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Old 10-25-2012, 07:17 AM
Location: Born & Raised DC > Carolinas > Seattle > Denver
9,349 posts, read 5,539,934 times
Reputation: 9446


We have two dogs, both a little over a year old. My wife has been out of work the entire time since we've had them, and they are both used to her being around all the time.

Well, she got a job and starts Monday. One dog is half shiba half american eskimo, and she's just fine. we were told that american eskimos can be very independent, almost like cats, and don't have anxiety problems. This has been 100% true. She often times plays by herself and doesn't need much attention at all. We can leave her crated for 8-10 hours sometimes when going out for the day and she's just fine.

The little guy is half shih tzu and half maltese. He's a nervous wreck. Anytime we leave for a long time, he tears up his kennel, flips his bed, and tears up any toys we've left in there.

Like any other animal lover, we would LOVE to be able to leave them out, but at just over a year old, they're not ready for that yet. We experimented with leaving them out last weekend. The emo inu was fine, but the little guy tore up some pillows and ripped up a toy.

We recently bought a Thunder Jacket, which seemed to get good reviews. We can't tell if that's working yet or not. We've also got a small radio that we leave on to break the silence. What else can we do? I've read online about some kind of pheromone spray that can help.

Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated!

our pups

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Old 10-25-2012, 07:30 AM
Location: Montreal -> CT -> MA -> Montreal -> Ottawa
16,649 posts, read 26,630,359 times
Reputation: 26595
Hi there! First of all, your pups are stinkin' adorable! Like seriously, seriously cute.

There was a recent thread about separation anxiety. That one resulted in pee and poo, so at least you don't have THAT problem. Take a look at it -- my response was the third one down, about practicing with short (and then lengthening) pretend outings.

Separation Anxiety manifests itself in poo/pee
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Old 10-25-2012, 09:02 AM
809 posts, read 1,916,625 times
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^ I agree with Dawn (Hey, Dawn!). Read her post from the link she posted.

I had to do this with my rescue, it takes time but it works. I rarely have to leave my dog but when I do he is now perfectly fine being left for several hours.

I leave the tv turned on to a 24 hour news channel (Animal Planet proved to be a disaster but that's another story). When I come home, he is usually laying casually on the arm of the loveseat taking in the day's news.

eta: Hopefully foxywench will weigh in. She generally has great little tidbits of advice...much of which none of us would have ever thought of.
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Old 10-25-2012, 11:39 AM
Location: St. Croix
737 posts, read 2,241,116 times
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We're quite frugal (cheap), so when I first read about the thundershirt, on CD of course, I thought that maybe I'd try something similar. Here is what works for one of ours that shakes and shreds when my DH is gone and thunder occurs: I use one of his t-shirts from his dirty clothes... lots of "good" smells because her person is with her. Looks ridiculous but actually works really well.

So, in your case, a piece of dirty clothing might help with the anxiety since it only occurs when your gone. Just sharing what works with me.
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Old 10-26-2012, 09:03 PM
Location: Floyd Co, VA
3,413 posts, read 5,109,442 times
Reputation: 7213
Hi Skins Fan. I know what you are going through as I too have a dog with rather strong SA. My best recommendation is a great little booklet or ebook from Patricia McConnell:

Patricia McConnell | Dog Training Book | I'll Be Home Soon! How To Prevent and Treat Separation Anxiety

My girl has shown some improvement with the use of Clomipramine. If you do decide to go the chemical route do ask your vet for a prescription for the generic, which you can fill at the local pharmacy for much less - I think it cost me about $17.00. The product made by Novartis is called Clomacalm and is outrageously expensive.

I hope that you can soon find a solution that works for your cute boy and that his life is soon stress free.
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Old 10-28-2012, 06:33 AM
25,953 posts, read 26,683,442 times
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I had to leave my dogs twice in my life under the care of the girl across the street to just feed them. One, however much I love her antics, I have to crate when I leave the house because she will always find something to tear up no matter how dilligent I am about making sure nothing is available. This last trip, I left her uncaged for a week with just the two alone.

I pulled the blanket I use in the bed out, because it had my scent on it and put it on the sofa. Anything that has your scent on it is a comfort tool. The house was is perfect shape. Not a disaster to be found.

My only concern with a dog like this being uncaged is not what it will do to your stuff, but rather what your stuff will do to it. I worked with a woman who had two dogs and they were not puppies and she'd had them for years. It was Christmas and the tree was plugged in and the lamps as normal and she just popped over to the corner store for a few minutes and when she came home she found one of the dogs dead under the tree. He had tried to chew the cord to the lights and was electrocuted. My own dog once chewed the cord to my printer out of the blue, but thank the lord it wasn't plugged in.
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Old 10-29-2012, 04:37 AM
25,953 posts, read 26,683,442 times
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The other thing I've done with puppies is turn an old sweatshirt I've worn inside out to put in the crate with them. It's another bonding and comfort tool.
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