Overly Nervous when meeting new people - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-18-2011, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
DTS
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Overly Nervous when meeting new people

jasmine is now 19 months old. we have done 3 OB classes with her, sub novice, novice and an open class. She has come along way from barking at strangers everywhere we went to, ignoring people when out in public. We don't take her to the dog park anymore because we have realized the big dogs which are her size scare her and causing her to have very low confidence. We don't have people over very often. mainly my fmily and my bf's family which she loves. Last night we had 4 friends over, which was very overwhelming for her. 2 of the friends she's met on a handful of occasions. we have tried to have her do a leashed greeting and have done a greeting outside the home. Being confined to the leash set her off more and made her bark more. Last night we put the baby gate up in the bedroom so she could, hear and smell what was going on but was a safe distance away. She prefers to watch from a distance and when she gets confortable will get closer.
She did her normal barking which we corrected and let her know that we arent worried theres nothing to be worried about.
Jasmine had then evacuated her bowels (just a few little pebbles) and was shaking, scared to death. Evntually I took the gate down, and dropped treats all over the floor around everyone.
We instructed everyone to not look her in the eye and to not talk directly to her because that is what upsets her. After, 5-10 mins she was fine taking treats from everyone, enjoying some ear scratches and general attention. She settled in her corner and I gave her a bully stick for a reward and for her to have some down time.
My question is how can we go about this better?
Also, i understand she is scared, especially with her history of fear barking, but this evacuating bowels, cowering, and shaking is all new.
She's never been abused or had a bad experience with people over our house.
I know we need to improve this and probably try some other methods to help her
Once our trainer finishes her October Schedule we are going to sign jasmine up for an agility class to help up her confidence.
When she gets older, will her shyness go away with more socializaton?
When out and about, she will ignore people now and just go about her business except if someone approaces us and gets in her face. which i dont tolerate
Normally our outings are just to be around people and to watch from afar.
I want her to be friendly with everyone
is there anything we can try or do to help her?
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-18-2011, 03:47 PM
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I think it sounds like what you did last nite, worked out FINE in the end, with that in mind, I'd be doing that as much as I could providing you can find friends that will help you out.

She may never be friendly with everyone, but the more you get her in situations that are not 'frantic', in her face types, the more she will get used to being able to just go out in the big wide world and 'deal' with it.

Start closing that "afar" gap. She doesn't need to be all over people nor do people have to be all over her..to just be able to tolerate being in the same proximity of people that will ignore her is a good goal to reach for.

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-18-2011, 05:27 PM
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Unfortunately, with such a nervous temperament, you will probably never be able to "cure" her of her fear. You can learn to manage it, but these types of nerve issues are genetic. No amount of socialization will get rid of it...

The most important thing is to learn how to manage it for her safety and yours.

Rob


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