Dogs/Barking And Lunging
My family and I just got a 2 1/2 year old yellow lab in January. He is a total sweetheart at home after he got neutered, and just lays around after his walks. But than I began a dog obedience class a couple weeks ago and he will not stop barking! I will stand in front of him to block his view, turn him around, and go the opposite direction, but his attention is always focused on the dogs around him. But it's only towards big dogs, his playmate at home is a rat terrier/poodle mix and we've had small dogs as close as can be and he loves them. And then a large dog that was a bit aggressive lunged at him through the showing fence, and he lunged back. It was terrifying, but I pulled him away in time before either one could do harm to the other. Is there a way to stop this behavior? Thank you!
Sounds like he got a fright and it sounds like you did too. What does the teacher say to do? I don't want to say something in contrast. Do you have a friend with a VERY LAID BACK big dog; an old one that just lays around. If so, the best thing to do is to hang around with them and let your dog get used to being with them. After he is used to him laying around, get the dog to walk with him etc. Then graduate to the dog park and befriend someone with another laid back big dog. Also, find a trainer who has an exceptionally well trained large dog who will not react to your dog. As your dog settles down, give him treats and walk them together. Most IMPORTANT is for YOU to remain calm. If your dog barks hold his mouth closed and firmly say "NO" and "Sit". Put him in a command. If you take charge of him, he won't feel he has to protect you or himself. He will trust you will take care of him.