I have been slowly teaching my smaller dog, Rascal to walk on a leash. He is tiny at 5.6 lbs. He gets carried everywhere he goes. There are times he wants to get down to explore. This is why I have been teaching him to walk on a leash.
Earlier today I took him with me when I left with my boyfriend. We stopped out at the local reservoir looking for Pokemon playing the app 'Pokemon Go.' We also stopped to eat the lunch we had picked up.
Rascal kept poking his head out the car window as we were eating. As he was keeping an eye on the runner with two German Shepherds, a seagull flying overhead, and anything else that was going on.
When we were done eating, I open the door to go put the trash from our meal in a trashcan. Rascal hopped out and started walking towards the water of the reservoir. I redirected him and coaxed towards the trashcan. As I used the one word command 'come'. Rascal was walking across big rocks he has never walked across before. He was slow at first but quickly picked his pace.
After throwing the trash away. I started walking towards the water of the reservoir. Rascal started to follow. However, he quickly decided to put his feet down to let me know he would no longer be moving anywhere near the water. Instead I walked towards him. Rascal darted towards the car. He was ready to go home.
You see Rascal has Aquaphobia, which means he has a fear of water. He will walk up to small bowls of water to drink it. Not towards a tub or sink. When I give him a bath. I end up being the wettest thing in the room on top of him not getting a bath. He fights back to prevent getting in a tub or sink. You put him. He will jump right out.
I have learned to compromise with Rascal in order to give him a bath. I am allowed to run water up to his knees in the kitchen sink. He will not sit or lay down as I wash him up. He will try to leave when I pour water on him to rinse the shampoo off of him. If I try this anywhere else, he fights a bath.
I should have known the reservoir would scare him. I didn't stop to think. The next time we go the reservoir I will have a treat bag with me to help him learn it is okay to walk up to the water in the reservoir.
Have you owned a pet that was afraid of water? If so, what did you do to help your pet overcome that fear?