Remaining dog not coping well with loss.

(8 Posts)
luccamum Mon 09-Jun-14 14:17:17

I posted previously about losing our elderly Weim, unexpectedly and a total shock.
We have another 8 year old Weim, and all Luccadog knows is that we took Zen to the vet, and didn't come home with him.
Luccadog has seperation anxiety, we thought he was dealing with the loss quite well, as he has never been on his own.
Last Thursday, I got home from work, to find him in an awful state, he had had a bad accident, there was poo everywhere, floors walls, bed, and he was coated in it too.
I was trying to clean him and the kitchen up, when the next door neighbour waded in, screaming over the back fence, that we shouldn't be allowed to have animals, when I tried to explain that we had Zen put down the previous week, I was told that we had killed him.
I was aghast.
It took 4 hours to clean up the kitchen.
I have had to take the week off work to stay with him (unpaid).
He's so subdued, follows me round like a shadow, doesnt want to eat.
We went to look at a kennel for day boarding yesterday, as there is no way we can leave him at home alone.
I feel we have failed him.
Anyone got any advice?

luccamum Mon 09-Jun-14 19:50:24

Well I spent the day clearing out the back garden, pruning and clearing, and dumping it all in a skip, with Luccadog welded to me.
Still very subdued, doesn't want to eat a lot.
I saw the neighbour go out this afternoon (we share a middle passageway, which gives access to the back gardens).
When DW came home, I took the opportunity to shift all the vegetation into the skip, while she sat with Luccadog to calm him.
I ran slap bang into the neighbour.
I got a full apology, very sorry for what she had said.
Admitted she was "bang out of order", and that she had said some "horrible things".
You are not joking!
At least feel a bit vindicated.
We are going to set up a video camera on Skype tomorrow, as I have to leave him for an hour for a hospital appointment.
Then at least we can see how upset he is, and for how long

Owllady Mon 09-Jun-14 20:23:27

Oh dear, he sounds incredibly distressed
Have you taken him to the vet to make sure firstly he has no underlying infection?
There is some kind of collar you can buy that releases a calming substance when you have grieving dog, but I don't know what they are called and I haven't used one but I don't want to leave the thread unanswered.

I am sorry about the death if your other dog too sad

And well at least the neighbour apologised but it was completely out of order

daisy5569 Mon 09-Jun-14 20:45:18

oh poor boy, I would take him to the vet or maybe give them a call to see if they can suggest anything.
It must be so upsetting for you, its bad enough losing your other dog without having to see your other one suffering.
I lost my old girl in september last year and was worried how my old boy would cope, he is only 8 months younger than my old girl and at 15 had never been an only dog. Luckily he coped ok, think my old girl was a bit of a bully blush the only thing I noticed was that he had to be encouraged to go for a walk and always seemed nervous and kept looking behind all the time.
Hope your dog settles down soon and starts to enjoy life again, think it will probably take time as he has lost his friend sad

moosemama Mon 09-Jun-14 20:45:31

Oh your poor thing, as if you aren't going through enough. Why say such horrible things if they knew they were out of order! angry

We went through this last year when we lost Oldgirl and Lurcherboy had never been an only dog. It's heartbreaking.

I think doggie daycare or perhaps a dog-walker/sitterplace is probably your best option in the immediate future while you come up with a plan to help him with his SA.

A DAP diffuser and/or collar may help and for dogs that don't respond well to DAP there's Pet Remedy.

If you aren't confident in dealing with behavioural stuff I'd advise getting a referral to an APBC behaviourist to help you come up with an SA programme for him.

It might also help for you to read Nicole Wilde's book Don't Leave Me as it's the best resource I've found for explaining and examining the causes of SA and coming up with practical exercises and solutions.

If he's really bad - and to be honest he does sound worse than my boy, the vet may be able to offer some medication while you are working through the programme. There are treatments such as Zylkene, which is actually just a by product of milk, but has a calming effect on some dogs. It's expensive, but you can buy online and don't have to buy it through the vets. There's also Clomicalm and then more 'medical' options if those don't work for him.

I'm sorry to say there are no quick fixes with SA though and you will need to keep him under his coping threshold while you work it through with him. My lad could cope with an hour after 6 weeks of intensive (and I mean intensive, as in I didn't go anywhere or do anything else for the whole time) work. We got another dog when he was able to do the full hour and that helped enormously with him, but isn't the solution for every dog and it really does depend on his character and the underlying causes. Unfortunately the pup we rescued came with his own issues and also has a degree of SA, so I can still only go out for a maximum of an hour one year on. It's incredibly restrictive, especially as I don't drive, so don't have the option to take them with me if I do have to go out, but all I have to do is remind myself of the level of distress they experience in order to react the way they do to know I have to stick with the programme.

luccamum Mon 09-Jun-14 21:18:35

Many thanks for all your help, he is going to the vet for his jabs and yearly check up tomorrow night.
We will ask about calming measures, we know Clomicalm, as Zen was on it as a puppy.
I'm just glad she apologized, it was so OTT, she looked really embarrassed.
He had a good dinner tonight.
He's asleep now.

Rowgtfc72 Sat 14-Jun-14 09:05:02

We had old jack pts at Christmas and fat jack who is twelve had never been alone before. They both used to spend all their times outdoors but since Dec she has howled to come in and won't leave my side. We've given her lots of fuss and attention and six months on she whines to go out, doesn't want to come in and doesn't stalk me anymore. I think she just had to do her grieving in her own time. She's certainly more friendly now she's on her own!

Rowgtfc72 Sat 14-Jun-14 09:05:12

We had old jack pts at Christmas and fat jack who is twelve had never been alone before. They both used to spend all their times outdoors but since Dec she has howled to come in and won't leave my side. We've given her lots of fuss and attention and six months on she whines to go out, doesn't want to come in and doesn't stalk me anymore. I think she just had to do her grieving in her own time. She's certainly more friendly now she's on her own!

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