ShibaInusWhat beautiful dogs. This is the first time, out of literally thousands of dogs over time, that I have ever been to a Shiba Inu. They look like little foxes.  Shiba Inu is Japanese for Little Dog.

Zoe and Harvey are very good little dogs. They both go to work with their male owner most days, spending time both in the van and the office, and they cause no trouble at all. They are very well cared for in every way. They should be having a lovely life.

I was called out because they feel Harvey is withdrawn and miserable. They naturally have tried to jolly him along, by lifting him up and trying to get him excited for example, and the gentleman in particular gives him a lot of attention – responding to all Harvey’s demands. Harvey can be quite needy.

I didn’t see a miserable dog. I saw a dog that is quietly in charge, and with that sort of responsibility he is serious-minded, a little aloof and not playful. Also a little scared.

I see a little dog who, when relieved of his responsibilities, should relax and become more playful and less withdrawn. Making their own decisions around the things that are important in life can be scary for a dog, and it is the same old thing – a question of leadership/dog parenting.

It is even more confusing for a dog when the owner will be fussing and cuddling him on demand, allowing him to walk all over him quite literally, but then is also a little harsh with discipline. Domination techniques like pinning down can result in problems including shutting down and even retaliation. People are unfortunately persuaded to use these methods by TV programmes.

If you have a dog that seems ‘shut down’, withdrawn or sad and if you live in my area, I can help you.