Teaching a Corgi its Not Polite to Rush Up to Unknown Dogs

By: David Codr

Published Date: September 24, 2018

For this Omaha dog training session, we taught 4 year-old Corgi Howie to stop rushing up to unknown dogs, which can be considered rude or aggressive to other dogs.

Howie’s guardian recently split up with his spouse so I met him at his temporary residence. Because of they were in new surroundings, this provided a great opportunity to do some dog behavior modification.

Being a herding breed, I started things off by discussing the importance of structure. Some dogs can go through life without having any rules or limits, but generally speaking, herding breeds are going to push back and test the limits in any scenario. If you don’t have any rules or structure in place, it can very easily lead that dog into thinking that it is peers with you or has dominion over you.

But if a dog considers you it’s peer or that it has more authority over you then listening become is optional or is not required. I suggested a number of dog behaviorist tricks that will help shift the leader follower dynamic.

To address Howie’s bad habit of rushing straight up to unknown dogs, I enlisted the help of Taylor, one of our puppy class trainers who also walks and watches dogs. Taylor was working with a golden retriever puppy named Sunny so I asked her to bring him over so that I could demonstrate how to teach a dog to stop running up to strange dogs excitedly.

Stopping a dog from running up to dogs it doesn’t know is important because rushing straight up to an unknown dog is often interpreted as aggressive or a challenge.

In Howie’s case, I’m guessing it’s mostly an issue of social inexperience. The approach I used is the same thing that you will find from any legitimate dog behavior expert around the country. Specifically creating a staged scenario or situation where you control the variables to put the student dog in the best position to succeed.

With a little practice, Howie should quickly learn that anytime he starts to rush or pull on the leash towards new dogs will result in a complete stoppage of forward momentum.

The goal obviously is for Howie’s future canine greetings to become more polite. This will result in a better response from the dogs he meets which should have a positive impact on his future behavior. One thing will truly lead to another in this case.

I recommended that the guardian find friends or neighbors with dogs so that he can re-create this dog greeting practice. The more the guardian practices, the quicker Howie’s behavior will change. Because the guardian and dog plan on moving out of state in the future, they will be wise to take advantage of the resources they have here in Omaha and schedule three or more meet and greets a week for the next 2 to 3 weeks.

To help the guardian remember all of the positive dog behavior tips that I shared in this in-home dog training session, we shot a roadmap to success video that you can check out below.

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This post was written by: David Codr

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