This is Kingly!!! I have said this many times before about other dogs, but I really, really love this dog. I met him yesterday when he was in playgroups. He is a dog that is initially quite nervous, but after maybe a half hour of him slowly approaching me and walking away, he finally started to engage with me, let me slowly pet him, and even gave me some kisses.
Kingly came into Chicago Animal Care and Control as a stray, & is available for rescue only.
I am definitely not a dog trainer and every opinion or assessment I make is purely an opinion/observation from a lifelong dog guy who has met and interacted with thousands of shelter dogs. When I take a dog from a very loud pavilion outside into a play lot, for the most part my routine is always the same, especially if the dog seems to be initially nervous. I sit on the ground and simply leave the dog alone for a few minutes, often times the dog will need to walk around the yard, sniff, go to the bathroom, and just realize that everything is OK before I start to engage with it. Once the dog starts to feel comfortable, eventually most dogs will approach and engage me, at which time I use soft words, speak slowly, and all of my movements are very slow. I have learned that trying to give a dog treats right away, making goofy noises, quickly trying to engage with a dog when they are nervous, and especially shoving a camera in its face has an adverse effect. I also think that me being on the same level as the dog helps them feel more comfortable. Having said that, I also fully understand that if you are with a dog who shows any signs of aggression or gives you the dinner plate eyes, not being on your feet is the last place you want to be.
All of the photos and videos that you see of me with a dog upside down in my lap and licking my face uncontrollably and all of that is always near the very end of our interaction, it is never something I would ever start with.
I find it kind of funny that so many people think I have a “way with dogs “, but really I’m just letting the dog get comfortable in a new environment before I start introducing more variables.