Here's the rundown... I have a mini Dach that is three years old now. I've had her since she was a puppy. Since then, we have moved four different times and there has always been an adjustment period. I keep her in a confined area during the day and when I'm gone due to her 'accidents' she tends to have around the house, usually when she feels she isn't getting enough attention or is upset. We've been in the apartment a month and a half now. She's only had a couple accidents, I'm sure do to confusion, the first week or so. But otherwise, she has done really well. We've gotten the routine down where in the morning when I leave, she goes into the bathroom, where I have a gate up, she gets fed and she uses puppy pads like she always has before. When I get home, I take her outside and we play and walk for her exercise. And at night - and this is the only difference - I've been putting her up at night too. In the past, when she's slept with me, or my roommate, she's been known to jump down in the middle of the night and either potty under the bed or get into some other kind of trouble.
Anyway... so that being the only thing different from her regular routine, she has done really well, up until a few days ago. She's acting out. She has started tearing up the potty pads that I have used since she was a puppy, she peed in my roommates bed the other day while he was sitting next to her. And I'm having trouble with her whining, barking and even howling at night and during the day, which she has never done before. I even got a call at work from my neighbor that lives across the hall saying she could hear her over her in the middle of the day howling. Is it all because she isn't sleeping in someones bed?? And why is it she was ok for the first five weeks and she's just starting now??
The only other thing that is different is I had to change her food last week. I hated to do it because I know my dog and it scares me but the feed store quit carrying it and I've yet to find a place that does. - Earlier this year, she quit eating or drinking and lost two pounds in little over a week. She's already smaller in size than most minis. But she got real dehydrated and has a seizure. So in order to get her to eat, I started adding wet food. Of course she ate, but she doesn't digest it at all which caused more problems with diarrhea and vomiting. Anyway.. it was a nightmare that finally ended when I found a dry food that she would eat and she's been health and happy ever since. But during that whole ordeal I don't recall any behavioral problems at all.
Oh! Another strange thing.. The other morning, an older lady friend of mine came by the house and Cash, who is normally very friendly.. she loves people.. well, she whined and cried as if she was being hurt at the sight of her. It was crazy! I've never known Cash to be scared of ANYTHING!!! She's a brave lil thing that has always went after anyone or any dog that she thought as a threat. She has nevered scowered down and cried like that before. She even peed when Ann went to pick her up.
Anyway.. I don't know whats going on with her. I've tried paying more attention to her. Spending more time outside exercising. I thought about maybe helping her break the sleeping with me thing by bringing her into the room. I have a cage. It's big enough for her, her bed, baby and a water dish. I thought maybe if I put it in the room with me and placed her inside at night it might help. Any advice?
Okay... since no one else has taken a crack at this, I will.
1. The destructive behavior is almost always due to lack of exercise. Even though she is a small dog, they still need at least 30 min. of walking a day. And that doesn't mean sniff, walk, walk. That means full out walking. There is a time to potty and a time to walk, know what I mean?
2. Something that will help the barking and howling, and for that matter a lot of the things you have mentioned is crate training her. Buy a crate just big enough for her to stand up and turn around in. The only things that should be in there are bedding and maybe a few toys. No food or water. The crate simulates a den that a dog would dig in the wild. A dog's instincts is to not soil their den. This works great for at night and during the day when you need to be gone. A 3 yr old dog should be able to stay in there during the day with a break or two to potty and get a drink.
3. Your dog's reaction to the other lady was purely submissive in nature. The whining, the peeing, the whole nine yards. It doesn't mean that your dog is scared of the lady per se. She is just being submissive to who she perceives as a pack leader or a dominant individual. It is quite an extreme reaction, (most dogs just calm down or whine a bit) but these more extreme submissive cues are common in smaller dogs. Esp. the submissive peeing.
There, I hope I have helped. If you have any other questions, PM me and I will do my best to help you! Good luck!