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This thread is for my mom. She rescued an 4-5 year old (approx) maltese from the shelter about a month ago. She has really started to show her true colors. She's really a terrific, sweet dog. She gets along great with people, including my 2 year old. She loves to fetch.

The main issue my mom is struggling with is her incessant barking. Mostly on walks towards other dogs. It's not an aggressive bark, really. I personally feel it may just be an excited bark. I feel like maybe she just doesn't understand manners. I don't think she was socialized with other dogs.
She really gets going at other dogs, barks crazily, excitedly, pulls and jumps on her leash. There is basically NO distracting her once she starts. We have both met in the park with our dogs, and after her initital barking she does fine with Arlo and we walk them together and they're good. She doesn't bark at Arlo anymore, because she knows him.

Today we thought we'd go to the dog park, and see if she was different off-leash. I was thinking maybe she doesn't like the restraint (?). Well she basically just ran at dogs barking like crazy, and would sometimes sniff their rear, but mostly she was just in their face. Not MEAN, but you know, it's bad because you never know how another dog is going to take it. Could turn rough...
She was going between no barking and just running around by herself, but then would start again on the dogs.
I feel like she just doesn't understand how to interact?

Do you think I am way off here? What do you think is best practice for my mom to start working on her bark?

My ideas were:
Take high ticket treats on her walks. Get her attention before she sees the dog (although she spots them from VERY far away), and treat her for ignoring the dog. But it's proven to be hard because she really isn't treat motivated when she's in the zone.

Any other ideas? She is going to get her training, but she's torn between a group class, and a one on one.
Any suggestions or feedback is awesome. Thanks :)
 

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I have the same problem on walks.

Yesterday I decided we would walk and train on loose leash/healing. So i had a little container of crean cheese which he loves. It worked well for most of the walk. I will defiantly keep with this as even when I took a break form the every 3-4 steps giving him a lick (back was breaking and he's a small dog, Lhasa Apso) he was still for the most part right by my side.

Now we came to a house with the owner training his dog to fetch. That dog came over to Tucker but not close and then retreated when he was called by his owner. I stood in envy! LOL Meanwhile Tucker was going bezerk barking and pulling and nothing would get his attention, look or touch command and at this point I didnt' have the crea cheese out. And another house had 2 dogs barking in the window. that we went gag over.

So when we had to pass those houses agin, I made sure I had the cream cheese out and he was walking beside me doing awesome. 1st house with dog, didn't even notice. Second house with dogs in window barking, he started for a few brief seconds to pay attention, but then directed his attention back to the cream cheese and we went on our merry way.

Very pleased with how this training went. Will keep it up for as long as needed.
 

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One trick I have used is that when they start acting all crazy and/or barking, that I immediately turn around the other way and walk away from the new dog. Try to get their attention as best as you can while doing this. Then I either keep walking the other way until they calm down, or I duck behind a tree or other obstacle where they can't see the other dog and wait for them to calm down. Then, when calm, I treat and then turn around and walk back towards the other dog. I treat them a lot at first for being calm while approaching (basically as fast as they can eat them), and then turn around again and stop treating once they start barking or getting agitated again and repeat the process.

You may look crazy doing this at first, but dogs usually catch on fairly quickly that if they bark, there will be no fun!
 

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One trick I have used is that when they start acting all crazy and/or barking, that I immediately turn around the other way and walk away from the new dog. Try to get their attention as best as you can while doing this. Then I either keep walking the other way until they calm down, or I duck behind a tree or other obstacle where they can't see the other dog and wait for them to calm down. Then, when calm, I treat and then turn around and walk back towards the other dog. I treat them a lot at first for being calm while approaching (basically as fast as they can eat them), and then turn around again and stop treating once they start barking or getting agitated again and repeat the process.

You may look crazy doing this at first, but dogs usually catch on fairly quickly that if they bark, there will be no fun!
This is something I suggested at first, but I think she's kind of abandoned that but since Lucy goes so crazy and there's no distracting her until she cant see the dog, I think this might be the best. I'll bring it back up to her.

Thanks for the replies! :)
 
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