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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 20221
Experience:  Dog breeder/Trainer and Behaviorist 18+ years
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I have a 4 year old Lhasa also she is very loving but very

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I have a 4 year old Lhasa also she is very loving but very timid. When the door goes or you drop a cup she runs away up the stairs. She seems to be terrified of everything. This makes her unsociable outside. Every dog we meet she goes for which is having the opposite affect of taking your dog a walk as no one wants to approach you. She has nipped two adults legs bursting the skin both times because the were holding something or running past her. We have dozens of near misses where I have managed to pull her away in time. My fear is that she will bite a child and that will be the end of her. I love her to bits and she is affectionate towards my family but always wants to bite other dogs and strangers. What can I do?
Hi Jacustomer,
My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.
In order to supply you with an informed answer, it is necessary for me to collect some additional information from you. When I receive your response or reply, it will likely take me between 30-45 minutes to type up my reply if I am still online when I receive notice that you replied. I hope you can be patient.
so you do pull her closer when you get close to other dogs and people, correct?
Has she had any obedience training?
Is she spayed?
Was she socialized with people or dogs as a pup?
How long have you had her?
Do you know of any incidents that would have made her timid?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Jane thanks for your reply. I have had Lucy for four years since she was nine weeks old. To my knowledge she has never been hurt or cruelly treated. The only thing I remember is two years ago she was very scared on bonfire night with the fireworks and was visibly shaking. If anyone comes to my door she barks and goes for whoever is at the door sometimes she just runs out to the gate and shows her teeth to whoever is passing. I took her to training to prevent her from running off but she was so scared I stopped taking her. I hold the lead close to me and do not let her pull away but I can't stop to speak with anyone or pat the dog they have with them. I have many friends with dogs some she likes other she doesn't. It's a shame as my friends allow their dogs off the leads in the park but I am so scared she will bite someone or another dog that I keep it on.
Thanks for the additional information. It is helpful. The first thing that should be done is to rule out a medical cause for the sudden aggression. You can read about these here: there is no medical cause for the aggression, then it is strictly behavioral. Dogs are aggressive toward people for a variety of reasons. It might be that they are fearful of people and thus are aggressive before the person can be. In other cases, a dog is aggressive in order to dominate the people. Other causes could be that the dog feels they are the alpha member of the pack and as the alpha member they must protect the pack (you) from threats (people)..In addition, owners sometimes make the situation even worse by tensing up and worrying about what will happen. The dog senses the owner worry and feels that she is justified in her aggressive stance because you are obviously worried about the people. They don't know you are worried about them attacking, they just feel that you are worried and assume it is the people..Some dogs never get over fear issues, but that isn't all of them. In many cases, obedience training helps a dog gain self confidence in themselves. It also helps them understand what humans expect when they give a command. This helps a dog be less scared of people. So you need to start back up obedience training. It doesn't have to be in a formal setting but does need to be a structured time each day and work with her. The following site is helpful at helping owners teach their dogs. Be sure and click on the link to the page on obedience at the bottom. and links on subsequent pages leading to detailed instructions. works best if you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below. This obedience work establishes you as the alpha member of the pack and as alpha it is your job to protect the dog and not the dogs job to protect you. Now the dog will still protect you if something should happen because you will be protecting yourself and as part of the pack, she will follow your lead and protect as well. But if you are calm around someone, she will see that you are ok and there is no need to help. This is why being the alpha member works well. Bat method of training might also work. Read more on this here: .Once you have her listening all the time when you give commands you can give Lucy commands to sit and stay when people come over and not release her until they are seated. When you release her, take her to one area in the room you will be in and have her sit and stay in one specific spot. This type of control over her will have Lucy looking for you to make the decision on whether she needs to be worried about a person or dog. .Give this a try. I think you will see a lot of improvement pretty quickly. I hope this information is helpful to you. If you need more information or clarification, please reply and I'll get back to you as soon as possible. If you are satisfied, please take the opportunity to rate.
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