Jump to content
How to help my anxious dog
3 replies to this topic
Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:00 PM
My male dog in an anxious dog but lately it is becoming worse. When he is anxious he shakes, whines and pants and is very clingy/protective especially of me.
So far he is afraid/ anxious around
Water feature or when the neighbour uses any of the above
He is now doing it and we have no idea why.
Is there anything I can do to help him?
Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:10 PM
I highly reccomend the thundershirt. Its an elastic coat that you put tightly on dogs when you know he will be anxious. My dog has one and its fantastic. I got it from england over ebay, but I noticed them in the pet barn (or was it pet stock) catalogue the other day. I paid $45 for a bichon sized one. Good luck.
Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:20 PM
A couple of things are happening, and the obvious one to ask is, what do you do when he gets clingy?
Do you try to soothe him and re-assure him? Because if you do, you're sending him the message that he has something to be fearful about and you're reinforcing the fear and anxiety.
The behavioural methods would go down a desensitisation path. So, the leaf blower starts up and you ignore all 'clingy' behaviour. Try asking for a sit, in a firm confident voice, and if you get it, reward the dog. This is a distract/replace strategy. Rather than allowing the undesired behaviour, you replace it with something acceptable.
Always reward and praise a dog who displays confidence and is ignoring the stimulus.
The next option is to simply crate him whenever he goes clingy. A crate is a lovely safe haven for a dog, and it means that you are not reinforcing the undesired behaviour. At some point, you'll get a tipping point, and he'll only want the crate during really big events like thunderstorms. The aim is to remove the stimulus that causes the undesired behaviour, and the reward for being fearful (that's you) and replace it with something unstimulating and neutral. Reward the dog for being relaxed in his crate.
I'd also consider discussing the issue with your vet. Sometimes medication can help with severe anxiety in dogs, and get you over the initial 'hump' of rewiring the behavioural responses.
This is probably enough to get you started - and I'd also recommend a behavioural specialist to have a few sessions with you at home. They may spot something that has triggered this in your dog, which I can't do over the net.
Hope it helps!
Posted 21 December 2012 - 12:27 AM
Anxiety and fear can be tricky and professional advice from a good trainer or behaviourist is the best form of help. Someone who understands desensitisation and counter-conditioning, to address the underlying state of fear not just suppress the dog trying to communicate his feelings.
The thinking on reinforcing fear has changed recently, a good article is here --> http://fearfuldogs.com/myth-of-reinforcing-fear/ . Reinforcing calm behaviour is a big part of it, but if you are feeling like some reading/googling, understanding the difference between operant and respondent behaviour and how to change each will get you most of the way there!
Edited by kiddies-n-kelpies, 21 December 2012 - 12:37 AM.
1 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users
Cara Simmons arrived at work to clean a large and beautiful house in time for a party planned for that evening. It was soon hers.
A few weeks ago, some dear friends of mine had their first baby. As the proud dad texted me a picture I had to fight the natural instinct to say “Enjoy every moment!”
A transgender man who breastfed his first baby - despite having his breasts removed as part of his transformation from female to male - has now had a second child.
A Canadian couple were slammed with a million dollar medical bill after their daughter was prematurely during their babymoon.
Australia?s No 1 selling car is now available in a Sports model and we have 5 to give away to some lucky Essential Baby families.
One in every five dollars spent at supermarkets goes on cigarettes or junk food, according to industry data.
There is no doubt mums have a right to continue breastfeeding after they have returned to work, but one teacher in the US has taken it to the extreme.
She looks him up and down and then touches his chin, but baby Lindsey still isn't sure this clean-shaven man is her dad.
We were green and uninitiated, perhaps a little naïve when it came to the favourite toy responsibility.
Medical experts say intense fitness routines can be done safely during pregnancy - if the mums-to-be follow some guidelines.
Fans followed every step of her on-screen pregnancy in Offspring, now Asher Keddie is going to be a mum in real life too.
Are our hopes, dreams and expectations for our children what they really need?
Before even giving birth, Katie Myers' maternal instincts warned her something was wrong with her baby.
