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Invited Guest vs. Stranger Danger in the House
  • RooneyRooney
    Posts: 143
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
  • To supplement Sunyata's comment, I resolved this by simply handing my guests some cheese. They then "train" banjo with the basics (sit, wait) and he both respects their wishes and likes them. Now he doesn't need the cheese as hell just bring a ball to them and expect them to throw it. He also won't jump on them (jumping means no treat). I havea very very quiet dog. I can probably count the amount of times he's barked at something on one hand.
  • We have a similar issue with people in our house. The scenario is typically this: we have Dakota greet the person outside. She is all happy, waggly, and loves them. We are outside for quite awhile, then when we think it prudent, we all come inside. Then, it is if a switch has flipped. Dakota suddenly realizes somebody strange is in her house and begins barking, sometimes nipping at their pants legs to try to remove them from the house, and then often finishes with a non-stop Shiba scream. We have tried everything possible. Treats non-stop, the guests feeding her her most favorite things, time-outs for 30 seconds, holding a leash while she screams, etc. We finally just retire her to a room upstairs for the duration of the guest's visit to calm everyone's nerves and ear drums. Nothing seems to work. I know that the more guests who come in, the more she will get desensitized, but I am too afraid of her nipping someone in the leg who happens to be wearing shorts that day. We were wondering what it would be like to put a small muzzle on her, then let her just do what she does until she gets tired and goes away. We can still give her treats through the muzzle, but would then not have to worry about her nipping. Does this sound workable? Nothing else seems to be.
    Post edited by DianaBoston at 2014-10-03 10:11:34
  • RikkaRikka
    Posts: 1501
  • JuniJuni
    Posts: 1269
    Juni is exactly the same. People she love outside of the apoartment are awful the second they step inside our home. She barks at first but that is controllable but as soon as people move she zooms in on people's feet and want to chase them (but rarely nip after them). It is a lot easier now when we've moved to a bigger apartment, we can put her in one room and tell people to ignore her and she will calm down quite quickly.
    One trainer I hired recently suggested I get some battery driven cat toys to redirect her focus and let her chase those instead of people's feet. We've only just started trying that so I am not sure if it will work or not.

    The trainer thinks her behaviour is because she is insecure (an idiot of a man really scared her when she was around one, long story but she developed a fear of people afterwards) and for some reason she sort of releases her stress with some hunting behaviour.
  • jennjenn
    Posts: 856
  • RooneyRooney
    Posts: 143
  • RikkaRikka
    Posts: 1501
  • @rooney --- yea we have tried that. Taking her away then bringing her back only to have the same results. I will keep trying though.
  • Just a little update on a recent behavior when a family member came to stay for the weekend yesterday from Iowa. Dakota ran to the door to greet her (I have a theory that a family member -- my niece in this case -- carries a scent similar to mine, so immediately Dakota senses this person is okay.) Is this crazy?

    Anyway, happy, happy, happy to see her with airplane ears and waggly tail. Dakota was totally fascinated by my niece in our house and couldn't take her eyes off her. We distracted her with watch me commands and cheese and all was under control. Then, after about 1/2 hour of fascination with my niece, Dakota did her barking thing, and a little air snap while my niece was petting her. Kind of like a cat does sometimes when it all of a sudden has enough petting and bites or scratches. Although Dakota never touches anyones skin. Then she tugged at my nieces pants leg a few minutes later her while barking a bit. Then immediately she was fine again -- and I didn't need to remove her from the room. As the evening progressed, Dakota was constantly in my nieces face for attention more than anything else. More of a curiosity and wanted to be included.

    Dakota never took a nap the whole evening and was alert the present and curious the whole time. She was a little agitated though. So, the evening went well as far as a stranger in the house, but my niece was family and I still worry about non-family members coming in, although she is getting better around this. Could she be just growing up? She is just over 3 now.. Who knows. And, anyone else have the experience where their Shiba is better or more accepting of blood family members than others? Even those family members she is meeting for the first time? Or, is my similar scent theory totally crazy?

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