Hearing that your dog may not be the typical dog that goes to the dog park to run and play with other dogs can be hard, and can make you feel like you have let them down. However, a lot of dog’s just aren’t comfortable with being social butterflies.
When we work with dog’s that are uncomfortable or reactive we do not except them to run with the others like they are running through a field of daisy’s. It is a slow process that takes a few steps that aren’t to be rushed.except
When first starting out you need to have dog’s that are well balanced and off leash reliable. This is key because the new dog that you are working with will look to the other dog’s to observe how they feel about things.
They are looking to the pack to see how they feel about you, the environment as well as how they feel about each other. If you are trying to work with a pack that does not have 100% trust in you and what you are doing then the other dog will feel it.
The reason why off leash reliability matters so much is because the new dog will most likely go through several uncomfortable moments. When this happens you need to have control over the pack to calm them down, or move out of the new dog’s bubble. This is what allows you to build trust in the new dog. In those moments when they get still, or slightly lower their head, you as the leader needs to be able to give that dog what it needs at that moment.
When first working the socialization process of any dog it is important that you have acceptance of coexisting. You can’t go into it with the mindset that they have to play together, instead they just need to have coexistence without any problems.