I became scared of my own dog. What can I do?

asked 2020-02-22 19:23:51 -0600

He's a 5-year-old Belgian Malinois/Tervuren mix. We used to play a lot, he likes playing tag very much. He makes me so happy. But whenever my parents would hug me, he would always bark from a distance, and only when my parents let me go would he come running to me and nip at me which I think also added to what made me anxious every time my I would be hugged by someone with my dog around. I'd always expect nipping every after hug. However, the nipping would stop whenever I go back to talk to him and play with him once again.

Just a few weeks ago my mom hugged me quite several times despite our dog being anxious about it, and I already told my mom to stop as rhe dog doesn't like it. Imagine the amount of anxiety I felt as well as my dog cried and barked during those times. I thought of how much nipping I'd probably get from him again. I was already quite scared even before anything happened.

I put my face near him and tapped him on the head (like I always do whenever we'd start playing tag, it's a weird thing I guess but it always made him excited to play). I found it weird when he didn't move. And then when he did, he started nipping at me again. On my butt, my arms, everywhere. The anxiety and fear I felt earlier intensified even more when he jumped at me. Being the big dog he was (although his size never scared me even once back then) I got even more scared. I tried pushing him away by putting his paws down but I couldn't. He would only jump back and I couldn't stop him from doing so. All I could do was hold him by the chest to stop him from going futher. I flet helpless as the other members of my family watched, telling me to let go as he would never bite me but I was scared, how would they expect me to let go. Only my father was able to calm him down.

After that night, I'd always ask for our dog to be put in his crate whenever I'm home. I still feel scared even until now. I also felt guilty for not being able to touch and pet and play with him anymore. I felt like everything that happened was my fault and that he's probably feeling so sad and confused as to why I never give him attention anymore and all I could do is to cry. I also frequently get nightmares of my dog (or any other dogs) lunging at me and biting me. Sometimes, I even dissociate whenever I play with my friend's big, energetic, jumping dog, since it felt like I was back at the night my own dog lunged at me. I almost cried.

I felt like the incident really had a great impact on my mental and emotional ... (more)

edit edit tags flag offensive close merge delete

4 Answers

Sort by » oldest newest most voted
answered 2020-03-20 19:57:07 -0600

I recommend dog behaviour. Also that a dog has a pack mentality. Even though you are scared of your dog. Stand on your feet be around him. Be firm, it will take tries but find the right tone of voice. He will stop and if he then continues. Give a firm and quick ah! and ah ah's Do not make any scared sounds. It will take tries. But it is vital. Even though you become anxious push through. You will find that you have more confidence than you think you had. He thinks he has advantage of you everytime you give up. That is why your dog continues. When you were younger. You were both on the same level. It can still ve the same but you need to be more forward in place than them in the pack. Your dog needs to be led by you. Your family saying he will not bite. That is due to the respect the dog has towards them in his place in the pack. They do not think he will bite you due to having your dog's respect. A jealous dog will be ome more of a problem if you back down. I had this problem starting. I was taught and put with an Alpha dog from the start. Why? Well it is no walk in the park having a dog. It has helped and they do this to flush out people who are not able to work with dogs. People asked me for help due to the dog just chilling with me. I then said "I did it on my own you should too. Even though I was scared. I did not give up to the dog. It looked like it but even though I wanted to cry. I stayed calm even though the dog tried to say move I am in charge. " My dog than pawed the air once. Like they were saying right on. The person said I quit. Now I can care for an Alpha dog. The dog gave me a high paw when they had to leave me. I then moved on to the less dominant dogs. I worked somewhere before. Also we were taught and trained before going in to care for a dog. They are tough you need to earn their respect. They want to lead. But when they see you are worthy. They will walk with you.

edit flag offensive delete link more
answered 2020-03-07 02:36:46 -0600

Being assertive is key. Therefore, it will take a lot of confidence and courage to train an aggressive dog. Unless you can do that, you won’t be able to change any behavioral problems of your dog without an actual experienced dog trainer, which I know can be pricy.

edit flag offensive delete link more
answered 2020-02-27 01:02:14 -0600

I'm very sorry this has happened to you. I know what it's like to be scared by a dog, even one you thought would never hurt you. I would not say it was completely your fault - your dog clearly has some jealous tendencies (some dogs are more jealous than others). But allowing the nipping, and even the barking and obvious agitation, likely did make it worse. I completely agree with Erica - you need to establish yourself as pack leader which is best done with a trainer, preferably one who specializes in aggressive and/or jealous behavior issues. This is not something that basic training (the type you can get at a pet store) can assist with; you may want to consider a trainer that provides one-on-one training. Good luck!

edit flag offensive delete link more
answered 2020-02-23 04:18:16 -0600

Sorry to hear of this experience. The best thing you can do from this experience is to learn from it.

Yes, you did create what ended up unfolding by your interaction with your dog, allowing him to nip at you after someone gave you a hug. You need to create boundaries with your dog and understand that you need to be in control at all times. It is never okay to let your dog bite or nip at you.

Moving forward I would strongly recommend that you get in contact with a trainer who can work with you one on one. And you need to do this now, you can not wait. In order for you to be able to trust your dog, your dog needs to respect you. You need to set and show your dog that you are the Pack Leader and that you set the rules.

Do I think that there is still hope for you and your dog? Absolutely! You just want to mak whe sure you work with a trainer to help you get back toa healthy relationship with your dog. Best of Luck!

edit flag offensive delete link more

Your Answer

Please start posting anonymously - your entry will be published after you log in or create a new account. This space is reserved only for answers. If you would like to engage in a discussion, please instead post a comment under the question or an answer that you would like to discuss

Add Answer