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I love that you've found a trainer you like and have a veterinary behaviorist lined up! That's being a great advocate for your dog. Meds can be an enormous advantage for many fearful dogs, and I hate that there's so much stigma around their use. Check out Crystal Thompson's blog posts on the subject for more insight from someone who benefited greatly from meds for her (recovering) reactive dog (Reactive Champion: Meds and Your Dog, Part I: Should You Consider Meds? or Reactive Champion: Why People are Resistant to Behavioral Meds for their Dogs... And Why You Shouldn't Be).

What I'd do today is TAKE A BREAK!!! For you and for Chisum, because it sounds like both of you have had a really stressful four day weekend. When a stressful event happens, our bodies (and our dogs' bodies) flood with adrenaline and other chemicals, if the stressful event is ongoing or repeated, then that chemical surge happens again and again (and keeps happening even after the stressful event stops, because our dogs don't know how to predict that the stressful event has actually stopped and is not about to suddenly march right back in the front door). This is exhausting, makes us totally keyed up, makes us feel like we're having an ongoing anxiety attack, and is just generally really tough. It takes days and days for that chemical backwash to drain out of our systems. Both of you deserve a nice cortisol-vacation!

What I don't see in your description of the weekend are any breaks built in (they might have been there, it's just hard to "see" over the internet!). Having strangers in the house is hard for many dogs, not just "reactive" dogs. For dogs who are scared of people, it can be incredibly challenging. Following a 5-20 minute session with 4-6 hours chilling in your room, napping and slurping on a Kong, might be one way to see more results in the long term. Full disclosure: I actually don't think fearful dogs need to be asked to meet guests at all, though I realize this was an unexpected situation. I like that you tethered him to you, and love that you offered him consistent comfort and support. You are a good friend to your dog.

As far as your trainer, I would maybe re-think having her feed him treats at all. The fact that he has a consistent "alarm" response to her until he "knows she has treats" suggest that the treats are having a masking/overshadowing effect (he may be moving closer to her than he feels comfortable, and masking his signs of fear, because he's busy letting "treats! treats! treats!" distract him). Longer distances and treats coming from you might produce better results over the long term.
 

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A trainer isn't a vet, and shouldn't really give advice about meds (other than "you should talk to your vet"). So that might be one reason it hasn't come up! But any good trainer should be enthusiastic about having veterinary support for a behavior modification project. As far as meds, they definitely aren't a magic fix, and there can certainly be side-effects or other issues, but unmitigated stress can cause long-term health issues too...it's just something worth talking about in depth with your vet, not something where there are absolute answers.

I think it's always good to experiment with different protocols and see if one approach produces different results...I've done BAT, LAT, CC, and plenty of other games, with different dogs and different situations. But if the dog's behavior isn't changing (or is getting worse, or is falling into predictable patterns that include rehearsals of reactivity), some troubleshooting seems in order. I guess both of these paragraphs can be summarized as: there's nothing wrong with trying new things, and then decided to do something different based on the feedback you get from your dog. And mistakes are simply inevitable, so try not to let the feeling that you absolutely have to do everything "right" paralyze you! I tend to be guilty of that more often than not, but always see more progress when I free myself up to try (and get it not-quite-right, and try again) than when I aim for perfection.

You might try looking for online communities specifically for reactive dog owners. Not that this isn't a great community, with lots of people with experience with reactivity, but sometimes it helps to find somewhere with more traffic and more stories to read. I wish I had a good suggestion though...the fearfuldogs.com yahoo group used to be good, and I know there is a BAT-focused facebook group, but surely there are others!
 
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