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I think I'm in trouble

January 16th, 2006, 10:11 PM
Ok here goes,we moved to Quebec 5 months ago,my husbands nephew got us a dog (Molly our Chocolate Lab) she is 1 1/2 was chained in a garage and beaten bad.She listens to me very well,have taught her the basic,sit, heal,come and such,but when I try and go out she freaks.She has chewed our door,yes chewed it a good 6 inches trying to get out,she is so freaked,she whines and is panting so bad,but will not drink or eat till I come back home.She gets lots of exersice all day as she is with me when I ride the horse or snowmobile(we have 27 acres for her to run).It is so bad that I cant even have a shower without her being in the bathroom with me.Any suggestions(please)

January 17th, 2006, 07:23 AM
Welcome to Quebec:) I am happy to hear that Molly is finally safe. She feels safe with you and maybe when you leave she goes through some seperation anxiety. There are herbal remedies available that can calm dogs down. Would there be a homeopathic vet in your area. You may need more than herbal remedies but its a start. I remember a book mentioned some time back... Iíll be Home Soon: How to Prevent and Treat Separation Anxiety by Patricia McConnell
( Sorry I can't remember which member on this site mentioned it ...but I looked it up and will be getting a copy for my yellow lab)

January 17th, 2006, 07:30 AM
I found it,it was Lissa...I hope you don't mind Lissa..and I hope I can do this..If its not allowed feel free to delete

Is your poodle getting enough exercise?! Have you done any obedience training with him?

For severe cases, some people swear by DAP diffuser's which is suppose to release pleasing pheromone's to calm dog's with SA.

Maybe you could consider seeing a homeopathic vet? There are lots of herbal and rescue remedies out there that could be of help.

Does you poodle get upset ONLY when you leave?! Can you leave him alone with a stranger without him getting anxious!? Can you leave him alone in a room without him getting upset? Do you ignore him for the first few minutes before you leave and when you return home?

Sometimes having a companion can help - maybe "borowing" a friend's calm dog would help!? Although if it does, it may indicate that you might need to finda permanent friend for your poodle:p!

This is suppose to be a good book when dealing with SA: Iíll be Home Soon: How to Prevent & Treat Separation Anxiety by Patricia McConnell

SA takes a lot of behaviour modification, effort and patience to overcome...It can be a long process...You can also look into doggy daycare, a dog walker or pet sitter - but that won't necessarily "fix" the problem - you will still need to train him to be calm when left alone...

With regards to the poop - maybe you should confine him in a room to start with (one that can be easily disinfected)...


January 17th, 2006, 08:56 AM
Though he's grown out of it now, my dog Max also went through separation anxiety when we first brought him home from the SPCA at 6 months of age. He tried to dig a whole through the FLOOR and today, the floor behind the front door is slanted with grooves.

There's a ton of info on this site about how to deal with separation anxiety and very knowledgeable pet owners on this board will certainly help you out.

Good luck and don't give up!

January 17th, 2006, 09:02 AM
Ohh that's fine - especially since it is going to be helping!!!:D

Getting Molly into some sort of training should help raise her confidence level...would leaving interactive toys be of any help!? Or maybe an old shirt of yours?

I wrote this in another forum so you may need to modify certain parts since Molly's SA sounds pretty bad...

SA is all about need to desensitize Molly to your comings and goings...The first part is to do it so often that Molly is bored with the whole coming in going out (by the sounds of it - this will take a long time)...the second part is to go out and come back BEFORE he starts getting upset...You want to be able to leave for longer periods of time without Molly barking and getting all upset...

You should set aside a couple of hours to work on it. Start small. Go out your door, shut it, wait a few seconds, and go back in. Don't greet or acknowledge her in any way... just be very matter of fact. Immediately do it again... try to increase the amount of time that you are gone. If all goes well, repeat the exercise and continue to increase the time as long as she shows no sign of stress. If Molly gets upset, you are moving too fast and you need to back up. Eventually, she'll become so used to your coming and going that she'll get bored. At this point, add in your routine that you normally do when you really are leaving... put your coat on, grab your keys, etc. Start the pattern of "fake" leaving, extending the time periods, until you see he's bored. You can start making sounds that you are walking away or slamming the car door.
It is labor intensive but if you do it right you can make a HUGE difference in one session. Molly will start to look a little differently at the concept of you walking out the door, and if you continue to immerse her in your comings and goings she'll learn to accept it as a normal part of life.

