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Questions on nosie/ training sensativities

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I am amazed at how alert Poco is. He is very reactive to everything auditory. I am not sure if he is more aware because he was a stray, thus Ceana's complacency is beacause she has always had "the good life," or if he is just a dog that is much more aware of his surroundings. Be it whatever it may, I am somewhat confused on how to deal with his reactions. He does not seem fearful with noises, he just seems to want to control them. If you make an odd noise he will lunge at your face, not to bite, but with a sharp bark. I belive that is his way of correcting and stopping what he does not understand. When Ceana barks at someone outside he does the same thing to her and she immediatly stops. LOL he is much more effective than my "leave it," at times.


I have been making funny noises around him and I correct him with a quick "no" or "ehh ehh," when he lunges. He is getting much better with most noises, (he no longer goes after the eliptical after a month and I am finally free to exercise in his presence) but he is still very reactive to whistling and new noises on the TV. The TV is the only thing that scares him sometimes. I would imagine this would make sense for a dog who has not really been around a TV.


Poco has the same lunging reaction when we play ruff with Ceana, and he does not know how to handle physical direction when learning new commands. For instance, he backs up and gets very confused if I try to put his paw in my hand for shake. I can tell he doesn't understand what I am doing. All the non human interactive commands are great. He can sit, up, down, & we almost have leave it & take it down as well. The little boy absolutely lives to please, so I know once he understands what I want he will catch on in a flash. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can communicate that these noises and interactive training are alright and safe?

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Hi there.


Yes i have the same issues with Kai, a rescue i took in a few months ago, if i said `come here boy ` he would run and hide - shows the life he used to have eh !!!!


Traffic noises get him worst, again as it seems he was never leech trained. I think its all about conditioning the dog to the noise itself. With Kai I sat on a roadside bench whilst the traffic whizzed past for half an hour. I did this for a week solid and now he is ok with it, tho controlling his pulling is another matter ( a new topic on the cards !!!)


I would leave the TV on all the time he is around and get him to relax whilst this is happening, i have done this with both of mine - now they sleep soundly even with the most obtruse noises that the TV produces. I spend about an hour a day training Kai with new commands around the house, he is a slow learner i have to say compared to my other BC, but he does get there.


I always make loads of fuss with him when he gets a task correct,It two days get him to catch a ball, with loads of fuss and treats when he got it right. After that he catches the ball every time, brings it back and drops it. Its not easy with rescued dogs as we often dont know their histories, but with a lot of love and patience they re-learn quite soon.





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Zeb used to react to noises and he was very well socialized. With him, it was like a very long, extended fear period. It was very frustrating and he would completely shut down - nothing got through to him. What helped was frisbee competition. His desire to get out on the frisbee field in competition was stronger than his fear of the noise from loudspeakers and crowds. He eventually associated the noise with fun things. Flyball training has helped in the same way.


Your description of Poco's reaction to sounds is similar to my last dog. It does sound fear related. Even though he's going on the offensive and barking or lunging, it doesn't mean he isn't scared. Its the fight part of the fight or flight reaction. It sounds like he's trying to bluff or scare away what's making the noise.



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When I first brought Buddy home, he was extremely reactive to almost any visual or auditory stimulus, but auditory was overwhelming. I kid you not that a leaf blowing by, in the early days, was enough to send him into a barking, shut-down state. I used to tell people he was autistic, because he really reacted in the same way as some of the autistic kids at my school: melt-downs when everything got to be just overwhelming.


I just worked on all the stimuli at once, gradually getting him used to more and more noises and places, until he could be in a jostling, noisy city and not melt down. (I started with city streets at 6 a.m., to get him used to the smells and sights without people, and then upped the ante.) However, I still can see his stress level increase and increase if it's too "crazy" around him, and I just take him out of the stressful situation.


Sounds like Poco is maybe having a lighter version of that - just getting used to what's a "normal" sound and what isn't? I'd say slow, gradual exposure should help him.


Good luck!



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