Seriously - help with Oakley :/

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Dreeza, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. Dreeza

    Dreeza Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    one
    Location:
    Arlington, VA
    This past month has been a bit crazy, so I am guessing this has something to do with it...but it just made a previous problem, that was bearable, completely unbearable.

    My bf was gone for the past month, I took a week vacation, we were moving boxes in & out of the house, my parents came into town, etc etc...a lot going on, so poor guy just prob really scared.

    Bf is back now...and Oakley is acting HORRIBLE. He gets plenty of exercise/attention (or at least no less than he has ever gotten...).

    When Adam is over, Oakley just barks. incessantly. Mainly when we are trying to go to bed. We've kinda given up trying to keep him out of the bed, as we just couldn't deal with the non stop barking...but now, he will be IN bed & barking. Or will get out of bed & bark (and then you physically have to get him back in bed...its like he won't get back in without you dragging him in)....or for the past 3 nights....crawls UNDER the bed & just starts whining & barking. At first I thought he was stuck. But no. When I tried to help him out, he just snarled/growled/snapped/went crazy. But kept barking. At nothing.

    His bark is SO loud & SO obnoxious. We are trying to do all the right (?) things - when there is a lull, we re-direct, play with him, pet him...or if there isn't a lull, give him a command to get him to stop barking & then reward that. But I think he is too smart & still realizes that it is the barking that generates this attention...so it seems to be making things worse. But I can't give him constant attention when I am trying to SLEEP.

    Literally getting to my wits end. I am EXHAUSTED. We've tried letting him bark it out, but that pisses of my roommates, AND, he won't stop. He has barked for 3 hours straight (ok, so we didn't go past 3 hrs...).

    It is clearly Adam's presence that is affecting him. He is pretty fine when he is not there. Adam & I are getting engaged soon. He isn't going anywhere. He loves (well, hates him sometimes) Oakley, and overall, Oakley does really seem to like him. They play constantly, he feeds him, walks him....


    WHAT THE HECK ELSE DO WE DO!??? Or maybe we are doing all the wrongs things. Either way... please help, or Oakley is about to get kicked to the curb (ok not really...but it is really getting bad).

    The biggest thing is the roomie issue. Its one thing to keep us awake, but the roomies, not so okay with it :/
     
  2. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Messages:
    14,011
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Illinois
    Home Page:
    Have you taken him in for a vet check? It seems unlikely to be anything health related if it's only a problem with your BF is over but when you say you tried to move him from under the bed and he snarled and growled, it makes me wonder if he's hurt or sore somewhere.

    Have you tried anxiety/stress relief stuff? Thundershirt? DAP spray? PetSmart has a calming diffuser or just a spray you can manually spritz as well. They also have some calming pills and liquids and things. Rescue Remedy?
     
  3. Dreeza

    Dreeza Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    one
    Location:
    Arlington, VA
    The snarling is unfortunately normal for him....I've never been able to physically move him without him doing that. Honestly, I feel equipped to find any sore/hurt spots more than a vet. Any vet I have taken him to cannot do a good physical exam on him because he is so spastic. Maybe some bloodwork if things worsen/he is acting up when Adam isn't around too.

    Hmmm, I do think I have some old rescue remedy - forgot about that, thanks! It didn't really work back then though. Will look into the other options you suggested as well.

    Thundershirt doesn't do anything either & actually is almost impossible to get on him (he freaks out whenever I try to get the velcro on).
     
  4. Maxy24

    Maxy24 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8,070
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Cats, Dog, Leopard Gecko, Gerbils, Fish, African C
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I know you've been having issues for a long time so I don't know what you've tried, but does he have his own crate or bed? I don't know if he'd use them but maybe having his own area could help. Maybe a special bed time chew, like he gets a bully stick or stuffed kong only at bed time.
     
  5. Cardiparty

    Cardiparty New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2013
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Like, has he been diagnosed with something that causes this kind of behavior?

    Have you thought of getting him on anti-anxiety medication? I don't often advocate for something that extreme, but that behavior would drive me batty.

    How do you react when he behaves that way? Do you try to redirect him?

    If nothing else, it could be as simple as him being a spoiled brat who, like a toddler, will scream if he doesn't get EVERYTHING he wants right then. I know people would frown on this, but I would probably keep a leash on him in the house and use that to control that kind of behavior.

