When I got my dog when she was three months old she seemed very depressed and not social. She then clung on to me and never has interacted with any other person but me. She barks and bites people when they come in a room. I cannot take her to the dog park anymore because she runs after people and jumps and bites them. I have no idea what to do. I cant go anywhere or leave her alone because she gets so depressed she wont move or eat or go outside. I have tries training, medication, everything. I am really at the end of my rope and nothing is working. She is still the sam Instead of being a great family companion she is a huge stress in my life and i cant trust her with anyone. What should I do?
Have you taken her to a professional behaviorist for one on one obedience training, or just done training by yourself? If you haven't seen a professional, I recommend that you do so. What breed of dog is she and how old is she now?
I'm not sure this is not another Border Collie Babe poster. If so, I usually try to ignore those type... but I can't help but notice that a lot of you throw out suggestions for cardiac specialist, professional behavorist (sp)..... I can't even afford that kind of stuff for myself much less for my dog. I know that some will say if you can't afford it you shouldn't have a dog, but maybe I am just different than a lot of guys, but who expects to have to take a dog to those type of specialists? Most people I know do not spend that kind of money on their animals.
jawlaw, I wonder about the bcb thing to but regarding the behaviourist, we have some in our city that are as low as $100 a month, still alot but worth my dog to me. I have never used them but have heard that they are good.
***Edited By: KatzPomDogz on 11/30/2004 1:23:40 AM*** Reason: ppptttthhhhhttttt!!!!!!
Can you muzzle her? Mabey if you can you can take her to the dog park and petco, friends house to be around people without her being able to bite. It's sounds like you are her life and she is trying to protect you and doesn't want to share you. Leave the tv on when you are gone so she has noise in a kennel and mabey something with your smell on it. I don't think she will starve herself and will eat when you get home. When people come over you can have her on a leash and choke collar and if she tries to jump and bite pull her down and say NO LOUD. You will have to do this until she understands that it's ok to have people around you. Mabey practice with a friend and have them come to the door over and over again until she acts ok and doesn't try to bite then really praise her. I'm not a trainer but there might be one in your area that would give you some free advise over the phone.
Jawlaw, when the choice is between having a dog pts or seeing a professional trainer or behaviorist even one time, the choice is pretty obvious to me, if you love your dog. Some things are worth the money.
most regular dog trainers are not equipped with the knowledge to help a dog with your dogs problems. it sounds like she needs professional help, in the form of a veterinary behaviorist. your initial consulttion will run you around 100 dollars. there are many meds you can try, if the first one didn't work. before you have a chance to seek professional help keep her crated or locked in another room when you have company over. this will not be an overnight solution. it will take many months of hard work on your part. but i never believe in putting puppies to sleep without exhausting every avenue available.
i completely understand your frustration over your situation. if you believe you have truly tried everything and euthanasia is your only option then that is your decision to make. no one can make that decision for you.
When she runs to you, do not console her. That's reinforcing the behavior. Is she well trained in sit and stay. I would work on that until she has it down pat and when she is around others, put her in a stay. Does she follow you around the house? I would crate her in an area where she can see you or chain her to a central location where she can see you come and go and praise her for being quiet and awaiting your return. When you are out, do not give her any attention when you walk in the door for at least l0-15 minutes. No big hellos or goodbyes. Be very nonshalant about your comings and goings. Reduce the amount of attention you are giving her for awhile. Then have someone else come over with treats. Something really tasty like bacon. Praise her for reacting positive to another person, even if its just long enough to take a treat. If you are having issues with leaving her alone, remember you transfer your anxieties to your dog. Your confidence will also transfer to her. Tell her she will be ok and mean it, no excessive coddling. If she is nasty to another person, remove her from the area and deny her contact with you also. She should never be allowed to run to you for protection. Only give her attention when she is doing the RIGHT thing. Good luck.
Minn and Katz- I'm not saying I wouldn't do it if it was a choice between pts or keeping my pet. I definitely would do whatever I could do... however, I doubt that a majority of people could throw even $100.00 extra a month for something like that... maybe I am wrong. Maybe most people with pets have money. I was just making a comment about what I thought people would think based on the people that I know that have dogs (at least most of them).
At the risk of sounding trite, lola, I feel your pain. I was in pretty much the same situation with a Dobie who became morosely depressed upon the death of his "brother" (a Rottie). We tried everything you did, plus an animal behaviorist, but he just couldn't lift himself out of his depression. After he bit my child for no reason whatsoever, I kept the Dobe by my side at all times, muzzled. I finally couldn't take the stress anymore and had him pts. So sad I was for a long, long time, but I feel I did everything I could to save him.
It's a hard, hard thing to decide to put a physically healthy dog down, but I believe it is sometimes necessary and for the best. There was nothing more I could do for my Dobe, and he was miserable all the time, which made the rest of his family miserable.
Whatever decision you make, lola, you have my support and compassion.