Confidence in a Kai?
  • NoodleNoodle
    Posts: 18

    We were lucky enough to adopt the four year old Puzzle from Pam of Royal Kennels! She is such an amazing Kai! She is goofy, loving, and oh so sweet to my sister and me. We couldn't ask for a better Kai! Her and our corgi, Gravity, get along so well!

    We were told that Puzzle won best in show and is a champion! Woo hoo! Also, when we met her, she was so happy and jumped on us to give us kisses!

    Although Puzzle is perfectly fine with us, she isn't very good with strangers! I know Kai's are aloof with strangers but she seems to completely dart when people approach when we walk her. It's like she thinks they're out to get her, lol! Her tail is rarely up too. When she is back inside, she is like a totally different dog and is back to being so confident, goofy, and happy!

    I'm sure she was a perfectly confident pup before we took her home! What are good exercises to do with her in order to help her regain her confidence?
    Naomi Romero, Illustrator!
  • poineapoinea
    Posts: 45
    Hi there!
    I have one of Pam's Kais too!

    I want to say that when we first adopted Ty he was the same with people and especially new places. He would run into my legs, tail would drop and he would get a nervous twitch in his tail that he would have to turn and bite at. After four months, I was able to accomplish on TDI with him, but knew that his nervousness of new places could be an issue, so we never actually went anywhere.. But it was still a great accomplishment with his amazing stoic and very calm demeanor.

    We worked with Ty on, 'Do you want to see?' and showed him it is okay. Or tell him, "it's okay, go ahead" whenever we brought him out anywhere or see anyone. Now the odd thing with him, even though he was like this with people and places, when he saw a dog he bolstered his confidence like nothing.

    So from one angle we had to encourage and the other we had to tame him down. He would literally get other dogs turning and charging at him from across an area to test him on his confidence. Even when I started agility with him with all the newbie dogs.... He would be following me just fine... another dog would run loose and bolt across the whole floor barking and following Ty into a tunnel. Thank goodness Ty came out and was like "What the heck is going on!" .... that could have turned into a mess quick.

    Although we worked with Ty and reassurance on people and places, I think the biggest help is my overly curious shiba. Asako has to know what is in everything, check it out, check people and things out to make sure it is okay. She is not scared of anything. So when she would start to go check out a person or a place, or even the lovely plastic bags from the grocery store, we would encourage Ty to go see as well. He would be skittish at first, but saw her doing it so he started to do it. She has been really good on teaching him to check things out and making sure they are okay.

    3 years later, he is for the most part okay. He will let people come up to him and pet him, tail up. Or he'll go check them out if he is curious enough. Then when he isn't interested or had enough he just walks away from them.
    He rarely ever bolts to my legs and tries to hide or even gets his nervous tick. Even toddlers he does great with.. little kids will run up to him, pet him, grab his tail. and he just stands there wagging his tail... then walks off when he's had enough. He has to check out every thing when we come home now too.. So instead of one dog sticking their head in the shopping bags, we have both standing and blocking us until they get to check stuff out. Quite comical really.. see them both shoving their heads into bags to check things out. What will be interesting is when we bring home our first baby this October on how they will do with checking her out in the car seat... :)
    Asako - 5yr/f/Shiba | Ty - 4yr/m/Kai
    Instagram: poinea
  • PoetikDragonPoetikDragon
    Posts: 2908
    We do a similar thing with our dogs, except we say "Oh, it's you're friend!" super excited every time we see people... including people they do actually go nuts to see.
    「怪獣荘秋田犬」Kaiju Kennels Japanese Akita and Hokkaido, Claire Matthews
  • RikachanRikachan
    Posts: 89
    Rika (Kai Ken) is almost always completely indifferent to anyone else outside of our family.

    Unless they approach the house (the open sliding window doors), in which she goes aggro. The odd thing is that if we are outside and we meet the same person, she's indifferent. But if they were to approach the window (the fields are just a few meters from the house), she is quite defensive and aggressive towards them.

    I've tried to encourage her to let people pet her and such, and I give her praise when she lets them. Mostly though, she's indifferent.

    As far as other dogs, I've tried to encourage her to be friendly and give a nice aisatsu (greetings), but she's not tolerant. The only other dogs she gets along with are (male) Kai. Go figure.
  • NoodleNoodle
    Posts: 18
    @poinea Oh! So you're the person who adopted art! I'm happy to know that technique work for him! We have a corgi who is very confident and Puzzle seems to adore the corgi! We can see if we can use the corgi to help Puzzle come out of her shell. We always walk them together and it doesn't seem to help just yet, though, lol!!

    @poetikdragon Good technique!! I will see if that helps Puzzle at all! :) She is such an amazing and funny dog in the apartment so I want her to be confident outdoors too!

    @rikachan Oh okay! How is she on a leash? Is she easy to control when people walk by?
    Naomi Romero, Illustrator!
  • RikachanRikachan
    Posts: 89
    @Noodle - She's fine on a leash. Sometimes she pulls, other times there is slack in the lead as we're walking. As far as people walking by, we're rarely around other people because we live so far out in the countryside; however, if we happen to pass a farmer, or we are in a place that there are other people, she ignores them. Rika is generally aloof to any other person, and except when she is in heat, she ignores almost all dogs as well.
  • sjp051993sjp051993
    Posts: 1605
    Puzzle could very well still be settling into her new home. It can take an adult Kai a bit to settle in and truly trust their new family.
    Stacey living with Tora, Kazue, Ritsu and Kuma the Shiba

    DSCF0686IMG_0940 - Version 2DSCF0714IMG_1151

  • kshiaukshiau
    Posts: 12
    It may just be that Akira is still a puppy, but he likes to chase after joggers. The only time he was scared was when a group of kids (4 of them) came running up to pet him.
  • mdokicmdokic
    Posts: 1020
    @kshiau, rehomed adult Kai (on average) have very different mental states from puppy kai who are in a stable home. As many people have stated before, it may take a Kai a little while to settle into their new home and be comfortable again. Puppies are far more resilient.

    Also, good to hear that your puppy seems to be quite outgoing :)
    Michelle, with Kai girls Kona and Kimber

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