nayah: How can I socialize my 11 month old rat terrier?
So, she is 11 months old, is spayed, and is a terrier breed. She was quite fine with dogs and people when she was younger. I don't know what happened. She barks at people on certain occasions while we're walking; it's not an aggressive bark though. However, she will bark like crazy when she sees another dog! It's almost to the point where it's getting really embarassing. I tried setting a play date for my dog with my friend's dog once, who is this huge boxer, and she tried to bite him and pretty much wanted to kill him.
Can you give me any techniques or tips for helping her socialize? I know the only way to help is to introduce her to other dogs, but I'm scared that she'll never stop barking at them. So, how will I be able to get her near another dog? I also know that it will take a lot of patience and work, but I'm willing to do it.
Also, will walking her or playing outside with her for more than 30 minutes calm her down? She's either really jumpy or relatively calm
Answers and Views:
Answer by sugar_piggie_18
This is quite a hard and frusterating habit to break, but kudos to you for wanting to, as youre right - it is quite embarassing and not very pleasurable for the other people having to hear it!
What i would suggest is that you first establish that you are boss with your dog, if you havent already. That will make this training go more smoothly. Just make sure when you give her a command, that she listens, and if not, repeat until she does, force her to do it (ex. push her bum down to make her sit), or punish her for not listening (ex. grabbing her collar and shaking it, not very hard though).
After that, i would take her to a place with lots of people and dogs and maybe stay in your car and if she barks correct her - that way its less embarassing for you, in the car. Also, be sure to praise her for not barking at people!
The main focus though is you get her to listen to you, so that when you tell her to stop barking she will. Once that is established, teach her to not bark in the first place by socializing her, with the above in-car scenario, and then taking it further, by going to dog parks. Usually people at dog parks dont get as annoyed by barking, and if you explain to them what you are doing they might even give you some suggestions!
Tiring her out first like you said, may help. 30 minutes for a rat terrier should be enough exercise to tucker her out, so take advantage of that time and socialize her then, and reward and priase her for not barking. Positive reinforcement always works really well.
Good luck! :)
Know better? Give your own answer to this question!
Comments ( 2 )
Taking her to the streets will not calm her down. I own a Schnauzer. She's charming and robust at times.
At 1years old, she's more territorial now than ever. This is their juvenile behavior. And if this behavior is continued it demonstrates signs of psychological.
Negative or improper responses to your commands should summon your firm and immediate "No!" Most obedience trainers avoid corporal punishment, because it often only makes the puppy fearful of you in particular, and humans in general.
I agree totally, and reinforcing her good behavior with verbal and gentle hand-stroking praises. Whenever she breaks a command, immediately correct her.
Some children will tease a dog to the point where the animal's patience is exhausted and it seeks to protect itself from further torment by aggressive behavior. This is an unusual state for a normal tolerant dog.
A rat terrier, makes a splendid watch dog, this trait could at times create a situation where a child might by his or her actions cause a dog to act in a manner that could result in injury.
Even the very best mannered dog will, on occasion, behave in a fashion that is contrary to your wishes. Be patient.
Once you perceive that your dog have developed a negative behavioral trait, it is important that you correct it in a manner that will convey to your pet that what it is doing will not be tolerated by you. You must be consistent in correction, and each time you apply corrective action it must be aimed at instruction rather than punishment. Even a young dog, if properly socialized, will strive to please its owner.
It is natural for a dog to show intense interest in other dogs, cats. Remember though, that some of these other animals were the natural prey of the dog's ancient ancestors.
Pick up a simple training book, which explains an array of techniques and positive reinforcements.
Most important~ Be totally patient
Take a puppy obedience class or just an obedience class. In the mean time, when you see a dog, stop and ask her to look at you and not lock onto the other dog(wave a treat in her face, then hold it near your face). If she can't, then back up until she can give her attention to you. With people, have them toss treats to her and work slowly up to taking treats from their hand, this may take more than one meeting. So, treats and praise when she doesn't act like Cujo, and remove her from the situation so she doesn't keep practicing bad behavior. When using treats, string cheese is wonderful. Use tiny bits, because when your dog is full, your done. Don't feed her and take her for a walk either. Get into a class or find a good behaviorist. It will be well worth the time and $ $ !!