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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

My wife and I recently got a dog rescued from a meat farm. She's a Jindo mix who the rescue thinks is 6 months, but we suspect closer to a year. She's been at our home for two weeks. Prior to that, she was with her foster for maybe three weeks.

We knew what we were getting into with this dog. We knew she was extremely fearful and emotionally damaged, but after two weeks I'm beginning to worry that she's getting worse.


She took a liking to my wife and our dog, but seems terrified of me. I've done the whole thing with dropping treats to her and letting her come to me, etc.

The last few evenings she's started coming over to sniff me, and when I go in the kitchen she stands in the door to see what I'm doing. She's realized that I'm the food-guy.

But that's not the issue. She'll probably get used to me eventually. Whats worrying me is that in the last few days she's suddenly become terrified of walking into the kitchen. She really liked to go on walks at first, but is now developing phobias of things outside. And she had started barking and growlinv at me when I come home from somewhere. Or even walk down the stairs to the room she's in.

Does this dog need more serious help? I don't know what her conditions were at the Korean meat farm, but i presume not good.

I feel pretty helpless right now. I've had dogs all my life and never encountered anything like this.

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Poor pup has been through so much! Bless you for giving her a chance.
I suspect that some of the 'numb' from all the big changes in her life has started to ease, and she is able to feel and feeling 'able' (has mustered the courage) to speak to how she is really feeling. Everything is new and scary for her, and it is going to take time for her to adjust.
I would suggest holding off walking her for now, if possible, to minimize exposure to new things, hopefully you have a yard that she can be out in to do her business and get some exercise and continue to settle in.
Men, in general, tend to be a trigger for fearful dogs, could be the deep voice, how they move or any number of things, lack of exposure or bad memories. If she is growling/barking at you when you come in from outside, (or into a room where she is) prepare yourself ahead of time with some yummy treats to toss to the side for her and avoid eye contact with her. You don't want to lure her with treats into coming closer to you than she feels comfortable - so tossing them aside allows her to feel safer, and give her the option to choose to approach you. Continue to drop treats at other times, but walk away once you do, to give her enough space to eat them without feeling intimidated - building trust is a process and often happens in tiny steps!

Give her a 'safe place' to go to when she feels the need, - could be an open crate, could be bed in a corner of the room, where she can just 'observe' the goings on and decide if/when she is ready to join in.

Consider using some calming treatments to ease her anxiety - DAP (dog appeasing pheromones) comes in a spray or diffuser, can be helpful for some dogs, Rescue Remedy works for some dogs, CBD oil (must be THC free) can work well for some dogs as well. A vet may have some suggestions as well, but be sure to discuss the potential (negative) side effects.

Mostly though she may just need more time, and space to adjust, she needs your patience and understanding (and it sounds like she does have that now) - the world (a new world to her) is a scary place.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks.

I suspect time will help.

Your comment about her numbness wearing off is interesting. I hadn't considered that.

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No additional advice, but as she can't . . .

Thank you for taking her on. Poor, poor girl. :( It doesn't bear thinking about what she must have gone through.
 

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The book - 'Love Has No Age Limit' by Patricia B. McConnell is a good read, and guide to understanding and helping a rehomed dog to settle in.

When I was working to help my fearful dog, I found the books, and the website 'Fearful Dogs' authored by Debbie Jacobs, provided invaluable in insight into understanding and helping a fearful dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Her latest thing is barking her head off when someone walks to the bathroom at night.

How in the world am I supposed to train a dog who is terrified of me, to not be on a hair-trigger and freak out whenever somebody (usually me) makes any move???

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I know it probably doesn't sound helpful but for the barking when you move, I'd guess it will (hopefully) get better with a little time. It may take months but once she has more confidence, if she still barks when you move you will in future be able to train a ”quiet” cue. For now though I'd suggest you continue to not interact with her at all until she builds more trust. Try to ignore her, don't even make eye contact as that can give intimidating body language signals to dogs.
 

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I rescued a abused dog its been 5 month and she still is fearfully of people when they come into our home. She's now fine with us .patience is the key let your dog acclimate and choose when . Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Some small progress over the weekend. She doesn't really bolt when i walk into a room, and when I was laying on the couch she came and sat by it.

At one point while she was really worked up in play mode she even played with me a bit.

Then she remembered she's still scared and walked away

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Good news!! Don't forget to celebrate the 'small stuff', one step at a time!!
Wonderful that she has started to play (and play with you).
 
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