I took Sasquatch to Lake Johnson to work on his leash manners and walking past other dogs on leash. I had just picked up his new harness (looks like the other one!) and wanted to try it out. The clerk at Unleashed helped me fit it to his body and off we went. Sasquatch was excited to walk, so we got moving!
We walked past a lot of dogs! As soon as I saw one coming, I made sure I was between him and them(moved him to my right side). I used my body (ok, lower leg) to move him off the path. This move increases the space between us and the other dog. Space between them means that Sasquatch is less likely to react towards the other dog. If the other dog keeps moving, Sas is pretty happy to move on as well. We passed a puppy whose owner was having trouble controlling it. Sasquatch wanted to do something about it. I said “no” calmly, moved him forward and off the path quickly by using my lower leg to block and move him over. It lasted 2-3 seconds, but for about 10 mins afterwards he was reactive towards ANY dog that passed us. I stayed calm, and just created space between us and the other dogs, made him move faster past them (less time to react) and stayed calm. He went back to ignoring the other dogs fairly quickly. By the end of our walk, he passed by 4 dogs at once without one outbust! Yay! He was tired by then but if I can break his habit of insecurity, keep him safe from the other dogs, he WILL trust you!
All week I’m going to walk him around other dogs, so he can practice ignoring them and trusting me to protect him.
He’s doing much better here at the house about not reacting to the other dogs! He likes the girls (of course) but is now taking time to sniff (not attack) the male dogs as he goes by them in their crates. Small steps but progress.