What would your dog do?

(24 Posts)
Saavhi Wed 08-May-19 21:34:32

I ADORE my dog (3-year-old GSD). However, this evening I just needed space from him and his separation anxiety (working on this with behaviourist). After having a long walk, food and water I left him in our spacious kitchen. I just needed to be on my own in the bath. He is perfectly fine but he is whining as if he is being murdered right niw. Am I terrible for leaving him? I really love him but just need a minute away from him. Feeling guilty.

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Saavhi Wed 08-May-19 21:35:31

Whoops, I thought this was doghouse. My bad- reporting.

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SuperLoudPoppingAction Wed 08-May-19 21:36:39

She would cry for about 3 minutes then destroy something minor then maybe lie down until there was A Sound then bark for 3 minutes then lie down.

GreytExpectations Wed 08-May-19 21:37:07

You are not terrible and there was nothing wrong with what you did. The more you can do this the better your dogs anxiety will be. Good luck with it all!

Medievalist Wed 08-May-19 21:37:24

You mean you .... left him .... on his OWN 😱😱😱😱. Could he not just sit on the bathroom floor ... 🤗 🐕

Babyroobs Wed 08-May-19 21:38:41

My cocker spaniel is the same , he follows me into the toilet and scratches the door if I shut him out, he sleeps between me and dh in our bed and when I am working from home ( desk is in my bedroom) he will drape himself off the bed to get as close to my work chair as possible. I do get frustrated with him as there's no peace from him he just follows me everywhere but doesn't do the same with other family members, except if I am out he will go and sit on my sleeping teen ds's head.

runninguphills Wed 08-May-19 21:44:51

Aw poor pooch! It's just that he loves you too much!
I have terribly spoilt whippet - she has too much love from the 5 people in the house. Everyone wants her to sit next to them or to sleep on their bed.

She now tries to escape on her own for a some peace and quiet...! Maybe this is something you could try??


Saavhi Wed 08-May-19 21:47:01

The only reason I feel guilty is that we have been gradually working on distancing ourselves. 1 minute, then 5 mins at a time etc. This is abrupt for my boy but I NEED a minute (dp is working away this week so fairly stressed). Poor baby.

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Saavhi Wed 08-May-19 21:48:56

runninguphills I love him too much also. I often tear just looking at him and his loveliness/prospect of being away from him one day.

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Saavhi Wed 08-May-19 21:51:10

My boy likes his own space but only if a family member is in the same room as him.

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Wolfiefan Wed 08-May-19 21:55:09

If your behaviourist is suggesting times to leave the dog like this then you need a new one. That’s if it is full blown separation anxiety. A dog with that can’t be left. At all. Not to start with. If they are then they suffer a kind of horrific panic attack and it reinforces that being left is the worst thing ever.
It’s a bloody hard thing to cure. sad

stucknoue Wed 08-May-19 22:05:59

You need to be able to leave dogs alone (I hope puppy owners are reading this). We left ours from day 1 in a secure place, he did cry a little in the night and I came down at 6am but start as you mean to go on. Ours is about as far away from these needy dogs as you can get, actively avoiding us unless he wants something, even cuddles he restricts to the evenings for some reason

Wolfiefan Wed 08-May-19 22:08:19

That’s fine stuck but not for a dog with separation anxiety.

DogHairEverywhere Wed 08-May-19 22:28:10

What Wolfie said. If it's full blown separation anxiety then you can't leave your dog alone at all. He will suffer terribly as they have no way of knowing that you will be back after your bath (or whatever). Often dogs will pee or poo in terror when left, if they are suffering from separation anxiety.
A good behaviourist will explain that you need to desensitise your dog to the cues you give off even before you leave the room. So that might be standing up from the chair, or even moving your weight forwards in preparation to standing up. It is a long, slow process and not one you can undertake lightly. Next time, take him into the bathroom with you.

SolitudeAtAltitude Wed 08-May-19 22:38:51

Yes, they are very good at reading body language, so getting him used to you standing up, putting your coat on. Grabbing your keys etc etc, without actually going out will over time desensitise him a bit.

It's a gradual approach but worked for us (neurotic lurcher household grin)

Wolfiefan Wed 08-May-19 22:55:27

Solitude is it a hound thing?!?!
The key is to never push them to feel anxious. So you may start by moving towards your shoes. Or just moving around the room.

