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Sally G.
Sally G., Animal Behaviorist
Category: Dog Training
Satisfied Customers: 9632
Experience:  Service /assistance dog trainer,Therapy dog evaluator and trainer, AKC evaluator, pet first aide and member of PAS Animal Response Team.
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Dog lunges and snarls at passing dogs when taking her

Customer Question

Dog lunges and snarls at passing dogs when taking her for a walk (on a leash with a "gentle leader."
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: Dog has never been abused. She is very affectionate with the three of us. I was told it was fear based aggression. It helps if I keep her behind me and always place myself between her and the approaching dog. The problem is I do not always seek the approaching animal. Today, for instance, I had just left the house with her, when a woman passed walking a very tiny dog and our dog lunged and snarled at this poor passing dog. Very trying and embarrassing.
JA: OK got it. Last thing — Dog Veterinarians generally expect a deposit of about $19 to help with your type of question (you only pay if satisfied). Now I'm going to take you to a page to place a secure deposit with JustAnswer. Don't worry, this chat is saved. After that, we will finish helping you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Training
Expert:  Sally G. replied 1 year ago.
Hello and welcome. This is just a short note to introduce myself. My name is ***** ***** I have been in the dog field for 25 years. I am a Therapy Dog & AKC Evaluator/trainer/ as well as an assistance/service dog trainer, specializing in behavior. It will be my pleasure to help you today
Expert:  Sally G. replied 1 year ago.
Does the dog shy away from others normally?Who told you it was fear based and what type of training were you told to do with her ?Is she spayed?
Expert:  Sally G. replied 1 year ago.
I see you are offline and I will be going off for dinner soon so I wanted to get an answer to you as quickly as possible.Barking and Lunging DogsCopyright Sally G When you have a dog that is fear aggressive or alpha aggressive, then you want to train them in commands daily before taking them into the situation again. If the dog is brought to the situation before it is shown what you expect of it then you are only setting it up to fail. Some dogs have been this way for a long time and it becomes a learned behavior as well, meaning it has worked for them so long of a time that they know no other way to respond. We want to teach them a new way to respond. Sometimes we have to set the dog up and work with a friend who can take direction from us while we work. This is helpful with Behavior Adjustment training. I would do clicker training with the dog as it is a positive method and you want the dog to eventually associate positivity with being near others. The site below will take you step by step in this.As for the reward, in the home use cheerios, outside the home in the yard and street use hot dog slivers and when other dogs/humans pass use chicken slivers. When we put our dog in more distracting places for them we want to up the ante of reward. For walking in public you want to teach two commands very well, Leave it and Heel. You will give these two commands constantly as you pass other dogs and if necessary hold a large chicken piece in front of the dog’s face for it to nibble on as you pass others. You want to set your dog up for success as you pass and this is why you are offering not only the commands but the treats at the same time. Give the commands like this: Fido Leave it, Fido Heel, leave it, heel, leave it heel etc. as you pass the other dog/person. This is telling the dog what you don’t want it to do (barking and lunging) and telling the dog what you do want it to do (the leave it and heel). For every action that you do not want to see, you must give the dog another action that is okay or that you expect. If the dog has not fully learned these two commands then do not put him in a situation where he will come in contact with others as you are setting the dog up to fail. I also recommend the Behavior Adjustment Training. This sets the dog up for success. What you do is walk the dog to a certain point, near the distraction/dog/person, and remove the dog before it has a chance to act out by turning and moving away, while praising and giving reward. Clicker training/positive method training/ print off video’s to see how clicker training is done, scroll down to videos Training method BAT is a good link for tips as well