Treatment Type: Training Techniques
Rated for: Dachshund
Posted Nov. 23, 2017
The more exposure your dog has to everything they may encounter in this big ol' world of ours, the safer the dog, the less stressed the dog, and the happier the owner.
No one enjoys a dog that is scared of his own shadow, that you cannot take anywhere because of how they react towards just about everything.
But how do you 'brave up' your dog?
Get as much stimuli as you can lay your hands on and take it sslllloooowwwww. Best to introduce the dog to a new stimuli when he is already feeling happy and relaxed. Perhaps do this after you've had your daily playtime together, and you're both relaxing. Start in a location that is not too big but not so small the dog feels cornered. Take away or block anything he can hide in, under or behind. Here you can try a variety of methods to get your dog to see the object for what it really is, a harmless thing. Use food or toys. Use a calm voice, slow movements. Project a calm feeling towards your dog. The dog will bark and go mad, but you keep calm while offering a treat or toy in your hand. Slowly but surely, with lots of patience, the dog will calm down enough to take the treat or toy from your hand.
One of the pups we had in the shelter, was a poodle who was scared of anything that waved. He would literally soil himself for a waving flag, plastic bag or even a big dog's wagging tail. I cannot even creatively come up with what could have caused such a fear in him, but there you have it. It took us 5 weeks of patience (and a lot of cleaning) to get that little fellow to stop soiling himself at the mere sight of a waving object. Another 4 weeks to where he wouldn't react so explosively anymore, and a further 2 weeks to where he didn't respond to it at all but calmly accepted everything that waved past his nose. Balloons, wrappers, tu-tu's, plastic bags or flags.
Our kennel and shelter help pups and dogs to become accustomed to just about everything they might face out there. From the postman, to motorbikes, to cats and birds, to waving and moving objects, noisy objects and sudden movements. The more stuff they are exposed and used to, the less they'll be stressed out.