Going insane, PLEASEEEE help me

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Apollonaro, Oct 9, 2004.

  1. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    In another thread i had informed you of Apollo's pooping in the house after the smell. We've stopped that. He started to pee and we stopped that too. But now this is ridiculous. his Seperation anixiety is getting worse. I let him outside before i leave, and i leave all the lights on, the computer on, the stereo on, the fish light on everything to give the impression that i am still here. He was fine for a while but now it's starting to get so frustrating that im going crazy. It's hard NOT to be mad at him! I give him a hug and a kiss and tell him he's a good boy EVERYTIME i come home and since i lost my car, i have to use my mom's car and she doesnt want him in the backseat because he sheds.........So! We have to leave him home, he started to bark.. and bark and bark and whine nad bark and eventualy i bought him a nylon muzzle to wear for the short period im gone every day just to pick up steve at night. He's fine during the day when i leave him but at night when i go to get him hell breaks loose. My little hell-dog SOMEHOW.. Not sure how, dug the HELL out of the basement couch. I put the cushions up becuase that's how i liket hem when i am there and when i cam back they are knocked all over the place like a 2 year old had a birthday party. And then there it was, the GIANT POO!!!! He'd been out like i said JUST before i left and over 10 times today becuase he'd been begging to go outside and he crapped every time. Im starting to think it's due to the fact i leave him at home and he's doig it out of spite i can't take much more of this can someone PLEASE help me break the Anxiety? I'm losing my mind!!!
     
  2. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    I think maybe it's time for crate training. He's definitely training YOU right now. Time to turn that around.

    The crate's not for punishment, but a haven for him to retreat to when you're gone. You need some good advice from someone who's familiar with crate training, as I am not. Brattina comes to mind . . .
     
  3. bogolove

    bogolove New Member

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    I crate trained Brady and it was worth it. I do have a fenced in back yard for him during the day while I am at work, but he sleeps in his crate at night. He willingly goes in there. you can't put them in there for punishment though. It HAS to be positively reinforced or it will never work. i give Brady a treat still to this day every time he goes in there. Sometimes if we are just going to the store or something, he will go in there if he does not feel like going outside, because I still don't necessarily trust him alone in the house yet. He gets a hold of shoes and important papers so i would still rather him have supervision. But crate training is wonderful and has really worked well, if I didn't crate train him he would have been out of control. I highly recommend it, but as I said make sure you make it a positive experience. Put a nice blanket in there with a good chew toy (or two) so your dog does not get bored and then when you put him in give him a treat he really likes and tell him good dog. Now I just tell Brady to go to bed and he walks in there and waits for his treat. sometimes he just goes in there to sleep too on his own. Let me know how he does.
     
  4. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    I'd happily leave apollo outside, we too have a fenced yard. But he barks as if he's being brutalized when he's left outside alone. He also digs underneath fences and can climb them. He escaped from my aunts fenced in yard becuase Steve and I went inside. So we figured if we left him INSIDE with some familiarities of what i normally do when im there then he'd be okay. uhm. WRONG lol.... The only time he'd be going in the crate is when we leave and there's nobody here to watch him. So it wouldn't be for punishment, like i said, hes not pooping on the floor anymore while we're right there but now he's doing it for spite LOL. he's like "You wanna leave me here alone? I'll crap on the rug so u get to pick it up" and he's a dustpan dog... meaning my pooper scooper is an old dustpan lol, im sure you can relate renee, you've got rather large doggies urself!!
    I'm going to go to a few different pet stores when i get a chance and try and find the best price. The stores around here are so strange. Some don't even know diddley squat about animals! I just want this craziness to end before im admitted into the psychiactric ward. My personal profile will say "Lost mind do to doggy seperation anxiety" lol. Thanks for your help i'll keep you updated as we go along.
     
  5. RD

    RD Are you dead yet?

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    Ahhhh sounds like fun. Two words for you.

    CRATE HIM.

    He is bored and getting destructive. IMO the kindest and safest thing you can do for him is to stuff a kong for him, and crate him when you leave. He can freak out and bark and dig all he wants in the crate, he'll realize that it's NO fun at all and just relax. It also helps if you turn a TV on for him while you're gone so it's not just eerie silence, in a metal cage.

