Monday, April 6, 2009

Recognizing Fear in Fido

Fear is a normal emotion that allows animals to respond to a threat. Fear prepares the animal for running away or fighting something they think is dangerous. Most dogs are accustomed to normal situations like traffic, household noises, being approached by strangers, etc. Some dogs, however, experience fear over things that are not really dangerous and that do not put them at risk of injury.

Dogs who are fearful have a difficult time adjusting to new situations and people. As dogs get more fearful they can become aggressive to cope with their fear. You can help build your fearful dog's confidence.

When dogs are fearful they may:

  • Run away
  • Keep a low posture
  • Tremble
  • Keep their ears back or flattened
  • Lick their muzzle repeatedly
  • Have dilated pupils
  • Tuck their tail between their legs
  • Bark at a person or dog while backing away

If this sounds like your dog, contact me for an in-home evaluation. Behavior modification combined with solid obedience skills and a dose of self-confidence has turned many a fearful dog around.

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Keep your dog safe as the weather gets warmer

As the weather warms, get out there with your dog and enjoy yourself. Here are a few reminders to help keep your four-legged friend safe...