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One of the most common things I find when I’m asked to communicate with a dog is stress. This sometimes is deep routed as a result of a past trauma.

I recently worked with Jake, a dog who has the most beautiful temperament when at home, but becomes quite aggressive when he meets other dogs. Through animal communication, I found that he was separated from his mother too early and had a mistrust of humans. He was also attacked as a young dog and as a result is fearful of strange dogs he meets.

The owner was using distraction techniques (treats) to evade such situations but this was  just avoidance and was not addressing the problem Jake had. It was also rewarding stressful feelings and aggression with something tasty!

This feeling of stress was also transferred from his owner who worried that Jake would attack when he was out on his walks. So walks became a stressful thing instead of an enjoyable one.

Working on a one to one with this dog and his owner has brought calmness and fun back to their lives. It’s not a quick fix and there may be setbacks initially. But it’s the human’s calm reaction to future incidents that will help Jake to stop associating stress with strange dogs.

You can train a dog to obey commands, but if you don’t address the underlying emotion that causes the reaction, you potentially have a ticking time bomb. By teaching Jake’s owner some calming techniques, he now has the tools to calm him and  Jake is learning to associate other dogs with a feeling of calm and trust.

It is so rewarding to see the transformation. Jake deserves to live a peaceful life!

By

Aideen Jones

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