Training Shy Dogs

Scaredy cat? What about scaredy dog? Some pets may be a little sensitive or shy around new people. Learn how to make your pooch more comfortable and trusting. While dogs are generally thought to be more outgoing pets, they can also be shy or skittish around unfamiliar people and places. However, with a little love and patience, you can get your shy dog to become more social and playful with others. Here are some tips on how to build your pooch’s confidence and help this process.

  • Practice tricks: helping your pet to review and practice skills such as “sit” and “stay” will help build its confidence because of the praise it will receive.
  • When Not to Praise: You may not want to praise your dog when it is scared. This can be difficult as it is the natural thing to do when your pet is skittish or scared, but this will form a bad habit. If you praise your furry friend while it is scared, that sends the message that it is okay to be scared.
  • People Therapy: A fun activity to try is having a dog-loving friend visit your home. Have your friend sit calmly in front of the dog with a treat in his/her hand. Whenever your pet takes a treat, praise him. This praise will build confidence and your pooch will begin to be less scared of strangers.
  • Yawning: Weirdly enough, yawns relax and calm dogs. The more you yawn, the more your furry friend relaxes!
  • Chin and Chest: When friends or strangers wish to pet your dog, you may want to suggest that they only pet its chin or chest. This is because these areas are spots your dog can see, and that will make your pet more comfortable. Another good idea is to have the friends or strangers kneel to your dog’s level. This action will make your pooch feel less threatened and scared.  

While your pet may be skittish right now, there are always ways to help it become more social and confident.

Was your dog skittish or shy? Give us your tricks in the comments!

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