So Embarrasing - Please help! - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 04:56 AM Thread Starter
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So Embarrasing - Please help!

Isla just terrified a poor chinese lady.

We were walking and Isla was being fairly well behaved along side me. I saw this woman coming so tightened the lead but she approached me for directions. As soon as she said 'excuse me' Isla launched at her.
This poor woman jumped back about 4 feet with a petrified look on her face. I grabbed isla and tried to reassure the woman but she still looked terrified.

Isla only really does this if people talk to me when we're out - including a stranger saying hello. Occasionally she will just try and jump some random person but she's much better at that now.

The question is, What do I DO? I can't preempt everything and sometimes, like today, she really goes for it. I can completely understand how she scares people.

It's so embarrassing but I just don't know what to do. Can anyone help? Please?

I should say that when I take treats out with me she's much better but I havn't tried it when people talk to me, just walking by them. However, i've already been told she's a tad over weight and I don't want to keep giving her treats on a walk as we go out 3 times a day.

Additionally when Itold her off it was clear she thought it was one big game. I really am at a loss.

Thanks
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 06:14 AM
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The one thing I can think of, is practice, practice...is her 'sit' solid? Otherwise I would start there. Have friends come over to practice with. I sometimes stepped on Tess's leash, but you need to be careful with that, because they can pull you down that way. Do you have her on a flat collar or a harness?
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 06:27 AM Thread Starter
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She wears a halti (as she's a nightmare puller otherwise). When she's so excited all commands seem to go out the window.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:12 AM
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Our trainer has us practice like this:

Walk with your dog up to someone (start off with your helper being stationary). If your dog is not pulling and is walking nicely (either in a heal or with a loose leash...whatever you prefer....then give your dog treats as you walk. Increase the rate of treats as you get closer. If they are pulling, have the dog sit and then give them treats to help them remain focused on you. Try to continue to walk forward.

Once you get close to the person, if your dog is on your left, hold your leash in your left hand just a few inches from your dogs collar (right hand in the handle of the leash). Ask your dog for a sit.

-Give them lots of treats for sitting. Then have a pretend conversation with the person, tell your dog "okay" and walk away...treating again for coming with you.
-If they don't sit, give them a hand signal as well, then treat.
-If they try to jump in the person, apply light pressure downward with your left hand to keep the dog grounded. Our trainer said that when the dog has a successful jump, it is reinforcing for the dog...so this is to prevent that from happening.

With lots of practice, your dog should learn to sit automatically when you walk up and greet someone. Jackpot your dog with treats the first few times they do this.

Hope this helps! It made a huge difference with Cooper (he is by no means perfect...but much, much better). When we are expecting company, we also do this (we put him on a leash before the guests arrive). Our trainer recommended keeping an extra leash hanging on the front door so you can practice every time someone comes to the door, even if they are not expected.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:28 AM
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While she is 'in training' if weight is an issue, then suggest reducing the food in her bowl, even using part of it as rewards at home, rather than reducing the rewards, when out use higher value treats, but keep them tiny, (pea sized - dogs will work for cheap). Work on and build 'self control' - teaching behaviors like wait, stay, on your mat, and 'leave it' all help to build self control. When you are walking her, have her sit with her attention on you (reward her for it) when someone is walking past. Over time she will learn that someone going past means she is to look to you and good things happen. Keep in mind that someone stopping to talk to you is a totally 'new situation' for her and she she doesn't know yet, how to deal with it. Work on 'polite greetings' (sit to greet) start with family, then friends, and then strangers. Once she has figured that out,(automatically sits when someone approaches her) start again, with those people approaching/talking to you and ignoring her, as long as she stays in a sit, intermittently reward her for it.
I think we all have those 'moments' with our dogs, when we wish things had gone a lot better. These are 'teaching' moments that highlight what 'needs work'. Hang in there - a dog's education is a process.


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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:30 AM
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I started walking Rose with the gentle leader and that has helped tremendously with both heeling and other dogs or people on the street.


Rose Bud - Golden Retriever (June 2012)
Darcy Bud - Flat Coated Retriever (June 2009)
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:51 AM
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I have an EasyWalk for Jack it pulls from the front so if he tries to take off it turns him around to face me it's worked wonders.I never had a problem with him & people but for a while he was horrible if another dog approched.Good luck

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:55 AM
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You might like this but I would use a prong collar. I had a horrible time getting Jige ot heel he wanted to walk about 3steps ahead of me. I am a slow walker bad knees and hips. I only had to give him a few good pops to get him to heel beside me. I used it for 3days the 3rd day I didnt need to do any correction. I didnt give gentle pops I made sure he knew it was a correction but didnt make him yelp or anything. I also said " no" in a firm voice.

My mom told me that my grandad use to say you get after someone once or twice really good instead of mildly getting after them forever. Used this with my child too.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 09:56 AM
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I had that problem with Buddy, he was very strong so I made him wear a Halti on walks and if he attempted to jump for any reason I stepped on the leash. It didn't take long for him to get it.
I was totally against using the Halti before Buddy because they look like a torture device but it's not and he got used to it quickly.
Good luck.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 10:41 AM
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Our Bella gets excited when ever some one approaches (kids, runners, anyone). She tries to launch towards them. Now when we're walking & I see an approacher, I make her go into a heal & keep her on short lead. I also tell whoever we meet she's a puppy in training, please do not approach until she's calm. I never liked pulling on a puppy's collar & neck. We're using a Sporn non-pulling harness.
This seems to be working.

Re: Halti's they're a very good tool & prevent the dog from pulling, by simply turning thier head. My wife would never have been able to train/walk our 75 lb siberian husky without one.


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Last edited by mddolson; 12-21-2012 at 10:51 AM. Reason: context
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