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Mud Puddle Paws Dog Training
Canine Anxiety & Reactivity 

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What is Canine Anxiety and Reactivity

Canine anxiety and on-leash reactivity are common occurrence for many dogs. Unfortunately these things are not only common, they are a growing issue for many families. When a dog, lunges, barks, growls, spins, and pulls at other dogs, or people, while out walking on leash, they are not being spiteful and bad, they are simply trying to cope. A dog who reacts to to strangers coming into his home, or even being outside his home, is likely filled with enormous anxiety, fear and frustration. Even-though these dogs may love going for a walk with their people, they are also over-come by things they encounter while out walking. These over-whelming emotions would be similar to what a dog feels when strangers come into his home.

Canine anxiety and reactivity in the home can consist of the following (but are not limited to):

  • strangers coming to the home

  • seeing strange dogs and people from out the window or from the yard

  • being left alone (separation anxiety)

  • losing a family member (human or canine)

  • noise sensitivity

  • living with other dogs in the home 

  • guarding resources

  • and more...


Most canine behaviour issues are based on fear and anxiety. Anxiety at being left alone, fear of people, other dogs, different environments, car rides and much more. Anxiety and fear are often displayed with reactivity – such as lunging at or shying away from other dogs or people, growling, snapping, biting, hiding, freezing, self mutilation, household destruction and more.

These behavioural displays are generally a symptom of an underlying emotional issue, in much the same way as physical illness symptoms are often an indication of a virus, infection, or disease. 


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