Opening (and emptying!) kitchen cupboards and bins - grrrrrr!

(6 Posts)
doglover Fri 29-Mar-13 21:21:55

Our new(ish) lab arrived in Dec and has the sweetest temperament. She's a rescue and was used to living with another dog. Ever since we got her, she's become agitated if left 9or at night) and this is getting worse. She opens and empties cupboards, drawers and bins - what a scene of destruction when we return! The dogs are not left for long extended periods and are always together with constant access to the garden. I appreciate that she is distressed that she's not with us 24 -7 but this isn't practical! Any ideas how to curb her anxiety and stop this habitual behaviour? TIA

typoqueen Fri 29-Mar-13 22:51:03

its really hard to know why a dog does this, it could be anxiety, loneliness or even boredom, our old lab used to behave like this she too was a rescue, we used to keep the bin outside cupboards had locks on and worktops cleared, made sure she had long walks and playtime to get rid of excess energy then she then started chewing the doors and chairs she would howl and bark at night for hours, lost count on how many beds she destroyed, we decided we had no option but to crate her obviously this meant she could not destroy anything but the best part was she loved it, from the first night no barking or howling, I can only assume she felt safe and secure in her crate (possibly previous owners crated her) after about 3 weeks we started leaving the door of the crate open with no problems well just the odd one if we left anything laying around she would have it in her crate...good luck

TataClaire Sat 30-Mar-13 13:22:19

Get child proofing for all your cupboards and retrain her for being left, start small and go back a step if need be, but also little things like making sure you don't make a fuss of them on return and have a little routine before you go out so they know that they're going to bw left but you're coming back. Worked great for my dogs. Otherwise go on the APBC or APDT websites to find a trainer or articles about separation anxiety and go from there. Good luck!

doglover Sat 30-Mar-13 13:29:44

Many thanks, TQ and TC. Really sensible advice. I'll let you know how we get on. smile

TheCunnyFuntIsAGrittersFiancee Sat 30-Mar-13 13:57:36

You may have to go back to basics wrt leaving her, get ready to go out, don't make a fuss at all, go out the door, come back, take coat off etc, then do it all again. And just keep extending the time you go out so she gets used to it and knows you're going to come back.

RE the cupboards, child locks?

doglover Sat 30-Mar-13 14:31:32

Yep, we may have to reort to child locks sad. Thought we'd left that behind a decade ago! We will try the 'quietly, quietly' approach though to leaving the house, extending the period we leave the 3 dogs. The other 2 labs are absolutely mortified when we return and see the mess - they slink out of the room as fast as they can!

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