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10yr-old Dog Can't Be Away From Home at Night...

annaannaanna
October 12th, 2007, 08:42 AM
Hi everyone! My loving, otherwise well-behaved 10-year old dog never could be away from home at night if my husband & I weren't with her. Even when we left her with family she loves, or boarded her at her vet's (and she loves her vet!) she is fine until night-time, then barks all night, tears up (destroys) her own toys & blankets and paws at the door until daylight. Putting her in a cage/crate doesn't help, and we tried this at relatives' homes and also at pet-friendly hotels when we had her travel with us but had to leave her at the hotel for brief times during the day when we couldn't have a dog with us (eating at a restaurant, for example.) She's the same with or without being put in a cage/crate at night; she doesn't sleep but instead carries on until daytime (or until we return, if we were at a pet-friendly hotel.)

We will be out of town this coming Christmas visiting family (who are ill and therefore, we cannot bring a dog with us,) and we will have to board her at her vet's. We did this several weeks ago, and when we picked her up at the end of the week, she'd lost her voice. We know she barked all night, every night that we were gone. It took 2 weeks for her voice to return.

We leave her with her own toys & blankets that have familiar smells, and her own food and treats, but nothing seems to comfort her. I dread leaving again this Christmas, but due to family illness, my husband and I must make this trip.

Does anyone have any advice about making being boarded easier at night-time for my spoiled "daughter?"

bendyfoot
October 12th, 2007, 09:26 AM
Can you find a pet-sitter who will come to your home?

Our sitter comes to our house a few times a day while we're away, and our animals are much happier to stay at home rather than be kenneled. We never have destruction or diarrhea (like we used to!)

annaannaanna
October 12th, 2007, 05:49 PM
Thank you for your reply, Crystal. I am afraid to have a pet-sitter stay with her, because she won't stay with anyone, even at our house. When relatives visit, our nieces and nephews want her to sleep in their rooms. She'll play with the kids until she's sleepy, but then she barks and paws at their door until they let her out and she comes to "her" (my husband & my) bed to sleep. I fear she'll just be inconsolable, even with a sitter.

Also, she gets dangerously destructive. She bit through an electrical cord near the front door, when we tried to leave her at my sister's once. Fortunately, it was to a light my sister had just unplugged before we left. So, I worry she'll do something dangerous like that, if she's not in a kennel at our vet's.

I suppose this is what we get for letting the dog sleep in our bed. (But believe it or not, other than for this, she is perfectly well-behaved and is voice trained to where she never needs a leash, won't touch food that she isn't told is hers, etc.)

I just can't think of any way to comfort her while she spends nights at her vet's. Can you?

Winston
October 12th, 2007, 06:24 PM
I have a lab that I can relate to your issue with! Except one thing..my vet will not keep him. Whenever he needs something done at the vets office (like his neuter appointmen!) when he came out of the anesthesia he began to bark, and bark and bark...He cannot stand to be away from us and not be in his home...they always call me and ask me to come and get him because it drives them crazy!!! He is really attached to me as well....he will not eat if I am away all day and he is home with hubby...but as soon as I come home he starts to eat...dont et me wrong he doesnt starve himself for days, thank god but I am not often away.. I wonder if their is something you could give him for the evenings at the vets office to calm him? at least throughout the day someone could pay him some attention right?

