- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


shy dog.

October 1st, 2006, 09:15 AM
I have an eight month old dog who is about knee height and tan colored. She is a mutt. I have been having trouble getting her to warm up to strangers when i take her out for walks. I love to take her to the coffee shop downtown and when were their many people are like "awe i love your dog shes sooo cute" and when they go down to pet her she backs down gets away from them and seems like shes afraid. When the person is too big or tall she barks at them and is threatening to them. Im not exactly sure why shes so afraid all the strangers we meet are nice to her. She almost wants nothing to do with them only me. Help me make my dog more stranger friendly.

October 1st, 2006, 11:43 AM
My Kita Gurl is a shy dog too, I dont really mind that she is not overly friendly with strangers, although like you they have all been nice people.

I dont have any suggestions and im sorry, but Kita seems to pick and choose which people can pet her. And its on her terms ( when she goes to them, instead of them hovering over her)

I hope you find some answers. There will be some good tips coming from others on the site.

October 1st, 2006, 12:25 PM
I'd just tell the people, "I'm sorry but she doesn't like strangers". IMO, she has to meet more people on a regular basis (like friends and family) before getting comfortable with complete strangers. She needs to know that strangers won't hurt her, and frankly, that's impossible to teach her with strangers directly because you don't know what the stranger might do yourself (can't control a stranger). That's why meeting people who you know and are comfortable with already over and over would help. You trust them, and she feels your trust and confidence and gains a little every time.:shrug:

October 1st, 2006, 01:55 PM
So im assuming that its ok that she doesnt like strangers and that i should just accept her for the way she is.. Are many dogs like this? Most of my friends dogs are always friendly with everyone except for a few they dont like..while my maggie doesnt like most people except for a few that she picks and chooses. Well thanks for the input. Maybe ill just tell people that shes not kewl with strangers instead of making her like people.
hmmm. thank you for helping me accept my dog the way she is. :crazy:

October 1st, 2006, 03:13 PM
Best way to get her to like strangers that you want her to trust is hand out a treat and say "would you mind giving her this, she's learning to trust"..My Berner Patch is awful with people he doesn't know so if we head up to the cottage and there is going to be a gang, everyone gets a bag of treats to give him and when he gets close to one of them they treat him. This way I don't get him to trust everyone, just who I want him to trust.

October 1st, 2006, 03:17 PM
I like that my dogs are weary of strangers and prefer to keep their distance, In my mind it eases the worry that someone may steal one of them.
On the other hand though, what if one was to get lost??? Hrmm? Maybe I should start working on them accepting people a bit more:shrug: :confused:

October 1st, 2006, 04:17 PM
Bailey(my walkingpartner)is the same,she will growl and bark at most men(not hubby,she loves him)but will allow women to pet her.
In her case,it could be,because the owners husband does not like her,or any dog.:sad:

October 1st, 2006, 05:28 PM
My dog is very aloof w/ strangers too. I insist people greet him the "right" way... palm up, and come in for a pat on the SIDE, not the head. don't loom over him. speak calmly and use his NAME. if he backs away, extend a hand - always palm up - and let him go to you. 9 times out of 10, it's the approach that freaks him out, not the person.

October 1st, 2006, 06:17 PM
I have a mill dog.. and she's stranger scared. Once she gets to know you she'll bug the heck out of you, until then she'll cower. Needs her own time (like 45 minutes worth) to get over it.. not the amount of time the average stranger has.. So I explain to people that it's why not to buy from sketchy sources. I use her to educate but I feel bad tryign to explain to little kids it's really not them, it's her and they can't push and get a her happy enough to pet.

October 9th, 2006, 02:57 PM
This thread is a little old but I wanted to post to share my experience...

I've had the worst time with my dog and his fear of strangers but he seems to be coming around...before, when people came over he would bark, growl, back away from them until they left. Now, he is so much better! Not perfect, but really improving...we can have company over now in peace. He will bark at first for maybe a minute or two then settle down and be somewhat friendly.

I agree 100% with Prin. The key is introducing people slowly and gradually. Soon the dog learns that new people are not a threat.

I've always said that I do not care in the least if my dog isn't friendly toward new long as he is not threatening. Slowly but surely I'm getting there...hopefully in another 6 months he won't have any issues. :fingerscr

pug lover
October 10th, 2006, 08:24 AM
have you tried picking her up while people are petting her I know that rosie loves that--she loves strangers looking at her and petting her but only while she is picked up--if she is not picked up she will hide behind

give this a try