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New dogwalker thinks my dog is autistic

(22 Posts)
luhvinia Thu 21-Nov-19 14:11:12

My lovely boy (GSD) is my absolute pride and joy. He is very demanding but it's fine for us as as we love and adore him. Our local vet has called him the best GSD that she sees. Is autism in dogs a thing? My boy hates change (don't all dogs?) but is friendly/indifferent to most dogs/people he meets.

luhvinia Thu 21-Nov-19 14:12:28

Our new dog walker is extremely professional and knowledgeable. He called our boy the most sensitive dog he's met!

Winterdaysarehere Thu 21-Nov-19 14:14:22

I diagnose my ddog as a psycho every day. And a kleptomaniac..
Sorry no help at all.

maslinpan Thu 21-Nov-19 14:15:02

You may your dog as much as you love a human, I am the same with my cats - however, both of us know that they are definitely animals and cannot possibly be deemed to be autistic. She is being ridiculous.

Honeyroar Thu 21-Nov-19 14:16:31

Yes it is actually a thing- I spoke to my vet about it years ago as thought my dog might be. If I remember rightly (which isn’t likely!) it’s a bit different in dogs.

StrictlyNameChangin Thu 21-Nov-19 15:01:59

Aren't all dogs prone to behavioural traits we would see as autistic if they were human?

tabulahrasa Thu 21-Nov-19 15:09:23

Autism both is and isn’t a thing in dogs, in that it’s not a diagnosable condition, but there are behavioural issues that present in dogs that share similarities with autism in young children.

But it’s not the traits that most people think of when they think of autism because they’re human behaviours.

It’s more obsessive behaviours, stimming, aggressive outbursts...

LochJessMonster Thu 21-Nov-19 15:11:44

Dogs can't be diagnosed as autistic.
There are some studies that say some dogs may have certain autistic behaviours, but tbh that is so difficult to prove.

Repetitive behaviours and impaired social interaction with dogs/ people are apparently signs but all dogs are different in their behaviours anyway.

Sociability can be explained by upbringing/training and negative exposures during the key puppy socialisation period.

In any case, she is not in any way shape or form qualified to diagnose it, and I'd be pretty offended!

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Thu 21-Nov-19 18:33:49

And to compare behaviour in a dog and a human is pretty bloody bizarre.

Veterinari Thu 21-Nov-19 18:36:54

Autism does not occur in dogs - repetitive and compulsive behaviours do occur but are usually linked with behavioural frustration or anxiety
What exactly is you walker concerned about ?

starfishmummy Thu 21-Nov-19 18:39:39

I think your dog walker is barking!!

carly2803 Thu 21-Nov-19 18:42:18

im just going to bippity bop the fuck back out of this thread.

bizarre dogwalker.

StickyToffeeTart Thu 21-Nov-19 18:47:37

My DM thinks her dog is autistic, I think that's ridiculous and pretty insulting to be honest

StillMedusa Thu 21-Nov-19 19:12:20

As both a dog owner and the parent of a young man with autism, I find that a bit insulting tbh.
The autistic spectrum is a triad of impairments, ..impaired social communication, impaired social interaction and restricted/repetitive iterests and patterns of behaviour which seriously impair every day living.

I really don't see how that can be diagnosed in a dog, in any way that can't be attributed to a combo of the breed genetics (GSD's are known to be a bit of a neurotic bunch..hence poor social interaction) and training/early socialisation. Dog personalities like people's vary.

The diagnosis of autism in a human is usually made when the impairment is severe enough to seriously impact their daily life... my son is 22, will never be fully independent , his mind set is so different from his siblings..he's kind and friendly , gentle and terribly anxious, but dependent.

My dog doesn't like strangers much..but that's because despite good socialisation as a puppy, her breed is virtually always reserved with strangers..and that's fine..it doesn't mean she has autism.

I suspect your dog walker isn't a diagnosing doctor either !

narcissistseverywhere Thu 21-Nov-19 22:13:50

I'm on the spectrum and diagnosing animals is just a bit of fun, one of my guinea pigs was definitely autistic, I wouldn't take it seriously. My dog is very much NT, living in a houseful of autistic kids / adults - poor girl

anappleadaykeeps Thu 21-Nov-19 22:21:49

No, she's wrong. Dogs have ADHD, it's Cats that have Aspergers.

Apparently...

LaurieSchafferIsAllBitterNow Thu 21-Nov-19 22:37:17

He's just mad the dog doesn't like him

My boy was like that....people just itching to get their hands on him, he was so so handsome, a couple once stalked us around B&Q just gazing in adoration at him and he completely blanked them like they were poison.

He did the same to some woman at dog training who tried to tell me I should offer "high value treats"
She was triumphant when she eventually managed to get him to take a bit of sausage, and then he spat it out and it bounced off her foot, I thought I might actually die laughing.

yetwig Fri 22-Nov-19 14:25:44

I find German Shepherds are one person dog, my dad's follows him round everywhere, she goes to work with him. If anyone goes up to say hello, she's not bothered. Doesn't make her autistic or any other dog for that matter.

JamieFrasersSassenach Sat 30-Nov-19 19:46:19

My springer spaniel bitch is what my vet once described as 'the dog version of autistic'.

I absolutely know that she isn't autistic as such, but she runs up to people she doesn't know as though she is longing to be stroked and fussed - and then when the person tries to do just that she screams, like a banshee, and behaves as though she has been fatally injured.

She is 5 now, we have had her from a puppy, she came from a lovely home - mum & dad are family pets, and the litter was a one off of 4 puppies - the other 3 are all fine.

She is REALLY hard work, everyone has to be told not to look at her, talk to her or stroke her - she is also very pretty, so taking her for a walk anywhere busy is a complete nightmare as people always want to touch her. As is having visitors - unless they completely ignore her and then she is usually sat on their lap after an hour.

She responds well to cheese, so going to the vets involves taking a lot of cheese cut up, having my arm around her so she can't see the vet and constant pieces of cheese into her mouth - the vet can do what she wants to her then and she doesn't flinch.

mummyflood Mon 02-Dec-19 15:46:09

oh dear hmm

How new is this dog walker? If I were you, if you have any concerns about your dogs behaviour/health, I would consult a qualified vet. If the dog walker is as professional and knowlegeable as you say, he/she would be advising the same. What did they hope to gain from coming up with this?

stucknoue Mon 02-Dec-19 16:16:11

Mine is for sure but I think most are, he's obsessed with balls and will repetitively chase them over and over, he's also anti social ...

Span1elsRock Mon 02-Dec-19 16:20:17

My BIL used to have a cocker spaniel who would have been labelled autistic if he'd been human. He had some seriously quirky behavioural traits that we all accepted because we loved him. But it was very stressful taking him out because he reacted so unexpectedly to people....... he tried to pull someone's rucksack off their back once as it had cheese sandwiches in blush

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