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I have a question.. I have a seven year old jack russell mix named Jimmy who has gradually gotten worse with his interactions with dogs. He used to sniff dogs and after ten seconds, he'd stiffen, then bark and run around. I suspect he was a bit uncomfortable with prolonged sniffing, or up close encounters. But he loved running around and playing with other dogs. I was trying to encourage his better behaviors by letting him sniff the other dogs for a brief second before marking it with a "yes" and recalling to give him a treat. It worked really well, no barking or snapping, he'd sniff the dogs and run to me for a treat. But it seems we cannot move passed this stage.

On walks, he doesn't look at other dogs or show any real interest. They can be going mad, barking, growling, whatever, and he's fine. He can walk so close to another dog that he brushes by them, fine. It's where he is put in a situation where he can't avoid - like sniffing and greeting - that he can't seem to handle.

I adopted a puppy in may and he is now 70lbs and super playful. Jimmy has seemed to gotten even MORE sensitive since Pax entered the house. Pax and my other dog, Junior, get along great and they play all the time. But whenever they play, Jimmy feels the need to bark constantly at them, lunge at them and snap, as if their playing bothers him. And let me say, they'll be playing clear across the room, minding their own business and Jimmy will go out of his way to attack them (mostly Pax). It's getting so bad that we don't let all three stay in a room together unless supervised, and even then it's annoying to deal with.

He also will shut down around strangers - he'll let them pet him, but avoids eye contact or any real engagement with them.

NEXT Jimmy is VERY uncomfortable with any foreign object getting near him. Specifically grooming. He shakes and drools when I brush him, rolls his eyes back and flips out during baths, and has to be SEDATED at the vet to do his ear and teeth cleaning. His nails used to be AWFUL to do, so I would do literally one nail a day. Although recently, my boyfriend held him for me and he seemed to get near relaxed and I was able to do all of them, so that was good.

What's weird is Jimmy and Junior are littermates, they were raised the same and all that. But Junior is much more outgoing, loves strangers and will play with other dogs, he'll let me groom him and even seems to enjoy it. He'll lie on his back and let me clip his nails. Jimmy was fine as a puppy, but as he matured, these behaviors slowly surfaced to the point they are now.

Jimmy will be starting training class soon and we'll be addressing his problems, but the next class doesn't start up until January, so I wanted some ideas on how I can better help him.
 
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