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Old 05-07-2010, 10:29 AM   #1
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Unhappy SERIOUS advice needed... dog with SEVERE seperation anxiety!

Hi knowledgeable people! Need your help for a very severe problem.

My friend has a 50lb mixed breed dog. (we think part Pit) it's a female she rescued at the pound when she was just a puppy. The separation problems started right away, the pup would eat through metal crates when they would leave the house. They cannot crate this dog because she has literally gone through about 5 crates before she was 1 year old. One time she bent the metal tray at the bottom and dug through the carpet and even into the floor boards to get out of the crate.

The dog is now 5 years old and have been to a behaviorist, doggy day care (kicked out) and most recently on doggy prozac. The vet has done testing and there is nothing wrong with the dog physically health-wise, no tumors or anything.

The dog is sweet and loving and wonderful with the kids and absolutely NO problems when they are home. When they are not home though, the dog literally TEARS the house apart. Tearing full length of molding off the doors and windows, digging huge holes in the walls, ripping up carpets completely off the tacking.

The doggy prozac was a last ditch effort this week to try to calm her down when they leave the house but they came yesterday to the WORST mess yet from her and they were only gone from 1 - 230pm. Her husband freaked and said thats it, I'm taking her to be put down (they don't want to put this problem on someone else) but she cried and said NO. She knows she won't be able to save the dog much longer if she can't figure out how to calm her down. I don't blame her honestly... she has spent hundreds upon hundreds of dollars to get help and professional training for this dog and THOUSANDS of dollars to fix the damage in the house. They have a chain link fenced in yard that she is now relegated to when noone is home and the neighbor is coming to let her out to run around a few times a day, but this is not a permanent solution, this can't go on for a winter in New England so something needs to be done this summer. The dog is no longer allowed in the house when they are not home.

I can't say I blame her.... I don't know if this is a chemical imbalance or what is going on but NOTHING is helping. I asked her to give me a few days to see what I could find out. I wanted to ask you guys here for some advice, and I want to see the holistic animal groomer that I take my dogs to to get their nails done. I want to ask her advice also. My friend is willing to try ANYTHING at this point, she DOES NOT want to put this dog down, she loves her, her daughter loves her.
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Old 05-07-2010, 10:45 AM   #2
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All I can say is WOW! I wish I had some pearls of wisdom for your friend!
I think you should move this post to a different area!
And bump!!!
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Old 05-07-2010, 10:45 AM   #3
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My princess used to be like that! She was not as bad but I had issues crating her too. Honestly she should ask her vet if she can sedate her! A mild sedative wont hurt her but this is a temp fix as well! they sell calming pills at petedge.com they worked great for princess! Some times dogs do things out of anger she needs to be reasured that shes not being abandond. I would pretend to leave the house and then when she started tearing apart stuff we would come in and yell NO and bang on the wall! It got her attention and she'd stop then I would do it again and again! We would do it all different times so she wouldnt expect us. I put a nanny cam in the room with her we limited her to one room of the house and we would praise her if after 20 mins she didnt distroy something. It worked for us! Princess is now able to be left alone my full 8 hour shift maybe 9 or 10 if i go to the store after work and she just sleeps on our bed! But all in all she has to gain the respect for her home and the humans living there. If all else fails I think she should call the dog whisper! It sounds skeptical but he helped a friend of my moms. she had to aggressive pitbulls that would bit her and tear her home apart for no reason and now she lives perfectly with them. Also give her ALOT of exercise Long walks be fore leaving her alone! get her a busy toy like the kong and leave some music on while not there! These things work on most dogs if any questions further let me know im here to help!
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Old 05-07-2010, 11:23 AM   #4
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I know some people are anti cezar Malaun I may of even spelt his name wrong. But I swear I saw a show where there was a dog that had the same issues. Maybe you can try to google that and she what tech he tried with the dog and see if that helps at all. The dog in the show use to chew even at the door knob till its mouth would bleed. It was so sad to watch. Ill see if i can google the eps. Ill repost if i find it.
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Old 05-07-2010, 12:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motomomma317 View Post
I know some people are anti cezar Malaun I may of even spelt his name wrong. But I swear I saw a show where there was a dog that had the same issues. Maybe you can try to google that and she what tech he tried with the dog and see if that helps at all. The dog in the show use to chew even at the door knob till its mouth would bleed. It was so sad to watch. Ill see if i can google the eps. Ill repost if i find it.
It's Cesar Millan, hehe, I love him. And I think I know what episode you're talking about, I just wish I could remember the name of the dog or what they did to fix it but the dog was like 90% better after a few months. This dog would literally open the door by himself and stuff you describe.

I'm so sorry, it's such a shame to have an otherwise great dog have one huuugee problem. I feel for your friend. I will look into the episode and see if I can find it.
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Old 05-07-2010, 01:38 PM   #6
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i saw that episode of cesar millan too. i believe they used a scat mat by the front door to keep her away from it so she wouldn't hurt herself anymore. she ripped the wood frame right off the door and all the nails were exposed. she was crazy. He worked with her in the crate so she would stay in there and not freak out. i can't describe what he did, its better to watch it. hopefully we can find the episode online.

Victoria has worked with dogs like this too. she says to make sure the dog has something to do while your gone like kongs with PB or interactive toys.

