Dogs Trust …is something that is earned and not automatically given. It may take some time and training depending on your boxer’s personality, temperament, dominance, and level of fear to get them to trust you.
Rosco was a shy, timid, fearful boxer puppy when we first met. In a small 5’ x 5’ cubical in the puppy store, I rolled his favorite toy (according to the saleswoman), and he remained cowering in the corner and wouldn’t come near me. This only got worse when he got home and saw my husband. I knew it was a delicate situation when Rosco jumped from my arms (we were sitting on the floor) to run and hide under the couch.
What I can say is … it took time. Just like with people who don’t trust easily, you need to find ways to show them. The most important things are to be your-self, be consistent, and create a safe, comfortable place for your pup.
Be yourself – Let’s face it some of our personalities just don’t mesh. And sometimes in life we need to play nice and make it work. There is a give and take; however, you must be the leader, the alpha. Even in a pack, dogs test the limits with the alpha from time to time. If a dog thinks you lack dominance then they will take on that role. So, be your-self and show it with confidence. Given time, your pup will get to know your style and personality and you will get to know there’s too.
Be consistent –If your doggie thinks you are going to let them out when you wake up in the morning, it is probably because you’ve done that for quite some time. Like people, dogs get into routines. Being consistent allows your dog to learn your routine and know what to expect. Your dog’s trust will eventually develop once they learn your routine. It is about what you DO not what you SAY. Remember, dogs observe behavior –they watch what you do. Saying “you can trust me” means very little to them.
Create safe, comfortable place –it could be as simple as a dog bed or crate, or as elaborate as a whole room. But whatever you choose, make sure you give your pup a place of their own AND a place they are never disciplined. At this point, I feel I need to clarify discipline – NEVER for any reason hit your dog. This is the easiest way to lose your dog’s trust and/or never earn it. Here is what I mean by discipline – your dog ate a shoe and you are pretty upset and you say “get in your crate”. This is the time you should never use the crate, bed, room as a punishment. Chances are, they will go there on their own. With Rosco and Daisy, if I say “who did this”, their behavior is … ears back, tail down, and usually go to their beds.
Back to Rosco …within 2 weeks he was a playful pup with both my husband and I. He turned into a bouncing bean and had the personality of a clown. With all the training we have done, to this day – if Rosco is unsure of our behavior he becomes very timid and usually backs off.
Just remember …
Dog trust is earned by creating a safe, comfortable, and consistent environment.