My dog's skiddish & hard to train

by Laurie

Lady is the white one & molly is brown

Lady is the white one & molly is brown

Hi, I have 2 Pom-chi's, lady is about 7 & molly who's around 4.

The thing is they have the same mother apparently but different dad's. I think Molly's dad is a brother or a relative of lady. Lady is barking a high pitch bark whenever she hears or sees anything & I live in an apartment.

Molly, if I get training treats she runs, if a loud bang or even me sneezing she runs & hides. I have loud sneezes & I try to be quiet with them. I can't get lady to stay training she will walk away when she's doesn't want anymore treats.

Molly really doesn't bark much but I can't seem to socialize her because she freaks out. I've been told to just take her away from what she's barking at, which works if I am outside but not inside. My neighbor below me has been being difficult by blaring music till 1030 then bangs on my walls & ceilings which scares them. I also believe she is antagonizing them when I am not home because she does it when I am. I have come home to molly shaking & not leave my side or my bed for days. She tries to get me in trouble by trying to get them barking so she can video it to send to my landlord.

I put a gate up in my room to keep them from the window they bark out but I don't know how to train them because I can't get molly to feel safe maybe enough to even sit. She will pee when I try to teach her anything. I have tried all different types of treats & even cheese. She wants nothing to do with any of them if it's to do with training. I give them praise when they listen, I got a hand held device that sends out noise in frequencies but it doesn't always do it.

I have tried putting them in their crates but i honestly don't want to use that as a punishment cuz I want them to like their crates. I wish I could move but there are no apartments I can afford or even available & I am at an income based place now. They aren't supposed to refuse you if you have an emotional support dog but they find other reasons. Not to mention moving doesn't solve anything..I am at a loss & feel like I'm letting them down now my neighbor is being the way she is..

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Jun 19, 2024
Why dogs won't accept food to train them...
by: Natalia

Hi Laurie,

Thank you for writing to us, I understand your frustration but know that just by writing to use it shows you care deeply about your dogs.

From what you tell me, it looks like both need a lot of training. But, unfortunately training can be hard for humans too, its not as intuitive or easy as it may look on social media, it's a skill you need to develop.

I can give you a few tips here, but I highly recommend you hire a professional and certified dog trainer that uses positive methods to really learn more.

Without the full history of your dogs it's hard to know exactly what is going on, but hopefully these tips will help you start moving towards a better situation:

1- Leave a phone or computer recording your dogs while you are out. Ideally with a microphone. That way you will know exactly what is going on and if a neighbor is coming to bother the dogs. This is important because if a neighbor is scaring the dogs while you are out, the anxiety will make your dogs more fearful. Also, you can then have proof that the neighbor is the one bothering them.

2- From what you describe, both dogs already show some fear and anxiety. So, the first thing I recommend is to NEVER punish them, do not yell at them or even say "NO!" "STOP!" or anything like that. The crate will not help them without proper training either.

3- I am not sure how you are trying to use treats to train them...but I recommend to use both treats and physical touch as rewards. I also recommend you train using the method called "Capturing", because it is less invasive than other methods (even other positive methods). Capturing lets the dog decide what to do, and you only reward those behaviors you like (the ones you don't like, you ignore).
It takes patience, you can read more about it on this link.

4- When Lady barks, just pretend it's a conversation you are having with her. She barks, you answer "Thank you Lady, the noise you hear is our neighbor coming back from work, it's OK, no need to be scared" (Say it with a calm tone of voice), then call her nicely to you and give her a treat and some petting. Every single time she barks, you do this... The idea is to let her know that you hear the noise, but that it's OK, no need to be afraid. Eventually (after several weeks) she will stop barking and go to you faster and faster. And eventually (maybe a couple of months) she will even habituate to the regular noises of your apartment building and only bark at the strange noises. Patience...and kindness.

You can read more about how to stop barking on this link.

Hope these tips help, you can keep browsing out website for more information on how to train your dogs with positive methods or even see our
dog training online courses on this link.

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