I know you said your friend tried a behaviorist but was this behaviorist a vet or just a trainer? a vet behaviorist would be best in this situation.

Has your friend tried giving benedryl to make her sleepy? Or acepromazine to sedate her when they know they are going out? if given 1/2 hour before they know they are leaving and before the dog suspects something is up they should be able to calm her down enough before hand so she won't get all worked up. sedating while no one is home though can be worrisome so i don't know if i would do that, but the benedryl is safe enough.
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Old 05-07-2010, 02:48 PM   #7
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I have had no luck finding the episode or the dogs name..
But when I did a search for the problem they mentioned getting another dog to help. I wonder if they know someone with a dog that has a good temperament and around the same size that they could maybe test out for a short period of time and see if it helps at all? I know that its going out on a limb and the husband may not even want that to be an option but run it by them see if its a possibility.

I will continue in my efforts to find the info.
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Old 05-07-2010, 03:39 PM   #8
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ok Im pretty sure I found the link.

I should of totally remembered the dogs name b/c its my very own.. Sara.

Dog Whisperer: Seven, Sara, and Madeliene Video - Dog Whisperer - Full Episodes - National Geographic Channel Videos
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Old 05-07-2010, 03:50 PM   #9
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I wanted to add its episode 130 it was filmed in season 5.
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:38 PM   #10
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Here is the culprit and the damage!!! (well part of it, all done in 1.5 hours)

She said the vet is sure that the dog had an adverse reaction to the meds, they are going to try different meds.

Thanks for the ideas!!! I am passing them along to her. Whats even worse is she is having a baby in 2 weeks! And now this HUGE mess and project has to be fixed!
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File Type: jpg Zoie.jpg (45.1 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg zoie damage.jpg (38.6 KB, 18 views)
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Old 05-08-2010, 06:55 PM   #11
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WOW thats some serious damage. It must be heart breaking for them to know he panics to that level. I sure hope they can find the answer.

He sure looks like a cute dog with the big puppy dog eyed look.
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Old 05-09-2010, 04:08 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by celstu1 View Post
Here is the culprit and the damage!!! (well part of it, all done in 1.5 hours)

She said the vet is sure that the dog had an adverse reaction to the meds, they are going to try different meds.

Thanks for the ideas!!! I am passing them along to her. Whats even worse is she is having a baby in 2 weeks! And now this HUGE mess and project has to be fixed!
WOW and so innocent looking too

an idea ? Rather than them having him PTS they can try to find someone who is home 24/7 where he won't be so anxious - it sounds like he may have pretty severe issues and with the right home maybe he won't be like this ?

not saying he's in a good home now !! But wow on the damage - no one should have to deal with this on a regular basis love or not......he looks like a little sweetie - must have some major sized teeth to do what I just saw in the pic
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Old 05-09-2010, 04:19 AM   #13
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Oh that is a lot of damage, what a sweet looking dog too!

I'm sure they probably do walk & exercise the dog a few times a day??
If they aren't in a position, especially with a new baby coming, they should think about someone with a farm or maybe a lot of land where the dog can run and get a lot of energy out.
That's the difference with small dogs vs large, it takes more then running around the yard to really wear them out.

Wrigley has separation anxiety, though it's not as bad as when she was a puppy. She chewed the walls, baseboards & window sills. Someone is usually home though, so she's not left for long extended periods and she's outgrown the destructive behavior. She lays with her big sister & that helps her!

I hope they can rehome to someone that is home more and/or has a lot of land. I feel for them!
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Old 05-09-2010, 04:36 AM   #14
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just want to add to my above post - we have pets to enhance our lives - not all pets are a good fit as much as we love them ,,,,,in this case I feel Reese is right - maybe a nice family with alot of space where he can exude all that energy/frustration may be the way to go ......

I realize thats hard to hear for your friend but no one should have to live this way. He'd be happier and they'll be happier in the long run knowing he's in a place he can be a dog and not a 'bad' dog.

It must be so frustrating to come home to a ruined home. Dogs don't know they're being destructive - whether it be boredom or anxiety it so it's hard to be upset with them but that is some major damage.

with a baby on the way this is only going to complicate a very compliated issue - do they know someone who'd love to have a dog with alot of land and freedom ? Fenced in yards are good but I have a feeling he'd chew right thru that too
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Old 05-09-2010, 05:00 AM   #15
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just want to add to my above post - we have pets to enhance our lives - not all pets are a good fit as much as we love them ,,,,,in this case I feel Reese is right - maybe a nice family with alot of space where he can exude all that energy/frustration may be the way to go ......

I realize thats hard to hear for your friend but no one should have to live this way. He'd be happier and they'll be happier in the long run knowing he's in a place he can be a dog and not a 'bad' dog.

It must be so frustrating to come home to a ruined home. Dogs don't know they're being destructive - whether it be boredom or anxiety it so it's hard to be upset with them but that is some major damage.

with a baby on the way this is only going to complicate a very compliated issue - do they know someone who'd love to have a dog with alot of land and freedom ? Fenced in yards are good but I have a feeling he'd chew right thru that too
I know it's hard!
I had a co-worker that had a dog with anxiety and managed to escape their house & yard all the time and was destructive. Another co-worker who bought a huge farm took the dog and it was wonderful for him. He could just run free and was as happy as could be!
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