Growled at some girls during our evening walk, never happened before?!
So last Friday I took Trevi for our evening walk, and as I mentioned in past posts she definitely has more heightened senses during this "time of day" walk. I think she is actually picking up on my nervousness because we live in in a major city suburb and I get nervous as a female walking by myself at that time of day, even with my pepper spray and a dog in hand. (I try as hard as I can to walk in a calm assertive state but at this time of day maybe it still doesnt come across) Now Trevi NEVER growls(except during play) and rarely barks. But on our walk 3 girls ages 11-13 (I'm guessing) asked if they could pet Trevi and I said yes because she loves people I just told them that she might put her mouth on their hands (she still does a little bit of mouthing when she is excited) but that she doesnt bite and she usually just licks but to my surprise she didnt do any of those things, instead she was acting scared and I noticed her haunches were up so I quickly pulled out some food treats from my pocket which I always have for training purposes and told them they could let Trevi eat from their hands. One girl went ahead and tried to pet Trevi at which point she growled and backed away like she was really scared of this little girl petting her. So I told the girls I thought it was too much all at once and thanked them for helping with her training and continued on our walk. Now I was really upset and concerned, my finance' and I are planning on starting a family and she has never shown aggression toward children. So when we got back home the little kids in our neighborhood were playing in the snow and so I let Trevi off leash and she played great with them for a good 30 minutes, she was gentle and they kept feeding her pieces of ice and it was the cutest thing I've every seen. So for training experts, do you think I should worry and if I am confronted with this type of situation again, people asking to pet on walks how should I help change this behavior? I should mentioned that Trevi is now 9 months old and entering that new "fear stage" time so could this just be related to that?