January 17th, 2006, 10:04 AM
You also want to perform the triggers to your leaving throughout the day without actually leaving. Pick up your keys and put them down, get your coat out, pick up your purse/backpack - things you would normally do before you leave so she gets desensitized to the triggers too. Do them randomly and without drama.
At first when you go through the 'fake leaving' she will panick but you must keep it up until you see that she barely lifts her head when you are leaving or coming in. Then you know she has changed. Even then you might have set backs and this doesn't get cured overnight. Loving patience on your part will be the ticket.

January 17th, 2006, 09:34 PM
Thanks for the welcome to Quebec,cpietra16.I have tryed leaving her with the neighbour who has a old collie,and no luck,she tryed digging under the fence,I have left her with toys,food and water and my old blanket from my bed and it does not help,I will try the coming and going trick and see what happens.Thanks for all the help,I will keep you updated on how she is doing with this

March 23rd, 2006, 08:23 PM
Just to keep you updated,Molly is way better now,she isnt as bad as she was now that we have frimousse(the beagle cross).I think she finally is starting to understand that I will come home

March 23rd, 2006, 09:27 PM
I don't live in Quebec tho I like the province and its people and have a sister and other relatives there - cannot add much to what has already been recommended since you have rec'd excellent advice from experienced dog trainers, rescuers and caretakers. It's good news that she understands you are not leaving her indefinitely - that will make the rest of the behaviour mod easier. (tho still requires much patience and I commend you for adopting both these pooches.) I had a much beloved poodle who now resides at Rainbow Bridge - waiting for me and the rest of the brood (Boy is he in for a surprise when he finds out how many siblings he has now, lol) and spend mega quality time with my chocolate lab nephew who I adore - he is a kind and exceedingly well behaved doggie (well most of the time anyway - there WAS that day in my SUV when he was a puppy and I left him and an open kleenex box together, not such a bright move on my part, lol) . He does have what I call VERY minor SA "spells" which are more complaints than anything to be concerned about - like when I am mowing the lawn and he is annoyed because I won't let him near the mower which might injure him so he barks at me - not a growl, just what I term his "what about me" whine. (He has already been hurt by walking on a sharp object in the woods that actually required emergency surgery!!) He developed it as a puppy when for ex he could not quite reach my bed and I'd have to help him up - now he weighs almost as much as me and can easily jump on the bed, lol

Your lab needs help to overcome her SA and I think the steps suggested will work very well - patiently and gradually building up to when Molly realizes she can be secure and you will be return and she is not being abandonned.

The only thing I can add is to make your arrivals and departures very low key and almost boring. Don't make a big fuss over saying hello and goodbye. Be casual and in a good mood, giving her happy vibes. I know we like to kiss our babies bye and I admit I so that too - if I have to live my Siamese baby for longer periods of time than I like, I hold her and hug her and kiss her and she is a smarty pants kitty so she prob knows something is up thx to her silly mama. However, I also make sure she has a good sitter who she is accustomed to, likes and associates my departures with good times and treats when I return. (Maybe the treat part is not good but it IS only for long trips - yeahm suuuure, lol - seriously, my grandpa ALWAYS came to visit my sisters and I with treats (Smarties - our fav cavity creator - I carpool with a ped dentist, lol) whether he was just down to the store for 5 minutes or away on business for a month. Now, I send Smarties to my nephew in the US - where the kind we have in Canada ,several other European countries and NZ and Au. Of course, now he is a senior in his undergrad degree but he still wants his Smarties (like I want my Boston Baked Beans candy which are now available in Hfx for a small fortune but at the Dollar store in Fla or Mass, lol)

Giving a dog something to do while you're away also helps. A stuffed kong or other chew treats will keep his mind off chewing wood which can't be all that tasty even if you are of the canine persuasion. And keep working on the desneitization. If he was not getting better, I would have also suggesting asking the vet if s/he thought Clomicalm or amitryptalline was indicated in the situation but it sounds llike he is doing OK.

btw, where did you come up with your the name for your beagle- such a cute name!

March 24th, 2006, 08:36 AM
Just to keep you updated,Molly is way better now,she isnt as bad as she was now that we have frimousse(the beagle cross).I think she finally is starting to understand that I will come home

That's great to hear! So many people wouldn't have stuck it out! Your babies are lucky to have you!

March 24th, 2006, 08:43 PM
Frimousse was named by my husband,And believe me some days I just want to kill them both,but then I can say the same thing about the two teenagers too(lol).We just had them both spayed,and one thing is for sure they sure dont give you an incentive to spay your animal here,for both it cost just under $600.00,was not to pleased with that,but I also dont want any accidents either.

March 25th, 2006, 12:17 PM
$600. sounds about right........i paid about $320 for beathovens neuter......mind you about $45 was for the optional pain meds:eek: .......i said to the vet OPTIONAL would you have a vasecomy without pain meds:D