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Separation Anxiety In Newly Adopted Greyhound-Help!


Guest laura150

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Guest laura150

We have just adopted a greyhound and have had him for 4 days. He's 2 1/2 and such a sweet and happy boy. He sleeps through the night, hasn't had an accident in the house, doesn't attempt to mark and lets us know when he needs to go to the bathroom.

 

He's such a good snoozer and is low key. We love taking him for walks in our neighborhoods and on the beach.

 

Our issue is the separation anxiety he is having when we leave.

 

We have our crate set up in our bedroom because he's been sleeping in there with us at night. The first day we left him alone for little bits of time in his crate in our bedroom and set up a camera to video him and he whined and barked the entire time we were gone. We left the radio on and gave him a kong with frozen peanut butter. He had absolutely no interest in it and barked.

So then we decided we'd take him out of his crate when doing alone training. We closed the bedroom and bathroom doors and confined him to the living room where he has his extra comfy bed, multitude of toys and a view of the door.

 

We did alone training today again and he seemed to be better. He'd take a lap around the apartment, whine a bit and then lay on his bed or the soft carpet. We felt like we made some progress and chalked it up to having the crate in the bedroom and him not being able to see us leave.

 

So tonight we left him alone for a little over an hour after doing all of the alone training and set up a camera. We left a kong and left a t-shirt that smelled like me on his bed. He whined and barked the entire time we were gone.

 

What are we doing wrong? Is it simply too early to make progress or are we doing the wrong things? I wonder if we should move his crate into the living room in the mornings (or just get an additional crate so we have two) and then put him in there when we leave. He paces the house a bit when we leave him alone so maybe this will help?

I'll also leave the radio on in the living room tomorrow when we do our alone training.

We live in an apartment and don't want to get in trouble with neighbors. When the people upstairs from us (they have since moved and been replaced by new neighbors with no dogs and no empathy) did crate training, we could hear their dog clear as day. It makes me nervous to leave in the morning for work!

 

Does anyone have any additional advice on alone training or this topic? I don't want to put him on meds just yet and want to see what else we can do.

Thank you!

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Congrats and you sound very versed on your training. 4 Days is way to early for your hound to figure his new life out.

I would continue to do the alone training. Do it when you are home. Make the ritual of putting the radio on, grabbing keys, purse, give kong, open door go out, for 1 min. come in. Wait about 10 minutes, radio on, gram keys, purse, give kong go out. Return in 5 minutes. Etc. Etc. The object is to confuse the heck out of him. When I leave all I say is "see you later". No fuse, leaving and no fuse coming home.

Taking the dog for a long walk before leaving helps tremendously. Keep us posted but you all need more time.

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Guest Marsroving

IMO it is way to early to consider meds. Please leave those as a last resort. You have a young dog who will need more exercise than a 4 yr old dog or even a 3 year old dog. Make sure he gets plenty of excersise before you leave and just work in establishing a routine for him. Greys love their routines, and it real helps gie hem a sense of comfort and stability.

 

Keep doing what you are doing. You are not doing anything wrong! You just need to have more patience and give him time to adjust. Do not expect too much too soon! And do not be too hard on y ourself! Enjoy our boy! Love him to death!

 

Take a deep breath and know its going to be ok!

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He has probably never been alone before. Even if fostered, there were probably other hounds. It is a gradual process as others have said. His whole life just became new again, and with training and time, you will have a great friend there.

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Always missing my boy Hi Noon Rocket. The home of Petunia, MW Neptunia and Kate, Miss Kate.

Don't believe everything you read on the internet. - Abraham Lincoln

 

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There are a million threads in here regarding separation anxiety. If you search it, you'll find lots of good advice. My only comment is about meds. I don't know why there is such a stigma about using meds to give your dog some relief and help ease him through the transition. Many times, owners only need them for a short period of time. If your dog broke his leg and was crying in pain, you would give him medication, right? It's the same thing. Anxiety is a very REAL condition and often warrants meds. Many dogs benefit from Clomicalm, SSRIs, and other fast-working anxiety meds. They don't make your dog a zombie or change their personality, or any of the misconceptions that people believe. If you've done all you can with alone training and feel like you're hitting a brick wall, don't let your hound suffer. Consider meds then.

