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Old 10-24-2007, 06:29 PM
 
Location: charlotte, nc
273 posts, read 1,214,181 times
Reputation: 128

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1st of I've tried reading a lot of online research, but many "professionals" contradict each other. I just wanted some opinions from people who have had similar issues here. My puppy is great and I love her to death. She is 9 months old. I realize this is still pretty young, but I havent seen a decrease in her anxiety at all. We have always crated her when we leave. She whines for a good 10 minutes after I leave, then eventually stops. This translates to my real problem. I want to be able to leave her out, for now only a little at a time, and eventually for a a normal amount of time when I'm not home. For example, if I leave for 5 minutes to go talk to the neighbor, I'll come back and my dog will have ****, pissed, and started to chew whatever she got her hands on b/c of anxiety. I left once for an hour and gated her in the kitchen and she chewed the wall. I left her with 3 of her favorite toys by the way, yet she chose the wall to chew. Having a guardian that has to be crated when no one home really makes me sad. If someone did break in or something and shes barking in a cage, it would be a joke to them. Also, I just dont like keeping her couped in such a cramped space for long periods of time. I worry about her whenever I leave b/c I feel bad she cant stretch out and run around, even with an XL size cage. Is it still too early? Or do I have the right to start getting worried that there will be a permanent problem? What should I do?
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Beautiful place in Virginia
2,658 posts, read 10,457,572 times
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I haven't gotten a dog, yet. However, I am interested in knowing what breed of dog you have.
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Old 10-24-2007, 06:57 PM
 
Location: St. Augustine, Florida
1,930 posts, read 9,458,381 times
Reputation: 1022
Quote:
Originally Posted by jadedSOUL83 View Post
1st of I've tried reading a lot of online research, but many "professionals" contradict each other. I just wanted some opinions from people who have had similar issues here. My puppy is great and I love her to death. She is 9 months old. I realize this is still pretty young, but I havent seen a decrease in her anxiety at all. We have always crated her when we leave. She whines for a good 10 minutes after I leave, then eventually stops. This translates to my real problem. I want to be able to leave her out, for now only a little at a time, and eventually for a a normal amount of time when I'm not home. For example, if I leave for 5 minutes to go talk to the neighbor, I'll come back and my dog will have ****, pissed, and started to chew whatever she got her hands on b/c of anxiety. I left once for an hour and gated her in the kitchen and she chewed the wall. I left her with 3 of her favorite toys by the way, yet she chose the wall to chew. Having a guardian that has to be crated when no one home really makes me sad. If someone did break in or something and shes barking in a cage, it would be a joke to them. Also, I just dont like keeping her couped in such a cramped space for long periods of time. I worry about her whenever I leave b/c I feel bad she cant stretch out and run around, even with an XL size cage. Is it still too early? Or do I have the right to start getting worried that there will be a permanent problem? What should I do?

Out of curiosity, what breed of dog do you own?

Anyway, my husband and I own three American Pit Bull Terriers. A 1 year 6 month old male, an 11 month old female and a 9 month old female. All three of them are wonderful dogs! They have been properly trained and socialized, and they are all very well behaved. We have always put them in their crates at night to sleep, but we use to doggy proof the house and leave them out in the house when when went somewhere. We don't do that anymore though! All three of them do, and always have, had horrible separation anxiety. I am a stay at home pet parent , so I'm home with them pretty much all day everyday, it's not like they sit in their crates all day or anything like that! And when we do go out somewhere we aren't gone for longer than a few hours, unless we take our dogs with us. If we leave our dogs out of their crates they will chew up anything and everything they can get! Doggy proofing the house doesn't help at all! They chewed up sofas, chairs, tables, cabinets, rugs and even tried to dig through the front door! Putting them up in their crates doesn't help with the anxiety I'm sure, but it does keep them from hurting themselves and destroying our house and everything in it! I'm not sure what to tell you to do about the anxiety, I'm not sure how much there really is that you can do. Our vet has suggested that we give our pups some Benadryl so that they will relax and sleep the whole time we are gone, but even with the Benadryl we still wouldn't leave them out of their crates if we weren't there to watch them. Just to be safe.

One thing that I have heard helps is for you to go out for a just a minute and then come back in, but when you come back in you have to ignore your dog, that way she doesn't think of you leaving and coming back as a big deal. You have to leave and come back like that over and over and over again, each time leaving for a little while longer. You have to do this for a while every day for as many days as it takes for her to not freak out when you leave and come home. I'm not sure if that would work, we have never tried it, but I think I might start doing that with our pups. Even if it would just help a little, it would be worth it to us!