    He will bark in the crate, no doubt about it, but if either of these is a possibility, there won't be a problem:
    1.) Inside the house, he won't be loud enough to disturb any neighbors
    2.) He might bark himself hoarse, where all he will be able to do is rasp, and you will barely be able to hear him. (Dakota did this)
     
  6. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    Well then i guess there's only one thing for me to do and that's to buy a crate
    How much are they canadian prices. I'd probably need a large crate, he's 50lbs. I'll be buying one next wednesday when the money rollllls in lol
     
  7. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    I'd suggest doing some homework on the internet looking at crate designs and different prices. That way you'll have some idea of what you're looking at and won't be at the mercy of a sales clerk without a clue. ;)
     
  8. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    I wouldn't trust the sales clerks in this city for the life of me. Whenever you ask them a question, especially the young ones, they are like "uhhhhhmmm Hmmmm let me get someone who can help you" what the heck, ur supposed to be able to help me! They don't hire you to mingle with the other co-workers and have chats about whos' hot or not at highschool. Blah... Last night, we took apollo to my friends house, that way someone could watch him while her and I went to the movies which was a beautiful break for me LOL then we met up at a local coffee shop and all hell broke loose. I thought Apollo would be okay cause normally he is if you can see him through a window he doesn't do much damage except for bark excessively NOT THIS TIME!!! HE chewed in a STRAIGHT LINE right through her seat belt!
    her boyfriend had to sit in the back with me becuase if we were to have gotten into an accident the little threads that were left would have resulted in him going through the windsheild, so thanks to my canine's anxiety disorder, i am now out more money that i don't really have to replace a seat belt in my friends car! I'm almost considering building him a fence down in the basement, lining the walls with rubber padding and putting padding on the floor as well and then electrifying everything else. I'm just kidding i'd never do that.
    He's like a little dinosaur, im sure you all know how tightly knit seat belts are... i would have figured if he chewed through it, it would have been in a jagged line! It wasn't... It was straight like it had been cut, that's scary, im glad he's docile and wouldn't bite any of us.
     
  9. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    It sounds like you've got a potential tyrant on your hands. :eek: I'm going to strongly suggest that you find a copy of either the training books or video from the Monks of New Skete. If there's a used bookstore near you that's a good place to start. They're available over the internet, too, form the website.

    Apollo's going to keep testing your limits. That's not to say he's not a wonderful, loving, lovable little creature, he's just going to be a handful, but the ones that try us and "prove" the relationship are often the most rewarding.
     
  10. RD

    RD Are you dead yet?

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    Hmm.. I think in Canadian $ it would be about $100 for a large crate. I'm not sure, I got mine on eBay for $50 and a small cow would fit inside. If I would have gotten it from petco or another pet store, it would have cost me hundreds.

    UHHHHH stupid sales clerks? Hmm.. Maybe like the one I encountered today at petsmart. I asked them if they carried pinch collars in small sizes (Ripley needs a collar that won't hurt the vertebrae in his neck if he pulls on it) and she said "We have pinch collars!"
    So I said: "Do you have small, lightweight ones for a small dog?" And she said "Yeah, there are pinch collars over here."
    So, we get over there, and she shows me a CHECK CHAIN! :rolleyes: :rolleyes:
    And I tell her that the check chain is NOT a pinch collar. She asked what a pinch collar was, and I figured that maybe they called it a "prong collar" there so I told her that.. Well, of course, she didn't know.
    Sooooo, she says "oh ok let me find someone who knows what that is." I just told her "forget it" and looked for it myself. All they had were the super heavy huge ones that would be too large for even a rottweiler. :rolleyes:

    If petsmart hires these people as clerks to HELP the customers, shouldn't they at least know what a pinch collar is? Sheeeeesh.
     
  11. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    I totally agree with you Rips girl. They are just hiring anyone who walks in off the streets, but if you DO have the qualifications then chances are you won't get a job..

