Wagging and jumping … you can’t get on the road fast enough. But what if this pleasant outing turns into a stressful situation?
What if your pet cannot tolerate its counterparts?
He barks the entire neighborhood together, growls … this seems like the start of a cruel attack …
Ziggy our barker
Like most owners of an anti-social animal, I am well aware of how quickly an outdoor activity can turn into frustration.
Ziggy, our five-year-old Scottish Terrier, is especially handsome and sweet but also quite stubborn.
He loves car rides and walks … But when he sees an ‘enemy’, especially larger versions, he barks the soul out of his body, he goes completely crazy and he would even dare to happen!
So very pleasant on the beach where stray wild animals come spontaneously to sniff … or when Ziggy decides to stir a full terrace, while I have just ordered a coffee …
At home my family friend is quiet, only barking when the doorbell rings … for the rest … calm, quiet and satisfied!
It is not unusual that Ziggy reacts so tightly to meetings with others. This form of aggression is one of the most common behavioral problems!
But for me, this resulted in short walks where we encountered neither humans nor animals.
From now on I would walk the shopping streets or the boulevard without him.
No, this could not have been the intention!
Time for action!
Fortunately, there is a way out of this dilemma. Compare this with a recognizable situation:
Your five-year-old toddler runs through the supermarket like crazy …
Calling, dragging along, … “here we will never come with you again”!
Now your child is not walking on a leash of course, but I thought that with a firm pull on the leash Ziggy would listen.
On the contrary of course! Just like the punished child, the dog will get even more frustrated and have learned nothing.
The following applies to both parenting: reward positive behavior!
Seek professional help
A well-trained coach focuses on dealing with other dogs through a positive approach. Learn what good behavior is in the presence of others, and reward it.
The first method works around “simple classical conditioning” Here we learn that the presence of another animal is a treat, just as Pavlov taught his dogs to link the sound of a bell to bringing food.
“Operant conditioning” is used to learn that good behavior is strengthened in the form of hugs, encouragements, and games.
Here, the underlying emotions (fear, rooster behavior …) are tackled instead of merely suppressing the external symptoms.
A good idea, such a private teacher, but you have to pay a cent for it!
Back to school!
Ziggy has passed the puppy school with flying colors, but since he was attacked by an aggressive four-legged friend, we have to go back …
I visited the trainer and the school again, where special obedience classes are also organized.
Here the slogan hangs ‘for what, hears what’ …: every right, such as meals, treats, toys, games, walks, … must be earned through obedient behavior. Penalties are avoided as much as possible.
Such a series of lessons bring your dog in contact with other breeds and will also learn from their good behavior. So after-monkeys …
But we don’t like the weekly training sessions, the school is just a bit too far.
Maybe consult our vet?
Tips from the animal doctor!
“Aggression is a common symptom of a lack of contact with other animals,” the verdict sounded.
True, the only friend who accepts Ziggy is the neighbor’s Labrador Retriever with whom he sits chatting for hours at the common hedge.
Of course, this is the best way to remedy this … children also learn from children, alone … we have to go back to the beach or the city!
“Gradually build up with that reward system”
Or better patience “(certainly from the owner)
Our municipal park thus became a local training ground. I sat down on a bench with Ziggy close by on a leash. Every time another dog passes, I gave him a treat and a lot of praise.
After we could repeat this several times, it became clear that rewarding works. Barked away, pulled away! Victory!
Now we are at the point that a walk does not give me gray hair. If we come close to a fence with imminent bark hazards, we give a treat.
Do I see the danger? Then I let go of the belt and try to get his attention.
If it doesn’t work, then we walk quietly onto another road.
Well done from myself and Ziggy!