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Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311823
03/26/14 09:33 PM
03/26/14 09:33 PM
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Northern CA
MaxaLisa Offline

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Many dogs with SA do not do well with crates at all and is not generally recommended (there are exceptions for some SA dogs). However, having one with the door permanently open (or door removed), may help her have a safe spot. My girl picks her safe spots.

There are some SA protocols where you buy a new bed and only use it for positive things, so you "charge" it with positive experiences, like giving them a kong with treats, etc. You are in the room when you are creating this positive experience. You slowly use this for them to be more comfortable when you leave the room, and will be used when you get to the "leaving" part. It's important 1) not to try this without help, since you can mess it up and this tool will be lost for your use, and 2) it's important that nothing but positive things are created with this mat, and you have to be experienced in what to look for. The mat is put away when not used for training and working, at least in the beginning.

Karen Overall has something called a Relaxation Protocol, and also a Deep Breath Protocol. Here's part of the protocol:
http://www.the-academy.ca/The_Academy/Resources_files/Deep%20breath%20relaxation%20-%20Overall.pdf
Here is a video of the end of the protocol - there are other videos in the right column - these are starting points, for the dog to learn to relax, build confidence, and create a working relationship: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2EFh7JnQa4

Here's a video of a dog learning to self-calm using deep breaths: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DIxELL4FkWI That video cites this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mtn-BeI9lHE


My observation is that SA dogs like control. For example, I can often avoid a full blown panic attack in the car by partially opening the window for my dog to smell so she knows where we are going more easily and isn't surprised.


MaxaL (aka LisaT)

Jazmine, mini-mix, 10/18/2011
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Max, 5/2001-2/2012, RIP my partner, my Regal Boy
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Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: aubie] #311826
03/26/14 09:40 PM
03/26/14 09:40 PM
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Massachusetts
Braverhund Offline
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Welcome here! welcome

You'll love this board, we gab about our dogs lots here, even beyond trying to resolve their issues. So, feel free to post pictures of your girl and Benson! We support each other here, laugh a lot, and talk about poop rofl.

Some suggestions for soothing your dog, draining the fire, helping her feel relaxed and safe, come to mind.

Acupuncture thumbup is very much worth it for an anxious dog when the cause is physical, such as weak nerves. Bonus: Many veterinary acupuncturists will even give you some gentle guidance in calming points for acupressure that you can do yourself at home with her. peacesign

TTouch is great because you can drop into a relaxed state as you TTouch her at home, sharing your calming vibes at the same time. Plus, it's portable for stressful situations such as the vet's, etc.

Walks are stressful for her, but exercise may help drain and release some of the build-up of pressure she feels, keeping her on an even keel. Is your yard large enough for a good, running game of Chuck-It each day? If not, is there a secluded area to run her with you on a lonely trail?

Diet can help, too. A prepared raw diet can be costly, but, it can help calm and settle a dog. She gets to eat without her body trying to deal with the carb spikes from all the plant fibers used to form the kibbles. Of kibble, grain free is less irritating, but dogs settle better when they aren't trying to handle potatoes, peas, flax, etc. A prepared raw diet may help calm her, and then you could transition to a DIY raw diet when you felt ready. That's cheaper. wink

Best of luck to you and your sweet girl! paw


Patti
Frauchen von:

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Dir gehört mein Herz
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: Braverhund] #311827
03/26/14 09:53 PM
03/26/14 09:53 PM
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Northern CA
MaxaLisa Offline

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MaxaL (aka LisaT)

Jazmine, mini-mix, 10/18/2011
Max-n-Indy
Max, 5/2001-2/2012, RIP my partner, my Regal Boy
Indy, 5/1997-10/2010, RIP my friend, my teacher

Health Index
K9 TBD info and Tick List Links
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Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: aubie] #311847
03/27/14 12:11 AM
03/27/14 12:11 AM
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I just want to say I'm so glad you found us here and hopefully some of these ideas will help your little girl. My little girl has some issues but thankfully the Thundershirt has helped a lot.

I wish you the very best. Please let us know of her progress and welcome to the boards!


Rosa

Proud Mom to Kody and Sasha
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh, Shoshi and Eli
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311852
03/27/14 12:30 AM
03/27/14 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted By: pet_mom66
She is not crate trained. We tried doing it when she was a pup, and it was a nightmare. She would get violent and thrash all around the kennel, until it knocked over, even if we were in the same room. It was instant, not like she was was in there for a long time. She freaks out if she is confined in any way. We tried metal crate, plastic crates, putting a sheet over the crate (per our vet's recommendation), and she just wasn't having it. We made sure we had the correct size of crate for her, and even tried a larger one at one point, but it was worse than her being free. She never went to the bathroom in there, just tried to harm herself or break out, I don't know.