As far as you being worried about your pup being cramped up in a crate all day, I honestly wouldn't worry about that if I were you. As long as she's not in her crate for more than 6-7 hours a day she is fine. Dogs sleep for most of the day anyway, so the only difference is that she's sleeping in her crate instead of somewhere else. As long as she gets plenty of daily exercise, like a nice walk before she goes in her crate and when she comes out of her crate, she would be fine in her crate during the day. Also, her crate only needs to be big enough for her to stand up and turn around comfortably. Crates are supposed to be pretty small because it's like their den. Dogs are den animals and their den should be like a safe place for them.

I have to say that if you want protection I would suggest an alarm system. I don't expect my dogs to "protect" me or my home, it's really my job to protect my dogs and my home, seeing as how I am the "pack leader". My dogs would, and have, protected me, but I would protect them in a heart beat. I hope you don't take this the wrong way, I'm just very against having a dog for protection.

Anyway, I hope this helps some. Good luck!
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Old 10-24-2007, 09:15 PM
 
Location: charlotte, nc
273 posts, read 1,214,181 times
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oh I'm sorry, I had just finished writing my intro thread where I stated what breed she was that I totally forgot to include that here haha. She is a doberman and greyhound mix. She is definitely comfortable in her crate, able to stand, turn around, and such. I guess if and until she proves she can be left alone, then crating her is the only choice while we're not home. I am in the same situation as you right now where I spend most of my day at home with her. I believe that is part of the problem. If she was used to us both being gone more often for longer periods of time, maybe she wouldnt miss us so much. I spend probably 14-18 hours a day in direct contact with her at home, so she is obviously very attached. I guess there will just be a transition as I reenter the normal workforce where I'll be gone longer and she'll have to get used to that in her crate first. Also, I did not take offense to the protection comment, in fact I think I gave the wrong idea. I don't mean to say I got a dog for protection, and I like to think I am the pack leader as well. I just meant that often her instinct is to protect the house naturally, which is an added perk to having her out (moreso when my girlfriend is home alone). My natural self defense ability along with the 38 I keep by my bed is all I need

anyways hopefully like I said as I start spending less time with her, she will learn to not get so freaked out. It is actually probably not healthy to spend so much time with her. She will probably spend around 10 hours while I'm at work in the crate, but I also exercise her 2 hours a day (in the morning and late afternoon walks and playtime) Speaking of, shes gotten so fast my eyes can barely keep up with her!! Shes only 9 months and constantly leaves playmates in the dust. And the agility is insane. Maybe I can put it to good use.
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Old 10-24-2007, 10:26 PM
 
Location: St. Augustine, Florida
1,930 posts, read 9,458,381 times
Reputation: 1022
Quote:
Originally Posted by jadedSOUL83 View Post
oh I'm sorry, I had just finished writing my intro thread where I stated what breed she was that I totally forgot to include that here haha. She is a doberman and greyhound mix. She is definitely comfortable in her crate, able to stand, turn around, and such. I guess if and until she proves she can be left alone, then crating her is the only choice while we're not home. I am in the same situation as you right now where I spend most of my day at home with her. I believe that is part of the problem. If she was used to us both being gone more often for longer periods of time, maybe she wouldnt miss us so much. I spend probably 14-18 hours a day in direct contact with her at home, so she is obviously very attached. I guess there will just be a transition as I reenter the normal workforce where I'll be gone longer and she'll have to get used to that in her crate first. Also, I did not take offense to the protection comment, in fact I think I gave the wrong idea. I don't mean to say I got a dog for protection, and I like to think I am the pack leader as well. I just meant that often her instinct is to protect the house naturally, which is an added perk to having her out (moreso when my girlfriend is home alone). My natural self defense ability along with the 38 I keep by my bed is all I need

anyways hopefully like I said as I start spending less time with her, she will learn to not get so freaked out. It is actually probably not healthy to spend so much time with her. She will probably spend around 10 hours while I'm at work in the crate, but I also exercise her 2 hours a day (in the morning and late afternoon walks and playtime) Speaking of, shes gotten so fast my eyes can barely keep up with her!! Shes only 9 months and constantly leaves playmates in the dust. And the agility is insane. Maybe I can put it to good use.
I just saw you other thread where you introduced your fur babies! They are both adorable!

