we have just picked our dog up from a young couple who couldn't look after their 9 month old lab.
he was not vaccinated or had, i think been on any walks or socialised in any way.
we have started dog behaviour classes to help us. but he barks and growls and goes quite mad at people walking by and dogs even though they may be further away. it is very difficult for me to walk him although i try but don't get very far, my husband gets further than me. my question is how long do you think this may last and do you think he will every become a relaxed gentle dog or has he be ruined !
What are "dog behavior" classes? what type of stuff are you doing (and is the dog wtih you)? How is he in class, and have you asked the trainer for recommendations.
I have had a few fosters and I found a huge difference after two weeks of beign with me and in my routine. It becomes easier to work with them at this point (though I start routine and training from day 1). The pup has no idea what is going on and his entire has just changed so that alone can be causing alot of the issues you see.
It will be highly important that you (and/or husband) remain calm and collected during walks even if/when he reacts. The hardest part once this starts is that the human will start to tense up when a dog/person is approaching and the dog can FEEL that tension and will react to it. I am not saying it is easy, I have had fosters that went wacko at dogs or roller bladers we passed and I had to work HARD to keep calm and collected.
Do you have other exercise options at this point? I would talk to a trainer but maybe keeping the walks short and in quiet times/areas until things get better would be good. Starting small and building on success. It is hard to train when the dog is thrown into something causes issues full pin (I have this issue as I have no yard to walks are a must). From there I would work with friends/others with dogs to set up good interactions (on leash walking by).
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
I dont think any dog is "ruined" at any age, some may take longer than others in regards to training but i dont think its ever too late. Maybe you could start slowly where the distraction is far away, when he starts barking correct him/her and make her sit, and you might want to flash a nice treat if you need to get their attention.. As the distraction passes by, give him a treat and praise him like crazy (and just keep working your way closer to the distractions). My lil 5 month old is doing the same thing sometimes, this weekend we will be working on this. I think the key is to find treats that you know he/she can't resist. I use to feed my puppy her kibble as her treat but noticed it doesn't work when her excitedness is way up there, so i got some new ones today, hope they work! good luck.
thank you Tanya and Myfirstlab
dog behavior classes are where there is a dog trainer teaching you and dog how to work well with each other i.e (walking on lead etc)this week my husband had to stand in the middle with barney and get him used to the other dogs walking around him to heel with their owners. barney was very distracted but was talked to frequently by my husband.
we have a garden for him to run around in but he doesn't like to be out there on his own , as i think his last owners must have left him out all the time!
thank you for your comments its nice to know there will be a time we can go for a nice walk where barney can enjoy it too!
I think like the previous two posters said no dog can be "ruined". Some may require more work than others but the reward of their unconditional love is well worth any amount of effort needed. We are still working on the socialization with our 4.5 month old. He was very similar when we begun walks and introducing to strangers and dogs. Still gets excited with some strangers but we have noticed a great improvement in his behaviour. Be consistant and stick with it. It will get better!!