Taking your dog for a daily walk is a wonderful way to provide him or her with exercise and mental stimulation, and it’s something we recommend to most dog owners. But, that walk through the neighborhood or park is anything but fun if half of your time is spent dragging your snarling and lunging (but still adorable!) dog away from every other dog or person you pass.

Having a reactive or aggressive dog can be frustrating, embarrassing, and even dangerous. The desperation faced by owners of reactive dogs is real; and for many, surrendering their dogs seems like the only way out of such a predicament. In fact, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, roughly 10% of the 7.6 million pets that end up in shelters each year are relinquished due to behavior problems as reported by their owners.

A training course geared toward reactivity may be just what the doctor ordered to keep a family pet at home where he or she belongs. Union Lake Pet Services has expanded our training courses to include a reactive dog class, and we are excited to share it with you!

What Is a Reactive Dog?

A reactive dog is one who will initiate a seemingly aggressive or fearful act preemptively, usually against another dog or person.  

Reactive behaviors include:

  • Barking
  • Lunging
  • Snarling
  • Whining
  • Pacing
  • Panting
  • Hyper-excitability

There are a variety of reasons a dog may develop reactive or aggressive behaviors, including genetics, improper early socialization, or a particular negative experience. Regardless of why it’s occurring, reactive behaviors are generally fear-based, and although many aren’t considered “aggressive”, they could easily develop into more problematic behaviors if not addressed.

Reactive Dog Classes at ULPS

We are pleased to announce our newest behavioral training class, Quirky K9s. This six-week-long course is designed to give dogs and their owners the tools they need to maneuver the various situations that normally cause the fearful or aggressive behavior. Our methods are humane and include the use of a clicker, treats, and a specialty harness designed to help keep your dog’s attention where it belongs, on you.

For those dogs that need a little extra TLC, in-home and private training options are also available. This one-on-one session gives the trainer the opportunity to get to know your dog personally and help you come up with a clear treatment plan designed to help your dog overcome his or her reactivity issues.

At Union Lake Pet Services, we believe that reactive and aggressive dogs can be taught how to handle their emotions in a positive way. A properly trained and well-behaved dog is better equipped to participate in daily life and activities with human family members, supporting bonding and happiness for everyone. If you have any questions about Quirky K9s, or any of our other training classes, please don’t hesitate to contact us.