maturity. I noticed in some of your older posts that you had stated that Oakley and Sadie both would often bark and growl at people when you walked them but you had worked on this, so this may be a problem in her socializing. This tends to be an issue with a lot of smaller dogs. Either way we’re not worried as much about causation as we’re worried about fixing the issue at hand.
Depending on what her stress level is, what I would do is the following: Take her to a place like a public park, outside an elementary school, a café, outside of a retail store, someplace that gets a lot of people traffic. Then sit far enough away that she can focus yet still know that the people are there, and (since you said she’s food motivated) run her through his commands and let her know that just because there are other people she’s okay, you’re in control, and nothing bad needs to happen, no contact need be made, she just needs to accept them as, most basically, background noise. Treat her a lot for calm behavior, and it may take quite a few times but eventually headway will be made.
As far as the waking issue – It sounds to me like Oakley is fairly co-dependent on Sadie if you could not get far without her there. I think the best way to deal with a problem like that one is to build confidence with them individually. Taking separate training class with each of them could be really beneficial for this.
The concrete problem is a material preference issue. You just have to wait it out. If it is necessary for her to do her business on a leash just pretend its potty training 101 again and wait her out on that leash, if she doesn’t go after a while just bring her back in and put her in the crate for fifteen-twenty minutes or so and back out she goes. Eventually mother nature will take it into her hands and after that barrier is broken the first time it’s all down-hill.
Edited by author Wed Nov 30, '11 5:39pm PST
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