Good Luck

Cindy

SnowDancer
October 12th, 2007, 06:45 PM
Frankly, you should be very happy your vet will still board your pup! Usually a dog that barks all night will get all of the patients and other boarders going as well and Mom and Dad are often told that their pet is not suited to boarding. My Eskie has separation anxiety - and he is the first dog we have ever board in over 30 years of marriage. We do not have family, but fortunately found a lady who worked at our vet's and then at the groomer's who home boards and our guy loves her - and one of her dogs (feeling is mutual). Eskies do not do well in kennel types of situations - and he is afraid of crates. He won't like it when he has to go in for the night next week - but he doesn't bark - he apparently looks just heartbreakingly pathetic. He wants only to be loved. I don't think your problem stems from allowing your pup on the bed - ours have always slept on the bed. We just didn't board our Dachshunds due to their back issues etc. When we got our Eskie we knew things had to change - things come up in life - maybe you have to go into the hospital, jury duty (happened to me - husband was away) etc., funerals and you need a place to leave your pup. I think maybe something to help your dog sleep at night might be required. Re a pet sitter, unless the person was at my house 24/7 that wouldn't work. Many just make a few visits a day - the night is the problem. My guy is also a chewer - he is 3 1/2 now - but he doesn't get busy for about half an hour. I hope things improve, but I wouldn't be surprised if perhaps some form of relaxation therapy (my word for drugs) is given to your pup. If so, be grateful that it works. I don't sedate - happy shot before surgery speeds up my heart etc. - the same with our former Beagle and Dachshunds - fortunately, our Eskimo gets drowsy.

Longblades
October 14th, 2007, 09:06 AM
We leave her with her own toys & blankets that have familiar smells

It may be too late to try this but have you left items of your own clothing with her? It seems to be you that she is missing. I leave an old T-shirt or sock that I've worn for a while with the pooch. The kennel tells me she carries it around with her and sleeps with it.

I agree with SnowDancer, a night-time sedative or some kind of relaxant might be the kindest thing for both your dog and the kennel people. We all have lives to live and circumstances like funerals, weddings etc. just cannot be avoided.

annaannaanna
October 20th, 2007, 07:09 AM
Well you all are just the BEST! I will ask her Vet if a night-time sedative is something he should give her each evening. I know he normally doesn't like medicating animals when it's a behavioral issue - he takes a let-the-dog-be-a-dog attitude, which is nice - but it very well may be the kindest thing for her. And I will DEFINATELY do the worn t-shirt/sock thing, LongBlades. I think that's so adorable that your kennel tells you that your doggie carries it around with her and sleeps with it!

I think I'll pack a sock from myself and also one from my husband for my dog; that may make her feel better, more secure. (Oooh, those poor girls who work for my vet! Unpacking stinky socks on the job! But I always bake for my vet and his employees at the holidays; I'll just have to make them something EXTRA nice this year!)

Our pets do miss us when we're gone, don't they? But as everyone's noted, being away from our pet family members is inevitable, at times. And I'm sorry for those of you who were told your pets couldn't be boarded. It's hard being a responsible pet-owner and finding solutions to these problems, I know.

But I think with these suggestions you've all made, Christmas away at her vet's should be easier for my girl this December. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You've been a big help and I'm feeling better about this already.

Anna

Longblades
October 21st, 2007, 08:55 AM
http://www.chungman.com/en/sub_en_index.php3?inc=product_en_industrial2

Here is another thing I do. The link is to images of muffler hangers. Mine is a diamond shape, about 5" x 3" and has different size holes in it but I think any would do. I think they are all about 1" thick and made of hard rubber. I stuff the holes with hard cheese, like cheddar, and after a week in the boarding kennel Poochie girl still had not got every last little bit out. This is a special treat thing reserved for the boarding kennel and she is so anxious to get it she didn't even notice me leaving her there. Mind you, she was a Lab, very food oriented.

When I lost the first one the muffler shop man just gave me one for free. And took two home for his own dogs. :thumbs up

Caution: Just in case you have a hard core chewer I would make a test run before leaving the dog alone with one of these, to make sure chunks are not bitten off and swallowed. And wash it thoroughly before using.

P.S. A year and a half later I found the first one. It was in my dressy winter boots where poochie girl had dropped it. The sad thing is, for one whole winter I had no need to wear my good dress boots or I would have found it sooner. I need to get out more.

annaannaanna
October 23rd, 2007, 07:08 AM
A year and a half later I found the first one. It was in my dressy winter boots where poochie girl had dropped it. The sad thing is, for one whole winter I had no need to wear my good dress boots or I would have found it sooner. I need to get out more.

LOL! This is a GREAT tip! And a really funny story! (A lot of us need to get out more, I'm afraid!) LOL!

Thanks for another good suggestion, LongBlades!

Anna