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How To Help Your Small Breed Dog Overcome Fear

Updated: Feb 22

Small Dachshund looking scared

Introducing a frightened dog to a source of anxiety,

like a vacuum cleaner, requires a gradual and positive approach.

This strategy can transform their apprehension into comfort over time.

Begin by switching

on the vacuum cleaner while offering an immediate reward, such as a treat or favourite dog enrichment toy.

Then, turn off the machine.

Repeating this process multiple times builds a connection between the noise and a pleasant experience your small breed dog enjoys.

Eventually, both you and your furry family member will view this as an enjoyable activity, dispelling the fear and unwanted dog behaviour.

Patience is essential

progress comes from consistent dog training efforts.

Understand that overcoming fear is a gradual process, taking weeks or even months.

Although results won't appear overnight, you'll notice gradual improvements.

Crucially, avoid reinforcing your dog's fear

Refrain from cuddling or comforting them when the vacuum cleaner is on and they become anxious.

Unlike humans, dogs don't comprehend words in the same way. Instead, they could misinterpret your actions as validation for their fear.

Stay composed and unwavering

in your approach, transforming negative associations into positive experiences and playful interactions.

By doing so, you'll be helping your dog navigate their fears with confidence and comfort.

Remember, every dog is unique,

and their journey to conquering fears is as individual as they are.

By employing these techniques, you can provide the support and reassurance your furry family member needs to face their fears head-on.

Disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for veterinary advice. For specific veterinary dog health advice, contact a veterinary pet healthcare provider.

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mary puppins small dog breeds uk

Mary Puppins, dog conquering dread, dog anxiety

mary puppins small dog breeds uk

Kate Phillips, Chief Editor

BSc (Hons), MSc

Kate is the UK's very own Mary Puppins, a professional Dog Nanny and expert in small breed dogs. With over 30 years' experience and successfully helping high profile celebrity pet parents raise their furry families, Kate shares her top tips with you. Kate guides readers on small breed dogs, dog health, dog training, dog nutrition, dog food, dog walks, dog accessories, dog enrichment, rescue dogs, dog behaviour, dog grooming and the best products for dog mums and dog dads to create the ultimate luxury lifestyle for their small dogs.


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