How To Break A Gun Shy Dog [2022] – Thing That Will Help You The Most

Your dog is scared of gunshots and you don’t know how to break a gun shy dog? Dogs can be scared of many things- including loud noises. 

Imagine if your dog was so scared of something that it stopped them from performing its basic functions. That’s what it’s like for a gun-shy dog.

There are ways to help your gun-shy dog, but it will require patience and dedication on your part. The best way to break a gun-shy dog is through positive reinforcement and gradual desensitization. Punishing your dog for being scared will only make them more scared and could make the problem worse.

Instead, you need to focus on building their confidence and helping them to feel safe while different types of training.

Why is my dog so gun shy?

Gun shyness in dogs can be caused by many different things, such as a traumatic event, being punished for barking at gunshots, or simply not being used to the sound. So what should I do? The best thing you can do to help your gun shy dog is to avoid situations that make them nervous. If you are going to be around guns or loud noises, it’s best if you leave the dog at home.

How to break a gun shy dog? Brief Explanation:

According to research by Theodore Thudium, 25% of all dogs in the United States are gun shy. If you’re a dog owner, there’s a chance that your furry friend falls into this category. And while there’s nothing wrong with a dog being scared of guns.

It can make things difficult if you’re hoping to take them out hunting or to the shooting range. Breaking a dog that’s afraid of guns is not quite as hard as you may think. The goal of helping the dog associate the gun’s sound with something positive is the objective.

This can be done by shooting a gun in a safe area while the dog is eating or playing with a toy. Once the dog is comfortable with the sound of the gun, it can be slowly introduced to the sport of hunting.

With patience and positive reinforcement, most gun-shy dogs can be broken and become great hunting companions. The key is to take things slow and never force the dog into a situation that it is not comfortable with.

When I was on hunting with my friends:

Once I was on a hunting trip with my friends and we were using our dogs to help track down the game. One of my friends had to shoot a rabbit that was running away and his dog, who was off-leash, came running over to us wagging his tail. As soon as the bullet was fired, my dog dashed for cover and hid under a bush.

We couldn’t get him to come out for a long time. Even though I felt awful for him, I knew it wasn’t his fault. Dogs are extremely sensitive toward the sound, and it’s possible for them to be startled by loud noises. He didn’t know that the gun wasn’t going to hurt him. After training my dog, I was able to get him to not be afraid of loud noises anymore.

Here is the best part of the discussion, If you’re really concerned with the gun-shyness of your dog, then watch this part of the video.

Tips for gun-shy dogs :

If your dog is gun shy, don’t worry, there are things you can do to help them get over their fear. Here are a few tips:

  • Start by slowly introducing your dog to the sound of a gun. You can do this by shooting a gun in a safe area while the dog is eating or playing with a toy.
  • Make sure to always reward your dog for good behavior around guns. Minimally fearful individuals, who like this noise, will gradually build their self-confidence by using this soundproofing.
  • Take things slowly and never force your dog into a situation that it is not comfortable with.
  • If you’re going to be around guns or loud noises, it’s best if you leave the dog at home.
  • Try to avoid situations that make your dog nervous. This should make it easier for them to relax and feel more secure.
  • If you’re training your dog to not be afraid of guns, make sure to use positive reinforcement and avoid punishment while training.
  • Dogs are very sensitive to sound, so it’s important to make sure they feel comfortable and safe around guns before taking them out hunting or to the shooting range.
  • With patience and dedication, most gun-shy dogs can be broken and become great hunting companions.

If the tips are not helpful in overcoming your dog’s fear, it is essential that you seek the services of a professional trainer or behaviorist to do the trick. Remember, every dog is different and will respond to training in different ways. Don’t get discouraged if your dog isn’t progressing as quickly as you’d like. Just keep working with them and eventually, they’ll overcome their fear of guns.

Things that you shouldn’t do to a young dog, ever.

So, according to research and experiment by the Journal Of Experimental Psychology, the heart rate of the dog accelerates very drastically initially when the gun shot is fired. So, that’s why we should keep some points in mind before we try to train our gun-shy dog.

  • Don’t force them to do anything they’re uncomfortable with.
  • Don’t shout or be aggressive around them.
  • Reward them for any progress they make.
  • Be patient and consistent with your training.
  • Make sure they have plenty of positive reinforcement.
  • Work your way up from the most basic commands, and don’t get obsessed with complexity.
  • Try to be as succinct as possible in your instruction.
  • If they seem stressed, take a break and try again later.
  • Remember that every dog is different and will learn at its own pace.

When should you introduce a dog to a gun?

One should introduce a dog to a gun when the dog is comfortable with other new experiences, such as meeting new people or exploring new environments. If a dog is gun-shy, it may be because he or she associates the sound of gunfire with something negative, such as being hurt or scared.

So, it’s important to make sure the dog has positive experiences with guns before introducing him or her to them. There are a few different ways to go about breaking a gun-shy dog.

  • One method is to start by having someone fire a blank gun near the dog while he or she is eating something delicious, like a piece of chicken. As the dog becomes more comfortable with the sound, you can gradually move the gun closer and closer until the dog is comfortable with it being right next to him or her.
  • Another method is to expose the dog to the sound of gunfire in a controlled setting, such as at a shooting range. This way, the dog can get used to the sound without being in a situation that is overly stimulating or scary.

How long does it take to train a gun dog?

It depends on the dog, but typically 6-8 weeks. The process of Overcoming a Fear of Gunfire in your dog takes patience and understanding. There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to how long it takes to train a gun dog, as success depends largely on the canine’s natural abilities and temperament.

However, most trainers will tell you that a solid foundation can be established in about 6 to 8 weeks of consistent work. But, of course, this is just the beginning, gun dogs need to be maintained and worked with throughout their lives to stay sharp.


So, there you have it. How to break a gun-shy dog? It’s not as hard as you might think, but it will take some time and patience on your part. Remember to keep things fun and positive for your pup, and be consistent with your training regimen. Soon enough, your furry friend will be breaking targets like a pro!


Can a gun-shy dog be cured?

Yes, a gun-shy dog can be cured. However, the method of cure will vary depending on the root cause of the dog’s fear. If the root cause is a traumatic experience, then a desensitization and counter-conditioning program may be necessary. It is essential to work with a licensed instructor to be sure the therapy is risk-free and productive.

How do you know if your dog is gun shy?

If your dog is gun shy, you’ll likely notice some fearfulness or avoidance around guns or gunfire. This may include behaviors such as cowering, shaking, and hiding. Gunshot sounds may also cause your dog to startle or run away. Many dogs become uneasy around firearms due to a lack of socialization or positive experiences with them.

Do gunshots hurt dog ears?

Yes, gunshots can definitely hurt dog ears. Gunshots produce a loud noise that can be incredibly jarring and painful for dogs’ sensitive ears. Dogs that are close to a gunshot can also be injured by the shrapnel and debris that is released by the explosion. For these reasons, it’s important to keep your dog away from any area where there is potential for gunfire.

Where do I start gun dog training?

Depending on what your end goals are for training your gun dog, there are a few different ways to go about it. If you plan to use your dog primarily for hunting, then you’ll want to start with basics like sit, stay, come, and heel. The best way to figure out where to start is just to do some research on the different options and see what interests you and your dog the most.

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