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I have a 6 year old Pomeranian/pekingese/chihuahua mix. I am her third owner. Think she was abused by previous owner. I gently pat her to sit and she acts as if I'm attacking her. If I approach her and say the word sit she runs away, even when treats are present. So I've been trying lie down instead. Any tips?
 

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Use a lure instead of physically manipulating her. Most dogs will sit automatically if you just hold the treat over their heads. You can also lure into a down by bringing the treat down and toward the dogs chest (you may have to play with the motion a bit to see what works).

Have you tried clicker training? If she's afraid of the clicker you could use a marker word instead.
 

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I have a 6 year old Pomeranian/pekingese/chihuahua mix. I am her third owner. Think she was abused by previous owner. I gently pat her to sit and she acts as if I'm attacking her. If I approach her and say the word sit she runs away, even when treats are present. So I've been trying lie down instead. Any tips?
You could try clicker training. Try to just reward when she does it on her own. She sits down or lays down you say great sit or down and treat, or click and treat. Kikopup has many great training videos to help you get started.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_wv1uvvqaSw
 

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In my very humble opinion, this is something that needs to be addressed from the inside, that is on an emotional level so that the core of the issue is addressed - fear. You need to start building an attraction towards you so that she can feel calm and still by herself. I can only imagine that clicking at her would only make it worse if she is suffering some form of PTSD.
 

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I have a 6 year old Pomeranian/pekingese/chihuahua mix. I am her third owner. Think she was abused by previous owner. I gently pat her to sit and she acts as if I'm attacking her. If I approach her and say the word sit she runs away, even when treats are present. So I've been trying lie down instead. Any tips?
Don't ask for a Sit, come up with a new word for those commands. She might associate them with BAD things.

Also the behaviorist I just say suggest starting with teaching reactive dogs that "freeze" moving commands not static commands (this is the go to "freeze" for some reactive dogs). This is the website she gave me: www.takeabowwow.com
 
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I agree that if she is a ptsd sufferer, those words might freak her out.

I would start small. Choose a marker word and condition her to it. I use "yes" on mine. To begin them I just say the word "yes" and treat them, even if they haven't done anything, so that they understand the word is a good thing.

When they understand this, then we get to work.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you everyone for your responses!


In my very humble opinion, this is something that needs to be addressed from the inside, that is on an emotional level so that the core of the issue is addressed - fear. You need to start building an attraction towards you so that she can feel calm and still by herself. I can only imagine that clicking at her would only make it worse if she is suffering some form of PTSD.
Any suggestions on how to help her feel safe? This is my first dog, I'm not sure I know how to address it from the inside. She's also afraid of vacuums, brooms, and dusters with long handles.
 
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