My dilemma is my nine-year-old Border/Queensland mix Scarlet has trouble with noises.I do my best to redirect and distract. It seems to do her some good to put on the leash and ‘work her’ while she is troubled. This is something that I am still working on, providing that I can hear what she hears. Sometime there are ‘noises’ that I can’t hear that make her tremble, shake, and seek out a safe place. What would I need to do during these times? Do I deal with it the same way, or is there another approach to dealing with the unheard noises?
Please send the answer quick. She gets so scared I worry about her health when she is like that. I will keep doing what I am doing unless you say otherwise.
Thanks so much,
Pawfessor Dion’s Answer
You should always use whatever works, so if your dog becomes relaxed when she gets into a working mode, that’s what you should do for her. After a while, the leash will become a powerful psychological tool – once the dog has associated the leash with work, she will begin to calm down once the leash is on. That’s when you can start re-directing her behavior.
Remember to have patience. You can’t put a time requirement on recovery; it’s about repetition, and you may have to work a long time to see the positive results you want to see. It’s impossible to know when that day will be. Just be sure that you approach her treatment with calm energy and leadership, and not with frustration. It’s natural for a human to ask “Why?” when repetition doesn’t yield immediate results, but that is a HUMAN reaction. For dogs, there is no “why?” there is only “now.” Until your treatment creates a different “now” for your dog, there’s still work to be done. That’s rehabilitation.
Good luck, and as always remember to…
Stay calm and consistent,