Our expert says:
Dog Behaviour Expert
Oh dear Sanet what a horrible expereience not just for the dogs but you as well! this is called one-event learning and your dogs have really gotten a major fright. I would suggest that you contact somebody in your area that does TTouch as this will help them to overcome it that much quicker.
What you can do in-between is to slowly start to make the lounge a rewarding place for them to be in again. Depending on the dogs degree of fear, you will have to do it at a pace the dog is comfortable with. Start off using the dogs food - place the food bowl just outside the doorway and let the dog eat from there. Very slowly (and i do mean this, over at least a week if not longer)push the bowl further and further into the room until the dog is comfortable there with it. At the same time, toss some really tasty treats into the room (starting just by the door)and gradually toss them further and further in. When you do get the dogs in the lounge, make this a special time for you all and do some basic TTouch moves on the dogs which will help to relax them (there is in article on how to do these on the friendsofthedog site under an article called thinking of adopting a shelter dog) which you can start with.
Additionally your own body language and feelings like this will impact on the dogs. when you do walk into the room, forget what happened and laugh and sing. this may sound strange but singing and laughter lowers our own stress and will make the dogs more relaxed.
If you are not coming right with this, try putting the food bowl mentioned above on a piece of carpet in the doorway and gradually move this in as described above.
The Ttouch honesly makes such a difference, do consider this in order to have a quick resolution. Good luck!
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