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Destructo boxer

June 19th, 2006, 08:59 PM
Hi everyone,
I have a question. Everytime I leave Maia (7 1/2 month old boxer) alone (gated in the kitchen) she becomes destructive. She opens cupboards to find things to rip up. She climbs onto places she doesn't even glance at when we're home. (even upstairs or far from her... she only does this if I leave home). I don't think Sam is involved but I'm not sure. I do my best to put everything away but I can't seem to maia-proof. IF I leave the door open so she can go in and out of the yard, she is perfectly well behaved.

Maia is starting to get to know my angry face pretty well! Yesterday it was my pencil case, a pack of halls, and the telephone. Today it was sponges and paper towel confetti.

Do dogs destroy things out of spite? What do you do when you get home and find a mess?

June 19th, 2006, 09:12 PM
could she be bored..she is a puppy:rolleyes: Or maybe feels alittle anxiety about being left alone?? Just ideas

June 19th, 2006, 09:48 PM
My English Coonhound used to do that, but she did it until the day she died RIP :crazy: girl(9yrs). I think it was abit of both, she was P***** right off that we left her home even thought 'Hov' was right with her, and she was bored. You say she is fine when you leave the door open so she can go outside, why don't you just do that or get a doggy door? Put tons of toys down for her and don't be so sure that Sam isn't involved;) You'd be surprised by the monkey see monkey do :eek:

June 19th, 2006, 10:39 PM
Hi phoenix! Sounds like Maia is either bored, or stressed. Dogs don't feel spite, so that's not it (good read: The Culture Clash by Jean Donaldson). This sounds like typical 7 month old boxer behaviour :D I would say that most boxers need to be crated up until about 1 1/2 yrs. When I come home to a mess, I just clean it up! Not much else you can do after the fact..just better puppy proofing next time, lol.

June 19th, 2006, 10:43 PM
From what i have seen Boxers (not unlike other breeds) get bored when alone, Kitas buddy lennox is 6 years old and still gets a little destructive when alone, recently he clawed opened a window and escaped! Luckily just as he was jumping out his owners came home. ( phewf)
Even with a ton of toys and stuff Lennox still gets himself into trubble!
Joys of Boxers I guess. They really like their humans to be around.:cool:
But yes definately sounds like normal 7 month old for sure. Im not one for crating but sometimes ( like in Lennox's case) its for their own safety. Granted its only for short periods.
Good Luck

June 19th, 2006, 10:51 PM
When Den-Den was a puppy he would constantly do naughty things for attention. He knew he'd get an immediate reaction and it didn't seem to matter that it was negative. He eventually came to realize he liked the praise he got when he was good. You need to praise him every time he's doing good behavior. He'll start working for the praise.

June 20th, 2006, 12:41 AM
I agree with the boredom. When the door is open, she has things to do. When it's shut, she doesn't and gets bored inside.

June 20th, 2006, 06:45 AM
Hmmm yeah that's what I thought. I leave the screen open for them every day except rainy ones because I don't want wet/muddy dogs coming in and out without a paw wiping! I'm not working right now so I'm only ever gone for 2h at a time (groceries or whatever). She is such a doll when I'm home!!!! Oh well, I guess it is a phase.

We crated Maia at first (Sam never had to be crated, and he's the lab!!) but now I much prefer her gated with a little space to move. She never calmed down in the crate. Some dogs are like that.

Luckily she isn't too bad (she doesn't take anything expensive!)- she loves any clothes she can find, paper towels, napkins, that sort of thing.

Oh well gotta love her.

June 20th, 2006, 08:56 AM
Tucker is crated so I never come home to a mess. Do you leave toys that require a bit of work? Kongs, Buster cubes, Busy Buddy toys (Squirrel dude, Twist-n-Treat, Waggle), etc...

as for opening cabinets, lock them. Use those child safety devices. I would put the sponges, paper towels, and anything else on the counters/sink, inside a drawer or locked cabinet when you leave. OR toss all items into a large basket, and put ontop of fridge. out of sight, out of mind. I'd provide a bunch of "busy" toys mentioned above though, to fill the void.

btw, love the pic!

