Shy Puppy Advice?

Illustration for article titled Shy Puppy Advice?

My generally friendly puppy, Murphy, has gotten into the habit of shying away from strangers who approach and try to pet her. She will often wag her tail and trot towards someone, then duck away when they reach out a hand. She also sometimes does this when I have friends/family over. She usually allows herself to be petted after having a chance to smell everyone and observe the general cut of their jib, and once she’s decided she doesn’t mind she’s totally chill. I never force her to accept petting if she doesn’t seem into it, but it’s extremely important to me that she isn’t fearful of people.

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Relevant background: She’s just short of 7 months old, and this is not something she has always done. We got her at 12 weeks, and she’d been living with a foster family, so she’s been around people/been handled since she was young. We took her to puppy class, and out to public places as often as possible during her early development period. She does spend time home by herself during the day while I’m at work, but my husband or my dad always stop by to visit and take her for a whiz midday.

I’m wondering if anyone else has had a puppy that successfully worked past shyness, and if there are any tips for how I might get her beyond this issue. I get that not all dogs are going to be the wiggle-around-and-try-to-fnagle-pets-from-everyone-type, but I want my dog to feel OK being approached/touched by strangers if possible.

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