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Guest KsFrets

Magnus had awful SA. We tried everything for a month, and nothing worked. The worst part was peeing in his crate. We were his second home, as he was a bounce, so we were determined to make it work. A month later, we got Maggie. Magnus's SA disappeared the day Maggie came through the door. It has never returned, not even a small hint of it, and never another accident in the house. We even eliminated the crate within several weeks. That was six years ago. We now have four dogs. It doesn't matter which, or how many, we leave at home with Magnus, as long as he has company, he is fine.

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Guest laura150

Thanks for all of the advice!

 

I have searched high and low about advice for SA. And while I know he's totally new to the game, I want to try and get him comfortable.

 

He goes in his crate at night (with a little bribe of some kibble) and sleeps through the night, no problem because he knows we are right there in our bed.

 

He hated the crate the first few days of alone training so now I have him in a confined space of the living room and kitchen (closed off everything else).

He has no interest in his kong what so ever, none. I've given one to him when we're home and if I hold it, he'll lick it all day but he can't seem to manage to figure out his paws are supposed to hold it.

 

I've tried the radio too, nothing.

 

Again, I know this takes time, but my neighbors will kill me!

 

Does anyone think moving the crate into the living room might help? He'll be able to see the door but not pace or anything.

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try moving the crate in the LR while u r home and leave crate door open. See if this makes him more secure. Remember, it has been less then a week for all to adjust.

Shut all bedroom, bathroom doors, walk in and out all day. I mean ALL DAY.

What are you giving him in his kong? He has to LOVE whatever is in it, frozen peanut butter, yogurt, liver goodies etc.

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Guest laura150

OK-will try moving the crate into the living room.

 

It's peanut butter. He will eat it when we're home but has no interest in it when we leave. We've been nanny caming him and he paces and sits, barks, whines, paces, sits, barks, whines, over and over.

 

He doesn't get the whole hold the kong in your paws and get the delicious treats inside so I'm thinking the other treat toys won't work either.

 

Today we're doing alone training all day. Put on the radio, wait until he's on his bed, give him some kibble and close and lock the door.

 

I know there are a million posts about the SA I just think I need to vent! I do have the patience, I just want him to know that we'll always come back for him!

 

Also-we have been taking him on good walks but I'm a little nervous about the concrete on his delicate paw pads since he's not used to it. Has anyone had any issues with greyhounds on concrete?

We take him to the beach and the park with grass and sand but on days when he needs a quick walk, we want to be able to walk around the neighborhood sidewalks.

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Guest LunaTheGreyt

I made quite a few topics about my Luna's separation anxiety (you've probably seen them if you've searched :)) She only got worse over the 3 months I had her, despite doing everything suggested by people here & my vet. Honestly, the only thing that worked for me was getting another dog (my last resort, as I wasn't sure I was ready to have 2 dogs). Luckily in my case, I was able to bring over my family's dog that I already knew very well and didn't have to do any training with. When I brought him to my apartment, Luna's SA went from severe to totally nonexistent in a day. Your guy is still very new, and may very well adjust as an only dog with time and patience. Do not feel bad about medicating if you have to - personally clomicalm did not work for us, but many dogs do benefit from it (or SSRIs, as another poster mentioned) when they are having difficulty adjusting to their new life. It doesn't sound like his SA is severe at this point, so keep up with your alone training/desensitization to departure, and definitely call your vet if you feel you are not making progress after a few weeks (I started Luna on the clomipramine after having her for 1 month). Good luck! :)

 

ETA: I really want to stress the fact that every dog is different, and what worked for one person (or even most/many people) won't work for all. I know from experience that you can try everything, and even though many people had success with x, y, or z method, it didn't help my dog. So hang in there! SA is a tough nut to crack. Feel free to PM me if you need to vent. :)

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The only thing I would add is that if your do choose to bring in a second dog, make sure you do it for the right reasons as it may work...or may not.

When we first got Chase, he had pretty severe SA. He jumped threw a window to follow me and would chew things around the house. He also howled like someone was trying to kill him.

 

I borrowed a very mellow dog from a friend of mine for a week. I have known this dog for years and I babysit him when his owners are out of town. Lucas in pretty relaxed at our house. It did nothing on Chase's separation anxiety.

 

We took out time, we alone trained for weeks before we saw any improvement. I'm a teacher so I would try to come home unexpectedly whenever I didn't teach and would leave and come back many many times during the day.

 

I don't wan't to be pessimistic and if you do want an other dog it can be a wonderful thing. Just make sure you want a second dog for you and are ready to work out his issues (if he has them) at the same time you keep working with your current pooch's SA.

