If you have a shy or fearful dog you must be very careful about how you work with him. The common mistake is to try too hard, which always makes the dog more wary.
You have to recognize that to the dog the fear is very real, even though it might seem silly to us. If you push too hard you run the risk of increasing the dog’s fear and making him harder to reach.
The keys to working with a shy or fearful dog are simple.
- Make yourself as approachable as possible
- Never move into the dogs space – always let him come to you
- Let the dog dictate the pace
- Use high impact food to reward him for moving forward
I shot this quick video going over the basics of how to work with a fearful dog. In the video I show how I worked with a really nice but shy puppy.
If you like the video, click on over to the youtube page for Scared Dogs: Training a Fearful Dog and leave me a comment there and like the video. You can also subscribe to my youtube channel. I plan on posting videos regularly from now on.
Good luck with all those shy dogs. It takes time to turn them around but they are worth the effort.