skittish & refusing to walk

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ryleyhfx
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skittish & refusing to walk

Postby ryleyhfx » Tue Jul 10, 2012 9:26 pm

hey all.
I'm having a little bit of a problem, err... situation with bella.
sometimes she seems like such a confident little puppy, running around, playing, being silly & other times she is the most skittish scared dog in the world.
recently while out on walks around the neighborhood she has begun stopping dead in her tracks, refusing to move unless we continue in a different direction. there are streets she refuses to walk down & it's been really frustrating walking her because of that. she is small, but strong & will not move. she has her tail between her legs & a sad look on her face & stands perfectly still in her stance. it's confusing.
yesterday she refused to even go for a walk whereas she used to run to the back gate in anticipation of a walk.
tonight she wouldn't go even outside to pee before bed. as soon as we made it to the backdoor she turned around & ran back up the stairs to my room. my roommate tried to say hello & she cowered, tucking her tail between her legs. she looks terrified right now & for seemingly no reason.
it seems like she just wants to stay inside the house...

any advice or insight? I want her to be a confident little pup again. it breaks my heart to see her scared over nothing.

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pacopoe
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby pacopoe » Wed Jul 11, 2012 11:53 am

How old is she now? My initial thoughts were "fear period" or "fireworks" but more info would help.

Either way I'd let her decompress for a few days (don't force her to go on walks) and then try again, slowly, with a new approach. Get her happily working and slowly increase your distance from the house. Does she tug?

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Mooresmajestic
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby Mooresmajestic » Wed Jul 11, 2012 9:54 pm

Have her checked out by a vet, and do a nose to tail assessment yourself. It could be fear, it could be pain. She could have something going on and walking makes her hurt and now she associates walks with pain. It could be something as minor as a broken nail or tiny cut on a paw pad or as major as joint problems. Always rule out medical before jumping on behavior, the two are usually closely related.

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Patch O' Pits
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby Patch O' Pits » Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:33 pm

Good advice was posted and I too was wondering how old she is?

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ryleyhfx
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby ryleyhfx » Wed Jul 25, 2012 1:34 pm

she's likely a year & half or older.
I took her to the vet last week & physically she is fine.

now that you mention fireworks... on canada day I took her out on a walk at night & while we were out the fireworks began going off & she really freaked out. for a few days afterwards she was very scared even around the house. I shouldn't have taken her out but at the time I thought maybe it'd help her get used to the noise... huge mistake obviously.
she's still stopping at certain streets & will only take very familiar routes, like the streets we walk on the way over to my girlfriend's house.
ever since the fireworks on canada day she's been very different & seems to really resent me for bringing her out in that situation. it's breaking my heart. it feels like I've just started fostering her again & the connection we had built up is completely gone.

we were just out of town, hiking & camping for a few days & she had a lot of fun in that atmosphere, was really happy, listened well & seemed to have a great time, but now that we're back in the city she doesn't want to walk too far away from home.

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ryleyhfx
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby ryleyhfx » Wed Aug 01, 2012 8:16 am

so, bella is back to normal, walking confidently down all streets without stopping.
we took it slow. I didn't make her walk down any busy streets & encouraged her when she walked, ignoring her when she stopped. it took a lot of patience but she seems to be walking normally on her accord.
I think I really messed up by bringing her on a walk when the canada day fireworks were going off. she was clearly traumatized by them.

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Ilovethepits
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Re: skittish & refusing to walk

Postby Ilovethepits » Wed Aug 01, 2012 10:40 am

I'm so glad Bella is calm again.

I have a dog that is totally freaked out by fireworks and July s&cks.


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