View Full Version : Bryn doesn't like men/boys what can I do?

26th July 2011, 09:23 PM
Bryn is a very friendly dog but he barks and lunges at men and has done the same at a young lad. If the male gives him a treat he stops and makes friends. As he's a rescue dog we have no idea if he has a reason for this reaction but as we have small grandchildren two boys and a girl I want to introduce them to him the right way. Can anyone help please. One is my 2 month old grandson.

26th July 2011, 09:53 PM
You are doing the right thing giving treats - best to get the man to go as low as possible, ideally sit on the floor, and not look at Bryn [same for any man or child meeting him]. Then they should throw treats a way away, at a distance Bryn is comfortable with. The distance can gradually be reduced, as he gets more confident. He shouldn't feel threatened if they are on a low level. YOu can introduce other men and gradually when outside to strangers, giving them treats to give him.

Head collars give good control but generally don't fit too well on Cavaliers, but a front fastening harness would give you more control - the Mekuti harnesses are very good. http://www.mekuti.co.uk/harness_shop.htm#size

I'm sure you know to manage him around children very carefully, also to teach your Grandchildren to be calm around him, not try to hug him or anything - the most important thing is to let him approach them and men in his own time.

There are various threads on here about introducing Cavaliers to children and babies. Obviously never leave him unattended with a child.

I'm sure others will come on with advice too.

Karen and Ruby
26th July 2011, 10:12 PM
Hello there,

Bryn's behaviour can be for many many different reasons and you will neer know why - you can have an idea if you study his body language carefully, one book that helped me is :


This book is fabulous and very helpful when you are working with a rescue- I bought it when I got my little one who like Bryn was very fearful and unsure of men.
Most likely he has had bad experiences in his past but I worked really hard with all members of my family in getting him used to them!

We started off with non-confrontational body language so never approach him head on or lean over him, back up in reverse and let Bryn sniff them first and if he doesn't want to approach then respect his desision. Have the men and older children have treats to give Bryn but start off with them not looking at him sitting on the floor and just throwing the treats toward his area so he can assosiate them with rewards.
Again if he backs away or givees any signalls that he is uncomfortabel then respect his desision!

Younger children will be more difficult as they are unpredictable and can't understand the reasons for his behaviour so I would make sure that Bryn always has a safe place to go (like a crate) and that the chldren are tolld very firmly that they are Not to approach im while he is in there.

They should also know not to chase him or lean towards him or be too rough with him.

Who knows what this little guy has been through in the past but what I will say is that even though my little man had neer seen a child before in his life (and at the time I had a neice of 7 and a nephew of 2 that he was introduced to) the Cavalier in him took over and he was so perfect around them!!

Men took a few months to combat but now he is fine with most and will even approach some for cuddles!!

Kate H
28th July 2011, 10:50 AM
If Bryn has a problem walking past men in the street, or generally outside the house, you might find the 'Watch' command helpful. Easily taught with a treat! Whenever you see a male human approaching in the distance, get Bryn's attention on you with a really good treat and keep his attention focused on you as you walk past the man/boy, saying 'Watch' or 'Watch me' and givng lots of praise. Then when you are past, give the reward and lots of fuss.

This is a very useful command - yesterday, for instance, out on one of our regular walks, my two were off lead in the park and we have to cross the narrow side road leading eventually to a school. After school hours, there's virtually no traffic but sometimes a teacher is leaving late and there's the odd car, so as we approach the road I get the dogs close to me and watching, pause at the edge of the road and then cross, still watching and only as we get safely to the other side do I let them run free again. It's a quick way of getting them back to your side and focusing on you, not what's going on around them.

Kate, Oliver and Aled