    Sorry, I see that you've been trying to redirect him.
     
  6. Cardiparty

    Cardiparty New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2013
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I just wanted to add....

    On a personal note, I just do not put up with dogs who have that kind of growly, touchy temperament. I do not have the finesse to deal with those kinds of issues.

    I had one foster that lasted about an hour

    I know that some people will tell you that dogs are dogs and growing is good because it's a warning and I do agree that it's good to know when your dog is reaching a threshold.

    I guess grumpy dogs just aren't my thing.
     
  7. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Messages:
    10,233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Olympia, WA
    Having watched over the years all the problems you've worked through with Oakley, making some progress, and backsliding at times like now, I wonder if he'd be a good candidate for bark softening. This isn't a simple case of spoiled dog getting his way, or someone forgot to train and/or entertain their energetic dog and I don't think doing those things more is going to fix it.

    It's a last resort solution, but Oakley has some serious underlying issues. Judging from your posts, they're mostly manageable but sometimes he get triggered and when that happens it takes months for him to settle back into some semblance of normalcy.

    This might be a way to make those times more manageable for everyone involved. Oakley can bark his fool head off without all kinds of gadgets and doodads and interventions, your roommates won't have to hear it constantly, your housing won't be put in jeopardy, and you'll be able to work on his behavior modification without all the tension that the constant loud barking is causing, which I suspect might help things settle down faster because he seems to be extremely sensitive to any kind of tension and change in his home.


    You're a saint. Honestly, I don't know that most people would have hung on to Oakley and been so dedicated working with him as long as you have. You guys are really blessed to have each other.
     
  8. Cardiparty

    Cardiparty New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2013
    Messages:
    166
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes, I agree.

    So, is it just that he's that sensitive and has a hard time dealing with change? It sounds from Romy's post that he's genuinely stressed out!
     
  9. Beanie

    Beanie Clicker Cult Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Messages:
    14,011
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Illinois
    Home Page:
    This could be a good idea too. I was also going to ask if you'd ever tried anything stronger like anxiety meds from a vet.
     
  10. MicksMom

    MicksMom Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    Messages:
    3,978
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    1 furry
    Location:
    Warren Co, NJ
    I can't offer anything that others haven't, but wanted to suggest tossing the old RR and getting new. I discovered when Mick was alive it worked better "fresh" (I bought a new bottle every year for thunderstorms).
     
  11. Dreeza

    Dreeza Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    one
    Location:
    Arlington, VA
    Thanks so much for the replies!

    And thanks Romy...that really helped to hear. Sometimes I just feel like I am an awful owner, cause I know I am far from perfect. But it just helps having the reminder that Oakley is just an extra special dog, and most other dogs don't require the amounts of training & attention he does.

    He has been on anxiety meds in the past, but I didn't notice huge differences in the bad behavior, but felt like he wasn't quite himself at the other times...so wasn't a fan. Got some calming chews from the pet store & bought some other calming stuff online (decided to try something other than RR if I was gonna have to invest in something anyways). Still waiting on the online stuff.

    He has been mildly more tolerable...but still the barking is just ugh.

    I am going to give him some more time to settle from this crazy month, but if this barking doesn't stop, then I may have to look into the bark softening.

    It is one thing if it was just me...but when we are over at Adam's & his roomies are trying to watch a TV show (or my roomies...)...and Oakley is just BARKING for no reason, then it is just SO frustrating. Petting him (after getting him to sit/be quiet for like 10 secs) will help for about 30 seconds...but then he just starts biting at my hand & barking. Playing with him helps some, but he is SO vocal when he plays that it just doesn;t help the noise level. Yesterday I had to go & eat dinner in the kitchen by myself to keep him out of everyone's hair

    He may need a vet check up, but honestly, I just doubt it is anything other than a psychological thing, cause he is totally fine if it is just him & I. He runs around playing fetch just fine, is just fine on his walks, etc.

    I'm really looking forward to when Adam & I move in together, cause it will prob be the first time in Oakley's life that things can (hopefully) be really consistent. I ask my roomies to not feed him without giving commands, etc, not let him jump...but I always catch them breaking this. It is just so hard to control other people :/
     

Share This Page