June 20th, 2006, 09:03 AM
Cute pic and cute puppies! (They can be 18 and still be puppies right? :p)

Lol your Lab is looking at the camera like "excuse me but you've gone and disturbed my rest thank you!"



June 20th, 2006, 10:02 AM
I have been there but what I found is most of the time it is boredom. Get on the kiong web page there is a ton of recipies for kongs and freeze it he will have to work way harder to get the goodies. Also once you get home there is nothing you can do the mess is done and you get to clean it up. But when you come home and nothing is destroyed praise like he is the best dog in the world. I would consider the doggy door if that saves your home and sanity it would be worth every penny. They are real cuties kind of hard to get mad at that face

June 20th, 2006, 10:57 AM
Hey Phoenix!
sounds like normal boxer-puppy behavior! Buster is 3 years old and we've just recently phased out the crate, but I learned really fast that if I rush him through his morning walk (or, God forbid, cut out the walk all together), he'll find something to detroy (luckily nothing too bad, like a roll of toilet paper, made a mess of my tupperware cabinet, etc). His personal favorite is a garbage, any garbage (even one with only paper in it!). My kitchen garbage pail is in my pantry!! :rolleyes:
Maybe you should crate her while you're gone, just so she doesn't develop any bad habits. Or increase the exercise...She sure is cute though, kinda hard to get grumpy with them when they look at you with those soulfull brown eyes, right?

June 20th, 2006, 10:59 AM
I'm not working right now so I'm only ever gone for 2h at a time (groceries or whatever).

Oh! another thing...if you're only gone for 2 hours, maybe you could give her a peanut-butter filled kong. They'll work on that for a long time. Buster's kong is a real life-saver...

June 20th, 2006, 11:07 AM
thanks guys
the basket for the top of the fridge and the kid locks for cupboards are great ideas. I really don't want to crate her again; she isn't that bad! You know, they're only locked in on rainy days, and those are the days we cut the walk short (she is a suck about it)... so yeah she's probably looking for some action!
She doesn't like kongs. I haven't tried in a while, maybe I'll try again... Sam loves the buster cube and he is entertained by it but not her. She doesn't like toys at all. She would chew on rawhide but I don't give them that anymore, especially unsupervised.
Just to clarify, while I might be mad, I just open the door, put them outside, and clean. And I do praise her like anything when nothing is disturbed!
Here's another pic of her cute little face. How could anything that cute get in trouble??

June 20th, 2006, 11:14 AM
She is just TOOOOO cute...I want to kiss her!
She really doesn't like her kong? I know Buster won't play with his if I put dog biscuits in it...but peanut butter is a HUGE hit (or cheeze-wiz)!!

June 21st, 2006, 02:24 PM
Hi there, we have a boxer, he'll be a year in July:) And he was the exact same way. He's recently been diagnosed with Seperation Anxiety. We've had a lot of problems, with peeing in his crate everyday, to destroying anything we put him in just to get out and then when he was out he'd make a mess... And he's as good as gold when we're home, he has never chewed on anything since we first brought him home and never messed in the house, he just does not like to be alone at all, anywhere. I learned by reading a lot of things that its very common for Boxers to have Seperation Anxiety b/c they are such people dogs. They always want attention and be around people. In a way I take it as a compliment but my wallet doesn't, haha... People say it could be boredom too, but with us it was definitely anxiety. So we recently started him on a pill our vet gave for his anxiety, called Colcalm or something like that? I didn't have much high expectation but boy it works great, better then great! Took a couple weeks to work, (vet said up to a month) and he doesn't mess in his cage at all anymore or do anything in it now when he's alone, he's completely calm! He's so good that we put the blanket in there in the morning, when we get home after work its still laid down nice and neat in his crate! The difference has been night and day! Which has made us so happy as we were so worried that he was stressed everyday! And the pill hasn't changed his personality at all, he's still the exact same and still has tons of energy! Nothing has changed, just when he's alone! So something to think about if it continues or gets worse, but talk to your vet:) Hope that helps a bit!