Hey all lab lovers!! My Hershey is two today. I have had him since eight weeks. He is such a sweet boy. He is GREAT with my seven year old daughter. However....when people come to the door he turns into a CRAZY man! He charges the door with tail tucked barking and growling. He WILL back off when I command and he will run to his crate and sit in there and growl at the visitor. I have a business in my home and have a lot of people coming and going. If they try to make nice with him and speak to him he will jump and growl. If they ignore him he will "sneak" (actually crouching) out of his crate towards them. If they notice and speak to him he will bark, growl and run. I am horrified at his behavior with other people. Like I said he WILL back off on my command. Why isn't he the sweet friendly boy to other people as he is with his family? Any suggestions??
We had something similar with Lucky, which our vet attributed to her anxiety. Does your dog do this if you take him for walks too or just in your home? I always keep treats in my pocket when we have visitors and when we go on walks. I ask guests/people we meet on our walks if they would like to give my dog a treat and I explain she's having some anxiety issues that we're working on. It's done great for her. She still barks initially when somebody comes in, which I don't mind, she's saying "Hey my house, you stranger mom there's a stranger!" but once I tell her it's okay and tell her to quiet down she goes and sits by me or her crate and will sneak up and sniff them. I just tell them to ignore her and after she sniffs them she's goes back away.
How well did you socialize him when he was small? This could either be a very poorly socialized dog OR one with a real temperament issue or both.
I would be very concerned with this sort of behavior, especially since he does not warm up when the visitor is accepted in the house by you. Even a shy, reactive dog usually accepts a vistor welcomed by his owner.
I think you need some help with him - at the very least an obedience class and probably some one on one work with a behaviourist. I think he is very much a bite risk. I would not answer the door without him in the crate until you have him evaluated professionally.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.