Hand Shy, Head Shy – 7 Steps to Help Your Dog Overcome This Behavior


Many dogs, most of the time puppies which have not been handled by the breeder, or animals which were abused, or are rescued from shelters draw back from hands. This is very true of a hand going toward their face or going over their head. Unfortunately, they can’t inform you what negative experience they’d with human hands. Many perceive this motion as a threat. Often, some type of abuse, lack of socialization or neglect, is the explanation for this heartrending behavior. Never grab at a dog with this behavior issue. It may possibly cause them to develop into more apprehensive, and/or possibly aggressive! Fearful dogs will be dangerous dogs. Be patient. You may help them overcome this fear, and make a positive association to your hand.

What You Can Do To Help Your Dog Overcome Hand Shyness:

1. When approaching your dog, approach slowly, and at a slight angle. By approaching at an angle, you won’t appear as big and threatening, than when you approached straight on. It’s possible you’ll also squat or kneel, in order to not project a threat.

2. SLOWLY reach your hand out, and stroke your dog under the chin, keeping your hand in sight. Avoid “jerky” motions along with your arms. Speak softly and calmly. Praise him/her for allowing you to the touch them. If they may accept it, reward them with a treat.

3. Enroll your dog in obedience classes as soon as possible. Find an area trainer who practices positive reinforcement, punishment-free methods. Work on verbal corrections, a peaceful tone of voice and non-threatening body language, reasonably than physical corrections.

4. Work on recall, so that you won’t need to grab at him/her. Welcomingly, call your dog by name, and say, “COME!” Praise and reward him/her once they come to you. Rub him/her under the chin. For some dogs, it helps when you squat or kneel whenever you call them.

5. Practice positive reinforcement. Reward your dog with a lot of praise and calmly stroke him/her under the chin. Reinforce your happiness by speaking in a soft, calm tone of voice, to indicate him/her you might be pleased with him/her behavior.

6. Give your dog massages as often as you may. Work the complete body, but think about the pinnacle and neck area. Speak softly to them in the course of the massage. The more you do it, the more trusting and relaxed they may develop into. Through this positive experience, they may learn to associate your hand as something loving and good.

7. Inform family and friends of what you are trying to do. Instruct them on the right option to approach and pet your dog. Don’t hesitate to correct them immediately, in the event that they are doing it incorrectly.

Bottom Line: Your dog must make the association human hands are usually not threatening. The more loving hands which are related to a positive experience your dog feels, the earlier they may welcome them. As your dog feels more relaxed with you, your loved ones and friends, start taking him/her to places where there are recent people to fulfill. Explain to them what the issue is you might be working on, and ask them to approach your dog. They’ll begin by simply giving the dog a treat or toy. As your dog is more comfortable accepting treats or toys from strangers; ease into having them pet your dog under the chin , then reward the dog with a treat or toy. This fashion your dog will associate human hands bring a loving, gentle touch and other good things. Be patient, calm, and consistent. In time, you will notice a more confident dog that welcomes human touch.


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