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Fearful Of Other Dogs

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Hi All,


We are starting to have a behaviour pattern emerge in our girl Jazz that we would like to help her with so it stops asap. Recently Jazz will snap, growl and bark at any dog (other than our boy Gin) who comes near her. She will allow a dog to sniff her but after around 30 seconds she launches. We have no issues with Gin who loves everyone, just her. She was very timid when we got her in April and didn’t like people other than us, however she has now blossomed into a people lover and will actively (albeit slightly hesitantly) seek people for cuddles (she is a cuddle monster!).


I understand she is not being aggressive it’s a bit of fear and nervousness but I am unsure of how to help her through this. Has anyone else had the same with their grey and how did you solve it?





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My terrier is fearful of dogs - she'll tolerate them if they're calm and respectful but if they're too excited or pushy she'll snap. I've learned her triggers and actively avoid them (even if it means going out of my way to avoid the excited dog who "just wants to say hi"). That, along with patience and positive reinforcement (treats or a petting party when she has a good interaction or doesn't snap during an excitable interaction), has helped immensely.

Mom of bridge babies Regis and Dusty.

Wrote a book about shelter dogs!

I sell things on Etsy!

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You need to help her manage her stress level and not add to it. Watch her during these greetings and before she reaches her limit, just walk her away a few steps, praise praise praise and lots of treats, then see if she is able to return to the group. If she can, great! Continue to watch her and remove her before she gets to the point where she can't handle anymore. Let the people you are greeting with know you're working on her tolerance levels and appreciate their help. If they are willing, see if you can also distract the other dog away from her with treats or attention to give her a rest. Keep these meetings short and happy. Don't overload her timewise.


If she's too stressed to return to the group right away, let her stand behind you, treats and praise when she's calm (watch her body language carefully). Since your boy doesn't have any issues, let him carry the greeting load while she decompresses.


If you have some friends with calm dogs you can also explore whether she's more comfortable greeting others off-leash. Some dogs are "leash-reactive," meaning they find it more stressful to socialize when their movements are restrained in any way. Invite a friend over, preferrably one she knows already, and see how they do loose in the yard. You can muzzle everyone if there's a chance there will be an issue - remember, if one is muzle, they all are muzzled, even in mixed breed company. Make sure you watch her carefully for stress indicators and help her leave if she needs to.

Chris - Mom to: Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

52592535884_69debcd9b4.jpgsiggy by Chris Harper, on Flickr

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom, Lilly

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My first greyhound HATED non greyhounds.


It really wasn't a problem for me, as I detest it when people I don't know, with dogs I don't know, think it's a great idea to allow our two leashed dogs to mix and mingle.


It's going to be much easier for you to avoid these interactions then it will be for her to "get over it." She could be like George, known as a "greyhound snob," or it could be a leash aggression thing where she is fearful because she's on a leash and feels trapped. Either way, it's far simpler to just wave and say, "Sorry, she's not friendly" and go on your way.


Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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