Some dads-to-be don't miss a beat when their partner is pregnant; others struggle with a range of issues and can become withdrawn, right when their support is needed most.
Katharine and Kris Camilli devised a clever trick to immortalise their family and friends' reaction to their exciting pregnancy news.
"After 30 years on television, I had become what I despised: a painted doll who spent an hour a day and close to $200 a week putting on a mask."
When a group of teenagers made rude remarks about her body as she walked past them in a bikini at the local beach, Julie Cross refused to cover up.
They had been trying to conceive a baby for seven years. Tragically Kristy Kirchner found out she was pregnant the day before her husband Royce's funeral.
We have 4 family passes to give away to see Disney Live! presents Three Classic Fairy Tales, touring Australia this December/January.
Every toddler's favourite television pig is being sued by an Italian woman who shares a name with a Peppa Pig character.
"Men can't have babies - that's something only women can do! But our community is full of like-minded people who wish otherwise."
Forget about the bright, pretty baby things - while you're in survival mode, all you'll need are the essentials.
The announcement of a mass recall comes as Malaysian police investigate the death of pregnant woman in July.
I had a much wanted precious baby girl, a 'good baby' who slept well, self settled and was mostly content. It just seemed implausible to think I could succumb to depression.
Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.
Top 5 Articles
To celebrate the release of PADDINGTON, we are giving five lucky winners the chance to win a family pass to the exclusive Australian Premiere in Sydney on December 7!
I am secure, confident and strong, but the responsibility of protecting my children can almost bring me undone.
There are so many ways in which parenthood changes us as women, but one of the most noticeable, for me, has been the changing state of my emotions.
Baby Maia was conceived against the odds, only to find she was sharing a womb with an ominous "foreign body".
They say dog is man's best friend, but this playful pooch seems to have chosen a jumping baby as her number one buddy.
New paernts can get frustrated when their newborn gets fussy and can't settle down. When you're feeling overwhelmed, try some of these simple tips to help soothe your baby.
The data-lovers at nameberry.com have been at it again – this time, they’ve discovered the names that are continually rising up the ranks, ready to take out some top spots in the next few years.
Ideally, you want to give food that isn’t expensive to make, isn't too difficult to create, and freezes well; stews, bakes, soups and pasta sauces are perfect.
Rebekah DiMartino is going through a break-up. She even wrote a farewell love letter. But it's not to her husband.
In a cruel twist, Carla had been breastfeeding and perimenopausal at the same time. But she's far from the only one to go through menopause early.
Busy restaurants can be forgiven for getting food and drink orders mixed up from time to time, but not when the confusion leads to a two-year-old being served an alcoholic cocktail instead of the child-friendly beverage they ordered.
Julia Morris has spoken about the devastation of suffering a miscarriage while on an international flight.
A US mother is home and tending to her new baby less than a month after surviving without a pulse for 45 minutes.
A new study proposes that, like a strong cup of coffee, ice may give those with insufficient iron a much-needed mental boost.
Each year in Australia, over 40,000 newborns need the help of a special care nursery or neonatal intensive care unit. One day a year, the staff are honoured by the parents they help through those dark days.
This time my husband and I hadn't taken any chances. We had paid $50,000 and travelled 13,000 kilometres to make sure the baby growing inside me was female.
Some pregnancy products come to market and are just awesome. Others just leave you scratching your head.
Being a first-time mum is tough for so many reasons – particularly because you really have no idea what you're doing.
Helen Richardson son's had two anaphylactic reactions in a month. It's traumatic for everyone.
It wasn't a pregnancy test or missed period that told me I was pregnant with my second baby; it was too early for those things. A doner kebab told me I was going to be a mum again.
Robbie Williams stole the show during his wife Ayda's labour, pretty much demonstrating everything on the "what not to do when your partner is in labour" list.
Thinking about a tropical babymoon but have nothing to wear? Here are some great swimwear and beach cover-up options for mums-to-be.
Trevor Macdonald has now been pregnant twice, and is successfully breastfeeding his newest family member.
How many weeks til Christmas?
Get the "Santa" shopping done without the kids in tow.