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Hi, we have a rescue pup that's approx. 5-6 months old. We've had him 6 weeks now. (he was a stray that no one claimed) He's doing great with us and our home. The problem is he gets so anxious to leave. He's terrified to go in the vehicle, I can't even bribe him with treats. Treats come out, he hides in his crate. He HATES the leash too. Again, he hides when he sees it. We live on 3 acres, so he has lots of room outside off leash, and surprisingly he's good off-leash, comes to me very well. The other night I thought, I'd try to take him for a short walk (on leash) he was doing ok, then we got to where he couldn't see our house and he stopped, started resisting and actually pulled the collar over his head and ran right back home. He jumped in my husband's lap and would NOT come to me the rest of the night. (even with treats) Any insight what to do? I've been trying to take him more places in the van, so going somewhere isn't such a bad thing. I'm guessing it just may take awhile??? what do I do about the leash and walks? I hate seeing him so scared and tramautized. Thanks in advance! Oh, we start obedience next week. That should be interesting!
 

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It will take a while. Try taking him to places that are a treat in themselves - special places to walk, for instance. Can you take him out for short car trips to start, just so he gets used to being in the vehicle?

I would also do "special" treats for the more traumatic trips. If you normally give biscuits, then for a car trip give pieces of cheese or hot dog - something he really likes that is a step up in quality.

dd
 

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Regarding afraid of the leash I would suggest to start slow and put the leash on the floor for a while and let him smell it, praise him for being so brave, when he is not afraid of it, make him sit and connect the leash to his collar, give him a treat let him then spend a day or so letting the leash trail behind him, then after that is all ok, then grab the leash and walk him around the house, you follow him for the first while till he gets use to it.

Regarding the car, you should feed him in your vehicle and add some good meat to his meal after days of doing that he should hopefully associate the vehicle as a good den, also play around the vehicles with him and open the doors up and encourage him to chase a ball through it. Also take him on short rides every day and make sure you end up at a good and fun place for him. Then he will start to associate vehicle as the means to get to all the fun places.
 

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Also - do you talk to him and encourage him while you are leash walking?

Does he have a favourite game - for instance if you were carrying a ball would he be more likely to walk on the leash to a location where you can play with the ball - having something pleasant happen at the end of the walk will be a huge encouragement to him.

dd
 

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Can Lexy help? Is she a friendly happy sort? Do they like each other? I use more social dogs to help less sure dogs-it's like...ohhh! I am supposed to do that?!?!? Got it!

I also say use really good treats-go to places you wouldn't normally take a dog like McDonald's, Arby's, Wendy's while you are out, and have something equally good to lure him along on walks.

Just do baby steps and when you see where the resistance is, back up. End on a good note each time. Nothing succeeds like success, right!

http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/shy-k9s/ has great info.

He's very cute.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
thanks for the ideas. I have tried 'good' treats, doesn't make a difference, his jaw is clamped shut and he won't take it if he knows what I want (get in the van) He was much better the day we took my husband's Suburban, he could see us better( than our minivan in the back) then he ended up jumping over the seat and sat between the kids. He's just getting big fast and it's hard to lift him into the back of the suburban! lol!

Jean, Lexy isn't much help--she's old, crabby and doesn't really like him much. Good idea though.

I need to keep trying. He does ok with the leash around our house/yard, it was just when we left and he couldn't see the house, he got really anxious.

Here's a recent picture of him

and another one of Dakota and our 2 yr old.
 

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first I have to say, what a gorgeous puppy!! and the kid is a cutie too:)))))

Seems like he does well with the kids??? couple of ideas I'd try..
First the car,,pack the kids in the car with the puppy and sit in the driveway,,don't go anywhere :))) it may help with him "wanting" to go in the car , knowing the kids are in it, and just sitting there not going anywhere..

Second, for the walk,,do the kids go??? How about a long line on the dog, so he has more 'freedom' but isn't loose, and walk a perimeter (since it sounds like you have loads of property), where he can keep the house in site,,slowly start adding a few feet away for a minute or so, come back into site of house,,that kind of thing.

I definately agree with going slow (which sounds like you are!!) , good luck with him, he's stunning..
Diane
 

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Holy cow, your rescue is absolutely beautiful.

I foster rescues and my hunch is just treat the dog kindly. At some point he will start following you around, and then you move on from there. My advantage is I have a forever GSD, so the rescues learn from both of us, and I have decided in most respects that is helpful.

I did note you mentioned another dog, but if there is little reaction between the two, I suspect it is not helpful.

As an aside I am from Wisconsin and work with a rescue group. So if you ever decide to part with the dog, please send me a personal E Mail.
 

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Thanks again, he did better yesterday. I just took him a very short way and he was ok. (well, lots of pulling, but that's another problem--lol!) I think lots of baby steps and we'll get there.

Timber1--we think he's beautiful too--I would love to know his 'story', I just can't imagine someone not wanting him. He is so nice and mellow. Our Brittany was not this mellow until she was about 5 yrs. old!
 

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He is beautiful! Give him time and lots of love!
 

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ditto on my end. I do rescue, but just adopted a 4 1/2 shepherd named Paris. She came from a breeder as a pup to these two women who kept her for three years, and based on medical records, and a training class the ladies did a good job.

Since, Paris was kicked around and almost shot once. When I got her she was labelled as aggresice. Of course, that was all BS.

Like you, I would kill to contact the original owners, to learn the story of Paris. But my rescue group says no way.

Again, your pup is absolutely beautiful. As for the pulling and stuff, easily correctible.
 

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A pup that young only remembers being removed from the litter and going to the vet. Not the type of things that they really look forward to. Take him to a park one day to play. The next day take him to the local supermarket and get some bones. Let him sniff the bag all the way home and give him one when you get home. The next day take him to petsmart or petco for a toy. After the 3rd day your car problems will be over.

I had the same issue getting our first one Max to ride in the car. As soon as we opened the car door the chase was on. Then when we drove somewhere he would get car sick. No we have to coax him out of the van at 2 years old.

Chris
 
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