Another "Afraid Puppy" Thread
I've read through an number of threads on this topic, but I'm hoping for additional input from folks here, as my situation is slightly different. I will try to be as succinct as possible...
I have a 6 month GS female, purchased at 3 months from a reputable breeder. I've done a fair bit of basic training, and she (mostly) follows my commands. The problem is that she appears to be fear aggressive with dogs, and it manifests itself in one of two ways.
I want to say first that she has no fear of approaching another dog. In fact, she is very enthusiastic about it; however, it's not because she wants to play, but rather it appears she is trying to establish her "ranking" in some way. In any event, once she is nose to nose with another dog, here's what happens.
#1: She comes in contact with another dog, the other dog shows confidence, and she cowers and barks aggressively and continuously.
#2: She comes in contact with another dog, the other dog submits, and she aggressively barks right in their face. If the other dog continues to submit, she continues the behavior. If the other dog barks back or makes any sudden movements, she runs away and yelps.
As a result of the above, I do not let her off leash at all if there are other dogs around, EXCEPT in one situation. My friend has a Corgi, and these two dogs seem to get along fine. They play very rough, but it is playing.
We go to dog parks periodically, and she barks a lot when she sees dogs, although sometimes we can just sit together and she watches them. However, if a dog approaches us, she's on point and will most likely go into fear mode.
I've read the other posts about dog parks, and it sounds like I need to walk by dogs and not them interact directly with my puppy, and also occasionally sit for awhile away from the other dogs and play with her a bit to reduce her tension.
I'm trying to find a good behaviorist in the area to help, but in the meantime I'm wondering if what I'm doing is helping or hurting, and is there any possibility that this is just a phase she's going through? Genetically, she is very well bred, and the trainer assured me nothing traumatic has happened to her.
Any thoughts/advice would be welcomed! =)