Behavior change

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by 628BJ, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. 628BJ

    628BJ New Member

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    I have an 11 yr old standard Dachshund that has been using a dog door since arriving at my house at 8 weeks old. He has no known health issues (vet checkup 1x per year).

    Recently he has started balking at coming in the dog door. I'm not sure if it's a game or if he's having some physical issue with the door. With enough encouragement or the right incentive he goes through, but increasingly he just stands on the other side and barks. Or sticks only his head through and barks.

    Nothing else in his routine has changed. I've inspected the dog door and it is working perfectly with no sharp edges or other apparent defects. I'm concerned that winter is coming and if he refuses to enter the house while I'm at work he could become quite uncomfortable in the Colorado winter.

    Anyone have ideas on how to understand this change in behavior?

    Thanks for any thoughts on this puzzle!
     
  2. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    Is he acting unusual in any other way? Slower to get up, hesitant to use stairs or get on furniture, etc? If he hasn't vet a check really recently, I'd bring him in.

    11 is when issues can start to pop up, and dachshunds are known for back problems.

    As far as him coming in and out while you're at work....unless you work exceptionally long hours or he has an incontinence problem, I don't see why he would have to go out while you're at work. Most dogs can hold it for 8 hours at a time with no problem. If he can't, you can try a belly band.
     
  3. BostonBanker

    BostonBanker Active Member

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    I'd definitely be looking at something physical. I had a friend who was having issue with their dog going through the chute in agility (probably a similar motion to opening a dog door), and it turned out to be a neck and back issue that went away when treated. Can you leave the door propped open when you are home for a bit to see if he'll go through the hole as long as he doesn't have to move the door himself?

    I'd definitely consider a check-up at the vet or with a chiro.
     
  4. 628BJ

    628BJ New Member

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    We haven't noticed any other changes. Oddly, he will push open the door and get his head in the house--and then bark.

    He's been a pretty odd dog compared to our other dachshunds. For many years he has been frightened of going down stairs. Given where his center of gravity lies this didn't seem odd and we've been carrying him down stairs since he was 3. However, if I've gone down the steps to get him a treat, suddenly the stairs are fine. He's down them in a flash. If I'm asking him to go down the 3 steps for a walk, a ride in the car or something else he likes, he balks and refuses.

    Now he has a similar approach to the dog door. Sometimes he goes right through, sometimes he carries on barking and whining for a few minutes but when I give the command 'inside' he comes through immediately. Other times he balks at the door and I cannot get him to come through for treats, dinner or any other enticement.

    Does that still sound like a physical issue?
     

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