mbc1963 Posted April 24, 2017 Report Share Posted April 24, 2017 My little terrier mix ("border collie mix") Cricket is a pretty easy dog. She meets and greets people well, mostly plays well with other dogs, and stays with me off-leash with near 100% predictability. HOWEVER: I live alone. There aren't a lot of people coming and going in and out of my house. And lately, when people enter the house or move unexpectedly in the house, she is darting forward and nipping at their heels. This isn't a fear issue, from what I can tell. She does this to people she sees all the time outside the house, and people who have been outside, walking with us. She'll accept treats and give kisses to people in my house once they are seated and she is used to their presence. She also meets strangers in other people's homes with a wagging tail. She calms well in her crate - even sleeps - when visitors are in my house. So, I'm figuring that it's a resource guarding/territory guarding behavior. (I do remember that with my old reactive dog, Buddy, the threshold situations were always most tense.) Cricket is home without me while I'm at work, and she will bark at the mailman or doorbell. She definitely has chosen the mantle of "watchdog," though she's not obsessive about it and is easily redirected. I've been pretty successful stopping Cricket from barking at other dogs on leash by correcting her, putting her in a "sit," and treating for calm behavior. She seems to understand the expectations... though that is a work in progress. The nipping thing has only happened three times (and maybe there've only been three occasions where she and I were situated correctly to trigger it), but obviously I don't want it to continue. This last time, I had her on leash and corrected her strongly when she moved forward. (Strong tug and loud "NO!") She honestly seemed surprised by my correction: kind of like, "Why would you correct me for THAT, lady?" It might be that she simply needs to be told it's not acceptable. Problem is, I don't know how to "tell" her that since there aren't many people coming and going. I would love to find a way to teach a new and appropriate behavior when visitors are entering or leaving. Does anyone know of a protocol for this specific thing? I do have a neighbor and sister who would likely be willing to enter my front door repeatedly while I keep Cricket on a leash and practice. I will likely call my trainer when I have some time off this summer. (Right now lots of issues with my elderly parents, so not a lot of time for this dog stuff!) Thanks in advance! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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