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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As Bobby has matured, we have noticed he’s a bit more hesitant in greeting strangers so we changed the approach to letting him go up to the person so he can decide rather than the person coming up to him and him getting nervous. This approach has been working well...until today.

So today, we are out for our lovely, well behaved walk on this beautiful spring day. Behind us a mom and her 12 year old daughter approached. I recognized them as regular patrons at the library where I work so of course we started talking and they wanted to pet Bobby. While I don’t do much meeting and greeting on walks this I decided was good for all! So, I let Bobby walk up to them thinking he will react as usual. Bobby, within a second regressed to being a shameless puppy....jumping, licking, mouthing. Oh, so shameless and embarrassing he was. Because I wasn’t expecting it I was a bit unprepared. My bad.

Anyway, they love dogs and we got Bobby settled eventually and the session ended with a great belly rub and love fest so it ended well. I did have to stay on top of things to keep him calm though. He absolutely instantly adored these people.
If only I could have read his poodle
mind prior to the greeting as then I would have begun the whole greeting totally different. I’m sure he liked their smell. He adores kids, both mom and daughter spoke in high voices and they had those “delicious” puffy gloves that moved and bounced. They also have cats and dogs so I’m guessing he smelled that. I’m sure it was just all too much for Bobby. So obviously, we have more training to do and more maturity left to go. I will also have to to try to have some sort of mind meld with Bobby’s brain so I can know which approach
to use. 😉LOL!!!
Obviously there’s still a silly, silly puppy inside that adult dog’s body that is just waiting for the perfect opportunity to be released! LOL! Just when I think Bobby is pretty well trained.....NOT! 🤣
 

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Always be prepared for the unexpected so that you always have the tools (treats, things to say to Bobby and the other people). I work to always be proactive with my dogs when out and about in situations where I don't control and can't necessarily predict the environment.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Absolutely you are right, lily. Normally I am pretty proactive when we are out and about but he hasn’t acted like this in public for so long I just wasn’t thinking of the possibility of this reaction. I worry so much about him not liking someone and possibly barking that I forget sometimes how much he loves most people, especially kids.

I did have treats and once he was nice and settled he got that. I was definitely able to calm him but this was an encounter I wasn’t particularly pleased with. I think my biggest mistake was not communicating clearly to the mom and girl once Bobby got excited. The mom was VERY chatty so my mind was definitely in two places so I wasn’t able to do both as well as I could. I will prepare myself better for encounters such as this.

It ended on a good note at least and Bobby was thrilled. They weren’t phased by it. I am the one who felt bad and embarrassed. It felt like a training failure.

I will also look at Bobby’s body language more closely when we are in these greeting situations. I’m sure if I had looked at that closely I could have been more preemptive as I’m sure there were signs of excitement before they even approached. I didn’t look at his tail and I should have. If I had looked, I would have known he was excited. Another learning experience for sure! I always appreciate your input. Thanks! 😊
 

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While reading your post I was expecting to read that Bobby had growled at the kid or mom... So I was very relieved when I read he was just being a little too friendly ! :)
 

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While reading your post I was expecting to read that Bobby had growled at the kid or mom... So I was very relieved when I read he was just being a little too friendly ! :)
I had the same thoughts. As far as training "failure"? It could have been worse, so not a terrible failure. He still had a soft mouth and didn't scare anyone!
 

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To be honest, I’ve known adult spoos—at least twice Bobby’s age!—who behave exactly like this. But I understand your embarrassment. I get exactly the same way. And I, too, would have been distracted by the friendly chatter. Training in the real world is hard.
 

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I'm with Dechi - a little over-exuberance with dog savvy humans may be a bit embarrassing, but is not nearly as worrying as fearful growling would have been. He is still hardly more than a pup, after all - time to get back to reinforcing all-four-feet-on-the-ground and not beat yourself up too much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks everyone. I am definitely grateful that his response is to be over friendly rather than a scary dog. I guess I was just surprised at how quickly it all happened as he’s usually a bit more cautious during initial greetings with strangers. My oldest grand daughter is the same age is the girl so I am wondering if that had something to do with it. He initially goes bonkers when they come over but that’s another training issue.😉
It was just weird yesterday because he greeted them like he knew them. Anyway...
I know it’s not a total failure but because my goal is for him to be a library reading dog this just felt like a big set back and it showed me that we definitely have a long way to go. He is young though and a very good boy so we will just keep on working on things.😊
 

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One time I let me dog greet somebody. I thought he was going to be good. He had made great strides.

But then he walked over, lifted his leg, and PEED on the person. So embarrassing. So. You know. Overexcited poodle is still pretty good and I think you're doing great. lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
One time I let me dog greet somebody. I thought he was going to be good. He had made great strides.

But then he walked over, lifted his leg, and PEED on the person. So embarrassing. So. You know. Overexcited poodle is still pretty good and I think you're doing great. lol
I’m sorry but I laughed so hard when I read this. I am sure you were absolutely mortified!
Just imagine if you could have gotten inside your dog’s head before that meet
and greet! 😉 I think reading dog minds would an awesome super power!
 
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