About 3 months ago we adopted a small (15lb) mixed breed male. We have 3 other dogs, all small terriers, that range from 14lbs to about 22lbs. The new dog is probably less than a year old, though we don't know for sure.
The new dog is not a terrier. He is more oriented to sight than smell, and his demeanor. etc., is nothing like the terriers I've owned over the years. His bark is high pitched and deafening, and more like a scream than a bark. We don't know his breed, but we wonder if he might be a powder puff Chinese crested. He has very thin hair that is blond and fluffy, and a little bit curly. He has beautiful skin that is multi-colored and shows through his hair.
I'm posting because he is timid and seems to have a low IQ. I've never owned a timid dog before and hope others might be able to give some tips.
1) The 5 of us walk on leash together every day. He pulls too hard. Is there anything I can try besides a choke chain? Other than pulling he does fine on walks. After about 3 weeks he still doesn't understand pulling tightens the choke chain, though he does seem to understand "slow down."
2) He has an annoying habit at dinner of waiting till the other 3 dogs have finished eating before he will start. They have their own separate bowls. Even when I know he's very hungry he will wait before eating. How do I get him to eat with the others? It's not like they are dominating him at dinner. They ignore him while they eat from their own bowls.
2) He frightens easily. For example, on a recent walk he got scared of a xmas tree left at the gutter and I had to pick him up and carry him a ways. If we even slightly raise our voices, even if it's not directed at him, he cowers. For example, a couple days ago I gave a stern "no" to one of the other dogs and he cowered and looked like he'd just been beaten or something.
3) We suspect that he probably came from a household that spoke spanish; we speak english. We think this partly because he seems to be clueless about anything we say to him. He has brown eyes and a face that reminds us of a sesame street character; his expression often reminds us of the saying "the lights are on, but no one is home."
Also, we think he might have been mistreated due to his high pitched piercing voice. It definitely is a bark\voice that could get a renter evicted or cause someone to lose their temper and abuse him. His voice isn't a problem for us since he's a house dog and we are home almost all the time. When we leave, though, we can hear him screaming. Thank gawd we have great neighbors; we all think his voice is kinda funny.
Any tips for timid dogs? I want to add he's never been hit or yelled at in our household. He's housebroken just fine, and gets along with the other 3 dogs. The 6 of us- 4 dogs and 2 people, sleep in a king size bed and he's fine with that. He's not afraid when he sees big dogs on our daily walks (he generally goes nuts, starts screaming, and then is fine if he is allowed to sniff them or looses sight of them). He's just timid.