 

BTW we are awaiting out second hound, but Chase is doing well now and I feel we can take on a second dog. :)

Good luck and be patient. It takes time for these little guys to adjust. xx

 

PS Sorry for the bad english, frenchy here

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Guest laura150

Thanks for the encouragement!

 

We did alone training for a few hours again today and he did better. The last 30 minute stretch we did, he whined only in the beginning and then not again. We'll do some more tonight and then tomorrow as well.

 

We can't have another dog in our apartment and so far the only sign he's showing of SA is the whining and occasional barking, plus some pacing. We've decided not to use the crate and put him in a more confined area.

 

It's so hard not greeting him when I come in but I'm hoping this works.

 

Radio on, kibble given on bed, door shut and locked. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

 

Fingers crossed he keeps making good progress!

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Sounds like you're on the right path! You'll be surprised what time and patience will give you in the long run. I bet you won't recognize him in a month or two. We tend to forget they used to live with many greyhounds in a very structured setting. Its quiet the adaptation to become a pet!

 

You are doing good, keep up the good work! :)

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Just love your effort. It will work out. You might try a little Rescue Remedy, holistic drops sold at health food stores.

 

The Kong should stuffed with a high treat value he can't live without. I would try the liver treats with yogurt and frozen. Given to him just before you open the door and leave.

 

As far as concrete, should be no problem and helps keep the nails filed.

 

Keep up the good work, it is intense but payoff is wonderful.

Post some pics of your doggie.

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Guest laura150

Ernie's doing better! The barking has stopped completely. I've become a fixture in my hallway and the neighbors think I am nuts but that's fine with me!

 

How long do you do alone training? Even if he's good, should we practice for awhile? 1 week, 2 weeks of sessions?

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Keep on training until he's completely fine, leaving for longer and longer periods. Asking how long to train for is a bit like asking how long you need to potty train a child or whatever. You need to train until they're completely trained,

 

Well done! Sounds like you and Ernie have made great progress!

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Guest laura150

He is doing better! He will still whine and cry when I leave, but only for a little while. He was fast asleep today when I got home from work. Definitely woke him up when I walked in.

 

He seems a little sad and is sleeping a lot. He's definitely excited to see me and has lots of energy and smiles and zip in the mornings but sleeps mostly throughout the day and evening.

 

Do some greyhounds get depressed when they leave their shelter or the safe environment they came from after the track?

 

We'll continue the alone training every night after I'm home for awhile and we'll do it on the long weekend. Hopefully he could care less that we leave by then :)

 

He hasn't had an accident or touched anything in the apartment besides his lamb stuffie. I'm sure that will change when he becomes more comfortable.

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I am sure it is not depression. With proper exercise and alone training, this is what they do. They wait until you get home so they can entertain you.

 

If you are feeling guilty for him get a neighbor or dog service to come for about 30 min. a day. They can take him for a walk and give him a snack.

 

You will see such happiness then!!! Glad things are doing better.

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Guest laura150

Ernie had a great day today. We did some alone training this morning and then he went to my father in law's house where he met his new friend Bagheera who is a mutt. They romped well together and chased each other and then had a pee marking contest to see who could pee the most on a poor bush outside.

 

Ernie jumped in the pool too! He was surprised. I was ready to jump in and save him but he swam right out to the steps and shook himself off. They romped for awhile, he chased me and then had a good towel drying and nap on the grass. He's been sleeping ever since!

I'm currently in my hall doing some alone training before dinner and a little walk on the beach. He's silent! Definitely a tired pup.

It was so nice to see his personality today. He was SO HAPPY running around for fun and making a new friend. He's such a good boy!

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Guest laura150

Ernie is doing great! He was alone for 4 hours today and did really well.

 

We've been taking LONG walks in the morning so he is tired out by the time we get home and sleeps it off.

 

It makes me so happy that he's adjusting to us and trusts both of us now.

 

Everyone tells me he is really a deer that we are trying to pass of as a dog!

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Guest Impossiblealto

Ernie is doing great! He was alone for 4 hours today and did really well.

 

We've been taking LONG walks in the morning so he is tired out by the time we get home and sleeps it off.

 

It makes me so happy that he's adjusting to us and trusts both of us now.

 

Everyone tells me he is really a deer that we are trying to pass of as a dog!

Ha ha, my dad says that my dog is a deer too! I think it's mostly because of thew fawn coloring and white spots :P

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