Puppy born with mental issues?

Discussion in 'The Breeding Ground' started by dogsarebetter, Oct 5, 2009.

  1. dogsarebetter

    dogsarebetter EVIL SHELTIES!!!!

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,999
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    7 (3 rabbits, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a duck!)
    Location:
    kentucky
    Isnt it possible to be born with issues? Before I got Ruckus the breeder did tell me that he wasnt one for snuggling, and he was a shy puppy.

    I got Ruckus at 4 months old. He wouldnt move for the first two days I got him. wouldnt play, eat, or even walk around. he just laid in the corner. I pretty well left him alone to give him time to adjust.

    I socialized the snot out of this puppy to try to get him out of his shell. And you couldnt tell he had been socialized!

    Fast forward two years. Ruckus had aggression issues, NEVER once wagged his tail, and was scared of many many things. After a few vet visits we put him on Amitriptyline, and he is now a different dog. He plays, comes up to strangers in the dog park for attention, wags his tail, etc.

    Has anyone else ever heard of a similar case? I am wondering that something didnt happen when he was a puppy! Or if its possible to just be born like that? How common is it for a puppy to be born with a chemical imbalance or the like?

    Is it genetic?
     
  2. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Messages:
    10,234
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Olympia, WA
    Definitely possible. I've met dogs that apparently could see things that no one else could, and had serious fear/aggresion problems that were like that from birth. One individual was born to a good breeder, and ended up being kept by the breeder her whole life. Her problems were serious enough the breeder didn't want to let her go to anyone, but at the same time they weren't bad enough to warrant putting her to sleep. The breeder did everything like you, tried socializing her a ton, and when that didn't work she simply led a sheltered, safe and pleasant life as a house pet for the person who brought her into the world.

    The person who bred her told me that the mother and siblings and father of the litter all had stellar temperaments, but the breeder did find out later on that the lines behind the sire were known for throwing an occasional dog with an "off" temperament. I think it's a hereditary mental illness thing in that specific case. Everybody is fine except for the few affected individuals. Needless to say, that person doesn't breed into those lines any more.

    Ruckus is your problem barker right? I wonder if those underlying mental issues are causing him to be more reactive/barky than an average sheltie would be. At any rate he's lucky to have you.
     
  3. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2006
    Messages:
    30,965
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    a lot
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Home Page:
    Ruckus sounds a lot like Trey. I am pretty convinced something just wasn't wired right for Trey either.
     
  4. dogsarebetter

    dogsarebetter EVIL SHELTIES!!!!

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,999
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    7 (3 rabbits, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a duck!)
    Location:
    kentucky
    thanks for the replies. I figured that Ruckus barking may be linked to his issues. poor guy will never be %100 right! But I am so glad we have came this far. It saddens me to know that he will probably be medicated the rest of his life.
     
  5. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2004
    Messages:
    55,144
    Likes Received:
    28
    Trophy Points:
    48
    TAte was seperated at birth, became severely dehydrated and took weeks to catch up. it left her a little simple in the noggin. Spacey Casey the dog we had when i was married was a total nutball. I do believe he was wired wrong from the get go. I believe that dogs can suffer from the full spectrum of mental illness that people do. I haven't read any studies but am going by my personal experiences. WE got some in the kennels that had way more than seperation anx.
     
  6. sammgirl

    sammgirl ACoops favorite

    Joined:
    May 17, 2009
    Messages:
    845
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I think that dogs can be born with just as many issues as people can. I think that certain breeds are more apt to be born with certain issues, such as dog reactivity with herders and a fear of strangers with the guardian breeds.

    I think that some dogs just aren't wired right from the get-go, like Laurelin said, and all of the socialization and patience and kindness and positive reinforcement and obedience classes in the world will never make a dog like that "better" or "correct."

    I think that in certain cases just like our Abby, the best you can do is just provide a stable, non-changing environment with a schedule that differs very little and just enjoy the dog for what it is, which is a house pet. :)
     
  7. Sweet72947

    Sweet72947 Squishy face

    Joined:
    May 18, 2006
    Messages:
    9,158
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    1 Dog, Norris!
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Home Page:
    I think Daisy was born with something wired a little wrong too. She's from my friend's dad who just bred his dog just because he wanted to (in short, a BYB). Her dam is a very friendly dog; I never met the sire but my friend tells me he's friendly too. When we met Daisy at my friend's house, she was nine weeks old. She wasn't playful, or happy to see new people. She just sat there quietly and looked at us. Daisy didn't really get socialized except for meeting my friends and such (because I was ignorant) and she was always shy with anyone new, and she's always been an anxious type.
     
  8. Squishy22

    Squishy22 Guest

    Its likely genetics. This is why I will never purchase a puppy without meeting the parents. Often times puppies will inherit their parents temperaments. If the dam or sire has an iffy temperament, I look elsewhere.

    Ruckus sounds like pebbles and she is a problem barker as well. She feels threatened by the most unusual things.
     
  9. Lilavati

    Lilavati Arbitrary and Capricious

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    Messages:
    7,644
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    Way too many!
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    Home Page:
    My father had a beagle like that. She seemed to have halucinations, was aggressive to both people and dogs, and a fear-biter. Dad figured that it was the canine equivalent of schizophrenia. In that case it was bad enough for her to be put down . . . she was downright dangerous.
     
  10. dogsarebetter

    dogsarebetter EVIL SHELTIES!!!!

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,999
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    7 (3 rabbits, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a duck!)
    Location:
    kentucky
    thanks guys!
    Ruckus's parents were pretty stable. his mom is a bit standoffish, but thats not uncommon in the breed. his dad was great! never met a stranger.
    Ruckus's grandmother on the other hand was said to be a real fruit cake.
     
  11. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2006
    Messages:
    30,965
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    a lot
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Home Page:
    Trey's parents were very stable, so were his siblings. He is by far the best bred dog I've ever owned. I'm not sure why he wasn't stable. He was so simple, I mean really he didn't have an intelligent bone in his body. Terrified of everything, bit me many a time. With him though he could not ever understand communication by another dog or a person. He thought everyone was being aggressive when they weren't and he'd react defensively to them. If a dog would try to play, he'd freeze up and completely shut down. Same with a person trying to play with him. For the longest time, any kind of attention would shut him down. He was always off in his own world. He gave off an air of being very ditzy because of that. No vet could ever explain his behavior. We ran so many blood tests but nothing was 'wrong'.

    I wish I'd known about Amitriptyline while he was alive. Maybe it could have helped him too.
     

Share This Page