She has a dog bed in our bedroom, but she does not use it ever. I'm not really sure how else to create a "safe place" for her. Any suggestions?

Where does she sleep at night? Does she have one spot that she chose herself? Where does your other dog sleep at night, in the same room as Lucy? What happens when Lucy and your lab are together in one room, door closed, and you are in another room with visitors? Some dogs cannot handle being alone and the company of a dog friend is enough to help when separated from their chosen human/s (isolation anxiety). For others, only the company of their chosen human/s will do (separation anxiety).

A safe go-to place is important but for a safe place not all dogs want or can handle a 'den' or crate, and your girl seems to be one. Some need a go-to spot with a view to all sides. Some who get anxious in a crate still choose a spot underneath a table or desk. Some want the safe spot in a corner with views to everywhere, no cover. Or is it on the sofa?! Watch the spots she chooses for herself. Put a new and REALLY comfy dog bed there. Only good things happen on this bed and around it. Yummy treats. And no stressors like visitors. What style of deg bed does she like? Is she a stretcher or a curler when she sleeps? Does she like a pillow/bolster or a flat mattress?

For extremely fearful dogs (and humans), the environment needs to be adapted as they are very limited in their own ability to adapt...

Xanax can be a life saver. My understanding is that timing of the medication is crucial if it is to help prevent panic due to a predictable event such as having to be left alone. A veterinary behaviorist knows these things. Xanax can be safely combined with other meds such as SSRIs but it has to be done by a veterinarian who knows these drugs well.

This article has helped many as a guide to when to medicate: http://suzanneclothier.com/the-articles/3-ps-does-your-dog-need-medication

I second the suggestion to start tracking in a safe environment. As you describe her, one might even start with 'find it' games in the house and familiar yard before tracking outside. Like tracking, these games are great fun for dogs and humans alike, and great confidence builders!

I so wish you and your dog will find a way for life to be a joy together!


Sarah
Chip vom Dog Pound, border terrior, Director of Rodent Control, CGC
Elly von Rescue, GSD, CGC, HI(C)
Captain Jack, Mama Blue, Little Orca, Bübchen, Tux, Cherub (pocket lions)

Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: shepnterrier] #311854
03/27/14 01:02 AM
03/27/14 01:02 AM
Joined: Mar 2014
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PA, USA
pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Thanks everyone!

Sarah, she doesn't sleep in any one place. She moves. She'll sleep with Benson, away from Benson, on the floor, on a bed in either spare bedroom, on the couch, on the floor in the living room, there's just no telling where she'll go each night.

We have tried to not put her in a room alone or with Benson very often, because she throws herself against the door and barks a lot. She does not like to be away from us. When she was a pup that translated into chewing, but she no longer chews (thankfully!).

We have a vet visit coming up at the end of April, so I'm going to research all of the things suggested here & also talk to the vet about it. Thank you all so much!


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311863
03/27/14 03:04 AM
03/27/14 03:04 AM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 1,408
Albany NY
BasiaBear Offline
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welcome I don't have anything to add to the advice already given (totally agree with finding a veterinary behaviourist!!!).


I have questions though, and honestly it is just my own curiosity and wanting to paint the picture in my head better...

1. How she is if you try to play together (at home)? Like tug, fetch, "find-it" games (as previously mentioned)... Is she keen on it or is she disinterested? Does she ever try to initiate play with you? Does she get happy and excitable when around just you and your husband in the house? When in the home, do you think she is totally happy, or is she just coping but still not as happy as she could be?

2.I was also curious to know if she is generally watchful... like does she stare out the windows when home, or at the doors when in public places? Is she hyper-aware? Does she have a need to know what's happening everywhere at all times?

I apologize if those things were already answered... I'm starting to get sleepy and I may have missed it. Anyway, glad you came here and I hope you found some advice that will help smile


Danielle
~Basia
~Amadeus
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: shepnterrier] #311896
03/27/14 04:11 PM
03/27/14 04:11 PM
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aubie Offline
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Originally Posted By: shepnterrier


I second the suggestion to start tracking in a safe environment. As you describe her, one might even start with 'find it' games in the house and familiar yard before tracking outside. Like tracking, these games are great fun for dogs and humans alike, and great confidence builders!


