Reactive Dogs - Other Dogs Scare Me


Best Traits:

  1. Reactive dogs are usually a bit smarter than your average dog and enjoy training, including advanced training like K-9 Nosework class.
  2. They bond quickly to people and usually love interacting with people.
  3. Reactive dogs will stare lovingly into your eyes and you will never doubt whether you are the number 1 person in their eyes.
  4. They are players and enjoy walks most when they can play games on their walk rather than searching for other dogs on the horizon.

Best match

Reactive dogs do best in homes with people who enjoy a deep connection with their new lab. They enjoy training a dog and are not interested in having a 'dog park' dog or a dog that will be the social butterfly in the neighborhood. Because of the unpredictable nature of a reactive dog’s reaction to dogs they should not be elderly or have any physical difficulties; they can pull a less able person off their feet. Homes where the new Lab will be the only dog are ideal and quieter homes without a lot of busy activity are also easier. Often single people with a backyard where the dog can run free for exercise make the ideal home because they can invest in the time needed to train a dog, are physically able to manage the dog if it reacts and can give the dog lots of exercise before heading out for a walk.

Reactive dogs can have one or two friends they play with if proper introductions are made.

Jessie's Story 

By Sarah Hoddinott, Lab Rescue Volunteer and Reactive Dog Lover


I adopted Jessie after fostering her. During the 3 months I fostered her she found her way into my heart as we would lie next to each other and she would look at me with complete confidence and the occasional slurpy kiss across the face. She was a country dog that had not spent much time with other dogs except for the one companion dog in her house and when she first met the dogs near me she was very frightened and cautious of them.

She and I worked together ever since and I've learned that you can teach an old dog new tricks. She was 8 when we started our training and along the way she learned many commands and even took an agility class. Everything new thing she learned built her confidence and she trusted that I would keep her safe when other dogs approach.

Jessie and Kingsley were great dogs together.  They were great  companions and playmates for each other.  Jessie won the hearts of everyone she met because of her great charm and affection.