I don't remember if I said this or not yet (I'm sure I did ), but my husband and I own three APBTs. APBTs were not bred for guarding, they were bred to fight dogs and to be extremely loyal, stable, trustworthy and human friendly! Normally APBTs do not make good guard dogs because of their natural love of humans, even complete strangers, but they are known for having an uncanny ability to know when someone or something is truly a threat or not and they are known for giving heir lives to protect their owners. My fur babies have protected me before and I know that they would again if they needed to. I know that it's instinct for dogs to protect their loved ones and I definitely don't have a problem with that! lol! Like you said, it's like an added bonus! But I definitely would never get a dog just for protection and I would probably protect my pups from protecting me if they were in a situation where they could get seriously hurt or killed. I wouldn't say I'm an especially brave person by any means, but my dogs are like my babies and as crazy as it may sound to some people, it would just be my first reaction to protect them, you know? But yeah, I see where you are coming from now, I guess I just misunderstood what you were saying, sorry about that! I agree though, I love knowing that my dogs would protect me if they had to, especially when my husband has to go out of town for work for a week or two at a time! But again, if there was anyway I could, I would protect my dogs just like they would protect me.

The anxiety your pup is having sounds like a pretty normal thing to me, the fact that you are home all the time like I am explains a lot. I'm sure as your pup gets a bit older and gets adjusted to being home alone during the day, everything will work out fine. I would assume that most dogs are home alone while their owners work, you know? To make everything less stressful on you and your pup, it might be a good idea to start working with her on the whole leaving and coming back thing. Now that you brought all of this up I have decided that I'm going to start working with my pups tomorrow morning! All three of ours still have horrible separation anxiety and I really want then to get over it some while they are still pretty young. Our females, Destiny and Jayda are still very young, Jayda is 11 months and Destiny is 9 months. But Brooklyn is really more of an adult dog now, he's already 1 year 6 months! Time really flies! It seems like just yesterday Brooklyn was 8 weeks old!

Okay, well I have to go let the pups out to go potty and get to bed, but again, good luck with everything! I'm sure it will all work out just fine! OH! By the way, I LOVE Dobies! Besides the three "pit bull" breeds, Dobies are one of my absolute favorite breeds! My grandmother bred Dobies for years, my mom grew up with Dobies and I have wanted a Dobie since I was old enough to know what they were! lol! We were originally going to get a Dobie, but all three of our APBTs kind of found us. After owning APBTs I have to say that they are by far my favorite breed, but Dobies are definitely at the top of the list! They are wonderful dogs! Greyhounds are wonderful dogs as well! Your dog must be a sweet heart!
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Old 10-25-2007, 05:32 AM
miu
 
Location: MA/NH
17,099 posts, read 34,528,599 times
Reputation: 16145
I've heard that smart dogs are much worse with separation anxiety. I wonder if you give your puppy a treat before you leave the house, like a kong with frozen peanut butter, your dog will then associate your leaving with good things. What toys does your puppy have to chew on? Lastly, your puppy might do better with another as company, even an older shelter dog.
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Old 10-25-2007, 06:05 AM
 
Location: Florida
1,738 posts, read 7,496,855 times
Reputation: 665
Quote:
Originally Posted by miu View Post
I've heard that smart dogs are much worse with separation anxiety. I wonder if you give your puppy a treat before you leave the house, like a kong with frozen peanut butter, your dog will then associate your leaving with good things. What toys does your puppy have to chew on? Lastly, your puppy might do better with another as company, even an older shelter dog.
that's what we did!!!!! We made the crate awesome!!!!!! ...it's also a "awesome" time-out
My dog is VERY SMARt and use to have anxiety. the way we fixed it was put him in his crate while we were home w/ a treat and the minute he didn't fuss we would let him out w/ another treat ...kinda taught him that quiet is good!!!!!!!!!!
Also, maybe your baby needs a job(agility???), sounds very smart.

We also use to wear out our codys brain by shaping ...this will sound crazy.
get anything(soup can, box, chair, stool, ball, picture frame,etc.) and put it infront of doggie. Once doggie shows interest you click(or praise and treat), then you start getting specific ...like w/ a box touch a certain side and wait for doggie too touch that side w/ his nose, foot, leg, whatever(you might have to touch the side a few times at first) and click and treat when he does. Then touch the other side and click and treat when doggie does ...this is teaching the dog to figure things out.
I usually say "what's this" and then say "yes" when he touches what I just touched(we don't use a clicker anymore). I've gotten him to roll things across the house. I taught him to put laundry in the hamper like this and I use to do this before we left so his brain was to fried to get anxiety. We don't shape much anymore, but he is calm w/ us leaving because we practiced calm behavior!!!!!
most dogs catch on quick and it's a good bonding tool.
You can shape a recall or a sit at the door.

