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We have had Kara for about 5 weeks now. She was 10 weeks when we got her, from a breeder but her mother was not there. We are not sure when she was taken from the mother but we believe it was about 8 weeks.

The problem is that she is VERY nervous around people. She is okay with my wife and I if we are alone in the house or alone on a walk, but as soon as she sees other people, she turns into a quivering wreck and cowers away, or starts going crazy and pulling on the lead to try and get away.

Before she was vaccinated we would carry her to the shops and around the neighbourhood to try and get her socialised early, but even then she would shake uncontrollably and wouldn't like anyone coming near her. We now take her out for walks which is fine if there is nobody else about (although sometimes she really doesn't want to leave the house), but she won't go near other people. It doesn't seem to be getting any better and if anything sometimes it seems like it is getting worse. We have been taking her to puppy club to try and socialise her but it seems so traumatic to her. We have been advised to socialise her as much as possible but it seems to stress her out so much it seems cruel!

She's also quite scared of sudden movements and loud noises, even if she's in a safe place with no-one else around.

She loves being around other dogs though. My Mum in law has two dogs and she is as happy as anything when she's round their house.

Has anyone had any similar experiences or can you offer any advice? We have been trying to ignore this and hope she will get over it, but it doesn't seem to be getting better. Will she ever be a confident dog and allow other people to approach her? It's heartbreaking to see her so nervous and this is worrying us so much /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/frown.gif
 

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If you contact the kennel club they will be able to tell you of good puppy classes in your area. Go to one that offers puppy socialising classes they are normally very well run and your puppy will play with dogs and people and should get over this problem. You need to sort this out soon as your puppy is growing up fast and this behaviour will become the norm if you are not careful.

You could also ask friends and family around and get them to feed your puppy treats or even play with your puppy to show that people are fun.

You need to try to keep your pup on the floor as if you pick it up all the time you are saying to the pupthis behaviour is ok I will protect you.

I do not know where you are in the UK so the classes I know of might be to far away.
 

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hang in there, and keep socializing; consult your vet also.....perhaps there is a calming medication to use to help her while you're socializing her.

Perhaps you could carry treats with you, give them to strangers, ask them to give the treats to your puppy. Maybe she'll begin to associate strange people with goodies!!
 

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Definitely try the puppy socializing classes. We took one offered by our vet's office. I remember wanting to wait because my niece was getting married and it was a busy time but they were very particular that we start her by 12 weeks because evidently there is some research that 12 to 16 weeks is a crucial time period in socializing puppies. Also as someone else said do not pick her up or act sympathetic, as hard as that is because then she will think there is something to be afaid of . Act as matter of fact and calm as you can, offer lots of treats and maybe even set up "chance" meetings with people you know and have them offer treats. Keep working with her now as later will be so much harder. My dog, Maggie, was a puppy mill dog and is now very well socialized to people, other dogs and cats (although she wants so badly to chase them). It can be done but its a lot of hard work. Good luck.
 

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Get friends to visit to give your pup treats. Even ask strangers when out walking to give a treat (we carry treats with us for this purpose). I agree with the others that puppy classes will help. Try to avoid stress situations until things improve
 

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We also have a scaredy-dog - our youngest beagle Popcorn is a basket case 90% of the time, especially around people, loud noises and new situations... She is a rescue that we adopted almost two years ago, though, so we think she must have had some traumatic experiences before she was rescued to end up like she is... One wonders what could have happened with Kara in her short little life to make her so scared - or maybe some dogs are just born like that.

All of the other advice you have already received is spot-on - and above everything else you will need loads and loads of patience. One thing we have learned from bitter experience is that if you try to take things too fast it will only backfire... with Popcorn we really do have to expose her to new things in bite-size little chunks or else she simply cannot cope and it can easily send her into a tailspin that lasts days before she regains some of her confidence again.

And in answer to your question about whether Kara will ever be a confident dog, I wish I knew the answer for your sake as well as ours... She has made great improvements over the two years we have had her, but we were wondering the same thing as you a couple of nights ago when we took the dogs out for a quick pee in front of our building before bed and some people just stopped as they were walking past to ask us about the beagles (we have three). They were perfectly friendly and harmless, but something about them totally spooked Popcorn - so much so that it took about half an hour of walking around outside for her to calm down enough to pee... something that ordinarily would take less than a minute.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks everyone for your replies. We're already taking her to puppy classes, she's pretty freaked out by it but hopefully that will improve. Actually socialising with the other dogs isn't the problem, she really loves other dogs. We were actually wondering if getting another dog would help solve the problem!!

We've tried getting strangers to give her treats while we are out but she isn't interested in anything except trying to run away. Will keep persevering...

Kara and family
 

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Quote:Originally posted by PuppyLuv:
We were actually wondering if getting another dog would help solve the problem!!
Although I am certainly never going to discourage anyone from having multiple beagles (we have three!) I do have to say that I really don't think our other two (both of which are very calm and self-assured) make all that much difference to what Popcorn is going through... maybe they help her general level of well-being but when she gets in a "state" and freaked out she doesn't seem to even notice they are there or take any comfort from them whatsoever. I was hoping that seeing how calm they are would also calm her down, but sadly that doesn't seem to be the case 99% of the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the feedback! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

Good luck with Popcorn (great name by the way). I took Kara out earlier and she actually managed to walk past someone without freaking out. Progress...
 
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