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Delilah is doing well gaining confidence with new people and dogs. The problem we're having is she reacts to maybe about 10% of people we come across. I can't figure out why she reacts to these people and not to others. They tend to be men, but not always. Sometimes they're women. And not always big or masculine women, but even teenage girls, elderly women, etc. They tend to be walking in our direction, though not necessarily. Sometimes she'll be good with a person and then later on start yapping at them and lunging as if to attack them (like she'll be good with them over a period of hours or days, and then decide she didn't like the way they just moved or talked out of nowhere).

She's not necessarily uncomfortable with strangers in general- sometimes she'll run up to them with her little stub wagging and try to give them kisses or cuddles. My boss for example- I thought she would be scared of him because he's a pretty big, masculine, loud guy but she LOVED him!

I have Asperger's and I tell people apart by their hair. I have trouble with facial features and gaits and clothing and subtle things like that so it's hard for me to figure out characteristics between these people but there doesn't seem to be an obvious pattern.

Delilah's REALLY cute and tiny and we live in a city and there are people everywhere and they all want to pet her so I've been doing a few things. I carry treats EVERYWHERE and so when people ask to pet her I explain to them she's a rescue and very shy but they can try tossing her a treat (she's very food motivated so she always likes that). That usually works and those people are good about following my instructions but then there are the people who don't ask and will even come up from behind and pet her when we don't know they're there. Neither of us really enjoy the city life...

I also clicker train her and have taught her to focus on me and give me eye contact when we're passing people and bicyclists. She's really smart and motivated by everything- food, toys, praise- so she learned that really well and all I have to do is say her name or make a kissing noise and she'll look at me and we walk on past.

The only problem is sometimes we'll walk past one of those people she reacts to and there's no way for me to know whether she'll react to them or not. Since I live in a city it's pretty much impossible to avoid people so we can't just manage this behavior- I can't even walk her at odd hours or something because we live in a really bad part of town with a bunch of homeless people and drunks and partying college kids and whatnot so there are people out all of the time. There's also a lot of crime and drug use, not to mention the creepers that street harass me on a daily basis so I don't feel safe walking her when it's dark. So avoiding people isn't really an option, we have to train.

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Off topic, but one thing I do know is that she DOES NOT like strangers in her house- I don't know if she's being territorial or possessive or fearful but it's likely a combination of all of those things. She will yap and lunge at their legs so we put her in the bedroom when people are over and sometimes I'll play with her or do some clicker training either in the bedroom or in the living room but far away from the guest and that helps her relax and focus on something else. But that's one thing that's consistent- when guests enter the apartment she is not happy at all, even if it's someone she's met before. My bf and I are both introverts so we don't have a lot of people over, but we're not hermits either! People are over from time to time. And she hates it.

So I don't know if that's at all related to her reactivity in public. The circumstances are different but the behavior is very similar.

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TL;DR/Main Question:

I think counter conditioning is what I'm going to try next. Is it possible to counter condition a dog when you're not sure what exactly is setting her off?
 

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You could have the person she's growling at feed her a treat. She might learn to trust the other "scary" people more. But make sure she doesn't always expect a treat from everyone.
 

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You can work on the same counter conditioning exercises with all people. Treat it as a general fear of people and train for a wide variety of factors and situations. Though knowing specific triggers or factors would perhaps make training and management easier. Perhaps write down info about each incident to see if you start to see a pattern. Look at movement, the space, and perhaps also time of day.

Head on, direct approaches are more threatening than being approached at an angle or in a curve. Also fearful dogs tend to have a hard time with triggers coming up from behind.

Sudden appearance of people can be a huge factor.

Similarly sudden or unexpected movement can be a trigger. As can be odd movement. My Dexter is freaked by the stiff, slow, unsteady movement some senior citizens have.

Tight spaces or areas a dog feels trapped is more likely to be a problem area.

And as for time of day... My Leggs has had a hard time early morning, dusk, and at night. Early morning and dusk it seems he is uncomfortable mostly when the sun is behind people. Features are hard for me to make out so they probably look like black shadow monsters coming to eat him or something. Lol. At night, it seems to be the similar difficulty seeing well at a distance that causes him to be uncomfortable.
 
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