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I just adopted a 3 year old male chi that was rescued as a stray. They weren't sure exactly what had happened to him before that but he definitely isn't comfortable with people he doesn't know. He bonded with me right away and is so sweet and cuddly but seems terrified of other people, especially men. When my boyfriend comes over Oscar barks and growls at him and stay as far away as possible or hides behind me. I'm not sure what to do about this as I want to be able to have him around other people without him being scared. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated :)
 

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Give him time! Many dogs are afraid of men until they are around them enough. Ask boyfriend to sit on floor & talk to Oscar, but don't force Oscar to interact. Give BF a treat to see if Oscar will take it from him. I'd let BF give a treat every time he comes over. As far as not being afraid of other people, that can take time & may never happen. There are socialization classes you can enroll Oscar in that may help.
 

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Tell boyfriend to not make eye contact with Oscar and just let Oscar approach at his own pace. He most likely will not take a treat from your boyfriend's hand at first but he can toss a treat in Oscar's direction. If Oscar comes out and takes the treat, gradually move the treats closer to boyfriend until Oscar will approach to take one from his hand. It will probably be a slow process but with patience Oscar may come around.
 

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I agree with these suggestions. Just give Oscar time. He will come around. Often rescues are afraid of men.
 

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Avoiding eye contact is really key with a dog that is frightened like that. They perceive a direct stare as a threat. My little shy boy runs if a stranger looks at him but he will come right up to them if they look away.
 

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I'd get him used to your boyfriend, in the way mentioned before then move in to introducing him to lots of other people, getting them to let him smell their hands and feed him a treat. Petting should be tickling chest or chin so that their hand stays where he can see it. Be calm and assertive and he'll pick up on the vibe, if you worry he'll worry. If he acts afraid don't reassure him in the common way as this will reinforce the fearful behaviour. Try finding a book on socialisation. There's a bit of this stuff in chihuahuas for dummies. Key is take it slowly, google dog body language so you can understand what he is saying (good articles on the cesar Milan website) and stick to the principles of behaviourism. Reward desired behaviour, ignore or redirect negative behaviour. Paying too much attention to negative behaviour will reinforce through your attention. Hope this helps.
 

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Socializing can be challenging. Angel has a small circle of people he likes.

Give Oscar time and what everyone suggested sounds great. He'll come around in time.
 
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