MsMustDoBetter Wed 08-May-19 23:04:10

We have started as we mean to go on - just living our normal life and expecting the dog to slot in. His means that sometimes she can be left for anything between 5 minutes and 3 hours. She is good as gold - we leave the radio on and lots of chews and toys.

We also shake up her walk every day. Sometimes it's one big walk, sometimes a medium and a short and sometimes three short.

She seems to be taking it all in her stride - doesn't fuss when left and sleeps in her crate without a peep.

Nesssie Thu 09-May-19 11:11:11

The key here is how did the dog react after you left him? Did he settle down eventually or did he toilet inside/chew something etc?

Could you get a baby gate that you can move around as necessary so when you are in the bath, put it across the bathroom door so he can see you but can be in the bathroom.
Then when you are cooking put it across the kitchen door. This allows him to settle down on the other side of the gate but still gives you space.

Greyhound22 Thu 09-May-19 11:35:51

My Ddog is strange. If I'm in the house he's like my shadow and I get ratty with falling over him.

However - if I go out he's completely unphased and can be left for hours asleep happily.

Saavhi Thu 09-May-19 20:56:06

Nesssie - My boy has not toileted in the house for well over two years (bless him!). He whined/barked for 15 minutes and then curled up in the foetal position sad. I often build makeshift walls if I am frying bacon/boiling water on the hob, he is quite happy just "seeing me".

Unfortunately, I have been a SAHM for the past 3 years so he has become accustomed to me always being around. Sometimes he stalks me, other times he's quite happy to doze in the corner in another room- but he always knows I'm around.

98% of the time I'm happy to have him act as my shadow but last night I had a bit of a meltdown (dp has been away since Sunday) and I just needed to be alone. Normally, I allow him to poke his head through the bathroom door and then settle in the hallway/my bed.

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xJune88 Thu 09-May-19 21:01:05

Mine would bark, probably eat something and scratch at doors. She hates been on her own and is so nosey! She sits at the side of me or lays on bath mat whilst I'm in the bath Haha x

KennyCalmIt Fri 10-May-19 01:39:29

I have a gsd. They’re called Velcro dogs for a reason

I wouldn’t get this breed and expect any different, in all honesty. No it’s not great if they have separation anxiety BUT if he knows you’re in the house it probably isn’t the same as it would be if he knew you’d gone out

Mine is absolutely fine when I leave her alone and go out. But she’d also cry if I left her in the kitchen and went for a bath. Couldn’t you just give him the freedom to move about as and when he pleases ?

ShortyShortLegs Fri 10-May-19 02:09:25

My mum had a rescue JRT Cross who was around 8 when she got him.
He had awful separation anxiety. The first time she left him for 15 minutes alone in the house he went on a rampage....scratched all the doors, knocked the curtains down, chewed the handle on the window, peed and pooed, broke ornaments by launching himself at shelves....it was awful. He was crying and howling when she came back.
Someone advised her to try a crate and lent her their bullmastif's one....he chewed his way out in five minutes😮
If she left him in the car while paying for petrol he'd go so mad he'd set off the car alarm! He was slightly better when left with my dog but in the end she just took him everywhere with her or left him with me and the kids! He was lovely apart from the separation anxiety, calm, loving affectionate etc. but as he was a rescue we don't know what had happened to him previously and mum decided it wasn't fair to put him through it.

We have another dog now JRT cross Collie who has dementia and constantly whines. It drives us all mad. He even whines while wagging his tail, whines in the car, whines while eating, whines in his sleep...whines whines whines!

We have been using Pet Remedy De-Stress and Calming Spray on him and it makes a big difference...I was very sceptical about it and picked up a free sample wet wipe at the vet....the difference in him was amazing! I bought a spray bottle for around £12 from Amazon. You can put it directly onto the dog or on their collar/bedding/car etc.
It might be worth a try, it definitely relaxes our three!!

Nesssie Fri 10-May-19 16:38:55

Saavhi - not toileting is a good sign! As it doesn't sound like you do it often so the fact he settled down eventually probably means he isn't too traumatised!

Could you work on leaving him, by blocking him in one room as normal and then moving in and out of sight, continuously (doing housework/putting things away). eventually he will realise that you are always coming back and so should settle down. And the more you do it, the quicker he should settle and then you can extend the time you are out of sight.

My dog doesn't have any separation anxiety (luckily) but even he likes to know where I am before settling down. When I first got him he followed me everywhere but now he can settle on his own (until I open the fridge or jangle keys etc)

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