Bashful 11 mth old mastiff.

Discussion in 'Training & Behavior' started by Danette W. Smith, Mar 7, 2018.

  1. Danette W. Smith

    Danette W. Smith New Member

    I have a very bashful baby that we have raised with 2 kids and ourselves. We did not realize as she was getting older how shy she was actually getting . I see NOW :( @ 160 lbs that she needed more socialization. That being said we live in the country so Petsmart, dog parks and others are not convenient to me. Please please any suggestions. Someone comes to visit now she jumps on the couch and sits up and gives us the "stranger danger" look. She show ZERO aggression but there's always that slight fear in me that the shyness will turn to that in the future.
  2. DennasMom

    DennasMom Well-Known Member

    How old is she now?

    I'd go back to socialization 101... introduce 1 new object a day, 1 new location a week and if you can find 1 new human a week, that would be a bonus, too.

    Objects: Flags, umbrellas, kids toys (things that move, make noise, etc), vacuum, cars, culverts, ladders, wheelbarrows, etc.
    Locations: New trail, new neighborhood, new park, any place you can reach in a reasonable distance... just taking your coffee to sit quietly together in front of the local grocery store for a bit would be great... but might be a bit down the road from a training perspective.

    Baseball season is starting up... are there any kids leagues in the area? Go visit a game - from a "safe" distance, slowly working in closer over a few months time until you can sit with her in the stands with the other parents.

    How about school yards? walk around the school when kids are NOT there first... then during recess - from a safe distance - work her up to her "alert" distance, have her sit and supervise the activity from there for a while... treat, and go home. Work closer each day, but still just to the "alert" distance, retreat if she gets too nervous and try again.

    Do you have any neighbors with (or without) dogs that you can arrange Meet & Greets with?
    We have a "nextdoor" web page for our community (and a facebook group) - putting out a request for Meet & Greets to help with dog training gets LOTS of positive responses in our area (and a few idiots, but... that's to be expected in a city suburb).

    Teaching tricks is another good way to reinforce your dog-human bond and teach her confidence. Get high value treats and a good book on dog tricks, and go for it! Keep it fun and always ALWAYS end sessions with something she knows how to do well and can be handsomely rewarded for.
  3. Boxergirl

    Boxergirl Well-Known Member

    I agree with Denna's Mom and she's given you great suggestions. Since your dog is older and seems fearful, remember to keep everything very positive. If she seems unsure of something, keep your distance and let her approach at her own pace. Socialization is about introducing her to new things, but not necessarily making her interact with those things.

    I like the way Laura VonArendonk Baugh explains socialization.
    Sheila Braund likes this.
  4. Sheila Braund

    Sheila Braund Well-Known Member

    Awesome advise DennaMom! Thanks!
    I've been thinking about doing the meet and greet with my neighbourhood as well .... as soon as Bella is out of her heat

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