One year old that is very timid and frightened very easily
My son rescued a German shepherd (his name is Archer) from a shelter here in Texas. He has had the dog for about 6 months now. When we first got Archer we could tell that he was going to have some issues. I don't know much about the breed but he looked and acted as if he might have come from a home where some abuse occurred. He is very timid, shy, and frightful. He will only interact with my son. He has a very sweet disposition, but we really want to help him enjoy his life a little more...you know?
We are seeking some ways to help him overcome some of his issues (despite being loved and cared for obviously). I know that there has to be some techniques that will help him be more social.
Can any of you point me in the right direction or even offer up some tips?
My son and I welcome and appreciate the advice.
A GSD can have weak nerves without having been mistreated. It is possibly why he was turned into the shelter, because he didn't 'act like a German Shepherd should'. Just a guess, could be way off base.
The best thing to do for an easily frightened dog is to expose them (SAFELY) to as many people, dogs and situations as possible. Again, safely. Be patient but persistent. Do it gradually, don't throw him in over his head. But do give him daily doses of socialization. Don't be too concerned if he never becomes very friendly with other dogs, but try to get him to a point where he at least tolerates them and isn't aggressive or fearful. Best of luck, it could be a long process and you might never succeed in all areas.
Thanks Pooky44. That makes sense. I will certainly give those tips a try.
I appreciate your response. Have a lovely day.
Time, patience and praise. Lots and lots of paise/reward.
Don't pacify/soothe the fearful behavior.
Don't try to force him past it (flooding, etc).
Use another, more confident dog when you can so your new dog sees success.
If it's mainly being fearful/shy of other people, ask them not to approach the dog or make direct eye contact. In time, the dog will approach them and hopefully they will cooperate and let the dog introduce himself on his own terms. That means just sitting still if the dog works up the nerve to come sniff, and resist the urge to reach over the head and pet.
I have had two very fearful rescues. In the beginning, they wouldn't even approach me. Now they walk all over me and would sit on my head if I allowed it. :crazy:
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