Getting your dog to pass other dogs without reacting can be done with the luring technique. Using tasty treats like cheese, frankfurters, or liver, bend down and hold the treats in front of your dog’s snout as soon as other dogs come into view. Use the ‘leave it command’ as you pass. When your dog remains quiet and focused on you and not the other dog, let them know how much you like that and reward them with praise and by delivering the treat.
This technique also works for anything your dog has a particular adverse reaction to. Using the treats, lure them past people on bikes or skateboards and so on. It will take time, so persevere.
And when you’re ready, you can take this to the next level by employing the same technique with your dog on a ten-metre longline, and then once you’re comfortable with progress you can drop the longline (it’s easy to regain control of your dog with a trailing longline).
If you’re really struggling with a reactive dog, you could also try Calm K9, a powder supplement to add to food. This and the Karma Wrap are useful aids for helping to calm anxious dogs. They are particularly useful during storms or firework celebrations.
If you’re struggling with any behavioural issues with your dog, get in touch with one of us in STECS and/or a local dog behaviourist.