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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So finally my dog was getting better with not being scared of men, she would just ignore them if they approached her instead of like before she would run away and hide. Well today, we are having bbq at my parents house and as I was preparing food my uncle that has never met my dog, walks in the backyard where the party was including my dog... as soon as he entered the backyard he started to scare my dog, making "scary" voices and shooing her away and clapping his hands loundly and trying to make it seem as of he was trying to "get her" (very immature and plain stupid) while he was doing that the dog started to run away from him and hide...He said "wow, thats a german shepherd? what kind of dog is that, why is she so scared?" I WAS BEYOND ANGRY that he would mess with her, and I told him to stop immidiately, I explained I am trying to train her to trust men not the opposite. The whole time we were outside eating and drinking tea (about 2 hrs) she was terrified of loud noises and anything new that she saw incluiding stuff like a bucket. This is so frustrating.. She was never scared of new things before, and she didnt care for noises... I mean maybe once in blue moon she would be startled if unexpected but this time she was actually hidng her tail between her legs and folding her ears I could tell she was terried of new things. HOW DO I HELP HER? will she be damaged now?!!! We were all sitting at the table for 2 hrs and the dog was laying under the table right to my uncles feet and she didn't bite him, but she didn't come out either... I don't know if its relevant, but I thought I would add...

She is 1 year old, and was behaving so well!
 

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Oh Jeez, what is wrong with that guy? You probably should have removed one of them immediately(if it was me, the man would have been gone). Your going to have to go slow with her and start bringing her around stable men. Start at a distance, have them give her treats, etc. I hope it all works out.
 

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As to the noises, it may not have been them so much as she was so rattled by what your uncle did that every time she heard a noise, she may have thought it was him again being mean to her. You will have to see if she took a step back or if she is able to go forward. You might have to revisit some of the steps you have been taking to build her confidence back up. Poor baby.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
He actually is a nice guy and a good man, will help any person in need.... But the only thing is he doesn't like animals, didn't grow up with them and doesn't understand why people have pets...

Im so worried she will be damaged from this, she was already not trusting men and after this I just don't know... Im scared to scare her even more and hope she wont become aggressive...Some men she trusts instantly usually ones who like her... But sometimes she will sneak up and try to sniff men she doesn't trust I think maybe she is resource guarding


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You see, she reacted this way - only because you reacted your way. You have showed her by speaking with your uncle angrily that something really serious was going on. Do not support her fear with anything, no lamenting, no panic, no anger, no emotion on your side. Should be absolutely opposite - cheerful call, engaging her with a ball, or simply ignoring her reaction. Please, don't think that your uncle was the reason why her reaction was so bad. It emerged out of her memory, what it was - you, probably, would never guess. Something to do with men, but, what else can you say? If I were you, I would start with aromatherapy at home, and go walking where you can meet more people. Feed a little before your walk, full stomach suppresses emotionality and feed a little after. Just don't stop, you should always be on the move, don't let her focus on anything. Short walks, then longer walks. She must learn to ignore people, noisy objects, flashes of light, etc somehow. She could be very shy first, her brain may say "no" to her, but she is a young dog and her body must like it. Also speak to her on the way, it may help.
I trained a young stressed bitch, she was terrified of fireworks once at night and was looking for it even in the blue sky since. Her owner brought her to me when she run away from him couple of times in the middle of the street and busy traffic. She is still looking for it, but she stopped shivering, she listens to commands, plays ball, just raises her eyes to the sky time to time. Exercise your dog instead of leaving her to her dark thoughts, honestly, it works!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You see, she reacted this way - only because you reacted your way. You have showed her by speaking with your uncle angrily that something really serious was going on. Do not support her fear with anything, no lamenting, no panic, no anger, no emotion on your side. Should be absolutely opposite - cheerful call, engaging her with a ball, or simply ignoring her reaction. Please, don't think that your uncle was the reason why her reaction was so bad. It emerged out of her memory, what it was - you, probably, would never guess. Something to do with men, but, what else can you say? If I were you, I would start with aromatherapy at home, and go walking where you can meet more people. Feed a little before your walk, full stomach suppresses emotionality and feed a little after. Just don't stop, you should always be on the move, don't let her focus on anything. Short walks, then longer walks. She must learn to ignore people, noisy objects, flashes of light, etc somehow. She could be very shy first, her brain may say "no" to her, but she is a young dog and her body must like it. Also speak to her on the way, it may help.
I trained a young stressed bitch, she was terrified of fireworks once at night and was looking for it even in the blue sky since. Her owner brought her to me when she run away from him couple of times in the middle of the street and busy traffic. She is still looking for it, but she stopped shivering, she listens to commands, plays ball, just raises her eyes to the sky time to time. Exercise your dog instead of leaving her to her dark thoughts, honestly, it works!
I wasn't there when this happened so she didn't see my reaction. I was looking at the whole thing through the window... She is plenty exercised and was scared of men since she was 2 months old. Like I said she was getting much better until this incident.. Sigh


