Hello! I'm new to this forum and to dogs. I just acquired a new dog last week from the pound, and in spite of the fact he's been sick with kennel cough, ear infections, an infection from his surger site from where he was fixed, and his difficulty in breathing, he's not tried to bite me once. I am able to stick my hand inside his food bowl while he is eating and he won't try to snap...but...I'm having a bit of trouble with him on the leash.
Before I got a gentle leader, he was excited at the thought of going for a walk, but at that time, he was walking me. Now that I have control over him, he decides he wants to sit down in the middle of our walk. He just flops down and stays! He is an adolescent, spent three months at the pound, was a stray, and has abandoment issues. It didn't help that I had company the same time I got him (he is a service dog in training and had he not been picked up that day, he would've been put to sleep) and he fell in love with them.
Since they left, he doesn't want to play either. Usually he's willing to allow cats/kittens/puppies/dogs to come all around him. The only time I really saw him show any signs of aggression was the other day when he growled at another dog...one I didn't realize he'd been silently meeting stares at. He's always on a leash, but as a result of that incident, he is always at my side or he doesn't get to go outside. That's when he started flopping down on our walks. I know he's been traumatized, but I know he's got potential too.
He can sit, stay, come, down, and say hello. He knows to stay off furniture. He gets nervous if I leave (fear I'll abandon him, I think), so I try not to stay out of his sight for too long at a time.
I'm new to all of this, and he's been to the vet. She did say he's got an excellent disposition and is promising. I'm not sure what the other breed in him is...especially since the pound didn't have his breed right to begin with. He didn't get any attention in the pound and he's insecure. Any ideas on how to gain his confidence? He's a picky eater and though he loves toys, he won't touch them now. I know he will take an incredible amount of patience and I'm willing to put in the time. I'm going to try to put his picture in. I came across this site yesterday and was impressed when I saw the postings here. Thanks.
Oh yeah, I am disabled and walk with a cane. I have other problems besides balance which is why he's being trained. He doesn't seem to mind being around me in spite of my problems...just doesn't like the fact I now control him instead of him controlling me. Also, I've had him less than a week.