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Dog attacked

Discussion in 'Dog Behaviour and Training' started by Ashleighx, Sep 3, 2014.

  1. Ashleighx

    Ashleighx New Member Registered

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    my cocker spaniel was attacked on the 25th august by a staffy whilst on the lead. our dog was very lucky and only had one minor injury on his paw.Now he is terrified by other dogs.I was wondering if anyone could give me any advice and helping my dog to overcome this and go back to being playful with dogs again.
     
  2. Oreo

    Oreo New Member Registered

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    Hi & Welcome,

    Sorry to hear about your dog. It's an awful experience for both you and your dog to go through.

    I am glad that he is now on the mend.

    Was the other dog reported?

    As for you and your dog it's important that any apprehension is not passed to your dog as they are very good at reading subtle body language.

    I think the best way is to walk your dog past others at a distance and see how he copes. If you can get a friends dog even better as you can control the situation.

    If he handle's it ok then get slowly closer.

    Try not to rush it as it can take, weeks/months to get to that point.

    Use plenty of praise and treats.

    Failing that you could contact a professional dog trainer for one to one advise.

    Keep us update :)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 3, 2014
  3. eingana

    eingana Do my ears look big in this? Registered

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    Hi Ashleighx, and welcome to DogForum :)

    I too think that desensitising and making sure that your concern doesn't pass down the lead are likely to be your best solution to this, although sometimes individual animals' discernment about what poses a threat can make true comfort really hard. A dog that is happy to be around a GSD may find labs terrifying, or shihtzus, or staffies.

    My rescue GSD Molly wasn't socialised as a puppy and whilst she lives with cats perfectly happily (sleeping in bed with them and has fostered somewhere between 50 and 100 kittens) and adores children, other dogs are something about which to get very concerned, bark a lot and go on full alert.

    Her scale of panic goes from none at all but lots of smiles and wags when meeting dogs that she has met extensively (sadly her best mate, a white shihtzu, died recently) to excitement when other little pale fluffy dogs are around, through stiff, alert and restricting her barks when larger or darker dogs are a distance from her, all the way to downright hell hound at an unknown dog coming in at high speed and invading her space.

    So yes, please do desensitise your lad with some friendly dogs first at a distance and then gradually getting closer (parellel walking is good for this) but please try to find a few friendly and amenable staffies that can be used in the desensitising. It will make the desensitising harder, but you are likely to be meeting staffies out there and desensitising to a GSD or a lab won't necessarily mean that he will be any calmer about staffies at all.

    Be calm, try not to show your tension to him and don't make a big fuss of him when giving praise. It's not a big issue to have walked past another dog, it's completely commonplace and therefore a small treat or a 'good boy' and then carrying on with the walk is the way to go when he's been calm or reacted appropriately passing another dog.

    Good luck :)
     
  4. Ashleighx

    Ashleighx New Member Registered

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    the incident was reported to the police and the staffy had been violent towards other dogs too, mickey seems to be ok with the smaller dogs its the bigger dogs hes more afraid of. thanks for the help :)

    hes brilliant around other animals as he lives with our 2 cats and wants to play with them. there was a dog on the other side of the road (a puppy staffy) and he froze and wouldn't move. i dont want him to become aggressive towards other dogs because of the one incident
     
  5. eingana

    eingana Do my ears look big in this? Registered

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    My advice when he sees another dog and freezes is to just stop and wait. Don't make a big fuss, don't coax him, just stop and wait. When he looks up at you he'll see that you're calm and at that point you can ask him to sit nicely for a treat, so you're gently taking his attention away from the other dog.

    If you can find a suitable staffy for desensitising purposes you may start off 100 yards away when your lad reacts to him, but if you stay at that 100 yards distance he will eventually look up at you or start to relax his panic about the dog that's not getting any closer and nothing bad has happened. At this point you can reward him for being calm- I would probably give him something that smells fabulous, to bathe his brain in the happy chemicals that happen as a result of good smells and tastes.

    The next time around it won't be as bad at 100 yards but may be 80 yards is the trigger point. Repeat in exactly the same way, as many times as is necessary for him to be satisfied that nothing is happening and you're not trying to force him to get closer. By gradually dropping the distance and looking for signs of him getting stressed you will give him the exposure to the other dogs without being pushed into interacting with them. You can work on that later on, once the major panic is already dealt with :)
     

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