I was just hoping for some advice regarding my 9 month old Border Collie puppy, Ace. I'll try to give as much detail as I can.
He was unfortunately attacked by an American Staffy two weeks ago. The dog jumped the fence whilst we were coming home from our daily walk (they live at the top of our court). The dog came from behind and bit his left shoulder, causing a tear in the muscle with a very deep puncture, alongside multiple other punctures on top and underneath the leg. Ace is okay and recovering well (a very active pup is hard to keep quiet!). The attack was unprovoked and unexpected.
We spoke with the vet about how to support Ace with recovering psychologically. She suggested getting him back out there to socialise and build up his confidence again, but to be aware that his behaviour towards unknown dogs may change. Ace is more than happy to be back walking, albeit short walks whilst he is still mending. He does not care about walking past the house which the dog came from. He is very relaxed on his walks, until he sees another dog. He immediately growls, barks and tries to jump at the other dog. It seems to be quite aggressive behaviour which we never saw before - he was always happy to go up to any dog and say hello or play. I understand why he has changed, I just don't know how to help him and I don't want to leave it too long before trying to correct his behaviour. Whenever I see another dog coming, I make Ace sit off the footpath where he can still see the dog and kneel next to him and try to keep him calm. He lives with two other border collies and is fine with them, and he also still loves our neighbour's dog.
He is also very unsure of some people - though this started about a month before the attack (8 months old). Even people he has met before and been very happy to see, the next day he might bark and try to jump at the person. Even if they reach out a hand for him to sniff, he pulls away as if he does not want them to touch him. Sometimes it takes a very long time to get him to stop barking/lunging at others. When we are sitting in the car, he has barked at people crossing the road, in nearby shops or someone off in the distance. This behaviour has continued since the attack. There are other unknown people that he will happily walk straight up to for a pat so I really can't pick who he is going to be wary of. It was mentioned by a friend that this behaviour could be age related and due to him not yet being desexed (we were told to wait until he was 12 months old) and that he is being protective of his family. What can I do to help him with this?
Any advice or ideas would be greatly appreciated.