    I've realised that all this psychotic behaviour started AS SOON as he got his neuter. That's when he started going to the bathroom inside the house as if he weren't house trained, that's when he started to nip people if he got too excited, before the operation if we played with him he would push us with his nose. that was his symbol of either "this is fun" or "i've had enough" but now he bites, and he's a little strong.... he's also developed his pulling habits twice as hard as before. My aunt's son really took a liking to him. He had to put his spring spaniel down not to long ago which he's had for something like 15-17 years. His old dog could READ paper, open cupboard doors and count. For real. It's incredible to see a dog read lol. I am starting to think that maybe i'm not experienced enough to try and get him out of this habit, and he needs someone with a little bit more experience becuase he's been in a bad family before obviously. I'm good at training puppies, but i can't seem to make an impression on apollo. now matter HOW much i yell at the pee stain on the wall. I love him with all my heart, but im wondering if maybe i should put him in the hands of someone that would be able to get him out of his habits. I want what's best for him, and i know that seeing us get frustrated (me and steve) Because of his sudden behavioral change must be hard on Apollo. I know that Bill would be able to give him a very strong education, not to mention he lives out in the country on a huge farm apollo would have a hay day. I'm starting to consider it and then waiting a while and maybe consider buying a puppy and start from scratch. Definately not right away.... What should i do? Should i spend alot of money on obedience and training and what-not that's not even 100% Guaranteed to help his problem? Or should i put him in the hands of someone who knows what to do.
     
  12. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    Regardless of what your decision is with Apollo, I'm still going to suggest that you invest the money (relatively a small amount) in the Monks of New Skete training information. I've seen amazing results happen for people using it, and even if you do end up with a puppy, the knowledge you gain from it will make things so much easier.

    If your nephew is genuinely attached to Apollo, it might be something to consider; just be sure, since it's so soon after losing his long-time companion, that it's permanent. Apollo doesn't need to be re-homed yet again, and I know it would break your heart to think of that happening to him. It's a tough decision. My best friend had to let Carter, her Cocker Spaniel, live with her sister. My friend had to move, and her new home has no fence, and there will be clients coming in and out, which would make Carter crazy since he's a little overprotective. I'd've taken him myself, but he'd just be coyote bait out here, not to mention he tries to fight with Bimmer . . . :rolleyes:
     
  13. Brattina88

    Brattina88 Active Member

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    Most puppies and some dogs experience a high level of anxiety when left alone. Most dogs gain confidence and get over this 'anxiety', but some dogs, for various reasons, do not gain confidence in themselves. Some dogs are left alone too long when they are puppies and they become traumatized by the event. Many canines are 'spoiled' when they're young and 'freak out' when they're older and the schedual changes. Other dogs are neglected or abused and therefore have a low self-esteem. These dogs can be bounced around from owner to owner and usually end up in an animal shelter. After they are adopted to well-meaning people they can still carry their low self-esteem and exhibit their learned behavior of separation anxiety. Other dogs for unknown reasons have a low tolerance for anxiety. Some say this is caused by genetics or horomones. And lastly, any dog can become traumatized unbeknownst to their "people" by some event and can spontaneously begin to experience separation anxiety.
    All of these types of dogs can show profound anxiety when being left alone, or simply out of eye-sight of their "people." The process of teaching them self-confidence and the ability to entertain themselves can be time consuming and requires a lot of patience and positive reinforcement. Here's how to do it:
    Begin by changing your "leaving" routine. Dogs that exhibit separation anxiety usually begin to get anxious long before you walk out the door. Most people have a set "leaving" routine that they go through before leaving the house. They put their shoes on, close the windows, lock the doors, jingle the car keys, etc. Dogs learn this routine very quickly and if they already get anxious from being left alone, this long, drawn out "leaving" routine can make matters worse.