This is how we started with "Find Mama/Find Daddy" in the house, then we took it to the yard where one of us would hide and she's search and reward with HUGE praise! Then we moved out of the yard, etc. It's also a great activity for you to see your dog work and complete a task.


Tiffany mom to:
Anna, GSD 9/21/08
Mauser, GSD 9/12/15
Danger Kitties: Mia & Winston
Andon & Tucker two-leggers
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: aubie] #311898
03/27/14 04:28 PM
03/27/14 04:28 PM
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PA, USA
pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Thanks y'all! I think tracking sounds like fun. Our trainer does it all over the country with his GSDs and has told us stories about it before. Maybe it would give her something to focus on.


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311918
03/27/14 09:30 PM
03/27/14 09:30 PM
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Grakira Offline
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I have a fearful dog. Though it's complicated, he is mostly scared of people he doesn't know.

Things have been the best for him...

1. Doing fun things! I put a lot of pressure on him when he was a young dog and it really fouled him up worse. I used to push him out of his comfort zone way too often. It made things very stressful for him. We literally took a year where I did nothing but the things he loved.

2. Stress in limited doses. For example, he really doesn't like walking in our neighborhood. So maybe we walk at the park (which he loves) three days a week and in the neighborhood one day and we play in the yard or go to my parents to play the other days. If I push him too many times in a few days, I can see him change.

3. Xanax as needed for stressful situations. I considered a daily med, but he is generally stress free. Wonderfully comfortable in our house, etc.

3. 100 mg of L-Theanine per day, 200 mg on stressful days. HUGE progress with this supplement and best of all, it's super cheap.

4. Tracking - this boy LOVES to track. He thinks it's the best thing ever!


Melissa
Vigo von der Gauss (Vigo) CGC, CGC-A
Vendetta vom haus Huro (Fawkes)
Akira z Khaos (Kira) CGC, CGC-A
UCH Qahlua vom haus Huro (Ayla) CGC, CGC-A
Rest in Peace, Amazing Grace 2/10/02 to 2/20/13

http://www.amazinggracerawpetfood.com/

Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: Grakira] #311936
03/27/14 11:51 PM
03/27/14 11:51 PM
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PA, USA
pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Grakira


3. 100 mg of L-Theanine per day, 200 mg on stressful days. HUGE progress with this supplement and best of all, it's super cheap.



Where do you get the L-Theanine? I typed it in to google and a ton of stuff came up, from human versions to chew-able prescription dog versions.


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: Grakira] #311942
03/28/14 12:06 AM
03/28/14 12:06 AM
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pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Grakira

1. Doing fun things! I put a lot of pressure on him when he was a young dog and it really fouled him up worse. I used to push him out of his comfort zone way too often. It made things very stressful for him. We literally took a year where I did nothing but the things he loved.

2. Stress in limited doses. For example, he really doesn't like walking in our neighborhood. So maybe we walk at the park (which he loves) three days a week and in the neighborhood one day and we play in the yard or go to my parents to play the other days. If I push him too many times in a few days, I can see him change.


I like the idea of doing nothing but things she loves, but her major stressor is people coming to our home. I don't think this is avoidable for us. Even though we have a no solicitation sign, people still come a lot. We had a Jehovah's Witness come the other day and as soon as the lady knocked, Lucy started freaking out and emptied her anal glands. I just don't know if we can avoid it.


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311957
03/28/14 01:06 AM
03/28/14 01:06 AM
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Northern CA
MaxaLisa Offline

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MaxaL (aka LisaT)

Jazmine, mini-mix, 10/18/2011
Max-n-Indy
Max, 5/2001-2/2012, RIP my partner, my Regal Boy
Indy, 5/1997-10/2010, RIP my friend, my teacher

Health Index
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Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: MaxaLisa] #311980
03/28/14 01:52 AM
03/28/14 01:52 AM
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pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Thanks Lisa! I was reading your thread, did you ever figure out the dosage of the powder? Do you give it with or without food? I think I'm going to order it from Amazon and see how she does.


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #311990
03/28/14 02:55 AM
03/28/14 02:55 AM
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Alabama
aubie Offline
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If it's solicitors you want to try to avoid, I'd suggest putting a sign by your door that says "do not disturb, day sleeper". People will respect that typically...more so than "dog with issues" wink


Tiffany mom to:
Anna, GSD 9/21/08
Mauser, GSD 9/12/15
Danger Kitties: Mia & Winston
Andon & Tucker two-leggers
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: aubie] #312004
03/28/14 11:53 AM
03/28/14 11:53 AM
Joined: Feb 2010
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Mary Jane Online content
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small suggestion: my shy guy loved to play peekaboo, you know like a very young child.

Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #312039
03/28/14 08:15 PM
03/28/14 08:15 PM
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Grakira Offline
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Originally Posted By: pet_mom66
Originally Posted By: Grakira


3. 100 mg of L-Theanine per day, 200 mg on stressful days. HUGE progress with this supplement and best of all, it's super cheap.



Where do you get the L-Theanine? I typed it in to google and a ton of stuff came up, from human versions to chew-able prescription dog versions.


I have found this works the best for Vigo: http://www.amazon.com/Enzymatic-Therapy-...words=ltheanine


Melissa
Vigo von der Gauss (Vigo) CGC, CGC-A
Vendetta vom haus Huro (Fawkes)
Akira z Khaos (Kira) CGC, CGC-A
UCH Qahlua vom haus Huro (Ayla) CGC, CGC-A
Rest in Peace, Amazing Grace 2/10/02 to 2/20/13

http://www.amazinggracerawpetfood.com/

Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: Grakira] #312040
03/28/14 08:20 PM
03/28/14 08:20 PM
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Grakira Offline
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Stopping people from knocking on the door is step 1, for sure. Does she respond in fear when it is someone she knows? What is her response when a familiar person comes in?

Doing the fun stuff helped to lower Vigo's overall stress level, which in turn helped him to be able to cope better.


Melissa
Vigo von der Gauss (Vigo) CGC, CGC-A
Vendetta vom haus Huro (Fawkes)
Akira z Khaos (Kira) CGC, CGC-A
UCH Qahlua vom haus Huro (Ayla) CGC, CGC-A
Rest in Peace, Amazing Grace 2/10/02 to 2/20/13

http://www.amazinggracerawpetfood.com/

Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: Grakira] #312070
03/29/14 01:43 AM
03/29/14 01:43 AM
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pet_mom66 Offline OP
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Thanks for the link Melissa! I'm going to order it tomorrow. I hope it helps her.

I really don't think we can totally avoid people knocking. They don't care, no matter what we do. We disabled the doorbell last year & put up a sign, they still come. My neighbor disabled hers and put up a sleeping baby sign, they still come. They just don't care.

She is fearful no matter who it is. My husband could come through the front door and she would be the same way. In fact, my mother in law (Lucy's favorite person after mama & papa) came over the other night and Lucy pooped in fear.

I think I'm going to try and have our invited guests come in through our garage/basement. Maybe part of it is the front door, I don't know. It's worth a try!


Rachel

Mom to my two furbabies, Lucy (3) GSD & Benson (8) Lab
Re: Dog is terrified of everything and everyone [Re: pet_mom66] #312102
03/29/14 12:41 PM
03/29/14 12:41 PM
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http://fearfuldogs.com/

http://drsophiayin.com/blog/entry/free-downloads-posters-handouts-and-more

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/shy-k9s/info

http://www.whole-dog-journal.com/issues/16_4/features/across-a-threshold_20726-1.html

Are some links I really like for scaredy dogs.

Is she better/less fearful if leashed and you are holding her?

Basically, you want to start out so that she's not repeating these things - that threshold article helps to address that.

I have a fear pooper who also will blow her anal glands - I think for the first 2-3 years I had her I didn't gesture or move my arms! I finally realized it when I had a foster dog out and they were looking at someone moving their arms like wow, that's amazing. smile She's fine with it now, and rarely does either, so there is hope.

I started using my mouth as a clicker to mark any bravery (ANYTHING basically opposite of her instinct of fear and self protection through secretions). She wouldn't take food from me, so it was just the click. Fearful dogs, once you find a clicker that doesn't annoy, typically enjoy that kind of training.

Seems like changes of any kind stress her out, so gradually letting people in would be the way I would go. I would need their cooperation - a call as they pull in the driveway, them staying on the line so they would know when she was ready. I'd make a ritual out of it, so and so is coming, yay, oh my gosh, can you believe they are here to see us happy dance, her favorite reward, happy voice, I think they are at the door, let's go say hello to them, using the other dog, oh hello hellooooo, look who is here and at any point she shuts down, stop and wait. Sounds like you have patient people around who would participate in this.

As for the door, that's super annoying and if people didn't respect my no knock sign (which they have - and then they hear what's behind the door - whoopsie) consistently, I'd cover my dang door in big bubbles bubble wrap. laugh

Fearful dogs of her kind are the best, in my mind!

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