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Hello again everyone!

So we have been doing some major training with Ronin in the past month and he is doing A LOT better. He has calmed down, no longer feels the need to jump at people and growl at everyone he sees. His trainers couldn't believe the turn around! And then in the span of two weekends it all went downhill.

Last weekend I took Ronin out to pee, on leash of course. In our front yard we have a large tree that spans about a third of the yard. One of my neighbors got the bright idea that it would be funny to hide behind the tree and then jump out and scare me. He had heard me coming out from the back door when he was walking by and thought, "Hey lets see if I can scare Emily!" not realizing I had the dog with me. I took Ronin towards his pee area and next thing I know, the idiot (sorry he just made me REALLY mad with this little stunt) jumped out from behind the tree and yelled BOO! I, of course, screamed because it scared me so bad, and I almost dropped the leash! Ronin, as you can predict, when nuts! Barking, lunging, snarling, ready to attack kind of response. I was able to rein him in, but I couldn't do the training I had been working on because he was just so upset. My husband, who was home thank goodness, came and took Ronin inside for me, while I gave the neighbor a piece of my mind. It took me almost the entire rest of the week to get Ronin back to the point where he would only bark, not lunge, at people when they walked by. But then this weekend....

My neighbors, the one with the 3 year old grandson that we were having issues with before, invited us over to a bonfire. I asked before I went if the grandson would be there, and if so I would not bring Ronin. She told me that he wasn't coming, and that he was staying the night at a friend's house. So I took Ronin over a bit later, just on his regular six foot leash. I had Ronin in a sit at my side, holding the leash, loosely about halfway down the leash, and he was being nice and calm. Then! Next thing I know, the little boy comes running, screaming out from behind the shed we stood right next to and what does Ronin do but jump and lunge, and the kid almost got bit! I mean I yanked him back and to the ground because the kid just kept coming. I was furious! The mother, thankfully, didn't get mad at me, and understood that it was her fault for not watching the kid, and the grandparents for not telling me that they had come over just a few minutes before the kids was leaving again. I don't think I have ever been so mad and upset I was almost in tears because I was so scared he bit him.

The kid came running on the side Ronin was on, and if I had only had a hold on the end of the leash then he would have bit that kid before I could have stopped him. The kid had apparently been playing hide and seek behind the shed with his mother, but the mother had gone inside and thought that the grandparents were watching him. It was just a bad situation. So now, Ronin is right back to the point of where he started and I can't allow him near kids at all. Any child, even from far away, looks at him, it's an immediate growl and bark. I do not take him to the pet stores, don't take him to the regular park we go to for walks because it just sets him off. I'm at a complete loss as to what to do. He's not even a fan of adults now.

I took him out for a walk yesterday in a different spot with a halti on so that he is under a bit more control, and there were more people than I expected, but I just kept myself far back from everyone else so that we were alone when walking with no people around us all the time or other dogs. A lady with a toddler all of a sudden walked by us, and I stopped, being sure to remain calm and relaxed and put Ronin in a sit and waited until they went by. He never so much as barked or jumped. I praised and treated lavishly and kept walking. Repeated the process a few times when people walked past us and he was okay. But by no means do I feel that this is fixed. I have a very long way to go before we get back to the point where I want him to be.

I really would love some advice and help if anyone can. Thanks! Sorry for the long post.
 
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