We rescued a pure bred Belgian Tervuren about 3 weeks ago. She is very shy and timid and I seem to be the one she is bonding with. However, if my daughter walks in the room she runs the other way. My daughter is 20 so not a little kid. It is hard to use clicker training as she won't take food when she is stressed in the least bit. Even with me, she is hesitant to come up to me, but with patience and coaxing, she will eventually. How do we build confidence and most of all, how do we work with her on accepting my daughter who just loves this dog? Any advice will be most appreciative. Thanks M
First of all, it will take time for a dog to overcome its shyness or fear. Have your daughter feed your dog and when she comes in the room, praise her, don't coddle her like a baby - that will only reinforce her fear. Have your daughter come for walks. ARe you planning to take her to obedience school? I woudl suggest your daughter come along. Ask your daughter when she comes in the room, to approach her sideways as this is how dogs meet and greet. I'm not suggesting your daughter is a dog of course but maybe this will help your dog feel less threatened. Have your daughter put her hand out so he can sniff it.
Just be patient...if it doesn't seem to improve consult a trainer.
In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semi human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog. ~Edward Hoagland
Thanks so much..We have tried a lot of those already. We realize time and patience will be the case here. My daughter takes her for walks all the time, feeds her (even though Angel won't take food from her hand). Angel sleeps on the foot of her bed, ironically, but during the day, she just seems to stress out a lot. We have not signed up for obedience yet, but we plan to. She needs a lot of socialization and confidence. We plan to have her try agility...not competitively, but for sheer confidence building.
I have a Belgian Malinois rescue. I agree with the above comments. I also would highly encourage you to talk to the foster mom that had her as well for tips. You should also ask to get on the e-mail list for Belgians. Lots of great people out there to help. Good luck!
Well, since you rescued her she probably wasn't sosilized well. Have everybody you meet be kind, gentle, and sweet. Have them used soft voices. Bring some treats aong so the can give her one. Same with your daughter. Use soft voices around you house, too. Even try having your daughter teach your dog a simple command. Training is good bonding with a dog. Be paitient. I have confidence in her. =)