He is now six years old and came to live with his lady owner about three years ago. Before that he was kept in single a room with lots of other dogs and in a terrible condition, full of parasites. He was, however, never alone. It is puzzling why he should be so scared of other dogs now. Maybe he was bullied.
The family has dwindled from four to one in the past few months as people have left home, and the lady has not been at work for a long while. She and Bovril are inseparable. He sleeps in her bedroom and keeps his eye on her all day. He will cry when she is out of sight even though he knows she is in the house, and he will howl constantly while she is out. Even when the daughters are there to look after him, he paces and cries until the lady gets back. If she goes away he simply doesn’t eat and he is already a very thin dog. The lady has no freedom.
When on walks another dog comes towards them, especially an off-lead dog, Bovril wants to run and hide, but because he has to be on lead all he can do is to wrap himself around the lady’s legs in panic.
Bovril is badly in need of a ‘leader’. A ‘rock’. They have so wanted to compensate for his start in life that it has made him insecure and needy. He makes all his own decisions and there are no boundaries, which I believe with a sensitive dog can lead to insecurity. He chooses where he sleeps, he chooses when he eats, he chooses when people play with him or touch him. Being the ‘decision-maker’ comes with responsibilities that he’s not temperamentally up to. When the lady is out of sight he panics like you would if your three-year-old went missing. Out on walks, trapped on a lead with someone who is not his protector but more his responsibility, he feels very vulnerable when other dogs come their way.
The lady is moving house in a couple of weeks. She is going to start changing things right away, starting with very short indoor partings from Bovril. This will need to be done in tiny increments and it can take a long time. She will eventually need to go back to work. On walks he will no longer be held tight when other dogs are about. He will have a longer lead and when they see another dog the lady will be his ‘rock’ and act appropriately.
I can help you, too, with these problems or any other that you may be having with your dog. Please just check the map and contact me.