A website could probably explain it better then me.

We now shape everything!!!
the idea is, good things happen when you pay attention.

The Shape of Shaping: Some Historical Notes | Karen Pryor Clickertraining
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Old 10-25-2007, 06:46 AM
miu
 
Location: MA/NH
17,099 posts, read 34,528,599 times
Reputation: 16145
That shaping technique looks very interesting. Thanks for posting the link!
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Old 10-26-2007, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Branson Area
880 posts, read 2,580,521 times
Reputation: 710
Default sep. syndrome

Having a dog w/separation sydrome is tough. We've faced it twice. If puppies are removed from their mothers too soon (before 12 weeks) or if they are put into a non-personal contact shelter it can often occur. Any breed can display symptoms according to our vet (and some books). '

In the first case, we got another dog. They provided company for each other and the problem went away. We made sure they had stuff to do when we were gone and tried give them some amount of exercise before we left for work.

It took alot of patience with our second case. We crate trained her and we took turns coming home from work every hour or so to play with her, let her out for potty, etc. We also EXERCISED the heck out of her before we left her in the crate. I mean exercise for 1-2 hours (yes...we got up really early) of walking, running, and playing ball. Then we came home every few hours and played with her again. Alot of exercise after work too. Dogs seem to get into trouble when they have unspent energy.

We also ensured she had lots of stuff to do. Kong's stuffed with peanut butter, toys that required she exercise her brain to get treats, etc. We also didn't punish her when she did chew something, we just gave her something else to do.

We also did the leave 1 minute and come back to play with her. Leave 5 minutes, come back., leave 15 minutes and come back, etc. It took us about a year to feel really comfortable leaving her alone. Also no "poor baby...I know you don't want to be alone"...no sympathetic voices. Just do what you need to do and leave. Be matter of fact about the whole thing....If she had done something during the little "practice trips" we ignored it and got her attention onto something else. Dogs are amazingly smart at knowing when you feel bad and play on it.

Good luck...it's tough.
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Old 10-26-2007, 08:22 PM
 
Location: Florida
1,738 posts, read 7,496,855 times
Reputation: 665
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrschilicook View Post
Having a dog w/separation sydrome is tough. We've faced it twice. If puppies are removed from their mothers too soon (before 12 weeks) or if they are put into a non-personal contact shelter it can often occur. Any breed can display symptoms according to our vet (and some books). '

In the first case, we got another dog. They provided company for each other and the problem went away. We made sure they had stuff to do when we were gone and tried give them some amount of exercise before we left for work.

It took alot of patience with our second case. We crate trained her and we took turns coming home from work every hour or so to play with her, let her out for potty, etc. We also EXERCISED the heck out of her before we left her in the crate. I mean exercise for 1-2 hours (yes...we got up really early) of walking, running, and playing ball. Then we came home every few hours and played with her again. Alot of exercise after work too. Dogs seem to get into trouble when they have unspent energy.

We also ensured she had lots of stuff to do. Kong's stuffed with peanut butter, toys that required she exercise her brain to get treats, etc. We also didn't punish her when she did chew something, we just gave her something else to do.

We also did the leave 1 minute and come back to play with her. Leave 5 minutes, come back., leave 15 minutes and come back, etc. It took us about a year to feel really comfortable leaving her alone. Also no "poor baby...I know you don't want to be alone"...no sympathetic voices. Just do what you need to do and leave. Be matter of fact about the whole thing....If she had done something during the little "practice trips" we ignored it and got her attention onto something else. Dogs are amazingly smart at knowing when you feel bad and play on it.

Good luck...it's tough.
yeppp-o she's right!

Also do not pay attention when you come in.
We ignored cody totally for about a year.
Now i can come in and he waits patiently and once i have my stuff put away I get on the floor and he jumps into my arms.

rescues are tricky, but all dogs are tricky at first. Also some dogs speak differently then others. It might take one training session w/ a good trainer to figure out how the dogs brain works and then Bingo, you know how to fix all your dogs problems. Our dog is attention driven, so treat and toys are fun, but a good wrestle for a sit works jsut as well. He also likes to learn, so we ask him lots of questions and teach him daily.
it's kinda fun ...like having a two year old who doesn't poop his pants
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