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fear aggression a work in progress

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I thought I would give an update on our 15 month border collie. We got him from a small breeder at 9 weeks and within a week realized we had a dog with severe fear agression. He would growl at all strangers, lunge at people on walks, lunge at dogs, attack dogs if off leash, bite if touched by a stranger, and whine at the sight of a dog. We have gone down many different training methods and behavioral advice and education. I cant say we always made the best choices but we adjusted and changed when one approach was not working.


- our first trainer was terrible. She couldnt reach my dog, who was 4 months old, at all and just let him flail around like a wild animal so totally over threshold, it was uncomfortable to watch. She was fired.


-our next trainer was sit means sit who use the ecollar. We were desperate and he gave us hope. Whiskey did make progress. He became able to see people on walks and no longer react unless they came into his personal space. He was so smart, I almost never used the zap collar as he just did as I asked without needing any zaps. He passed his entire level 1 obedience test without the collar. However, the trainer would put him over threshold and I didnt like that. He also stopped making future progress.


-we switched to a behaviourist, she taught us many focus games, etc. He again showed some progress. He can handle triggers at closer distances and can be distracted from triggers on walks but telling him to look for squirrels. However, he is still a risk.


-we started a BAT class and continue to work through all these games and techniques.


-the vet just added trazadone to his prozac and we think we are seeing some success with this combo of drugs.


We exercise him mentally and physically dailly and we are happy about the small improvements but we have had him with trainers and behaviorists for 11 months now and I wonder if we will ever get to a point where other people can watch him or we can feel he is safe around his triggers.

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