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Yes it is frustrating. But the good news is that she is not so frightened that she bit him. That's good. She is still a large puppy.

Does she have to like men?

Ok, you are going to have to take her to a vet at some point, and even if you pick a woman, there is a chance that she will encounter a guy at the vet. But she doesn't have to love every guy out there.

I would build the bond with her by training her. Are you going to classes? If you are going 1 day a week, add a class, maybe agility or something, that you and she can learn with lots of treats and lots of praise.

There is something about the positive reinforcement, accomplishment, and full body work out that agility can do for a dog with a softer temperament. This is not life or death. This is fun. You are not there to compete, you are there to have a good time with your dog and hopefully in the process the trust between you and she will deepen some.

I would keep her away from anything that you have determined is a trigger for a month or more. Just give her a rest and let her mature a little, while training her 1-2 days a week in a class where all the owners and trainers are respectful and will not approach themselves or allow their dogs to get up close and personal. It is enough to be training in their presence.

Yeah, I can train in obedience without a class too, but I cannot manufacture other people with controlled dogs all wanting to hang around and train at the same time, so I go to classes. And for this dog, a class with fewer people and dogs would be a better choice.

Be your dog's advocate. If you think that something might take her near her threshold, back off. Or just opt out of that particular exercise. Later you can do it or not depending on what her day and week has been like. If she already met a stranger person or had been to a new place today, getting that during class is probably not helpful.

If you continue on for another 12 months you will most likely be in a whole other world with your girl.

Your dog is what she is, not the most confident dog on the planet. You can increase her confidence in you and in herself by positive training, and exposure to new things without over-exposing her. While she may not ever be super-confident, she can make a very special pet and have an awesome bond with you.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
agree. I wonder where this fear of men comes from, I have noticed that its common with any breed...Women she trusts no problem. I take her to petsmart on the leash and she doest care about men. Dog park again doesnt care... but if we are somewhere with people she is off leash she will avoid men and if they try to approch her she would walk away this time she RAN :(
 

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I don't know. We just can't crawl up into their brains and understand why about a lot of things. Sometimes our dog reflect outwardly what we fell inwardly.

For example, my dad was raised Christian Science, and he truly believed growing up that you go to the hospital to die. He has run away from doctors and dentists, and has lasting health issues due to having not been treated as a child. Over the years, he has had to deal with many doctors, but it is something that he really never feels comfortable.

I grew up on the other hand as a Lutheran and I never had my dad's distaste for anything that smells of medicine. Cujo was my parents dog. When my dad took him to the vet he would cower and shake. When I took him to the vet it was like another day in the park. My dad has lived with Cujo since he was 14 weeks old. I saw him just about every day, but I did not live with him, or train him, or feed him beyond taking him to the vet to be neutered. And I took him in for shots and stuff as much as my dad did, so it wasn't that he went there only for social visits with me, and only for crappy visits with my dad.

No rhyme or reason other than my dad's underground feelings of things that are medical in nature.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, today when I was at my parents house and my step dad just got home she was so scared of him she peed herself when he tried to pet her, she was avoiding him and putting tail between her legs :((( I asked him to give her hot dog and she came over to get only one piece...after about an hour she was still avoiding him but walked by him no problem when it was time to go home. I am so upset :( after my uncle scared her I feel like she is not the same dog... I hope she recovers soon... its strange some men she doesn't really care bout just ignores but some she is terrified... :(
 

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Your crazy uncle owes you big time. Involve him in trust training with her but only if he has promised, sworn etc. that he will take his cues from you and stop acting like an idiot. Otherwise you can tell him to foot the bill from the behaviorist ;).
Start at a level where she sees him but doesn't act fearful, let him throw the best treats possible (have her hungry) etc. Take small steps and in the future keep her tethered to you to prevent stuff like this.
 
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