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Discussion Starter #1
A little info about Sadie and me.. Sadie has been with me since 8 weeks old she is now 9 months. We took our 1st OB class at 5 months and she was the star of the class. She greeted every one and played with other dogs during down time. Just and all around social butterfly. We took 2 months off because classes were not offered at the time. The next class we signed up for is Rally class. That is where the problems began. Sadie seems to enjoy class most of the time the issues I am having with here are when some one whats to pet her she will now growl at them.She is fine standing next to someone even walking by and they touch her , they can walk up to me and we can talk and shake hands , hug whatever but as soon as they greet her she growls. She does well in class around the other dogs .. she is not agressive to them unless they run to me off leashe and then she seems like she is protecting me and will growl and stand in front of me. I am not sure how to deal with this I correct her and she stops but we have never taken it any futher like them petting her. Am I making the problem worse? My trainer thinks it is a phase and she will grow out of it. She also thinks maybe Sadie is just stressed. I don't know what to think..I am very interested in agility and Rally do you all think that is possiable with her? Sorry so long. I am open to any and all suggestions.
Thanks ahead of time.
 

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I agree, Sadie is stressed when people approach her-she is warning them to stay away. I wouldn't correct her for this as she may see the correction as coming from the person, and not because she is growling. If you correct her for growling(warning) she may quit and then just bite instead of warning.
Is she food motivated? Treats are good for this instead of correcting. For now, I wouldn't let anyone pet her unless she solicits it. I usually let my dogs do the first greeting and leave it up to them whether they want some strangers hands on them. It goes much better when the dog feels they have some control over who is touching them.
Of course at the vet, you may have problems too. I have to muzzle Onyx at the vet, as she doesn't want people touching her if she doesn't know them.

Michael Ellis has some great clips on fear stages and dog aggression, maybe watch them for more understanding and how to manage her.
I would get her into an agility or rally class, it will build her confidence and keep up her exposure to others.
The book Control Unleashed is great for dogs that are a bit reactive but competing.
I recommend it highly!
 

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how is she when she's in public?
maybe you should do some heavy
socializing. i'm guessing.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Sadie does well in public unless someone comes up to her then she will growls. Only when they make eye contact with her or talk to her.
 
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