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Thread: Acting up on our walk

  1. #1

    Default Acting up on our walk

    Hi Everyone,

    Im new and after reading a bit here I thought id ask for some advice. I have a nearly 2yr old neo mastiff cross from the pound. She was not socialised and both the pound and myself believe she was used for just breeding. She was underfed weighed in at about 30kg and was so scared of people she wouldn't even approach you for food. Now however she is a lovely well adjusted social dog , who weighs in at a healthy 48kg.

    My problem is that when we go for a walk (she walks with her "Sister" a staffy cross something) she freaks out when ever we walk past a house that has dogs barking and being aggressive behind a fence. Dogs that are being walk or roaming round she has no issues with. I'm walking her on a halti ATM and at any other times have no issues with her. I've tried getting her to sit with her back to the fence until she's calm again, but as soon as we start walking she freaks out again. i can take 4 rounds of sitting to get past a normal size yard.

    Any help/tips would be great.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Sunshine coast Qld


    Hello Zena's Mum and . I'm not the one to help with your questions but we have a wealth of good experience here who will.

    Poor Zena, what a terribly rough start to life she has had, and it's great she now has someone to help her with her fears.
    The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
    Mohandas Gandhi

  3. #3


    Thanks for the welcome and kind words

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Sunshine Coast


    Hi Xena's mum, welcome to the forum!! Would love to see some photos of Xena and her adopted sis!! When I want Oskar to pay attention to me and to ignore something else, I hold a treat in front of him, until we are in the clear, then give him that treat. Maybe you could try just focusing her attention on a treat and give them to her as you are passing these yards with barking dogs. Just a thought.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Southern NSW


    Welcome to this forum.........Your dog needs to feel secure again. She has obviously had a sad life and need to get confident again.

    I posted these before, here are some good links to some ways to teach a dog to be more comfortable....

    Has anyone done any desensitising/counter-conditioning with your dog?

    Here is some info on it,,,link...... Behavior Adjustment Training (BAT) | Official site for BAT: dog-friendly training for reactivity (aggression, fear, frustration) by Grisha Stewart, MA

    And if you are very interested pm me and i can let you have more instructions in PDF format

    And some really good info from my fav Animal Behaviorist | Dr. Sophia Yin
    Pets are forever

  6. #6


    Some dogs are just not food motivated so you may need to find a toy that you can distract her with until you get past the problem zones. Going back to basics and ensuring she knows her name means " Hey , focus on me" will help her shift focus away from the problem.
    Nev Allen
    Border River Pet Resort

  7. #7


    Thanks for your advice everyone. ill try the treats and maybe her favourite toy , let face it she is a food activated dog lol.

    Like anything its just time and patience, she's not my first abused dog, Im a sucker for a sob story so she probably wont be my last.

    Ill pop some photos in tomorrow when i have a day off.

    Once again thankyou allfor your kind words tips and encouragement.

    Xena's mum

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2011


    The only thing I an add is that if you do try getting her to focus on you with treats, you should ideally start before she gets freaked out. So if you know where the problem spots are, start getting her to focus on you before you reach them and keep rewarding her for staying calm and focusing on you (ie. the treats) while you walk past.

    Good luck! It sounds like you have already done some wonderful work with this poor dog. It's great to hear success stories like this.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Victoria, Australia


    My dog is abit fearful of other barking dogs too. Especially small dogs.... She is a kelpie.... -.- lol Big softy she is. I usually just get her to sit and pat her and talk to her till she is calm again. But usually she wont feel okay till we are a few houses down. I can tell when she is upset about it because she sticks her hair up and looks at me and looks at the fence and trys to get away from the fence.
    No one loves you like your dog does.

  10. #10


    All great advice and i feel a lot better moving ahead with her walks! we had a great time at the dog park today so I now have two very tired happy pooches.

    The pics as promised


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