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Question About Initial Greetings

642 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  mathilda
From when we first got Sawyer, he's gotten a lot better with people especially when they come to our house. Usually the only time he really reacts is when they first get to the house. Normally I put him on leash (preferably harness if I have time), and take him out to "greet" them, instead of having them come straight into the house. When he first see's people he barks, his hackles are up and (depending on the person) trying to go to them. I know its not in a aggressive manner because as soon as he close enough to you to start sniffing, he's fine and stops barking, and calms down. Well not completely calm, but bellow threshold. Im wondering whats the best method to work with him to get over the initial greeting part. Is it better to let him go to them and sniff then reward. Or is that reinforcing the behavior? I have tried taking him away to the other side of the house where he cant see the "strangers" to wait for him to calm down then go back each time he reacts. But I find that he calms down much faster letting him sniff. Admitadly though when I tried that method I wasn't doing it as well as I should and I didn't really have the time to really do it. Which one do you think would be the best method to help him be more comfortable when people first come over? I think a part of it, is the new car in the driveway. I find cars tend to make him uncomfortable, the one time we brought him to a outdoor ice scream place that was next to a busy road, he was very freaked out and wanted to get straight back into the car. So that is something im starting to CC him to so hopefully that might help a bit.
Its funny, for all his stranger danger/ stress from new people he really does enjoy being around people and want to be where they are. If you put him in his crate or another room he gets upset, and whines/barks. He does calm down after a bit but you can tell he's not happy about it.
Any thoughts?
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Sancho acts similiar, even though we're training to get him relaxter when meeting new people inside the house (outside is fine).^^"
With him i think it is a mix of excitement, resource gruarding and a certain protective instinct.
Sawyer is an Aussie isn't he? I heard of them having a certain protective side sometimes.. does he show protective behaviour in other situations too?

Sancho is relatively wary of strangers when meeting them the first time, but generally people friendly after warmed up to them.
We send him to his place until we're done greeting and the people sat down and then he's allowed to greet them.
He can see them but he has to wait until it is a bit quieter so he doesn't scare the people...he also is not so keen about men hugging "his" girls or a overstep certain personal space to them, that he considers as normal.
He wouldn't bite, but he gets nervous and starts barking and shoving himself between them and this is pretty annoying when you alreade have over a dozen people hugging and laughing.
After he had greeted everyone and checked they're not there to murder anyone, he'd mostly be satisfied and either find someone to cuddle with or go on his place silently watching. ^^"

So yeah... seems like not being part of the initial greeting but being able to witness it from his place, as well as being able to greet the guests later is the way to go for us.
if he were locked in another room alone, he'd whine and bark and be distressed because he knows something's going on, so that's not good for him.
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