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Separation Anxiety Or Just Adjusting?


Guest bailey8112
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Guest bailey8112

Hello, I adopted my first greyhound last week (74 lb 4.5 year old male). He is awesome while I am in the room with him but as soon as I leave all that changes. Every time I take him out he pees and poops like he knows he is supposed to do that outside. He poops a lot (between 6-8x per day and all are solid). So I have been working on the alone training and he isn't doing well. If I just go to the other room he whines and paces back and forth and may eventually lay down and I built up to 40 minutes of me being in the other room. If I actually leave the apartment he freaks out almost immediately. I had to go into work for about 45 minutes and he tore down the curtains and blinds (which have to be taken down one by one, so it isn't like he just pulled down one unit), then he peed and pooped on top of them. So far have left 3 times and each time he tears down the curtains. We have been going on 30 minute walks at least 3 times per day and I have tried using the filled Kong to occupy him, but as soon as I leave he drops it and proceeds to freak out. For the last 2 days I have been giving him Composure treats to help with stress, but it doesn't seem to help. Also, I have a 42x30 crate which I have been feeding him in, and I tried to use it after the first curtain incident, but within 5 minutes of finishing his treat he began howling and scratching at the door to the point that his paw began to bleed. So I'm not sure that the crate is a safe option.

 

Any suggestions? Do you think this is just him adjusting or separation anxiety? He was at the adoption site for over 4 months, so he is not fresh off the track.

 

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It sounds like separation anxiety to me. Another dog may help, or he may need medication until you can go through alone training with him. Two great resources on SA and alone training:

 

Treating SA in Dogs

I'll Be Home Soon

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Agreed ... sounds like separation anxiety, although I'm not sure that some of this might be expected during the first few weeks in a new home.

 

I've been blessed to not have had any hounds with serious SA issues, so can't help you too much. I do leave the tv on whenever I'm not at home, and do like to have two hounds to keep each other 'company' (so that they don't feel so alone).

 

If you adopted your boy through a group, please reach out to them for assistance -- the kennel manager (or his foster family, if he was fostered) may have some insight into his behavior and what might help him adjust.

 

Congratulations on your new boy -- please keep us updated on how he's doing.

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All of the above.

 

Additionally, pooping 8 times a day is NOT normal. Twice or maybe three times is more like it. You may be feeding him too much, which could be increasing his energy level beyond his limits of tolerance. He also may be anxious because he needs to go o-u-t all the time.

 

There are tons of threads here about separation anxiety and how to deal with it, but if you are a real person with a job who needs to be away at work every day, this might not be the right dog for your lifestyle. Please contact your adoption group and discuss his level of anxiety and your schedule.

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Guest iconsmum

Hello, I adopted my first greyhound last week (74 lb 4.5 year old male). He is awesome while I am in the room with him but as soon as I leave all that changes. Every time I take him out he pees and poops like he knows he is supposed to do that outside. He poops a lot (between 6-8x per day and all are solid). So I have been working on the alone training and he isn't doing well. If I just go to the other room he whines and paces back and forth and may eventually lay down and I built up to 40 minutes of me being in the other room. If I actually leave the apartment he freaks out almost immediately. I had to go into work for about 45 minutes and he tore down the curtains and blinds (which have to be taken down one by one, so it isn't like he just pulled down one unit), then he peed and pooped on top of them. So far have left 3 times and each time he tears down the curtains. We have been going on 30 minute walks at least 3 times per day and I have tried using the filled Kong to occupy him, but as soon as I leave he drops it and proceeds to freak out. For the last 2 days I have been giving him Composure treats to help with stress, but it doesn't seem to help. Also, I have a 42x30 crate which I have been feeding him in, and I tried to use it after the first curtain incident, but within 5 minutes of finishing his treat he began howling and scratching at the door to the point that his paw began to bleed. So I'm not sure that the crate is a safe option.

 

Any suggestions? Do you think this is just him adjusting or separation anxiety? He was at the adoption site for over 4 months, so he is not fresh off the track.

