Dogs who bark, lunge, growl, snap or snarl at other dogs, strangers, cars, bikes or other objects are often known as 'reactive dogs'. These behaviours can be scary and upsetting for both you as their guardian and for other people around you. But very often your dog will be behaving like this because they are unable to cope with what is around them, in any other way. To put it simply they are overwhelmed with difficult emotions. And if you have arrived here because you live with a 'reactive dog' you have probably experienced overwhelming emotions yourself.
And what about fearful dogs?
It is very common for 'reactive dogs' to behave the way they do, due to fear and often they will show both obviously fearful and reactive behaviours in different situations. However, some fearful dogs don't tend to react by barking and lunging but do react by cowering, avoiding, shaking, hiding and variety of other behaviours that seem disproportionate, or like an over reaction to the situation. But again these dogs are also experiencing overwhelming and difficult emotions.
How Can Beyond Reactivity help?
Matty can help you and your dog; together you will identify your dog's needs and ways you can address them. You will be given strategies to build your resilience, confidence and move beyond those overwhelming emotions you are experiencing. Techniques to work with your dog that are gentle and kind; that focus on changing their overwhelming emotions and building their confidence, which in turn will have a positive effect on the behaviours caused by them. Having lived this fearful and 'reactive dog' journey in the inner city Matty's behaviour programmes are especially tailored to urban reactive and fearful dogs and their guardians.
Matty is a provisional member of the Association of pet behaviour counsellors (APBC). Provisional Members have demonstrated that they have the appropriate level of Knowledge and Understanding for the professional role of Clinical Animal Behaviourist (CAB). They are now gaining the practical experience necessary to be assessed as a CAB and therefore become a Full Member of the APBC. The APBC supports its Provisional Members undertaking behaviour consultations.