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Thread: making progress!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Ipswich
    Posts
    247

    Default making progress!

    Ok, so I was having a couple of issues with my dachshund pup Dexter. He had developed some mild separation anxiety, he would freak out if I left the room or if he couldn't see me or get to me, would howl and bark and make a lot of racket whenever I left for work etc. I've been working with him to try and teach him that it's not the end of the world when I'm not there, giving him lots of tasty things to occupy him when I go and just trying to mix up my routine a little so there's no obvious triggers, like me picking up my keys, or putting on my shoes etc. He's been getting progressively better over the last month or so, I can leave the room without him freaking out now, and I can put him outside for a while before he starts whining and he seems a lot less anxious when I leave for work. He's actually excited and runs into the laundry when I bring out the kong and the bones and will actually eat them as I leave, whereas before he would ignore them and freak out. He's still not 100% content that I'm leaving, but he's definitely improved a lot. When my partner gets home he usually barks and carries on because he can hear someone and wants to be let out, and that went from continuous (1.5hrs+) initially to barking, pause, barking, pause etc, so we've taken advantage of that and only let him out during a pause. He's always ignored when let out, no fuss made, just take him out to the toilet and come back in and make a tea or whatever. My partner said that he was really good yesterday and didn't make any noise when he got home. I'm sure he would've if left long enough, but I'm just wondering, is it appropriate at any point to praise him for being quiet? or is it still best to ignore him after being let out, noise or not?

    Obviously I'm happy that he's slowly getting better and I don't want to ruin it by praising him at the wrong time.

    Also I've heard of the rule that you should give 5mins exercise per month of age the pup is, when do you stop following that and start just giving an hour or half hour or however much as an adult (he's 4.5months now)? Any suggestions for an appropriate amount of exercise for a dachshund? At the moment he follows me most places, and when I go out to the backyard to feed the ducks, he has a bolt around on the grass, inside he runs around with the cat and I sometimes get him to chase me around the house or the yard. I also take him on short walks before I go to work, about 10-15mins around the streets and sometimes I'll stop in the park behind my house if there's no one there, and let him have a little bit of very closely supervised off leash run around dragging his lead so I can easily catch him if needed, but I'm usually encouraging him to chase me and I'm armed with treats. The park is bordered by a few houses, so it's got fences on 3.5 sides, and the only road front is the end of a cul-de-sac with no traffic, so it's pretty safe and quiet with little in the way of distractions. On weekends if we have time to go somewhere, I'll usually practice recall and let him have a good run around until he's tired.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Southern NSW
    Posts
    3,784

    Default

    Sound like you have the anxiety part on a path of recovery...i would not praise at present.....your timing might not be good enough and you might just put yourself backwards...i never make a fuss of my dogs when I get home. And they have never been anxious. it is just what we do. We come home, our dogs can see us. We do some chores, like put away the dogs, park the car, close the gates and so on (we live on a property). I let the dogs out and i do not pet them or engage with them......After about 5-10 minutes i cll them individually and say hi and such. I call them.......
    Like you we leave we give our dogs something, sometimes awesome, sometimes a dog bikkie....But our dogs associate leaving with getting something and often sit and wait for that.

    I think you are doing a great job.........just keep it going.

    As to the exercise...........I don't even limit exercise time with my giants, if they do it themselves...meaning i walk around and they follow me. The only exercise we limit is the type where we take them for a walk and they have no choice. Your pup can choose to sit and watch you, is not dragged along or feels it should come along. With giants, you also prevent boisterous play with other dogs at a pre 12-14 months. But self play and being silly we do not limit, unless you had one that kept knocking itself and doing injury. We would also limit jumping and steps/stairs. I think your breed you would also have to be a bit limiting, because of the structure balance and percentages, long back, so just keep it easy and low key and allow your pup to make the choices until older
    Pets are forever

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Ipswich
    Posts
    247

    Default

    Thanks newfsie!

    I am trying to limit his jumping, we have no stairs inside the house and only a few rock steps outside, but he's not normally climbing around on those often as he's only got access to the back part of the yard where it's more just slopes. He does sometimes try and climb over things in the house such as the foot stool, but we're discouraging this and he stops when we tell him not to. The 10min walks at the moment seem to be fine, there's lots of smells and sounds to stimulate his mind and he's pretty settled afterwards but he's not exhausted, so I think it's a good level of exercise for him at the moment.

    Hopefully he'll only continue to get better with the separation anxiety. I'll just keep doing what I'm doing and see how we go

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Canberra
    Posts
    4,290

    Default

    Good work, Blackthorn! Your puppy sounds adorable.

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