 

Is he getting 2 really serious walks a day? 45 minutes to an hour each time, no running but no stopping? You need to give his large muscles a chance to get rid of the cortisol that's building up because of the stresses of his new life. He literally can't relax without that happening. Medication will just mask the problem. You have a seriously big dog now, you need to exercise him to reset his system - help him.

walking with your dog is a huge relationship builder, unlike anything else you can do together. From a good relaxed relationship comes everything you want to have with him. Really magical dog owners and trainers all know this, and they say it, sort of, but its not really "heard" in the way it needs to be - try it and stick to it, I promise you'll be amazed at how things level out.

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Guest bailey8112

Thanks for the help and replies.

I have a question about the medication for SA. Once they go on it, do they have to stay on it? or is it something they will just help him get through the alone training and then he can stop taking it? I am a college professor who for the most part has the month of January off, so I can work on the alone training quite a bit over the next few weeks and even after that I can come home between classes. But where we are now, he won't let me leave for any period of time before having an anxiety attack.

 

I have discussed this with the kennel manager (not sure if that is what they are called) and he said Penski didn't really express any of this behavior while there. He said there were quite a few times where he was crated, but he never heard a sound from Penski. Which is not what I have been experiencing. So I am hoping some of this will go away once he is used to his new surroundings and situation.

 

I don't think I am feeding too much, I am going by the recommendation on the Iams green bag (3.5 cups/day divided over 2 meals). Maybe the extra poops are stress related as well. He often poops 2x each walk, but there isn't really much volume to them. If you added it together, that would be more like what I would expect.

 

I'll try increasing the length of the walk time to see how that goes. He wasn't getting 2 45min-1hr, but we have been doing 3 30 minute walks per day.

 

Thanks for all the advice, I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

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I have a dog that suffered with severe SA when he first came to us, Ziggy. He tore the back off of our sofa. I don't know how he didn't get hurt. He chewed on all of our wood furniture. We bought the sour stuff to put on the wood but he must have liked it because he chewed it even more! It was a nightmare for a while. When we got our new boy, it stopped immediately. Ziggy was not a fan of the new grey but his SA has never returned. They are best of buds now. It really will get better. Feel free to contact me if you need someone to listen.

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Guest iconsmum

Thanks for the help and replies.

I have a question about the medication for SA. Once they go on it, do they have to stay on it? or is it something they will just help him get through the alone training and then he can stop taking it? I am a college professor who for the most part has the month of January off, so I can work on the alone training quite a bit over the next few weeks and even after that I can come home between classes. But where we are now, he won't let me leave for any period of time before having an anxiety attack.

 

I have discussed this with the kennel manager (not sure if that is what they are called) and he said Penski didn't really express any of this behavior while there. He said there were quite a few times where he was crated, but he never heard a sound from Penski. Which is not what I have been experiencing. So I am hoping some of this will go away once he is used to his new surroundings and situation.

 

I don't think I am feeding too much, I am going by the recommendation on the Iams green bag (3.5 cups/day divided over 2 meals). Maybe the extra poops are stress related as well. He often poops 2x each walk, but there isn't really much volume to them. If you added it together, that would be more like what I would expect.

 

I'll try increasing the length of the walk time to see how that goes. He wasn't getting 2 45min-1hr, but we have been doing 3 30 minute walks per day.

 

Thanks for all the advice, I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

 

 

A 30 minute walk is useless to a dog his size. Its barely time to warm up his large muscles so if your 30 minutes is door to door you're not close to providing enough. Why you would medicate over top of that is beyond me. The second dog option is often a permanent fix but then you have 2 to walk - properly.

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Guest hankthetank

We also adopted a 4.5 year old Grey a couple months back. We were told by the shelter to crate train him for 2 weeks, only letting him out twice a day for 30 min. & for bathroom breaks. They said it was for his own safety as he acclimates to his new surroundings. They were so insistent about it that we were given a handout outliing the 2 week crate training procedure upon adoption.

 

They also advised to avoid the crate as "punishment" for doing something wrong. Instead of just jumping straight to meds or going out to buy another dog, maybe try the crate training? Or if you leave your dog out, make sure it is wearing a basket over the mouth?

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I second what GreysMom said: pooping that often is NOT normal, specially if they're well formed.

 

If you haven't already done so, a routine "wellness check" at the vet is in order.

 

When a dog is pooping because of stress, it's usually runny.

 

Sounds like he's clogged up somewhere and only able to pass small amounts.

 

The figures for how much to feed on the back of dog food are irrelevant. I don't even look at them. Find out how much he was being fed before you got him, and start there.


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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