    When you leave the house, do so promptly. When you leave, say "Take care of the house." Don't make a big deal out of leaving, just start to teach them a phrase that means, "I'll be gone, but I'll be back." Then, when you leave, turn around and come back in after about 30 seconds to 1 minute. When you come home::: Say hello to your dog in a low-key manner and go about your day. You need to be low-key so that you teach your dog to be low-key! If you are overly anxious about leaving or coming home you will be conditioning your dog to be anxious as well.
    A lot of people make the mistake of making the reunion (coming home after a days work or something) a huge deal. Apologizing, rejoicing, or greeting the dog animated-like is a bad idea. Let the dog outside and wait a couple minutes before petting your dog a lot (Low-Key!)
    Dogs are social animals, and any dog that spends 8-10 hours a day, everyday all alone may begin to exhibit obsessive behaviors that may or may not develop into separation anxiety. A dog that experiences separation anxiety usually does his damage as soon as (or very shortly after) you leave the house. A dog that is bored and lonely will become destructive after a few hours (usually 4-6) of being left alone. If you feel your dog is bored, read "Obsessive Behaviors" for some ideas.
    Another great confidence builder for dogs is any type of doggie or obediance classes. Even if the dog heeds your commands the socail interaction between you, other people and your dog benifit him greatly; as well as the leader position it gives you.

    Here's a good starter link for crate training
    Crate Training
    Crate training dogs (over 6 months old) Often problem behaviors in this age group result from the pet feeling insecure when left alone

    And a final note: I see dogs day in and day out that have 'seperation anxiety' problems. Most are juggled home to home because the owners think a new owner will somehow better handle the situation and be better for the dog and most are ultimitly put down. If you can't handle or can't un-train what your dog has trained you then what makes you think another person will? Lets face it: People are lazy. You see animal abuse/neglect everyday on TV I bet. The best person you can count on is yourself ;)
    They may think the same as you (someone else will be better for the dog), the dog will be juggled in and out of homes, the problem will worsen and theres a possibility he will be put down for his behaivior that can be stopped with a little work/training now.
    (Not that I'm bashing you or your nephew or anything! ;) )

    ****a lot of the seperation anxiety info was quoted/loosely quoted from http://www.doggiedoor.com/sepanx.shtml
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2004
  14. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    Thank you Brattina, that was very helpful to me. I've tried the leave alone tactic, it worked for a little while then he became very anxious again. Ever since his surgery, all his training and all the progress he's made since the adoption just went to poop! One upper is that we've started to get him to play with us, he acts liek he's enver been played with, he spins so fast in circles that he digs up the carpet LOL. Then he jumps wags his tail, licks you, then playfully bites your hand. He has around a 10 minute rule, "if ur not back in ten minutes im going to destroy the house". I do'nt want to get rid of him despite WHO likes him. He's my dog and me and my fiance are the ones that have invested our time and money into trying to make him happy. I know we've left an impint if he loves us enough to jump at our every move, tail wagging, tongue hanging out of mouth. It's just hard. I dont currently have a job so i'm here all the time nad he sucks and mopes around the house cuase his daddy is gone lol. he's never alone for more than 2 hours at a time. If even that! it's just starting to get out of control. Hey Renee, is that training "Monks of new skete" avaliable in pet stores or do i have to order it online?
     
  15. Renee750il

    Renee750il Felurian

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    I've seen it available in some bookstores, and if it's not in your pet store, they'd probably be glad to order it for you.

    You sound like you're a little less discouraged now. I know you had to be at your wits' end to consider letting your nephew take Apollo.
     
  16. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    I think witts end was an understatement lol, i was too the bloody point where i would bite my fingernails looking at him with my hair in a mess trying to figure out what happened to him. I'm less discouraged now becuase he's not a dummy and he knows that when i said "I might have to take him to bill" He completely changed. Our basement smells like dog pee which means he's done it other times nad i haven't been able to catch it which ALSO means i've got to rent a carpet cleaner to get the odor out lol cause i've got no idea where the odor is coming from. I guess i'm less discouraged, honestly, because of you guys. You've helped me before with his little problems even though they were minor as opposed to this. I'm still a little confused as to why it all started happening when he got neutured but hey, only god knows that one. A big problem is the pulling, a close friend of mine lives in a basement of someone elses house, it's a duplex. And Apollo ran full tilt down the stairs, knocking steve off his balance who fell and hit a picture on the wall that ALSO fell (that belonged to the owners of the duplex) and unless it was for me and my cat-like reflexes the picture would have went smashy smashy. To control his pulling, do you think it is a good idea to maybe by a halti or something? he's got a strong neck, i just think he'd pull against it, i'd really like to find a way to stop his pulling. he won't pull with me because i pull back and give him the special word "Don't pull!" And he stops and walks along with me but as soon as steve grabs the leash, he's outta here lol
     
  17. RD

    RD Are you dead yet?

