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KickReturn

Advice for calmer greetings

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I have a new boy (it's only been two days) who's greatest joy in life is meeting other dogs. As soon as he lays eyes on a new dog, he goes into locomotive mode and pulls like mad to engage. At contact he is perfectly gentle and reasonably polite if a bit too bum sniffy. If he is denied contact he will bark an invitation to play. The other dog knows what the bark means, but the other people assume he is being fierce.

My approach has been to kneel down and hold him back with an arm around his chest and ask the other dogs owner to bring their dog over. I'm trying to teach him delayed gratification. It seems to work and he was better today during several greetings. No squirming, lunging, or barking, but there is still a long way to go. What else should I be doing? He is not food motivated, so distraction options are limited. As per usual the presence of a leash complicates the whole thing. I prefer to control him with my hands. I just don't like the impact on the dogs body language of their straining against their collar.

Worth noting he is young - less then two years old. My previous two greyhounds never barked or even required any corrections, so this is a bit new.

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Congratulations on your new boy.:yay

If what you're doing is working then that's great especially if you are getting results having only had him for two days and he's still got his youthful exuberance :)

I use a quick flick/tug on the lead and "NO" to curb Grace's enthusiasm for greeting cats or any other situation I need her to stop what she's about to do.  

There will be many opinions on how to control/train your dog just find the one that works for you.


Grace (Ardera Coleen) born 18 June 2014
Raced at Monmore Green, Wolverhampton UK - 68 Races, 9 wins, 5 second places
Gotcha Day 10 June 2018 

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Maybe switch to a harness while on walks? That way you can still keep decent control without the neck straining compromising his body language. And maybe something like this - https://friendlydogcollars.com.au/collections/friendly - would let other owners know he's just very friendly?

Have you worked on "wait" or "stay" at home? It's still very early days for training, but those can be helpful tools to have in other situations too. I wouldn't try to train them in the distracted, dog meeting scenario, but if he starts to understand that he gets what he wants when he waits patiently it will help a lot.

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a harness is great for a dog w/ injuries to neck or shoulder. it does not aid in controlling your animal. the best of all are group obedience classes where he can be taught manners and then you can apply them to your walks. 

some people carry bait to distract their dog and lure them from the overstimulation. stick w/ a 1" or 3/4" martingale, good leather or biothane lead(not nylon, it's difficult to grip). wider martingales are lovely- but they offer no communication from the handler(you ) to the dog. 

there is also a good gripper leash on the site where i purchase my biothane leashes- K9NOZ. bud's hardware is excellent- he even has a crazy alligator clip that is very secure, but his black gripper leash is excellent. for a gh i use his 5/8" heavy weight, old fashioned clasp.

and yes 2 year olds are still adolescent dogs testing the waters.

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Hi. It's only been two days. Every dog is an individual. Any behaviour your new dog displays now, will almost certainly change as it ages and settles more into your/it's new life, week by week, month by month, and beyond. A behaviourist and/or trainer who is trained in the use of Positive Reinforcement type meathods is a great idea.  Right now (two days in) I'd be concentrating on avoiding things that trigger reactions like barking, straining, jumping, etc. All of those excited and excitable reactions (good and bad) are elevating the dog's stress levels. Right now, after only two days, helping the dog to be calm and safe and secure and content within it's new family, home, house rules and routines, and building confidence in the dog is important. Right now, try walks in quiet uneventful areas at a quiet time of day. The trainer/behaviourist can help more on a face to face level. Cheers. 

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Thanks all.

He is improving day-by-day. Maybe he is a quick learner (fingers crossed). He seems to have got it that ultimately he will get to meet dogs that he sees so it's OK to be patient. Yesterday without being held he waited patiently at the edge of someones property until the resident dog sauntered over to say hello. He really is a super fellow. Just very young and super curious and eager about everything.

Next up, prey drive - this new guy is a bit exuberant. If anyone remembers, I live in a neighbourhood that is overloaded with wildlife. Rabbits on every lawn, at least a couple of deer on every block. A subject for another post in a few days.

Here is the late greyt Hester getting along with the wildlife:

 

Edited by KickReturn

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