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So I have been trying to socialize my 4 month old with other dogs. She has 3 siblings and a cousin that all live in the house with her and she sees them all the time. She is 100% comfortable with them. However, if an unfamiliar dog cones around her she will ball at it and then scream in fear if it comes toward her. She does this even if the dog is smaller than her and is just walking by casually.

This is the first puppy I've had that has been this fearful of other dogs. I keep get on a leash and try to offer her comfort. I take her to the dog park when I know there are only a couple of dogs there. And I'm familiar with most of the dogs and their owners do she isn't around completely random dogs.

Any assistance you can provide is helpful.

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I wouldn't try to force contact with other dogs she doesn't live with. You have to be careful too, with what you may think is comforting her, its too easy for that to be confirming in her mind that other dog is something to fear. If you keep her around things at a point she's aware of them, but not panicked, it can give you a chance to let her learn to deal with it and understand she doesn't have to worry about the other dogs.
 

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Sometimes all is not what it seems to be.

I have a neighbor with two dogs and the GSD clearly dislikes and feels tormented by the other. The smaller dog is always leaping at the GSD's neck to try to get the GSD to engage. The GSD walks rapidly away from their other dog with its head held high and to the side away from the smaller dog and keeps its tail down in the smaller dogs presence. When the GSD is out alone, it is an entirely different dog, calm, confident, and relaxed. Maybe your dog is feeling stressed with your other dogs and you are missing the signals.

The same could be said about the dogs you choose to let her near in the dog park. If you want her to socialize with other dogs, maybe let her pick and choose what dogs she feels comfortable with. She might be sensing something with the dogs you are selecting.
 

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Hi. So, you're saying that your 4 month old pup is comfortable with her housemates and uncomfortable with dogs outside of her home?

I'm not in any way an expert on puppy/dog behavior but I think you should leave your pup in her comfort zone...she knows what to expect from her house mates and she's learning social skills from them. She is fearful of dogs unknown to her.
For now, keep her away from unfamiliar dogs.

My advice would be to sign her up for a basic obedience class, that way she will be introduced to other dogs and puppies in an organized and supervised setting. After a short time in a group class with a good trainer she will be so busy learning the basic skills that she'll hardly notice the other pups. Eventually, the class and the other dogs will become familiar to her.

For now keep her away from unleashed dogs and only expose her to leashed dogs at a safe distance.

Good luck.

Ps.Best not to comfort her when she shows fear, it's better to lure her away from the fearful situation using an upbeat and fun voice and, or a squeak toy.
 

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Well ... you're at a crossroads here. As I view it ... the way people end up with problems is when they take the "my other dog road was like...." "This" is not your other dogs ... this is "This dog" and she has said ... "I am uncomfortable around unknown dogs." I would "respect" her choice and make adjustments with "This" dog in "My Approach." Dogs don't have thumbs they can't send a memo as it were ... note to owner, "I am uncomfortable with this approach ... please stop ... signed Foo Foo." Work with the dog in front of you, you're fighting a battle you don't have to have here.

Couple of articles are in here, "Why Dog Parks are a Bad Idea" and "Three Dogs Who should not be at a Dog Park" :
http://www.germanshepherds.com/forum/5296377-post8.html

I would stop putting pressure on her with the other dogs stuff. And I would start doing this:
Fearful, Anxious or Flat Crazy "The Place CommanD - Boxer Forum : Boxer Breed Dog Forums

The goal ultimately would be a two hour "Place" with distractions. At some point you can start to do "Place and Sit on the Dog" with "Distractions" outside the Dog Park ... no contact with unknow dogs. It will give your dog to "time" to adjust, and show her that she can "trust you" ...not to put her into, for her "uncomfortable situations." Ultimately ... she will be who she will be??? But you will not be "forcing the issue"which may or may not "break her??"

But .... true confession I don't do "Dog Parks" in any case, so it's not a problem I've ever had?? And my dogs do just fine around other dogs ... most likely because ... they have never had a "Bad Experience with other dogs??

But if you don't like my approach go with "MAWL" socializing with other dogs is more her thing. :)


I just say "NO" to unknown dogs myself, as I like to employ the "KISS" principle ... works out fine. :)
 

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Great advice!! Thanks guys! This is my first time with a pup this skiddish. And we literally just started introducing her to other dogs. So if I'm doing something detrimental then now is the time to stop. That's why I wanted to ask now before I made any mistakes that had long term effects.

Thank you for all the suggestions. I'll be delving in and making some changes with how we handle socialization.

And Citra thanks you all as well

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Great advice!! Thanks guys! This is my first time with a pup this skiddish. And we literally just started introducing her to other dogs. So if I'm doing something detrimental then now is the time to stop. That's why I wanted to ask now before I made any mistakes that had long term effects.

Thank you for all the suggestions. I'll be delving in and making some changes with how we handle socialization.

And Citra thanks you all as well

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Uh wow ... I'm stunned speechless and seriously impressed! "This" is not what we usually see when suggestions that "perhaps" a change is in order would be a good course of action.

Well ....from a handful of the usual suspects ...."Thank You!" :)
 

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However, if an unfamiliar dog cones around her she will ball at it and then scream in fear if it comes toward her. She does this even if the dog is smaller than her and is just walking by casually.
Its possible too, from just this description, its not what you may think it is. That scream may not be fear, unless you're seeing some other things you didn't mention? Frustration, stimulation, excitement, it can all look like fear, or at least sound like it. Is she overly submissive or overly pushy with your other dogs?
 

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I agree with what everyone is saying and just wanted to re-inforce the importance of NOT 'giving her comfort' - fussing over a scared dog gives them positive attention from you and seen as rewarding, so the association in their mind is that being scared is the correct reaction. instead, act neutral, matter-of fact. Reflect the state of mind that you want to see in her as she will look to you for guidance in how to react in scary situations. Be neutral, confident, or even laugh off the situation or act completely bored by whatever it is that Citra is unsure of - "Oh, nothing to be afraid off", is the signal she'll read from you, "Looks like the most boring thing in the world!"
 

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Its possible too, from just this description, its not what you may think it is. That scream may not be fear, unless you're seeing some other things you didn't mention? Frustration, stimulation, excitement, it can all look like fear, or at least sound like it. Is she overly submissive or overly pushy with your other dogs?
Hmmm I thought we were done here??

But OK i'll play. :)

A "Pro" on here told me once that "pet owners" misidentify issues all the time?? My dog ... was it fear or aggression???

I said don't know and I don't care. What I did know, was that my dog was "unpredictable" given the "chance" either one could bite the crap out of someone.

I never gave him that chance. Her dog does not like other dogs, good enough change the approach. Give her "time" maybe she will, maybe she won't?? I can't say but I can say this dog seems uncomfortable with other dogs ... "good enough for me."

But ... to be accurate not only do I not do other dogs but I train my dogs to "ignore other dogs" so hardly unbiased here. :)
 

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Uh wow ... I'm stunned speechless and seriously impressed! "This" is not what we usually see when suggestions that "perhaps" a change is in order would be a good course of action.

Well ....from a handful of the usual suspects ...."Thank You!" :)
Haha!! Well, my dogs' health and well being is my top priority. I know what I know and I know what I don't know. So if I don't know something, and it concerns my dogs health and well being then I take it seriously.

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Haha!! Well, my dogs' health and well being is my top priority. I know what I know and I know what I don't know. So if I don't know something, and it concerns my dogs health and well being then I take it seriously.

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...A man who knows and knows he knows
He is wise, follow him." : )

that's just the end of the quote. lol
 
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