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    I'd say 'NOOOO' to the halti, personally. I have a halti for Dakota, and I use it only to help direct his attention towards ME, and to keep him from picking things up on the sidewalk.
    Regardless of whether or not Apollo has a strong neck, a dog running to the end of a leash on a halti will hurt himself, because the halti turns the head back toward you. So, when he runs to the end of the leash, he will be swung around by his nose to face you again.
    If I were to use any training collar on a strong dog that pulls, I would use a pinch collar. It won't press against his trachea like a flat collar or a check chain will, and it won't yank his neck around. You can actually be gentler on the dog with a pinch collar than you can with a check chain or flat collar.
     
  18. Brattina88

    Brattina88 Active Member

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    I'm glad I could help :D
    What age was he when he got neutered? I've personally never had a problem with this sudden of a behavior change with the nuter, but that doesn't mean it never happens! Some dogs are sensitive to surgeries in general - I'd be a little curious about the vet and if he has different methods or something. Maybe your dog picked a great time to be in his 'terrible twos' (personally, working in a Day Care 3yr olds are 'worse' hahaha :p )
    Raising dogs is harder than people think. I really hope that we can help you get through this and things work out for the best!
    It sounds like him never being alone because you don't work is the problem. Not working can benefit you for the time being because you can wean your dog off of you; which needs to be done especially if a job is in your future!
    Check your local library for that book. My library carries it, and they hardly have any books so there's a possibility yours can. That way you can check out it (nothings better than free!) and renew it (I do that online ALL the time) whenever you want. Great stuff, libraries... :rolleyes:

    Here's a plan I stole (again) off of the website I posted above:
    The first day, you will leave and come back about a dozen times. Each time you leave, increase the time you are gone: 1 minute, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, etc. Any time you come home and your dog was exhibiting his anxious behavior (chewing, barking, etc.) cut the time you leave in half next time. If he's still experiencing separation anxiety, cut your time in half again! Once your dog is no longer anxious, start increasing the times again.
    Then repeat this again the following weekend, varying the time you are gone. Leave for 30 minutes, then for 5 minutes, then for 10 minutes, then for 2 hours, etc. Also, read "What to do with a Chewing Puppy" for some ideas about keeping your dog occupied with a Kong toy when you leave

    -I've actually never heard of that book lol :p
     
  19. Apollonaro

    Apollonaro New Member

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    he just got neutured this september, he's 1 and a half years old.

    as for the pinch collar, im just scared to walk into a pet store and find someone that actually knows what they are. I've heard of them but i don't have enough friends that have dogs so i've never physically seen one or used one myself and with the education of the sales staff in this city. I think there should be a Chazhound store! Make it like a big ordeal, and only have the finest employees there are and make sure and give them a college worthy test about animals to make sure they even remotely qualify for a position in sales. That way i'd feel a little bit more confident going into a pet store lol. i'll go look at pinch chains tommorrow. I'm sure my friend Tamara can get me one, she's one of the few decent educated people who actually learned about animals further in college she took some preperatory course to learn abou tthem and now she works for 'pet paradise' So yeah!

    I'll definately be back and forth to tell you more about what he does and what he's doing and what he's not doing anymore.
    here's a new update already: Steve nad I just wen tot the store, and someone had locked apollo in the basement after we left. And we came back and there was no noise until we walked passed the door that's when he started to whine. and we went down and there was no pee or poopy on the floor and i did what i learned on here and just gave him a casual "Hello Apollo" and a little pet before i walked away from him. It was funny actually, he just sort of stood there and looked at me and cocked his head before following me down the stairs loll
     

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