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Helping a shy rescue sheltie

Discussion in 'Behavior' started by Maria, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. Maria

    Maria Forums Novice

    Jun 7, 2018
    Hello, I just adopted a sheltie mix from a rescue. She was very shy at first but I have had her now for about 2 and a half weeks and she has gotten used to me, trusts me, gets excited to see me etc. She is a little over a year old and she is very timid and shy around strangers, especially when they look her in the eye or try to interact with her. If I make the stranger aware of the situation and have them look away and ignore her, then she will be curious and get used to them a lot easier, but I can't always explain this to everyone. I want to be able to take her with me places without feeling like I am putting her in a stressful situation. Unlike a lot of other timid dog posts in this forum, my dog is usually fine until someone approaches her within a certain distance, then she gets scared but she is not scared of loud noises or much else. Is there a way for me to train her so she will be friendly with everyone eventually and realize people are no big deal? I have been giving her treats whenever I see that she makes a curious move towards a stranger and trying not to reward when I see that she is scared. I am really looking for any other training tips and tricks I can use to help her with this, if any.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2018
  2. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    Maria, welcome and bless you for rescuing your little Sheltie.

    I know I have said this to so many, many times. Please consider obedience classes. They help the dog to bond to you and give them confidence as well.

    My Baron was so shutdown when I got him. Scared of everything and new people like you describe. I have to say he did so much better after going to classes. I can’t recommend them highly enough!

    Please go to a class and watch before you enroll as some trainers are better than others!

    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress!
  3. Chris

    Chris Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    My Beckon is the same way -- shies off behind me when approached. I took him to obedience class, and it really helped. He's till shy, but not nearly as scared as he used to be. I simply tell people who want to approach him that he's shy, and they respect his distance. I took him out all day shopping with me a couple of days back, and he did great. Slow and steady is the key.
    JacqueZ, ghggp and Maria like this.
  4. Maria

    Maria Forums Novice

    Jun 7, 2018
    Thanks so much for the advice! I have heard this from a few people so I will look into it!
  5. Hanne

    Hanne Forums Enthusiast

    Nov 13, 2014

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