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Large timid dog

October 20th, 2005, 08:11 PM
My dog has been timid since day one. He is an Airdale cross and not that his being timid is a bad thing for being around kids and stuff (he loves kids) but i was walking him today in an off leash park and another dog decided to take after him and be aggresive. My dog did not defend himself. He runs and that seems to make things worse. In the past, when he has been attacked by other dogs and this is not often, he has been wary of new dogs that he meets. Also, one time out walking him, he hid behined my legs when a little dog came out onto the street barking at him.

He has had two levels of obedience training and realy was a quik learner at the obsticles.

Does anyone have any advice for getting my dog a little more confidence in himself so that other dogs decide not to attack him?

October 20th, 2005, 09:10 PM
My girl, while not overly large (about 35 lbs) is also a very timid dog, due mostly to the fact that she was abused by her previous owner. One thing that has really helped her, is playing with the same one dog every day. (Not JUST that one dog, but at some point each day for about 4 months, I made a point of her having a "play date" with a really friendly golden retriever) If you have any friends or family members with a friendly dog that yours like, letting him gain trust with that dog will help him gain confidence with others.
My girl is still a very submissive dog, but she has a lot more confidence than she used to. I don't think you will ever be able to fully counteract what has happened in the past, but I am confident that progress can be made.

October 20th, 2005, 10:39 PM
Definitely don't allow other dogs to bully her. At the park, I like my doggies to know that whatever happens, I'm safe. So when Boo is stuck playing with a dog that he really doesn't want to play with, he travels over to me and I remove the dog.

I see so many people who push their dog away, thinking that they will build confidence if they have no choice. To me, this is horrible. Confidence is security. You are the alpha dog; you have to protect your pack. You don't smother your dog, but you remove the other dogs, you know what I mean? So your dog knows that you always have her back. If you're not comfortable removing other dogs, I suggest staying out of the park until you are.

October 21st, 2005, 07:04 PM
Thank you for the advice. My boy is >90lbs but the other dogs, no matter their size do not seem to care. Got to be a body language/energy thing. He has had a play buddy for a long time and he has just been moved away from him. I will ask around to see who would be into having a play date


doggy lover
October 21st, 2005, 07:33 PM
I use to have a 120lb baby, and he would never get in to playing with other dogs, he would tolerate them and let them be around but if one bothered him he always came running for me. He lived like that his whole life and that is the way he liked it so who is to argue, just as in us some dogs are passive.