Walking your dog to the school bus stop can be a great training experience. It can provide socialization, exercise and fun but be sure to use good judgment. Always make new experiences fun for your dog with wonderful rewards and lots of praise.
Being close to active children may be too difficult for your pup so take those baby steps and perhaps work with him across the street. When your dog is consistently responding to his name move a little closer to the group. It’s important to work at your dog’s comfort level.
- Your dog will probably be very excited so manage the jumping: Stand on the leash if appropriate and/or hold the side of the collar with your fingers pointing to the ground.
- Only allow one child to approach your dog at a time.
- Stand between the child and the dog for better control.
- The child must be calm and just stand still until the dog can relax. Then he can extend his hand to the dog. It’s better to pet a dog on his chest or side rather then to reach over his head.
- Another idea is to give the child a few treats to drop in front of the dog.
The important thing to remember is just to make seeing people a positive experience for your dog. This may take some time so be patient and don’t rush it.
If your pup is afraid of loud or large vehicles begin to feed him tiny pieces of chicken or whatever he loves as soon as you see or hear the bus. Stop the treats if he becomes reactive to the bus. Again, space may be necessary so move back away from the bus until the dog is calm. You want your dog to think that good things happen when he’s close to something loud: I hear the bus and I get chicken so maybe the bus is a good thing.