Dog scared of woodlice

(21 Posts)
Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 15:46:50

Hello everyone.

I was wondering if any one else has had this problem with their dog?

There have been woodlice getting into my house for the past few weeks ( still trying to find out where they are getting in). They dont bother me but my dog is very scared of them. It started with him backing away from them and shaking his head as if there was something in his ear. He usually calms down after I put it outside.

Last night he saw one and did the usual backing away but after I removed the woodlouse he refused to come into the front room for about 2 hours. When he finally came back in he was constantly checking the floor and sofa for them and didnt want to lie down.
This morning he was still checking the floor for them and stayed in the hallway.

He has also recently become very scared of the sound of rustling paper and rain on leaves so much so that he doesn't like going outside in the rain.

I have asked the vet about it and he checked him over but didnt really have any ideas.

I have asked other dog owners I know but none of them have this problem.

A bit of a backstory.He is a 4 year old lab cross. I got him as a rescue 2 years ago.
When I first got him he was quite timid. The rescue centre thought he had been a stray. He didnt know how to use stairs, tried to walk on the sea as if it were solid, scared of louder noise. But he has done really well and is usually a very happy dog.

I was wondering if any one else has experienced this with their dog or might know why he is acting this way.

Thank you.

OP’s posts: |
elQuintoConyo Sun 16-Feb-20 15:50:40

Oh what a pooch! Sorry, I have no idea, but want to give him a hug and an ear scratch!

Whynosnowyet Sun 16-Feb-20 15:51:51

Maybe he thinks they are baby armadillo?

Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 16:08:23

Aww thank you.

OP’s posts: |
Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 16:09:47

Knowing him he probably does think they're armadillos!

OP’s posts: |
Wauden Sun 16-Feb-20 16:31:16

Do you think that his anxiety has returned for a reason? I think that is what Cesar Milan would look at.

loveliesbleeding1 Sun 16-Feb-20 16:47:14

Oh bless his heart.I don’t have any answers but my puppy was scared stiff of boiled eggs of all things! She backed away from it,and started whining and barking at it,so bizarre.


loveliesbleeding1 Sun 16-Feb-20 16:49:11

Oh and my girl is also a lab cross,maybe they are more susceptible to random phobias.

aliasname Sun 16-Feb-20 17:00:19

DH thinks woodlice might smell funny to dogs - neither of ours will touch them, although will happily play with and eat other insects.

And I think its perfectly reasonable to be scared of boiled eggs - those are scary fuckers, and you've no idea what could come out of them.

Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 17:01:57

I can't think of anything specific that might have caused it. The only other thing that scared him recently was when I was moving a cabinet and it fell over with a loud bang. He was in the other room though.

OP’s posts: |
EmeraldsAtDawn Sun 16-Feb-20 17:05:50

He was in the other room though.

Was he in the same room as the woodlice at the time?

Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 17:05:55

It didn't occur to me that they might smell funny. He is also perfectly okay to play with spiders.

I agree about the boiled eggs though. Very scary.

OP’s posts: |
aliasname Sun 16-Feb-20 17:06:48

OMG just googled it

Woodlice make a distinctive bad smell by excreting ammonia through their exoskeleton. As a result, many local names for woodlice liken them to pigs, such as ‘chiggy pig’ (Devon), ‘gramersow’ (Cornwall), ‘sow bug’ and ‘woodpig’. You can test this by keeping woodlice in a jar for a short time and sniffing the air inside.

Not gonna tell DH he was right though, that's the kind of intuition that gets you funny looks

Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 17:07:46

There was one in the hallway when I went to check on him after the bang. Maybe he has associated them.

OP’s posts: |
Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 17:09:42

@aliasname That must be it then. Dogs nosed are so sensitive aren't they.
Don't think I want to smell one like the article suggests though.

OP’s posts: |
aliasname Sun 16-Feb-20 17:45:39

It doesn't explain why he's scared of them though - unless he thinks that anything which stinks that much must be inherently evil.

But then they go and roll in fox poo, which must smell 10 times worse? The mind of a dog is just a mystery...

OrSomeSortOfWokAtTheVeryLeast Sun 16-Feb-20 17:54:13

Oh little poppet being scared of them halo

my dog just tries to smush them with her face and rolls on them, occasionally she tries to squash them under her paws, shes a woodlouse savage.

She is also a rescue and scared of plastic bags/packaging being opened and rustling.

If its affecting him though, maybe it's worth contacting a behaviourist to see if they could help?

Mydogsaweirdo Sun 16-Feb-20 17:54:19

@aliasname No but then he is quite....sensitive. It wouldn't suprise if he thought smelly things were evil.

I'm quite lucky that he doesn't roll in anything. My last dog though. She was awful. I'll never understand a dogs mind.

OP’s posts: |
Twenty2 Sun 16-Feb-20 17:59:13

Christ, stay away from Cesar Milan, he uses cruel and outdated methods of dog training shock

FLOrenze Mon 17-Feb-20 15:16:03

No advice I’m afraid, but it did make me smile. My Rescue is scared of spiders, butterflies, house flies, bikes and falling leaves. She has not encountered wood lice, but I am sure it is on her list.

pigsDOfly Mon 17-Feb-20 17:50:52

My dog is scared of spiders and flies. She will shoot off upstairs if she sees either in the house and refuse to come back down for hours.

I have no idea where this came from, I've had her since she was an 8 week old puppy so no unknown history. Although, I also hate flies so maybe she's picked that up from me.

I actually came on here to say that I think woodlice have a nasty smell, couldn't have told you what it was though, just something at the back of my mind.

Ammonia is a horrible smell and to a dog's sensitive nose must be very unpleasant; quite sensible of him to avoid them really.

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