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Saintydad

Help ,Dog wont walk with anyone but me

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Hello i am new to the forum and was Hoping somebody can help .My Border Collie Lola is now 8 years old but for the past 3 years she refuses to go out walking with anybody else in the family ,As i work shifts she is now losing out on exercise as she waits for me to get home this means she is losing out as i can only take her before work (up at 3.30 Am to get her out before i go) and when i get back.If anybody else tries ,she wont go over the door and retreats to the Kitchen.Even if i am out with her and my phone goes she will lie down and not move until i can give her my full attention.Hoping somebody out there  may have any  ideas and help to try and remedy this problem.Thanks in Advance

Saintydad

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Hi there. I cannot help but wonder why it is that this problem has been going on for three years without being addressed. 

Or, did you try to change this but were unsuccessful, and if so what did you try?

Now that this dog has been walking only with one person and not going out the door with anyone else for so long it will be much more difficult to retrain her.  What is her relationship with the other people who are trying to take her out? Is she afraid of them for any reason? How do they handle her when she is out walking? Is there a chance that she has had a bad experience with these other people? Do they live in your household, or are you talking about dog walkers? 

Sorry for all of the questions, but without more information it is pretty hard to advise on this. Perhaps you could give more details and then we can be of more help. My first thought is to work on strengthening the relationship between the dog and whomever else you want to walk her, with treats and play and lots of attention. It sounds to me as if there is a lack of trust for these other people and that will have to be addressed first. There may also be other fear issues at work here that will need attention.

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When you walk her in the daytime, TAKE A FAMILY MEMBER, (or roommate ~ someone else from the household) WITH you. Even if it's just on the weekends, get her used to having someone else present. After a few walks, hand off the leash to the other person while you're walking. Don't stop for this, just keep walking, staying w/the other person & your dog. 

Gradually, have the person you're walking with take the leash more and more. Gradually, allow the dog to see that the other person is holding the leash and that you're walking a few feet away.

The other person should be a responsible and committed teenager, or an equally responsible and committed adult. Walking a dog, particularly this one, is not a job for a child.

D'Elle's questions about possible difficulties between your dog and other family members are important to answer. Your dog could even have been scared by something that just happened while with the other family member, not ill treatment from them. A lot of dogs are 'superstitious'. If a cooking pot falls in the kitchen while they are eating dinner there, they won't go in the kitchen anymore. If a truck drove by while someone other than you was walking her and hit the air horn, your dog might think that very scary noises happen when she's out of the house when ANYONE other than you.

Do other family members feed her, play with her, give her affection and attention? If not, they need to step up and get involved.

This will take time and commitment from you and your family. Your payoff is that you'll have a break from dog walking and family members will have a relationship with the dog. Better for everyone.

Ruth & Gibbs

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Thanks for your advice,My wife comes with myself and Lola a lot of the time for walks but as I said if I drop back or am not present she will lie down and not move until I reappear.My sons don't spend to much time with her and never have(Lola is not keen on them although we have had her for 8 years she growls whenever they are about) My wife on the other hand gets on great with her ,she feeds her plays with her and even sleeps at my wifes side of the bed but still will not let her take her a walk.

Regards Neil

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This is definitely unusual behavior. I wonder if it might not be helpful to consult a good positive reinforcement trainer or even a certified behavior consultant.

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