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Dog Reactivity

Walking your dog should be a pleasant experience, but ​. Leash reactivity is a significant challenge, particularly for city dogs. However, at Two Dads Dog Training, we've helped hundreds of reactive dogs in urban environments. Our personalized 1-2-1 plans and group classes are designed around four essential elements to ensure a successful recovery.

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​Imagine you want to enjoy a peaceful walk with your furry friend, just like any other person. However, whenever your dog spots any trigger, such as a person, another dog, or even a plastic bag blowing in the wind, they become restless and start barking, lunging and making a scene.


This behavior is known as reactivity, which is an extreme overreaction to everyday occurrences, like encountering another dog on a walk.


Reactivity is a broad term that encompasses several similar-looking behaviors with two main purposes:

  1. Accessing something desirable

  2. Escaping something unpleasant

Identifying your dog's reactivity is crucial for creating a successful training plan to address the issue. 

Four Elements: Behavior Intervention Plan

Four Elements
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When it comes to addressing reactivity in dogs, it is essential to prioritize behavior management. This involves changing routines and the surroundingsto restrict the dog's ability to engage in undesirable behavior. Though this approach may be unpopular, adjusting human routines is key to achieve the desired outcome.

Without proper management, animals may continue to practice undesirable behavior, making it more challenging to teach them new habits. It is essential to avoid exposing these animals to stimuli that trigger fear, reactivity, or aggression, such as flooding, which can cause chronic stress and impede their learning abilities. Our primary aim should be to keep our animals as far away as possible from their triggers, unless we are actively engaged in a therapy session.

Some of the management strategies we recommend to help reactive dogs are:

  • Walking your dog at offpeak hours, when it is less busy

  • Reducing the walks to quick potty breaks

  • Removing indoor barking platforms with windows access

Options: Reactivity Interventions

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