One of the most unfortunate misconceptions a large number of people have is that by trying to help their shy, timid dogs, they can, in reality, make things worse. The absence of a strong pack leader is a likely cause of fearful dogs and no matter how kind and gentle of an owner you are, your doggie companion will not come out of their shells.
As dog owners what we fail to see is that we give our dogs signals and messages that they are the pack leaders and as a result our little friends are put under huge amounts of pressure that they should not be expected to endure every day.
Imagine you are 5 years old and you find yourself in a forest as night falls. You suddenly hear a twig snap or footsteps through the trees. This would be a terrifying situation, however if your parents were there with you, this situation would be far less threatening. That is because someone else is in charge! Your dog feels the same way when you make them pack leaders, they are scared and unsure of the many strange things our world presents them with. Our little friends will snap under this stress and responsibility, and that is why we must step in and help them.
To help your dog, you must first make the decision to become the pack leader. There are tons of books out there to help you through this, but I find that videos are easier to understand and quicker. Here are some things to keep in mind when working with your timid dogs:
- Take your time and be patient, pushing them too hard or too fast will only delay your progress and stress them out
- YOU must be the pack leader – Below are some helpful videos that will guide you step by step
- Ask your friends to ignore your dog when they first meet
- Ask people not to approach your dog, wait until your dog is calm then call them over, if they do not come, do not use force. They are frightened, and should be left alone
Go through a few of our videos and get the step by step instructions that will help you incorporate all this into your daily lives. Just sit back, relax, watch and learn.
Establishing yourself as the pack leader and putting this in place will put you in a position to better help your fearful dog.
Also, remember practice makes perfect and be patient with your little friend.