Puppy only really barks at other dogs, would a puppy playgroup be a bad idea?

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sourced from: https://www.reddit.com/r/puppy101/comments/a0x6z4/puppy_only_really_barks_at_other_dogs_would_a/

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Our 6.5 month old pomeranian has fallen into the habit of losing his mind barking whenever we're within 10 feet of another dog, only stopping when we pick him up (which I really don't want to get into the habit of) or drag him out the sight of the other dog. and we used to take him to a puppy playgroup where the same thing would happen (he did not have a bad experience there, we watched him the entire time and the other puppies barely came near him because of the barking). We've had him since 8 weeks and he lives with our other dog and doesn't bark at him, but we live in a city full of dogs so this is starting to be a huge problem.

We've tried treats/going in the other direction/etc and it's only other dogs that seem to trigger him both on and off leash. I'm wondering if we should take him back to puppy playgroup and give him a mountain of treats at a distance from the other puppies (maybe not let him play right away) so he gets used to them. He is fine when he's being carried or held but I want to break him of this habit because I don't intend for him to be an indoor or "purse" dog. Unfortunately, we don't have friends with dogs otherwise we would do that instead. We dog sat another dog for a few weeks and he initially did the barking thing but settled down after a while, so we have tried to socialize him so far to the best of our ability.

I'm also wondering if neutering him (we're waiting another month because of our schedules) would make a difference? Or even using calming treats (which I'm skeptical about). Walking him has become a nightmare and he's a great pup otherwise.

submitted by /u/ramoanaflowers
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