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Dog scared of butcher

I have a 10 month old Daniff (Bull mastiff x Great Dane) and he absolutely terrified of walking past the local butcher at the end of our street. He either stops and refuses to walk or he pulls out of his collar, one time running in front of 2 cars and almost getting killed. My husband was able to carry him past the butcher but at 46kg that is not the solution.

I was wondering if anybody would have a solution to this, the lady that works at the butcher came out to meet him and my usually friendly boy wouldn't go near her.


1 Answer


Hi Glitzib

I'm guessing that your poor dog has obviously suffered a fright outside the butchers and is avoiding the location as he doesn't want a repeat of the incident! It may have been something subtle that you didn't notice such as a loud or unusual noise or being startled by someone exciting the shop = fortunately the solution is quite straight forward and involves desensitisation and definitely not forcing him.

Firstly, find a food/treat that your pooch LOVES then take him for a walk to the local butcher. A few shops from the butcher, or before he shows signs of becoming tense, feed him the treat (perhaps as a reward for sitting if he knows that command). Take one step closer to the butcher and call him (using the treat as a bribe) if your dog comes to you say 'good boy' in a kind voice and reward him with the treat. Keep moving closer to the butchers shop until you see the first signs of anxiety.

At this point, give him a pat and a reward and walk back in the other direction away from the shop. Return the next day and see if you can get closer.

Eventually you should be able to have him sitting for you in-front of the shop, more focused on the pending treat than his previous fear!

Hopefully this technique will work for Hank

Good luck!


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