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A lot of what people think is from abuse is just lack of socialization. Sadie would react the same to kids, but I had her since she was 7 weeks, she was never abused by one. Just not socialized.

Read about desensitizing a dog to something. Using the clicker, I got Sadie to the point where 9/10 times she goes to the kid asking to be pet. 1/20 times she is uncomfortable but lets them pet, 1/20 she tries to hide. That was in about 4 months of work. I am optimistic that she will be at 99/100 soon. And this was with her NEVER letting a kid pet her before I started working on the issue. Yours is only afraid occasionally! It should be easy! :)
 
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