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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I think the more appropriate title would be fearful puppy.
So, I have a 7 month old Border Collie Lab cross. Lately he’s been developing some reactivity while on leash. At first I thought it was just with dogs, but now it has spead to people.
The first incident was when he was 5 months old. We were walking pass a girl which was standing on the side of the road with her Shih-tzu. He started barking and slightly pulling me towards the dog, but nothing overly serious and I brushed it off.
After that, he reacted to some dogs just by stiffening and giving a bark. To some dogs he didn’t react at all (eg. A dog barking from the car, behind the fence etc.). But a few weeks ago he threw a full tantrum while we were just about to walk out of our yard-a dog with his owner was approaching, and mine started lunging, barking and growling. I tried to pull him back in the yard, but he kept pulling be after the dog, even after he stopped his tantrum and the other dog moved away. There were a few other similar but smaller incidents.
The thing that made me believe it was fear was when we were walking through a narrow passage. We were walking in one direction, and a girl was walking towards us. He had already seen that girl, so she was not a complete stranger. A tantrum again-bark bark growl growl lunge lunge. The same girl 10 minutes later on a road-come play with me!
I’ve been given advice to let him meet other dogs while off leash, but this seems quite counter intuitive to me. What if he tries to attack other dogs? With spring coming, I hope there will be more dogs on the local field (no dog park nearby). What should I be doing? Long leash, no leash, short leash, no going on the field?
This is my first dog, and I am really hoping someone could give me some more advice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The thing is, he hasn’t had much interaction with dogs off leash. I live in a rural area, not in the US, and most dogs here rarely leave their backyards, if at all. So it’s hard to find dogs that are friendly and properly socialized. I admit my dog also could have been socialized better. With familiar dogs he is okay both on and off leash (except a lab who has shown dislike of my dog from the moment they have met). We have a large field about half an hour walk through the woods, and some people do come here with their dogs. But again, I am not sure about their socialization.
 
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