(Closed) Help—timid/scared puppy…what to do?

posted 6 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
51 posts
Worker bee

Puppies actually go through a fear period multiple times throughout their puppyhood. It’s great you’re signing him up for classes! That should definitely help.

Other things you can do are to continue to take him out to  meet new people and experience different places. He should meet someone new every day if possible. Keep tasty treats on hand to reward him for calm behavior when he meets new people. Have people offer him treats to coax him. This is much easier if he’s food motivated. If not, is there a particular toy he loves that people can reward him with? 

You don’t want to absolutely force the issue if he’s terrified, but don’t coddle him either. Do not reassure him if he’s scared, this just teaches him that cautious behavior gets him love and pets! Don’t hold him during introductions. Keep him on a leash on the floor. Have people get low and offer a treat when they first meet him. Have your dad try this too. It just takes persistence and patience and time. I promise! 

Post # 4
1026 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Some dogs can get overwhelmed by new people, especially if they move straight into scratch them as soon as they see them.  How are these people approaching?  Do they come straight at the dog to pet the cute puppy?  There are a couple things that can help.  First have the puppy sit whenever someone is approaching.  Giving him a job (sitting) when someone comes in gives him something to focus on other then the anxiety.  Second don’t allow people to rush up to him and start scratching.  They should stand a foot or two away from you and puppy.  When the puppy is relativly calm release him from the sit, and let him approach and sniff the new person. Tell them to ignore him- don’t look at him talk to him or scratch.  This gives him a moment to figure out who it is, are they a threat, does he know them.  After he has sniffed them, give the person a treat to give to the dog.  At this point if the puppy is calm and relaxed they can pet him.  

Post # 6
531 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

Also puppies can sense your feelings so you need to stay relaxed when he gets scared bc if you get anxious he will too.  If he can sense your’re relaxed it’ll help him feel the same way.

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