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Anxiety

Anxiety

Postby JasperKat » Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:17 pm

My 6 year old Tibetan Terrier seems to be getting more anxious. Mr Kat and I have been saying "getting more anxious as he ages", when discussing it but thinking about it now I don't know if his age has anything to do with it.

He gets stressy when we have visitors (last week he ran upstairs and peed on the bed when we had friends over) and when we go next door to hang out with the neighbors he clings to me. The neighbors and the visitors last week are all people he's seen dozens of times. Mr K says he's been mopey and clingy this week (I am staying at a client's house, haven't seen it first hand).

Our second dog has lived with us for almost a year and a half, and Sprocket doesn't really care for her. They don't fight or have much conflict, but he doesn't play with other dogs or have a lot of interest in them and Molly wants to play all the time. So she annoys him. She's definitely a source of stress for him, but something else must be going on.

He's physically healthy, just increasingly anxious. He doesn't seem to be able to soothe himself as easily as he did a year ago.

Age? Developing behavioral issue? Or am I just watching him more closely now?

-JK
PS. It's strange to write about my dogs as if you guys don't know them!
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Re: Anxiety

Postby Shiva » Sun Feb 20, 2011 10:37 pm

Aw, poor Sprocket! :( I don't have any helpful insight, just sympathy. Syama (my 3 1/2 year old Aussie x) is an anxious little man. He has never been good at self-soothing or calming himself. I'm ready to try medication for him. (We're seeing the vet in a couple of weeks to discuss it.)

It does seem like there should be some underlying cause for his anxiety worsening, doesn't it? Are there any environmental changes? Construction or street work in your neighborhood? Is there anything that could be happening when you are not at home that would make him more clingy when you are? Anyone coming to your house or in your yard? :?
~Shiva , Chief Troublemaker
If this post was edited, it was probably for spelling.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby JasperKat » Wed Feb 23, 2011 12:34 pm

[quote="Shiva";p=583]It does seem like there should be some underlying cause for his anxiety worsening, doesn't it? Are there any environmental changes? Construction or street work in your neighborhood? Is there anything that could be happening when you are not at home that would make him more clingy when you are? Anyone coming to your house or in your yard? :?


I have been gone more over the past few months. The in-home dog sitting has been picking up quite a bit and dog walking has been busier as well* so even when I'm living at home I'm out of the house more. Other than that there's the introduction and settling of Molly into the household and the cats have been becoming braver and hanging out downstairs more. Molly has become more assertive and also more affectionate** as she settles in, that may be causing him some stress over sharing the spotlight.

I'm struggling with my urge to baby him vs knowing that he needs rules and structure. What I really want to do is carry him around all day and kiss and snuggle him ;)

-JK
*Which, horray! I hate being away from home, but I loooove finally making decent money!
**Also horray! My co-trainer says that because Molly was bounced around so much as a puppy/young dog that she's taken some time to feel secure. Thoughts about that?
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Re: Anxiety

Postby Shiva » Thu May 05, 2011 7:08 pm

How is Sprocket doing? (I read on FriendFace about his loss of yet another nail... poor d00d. :( )

Syama is on clomipramine now and doing really well.
~Shiva , Chief Troublemaker
If this post was edited, it was probably for spelling.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby vegankitty » Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:44 am

Bonnie has suddenly become very anxious. I walk a dog at a local shelter every night and tonight she would barely let me out the door, yelping and crying. We had just gotten in from a walk too. She's also been having a lot of accidents. Could it be post-surgical anxiety? Today was the first day she could have the cone off. I was going to keep it on longer but she knocked that off. DJ is taking her upstate soon, hopefully as soon as her stitches are out, so after Thanksgiving.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby vegankitty » Tue Nov 22, 2011 6:23 pm

Bonnie is getting worse. Last night I had to go do inhome dog sitting and when I picked up my coat to leave she was inconsolable even though DJ was home.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby panthera » Tue Nov 22, 2011 6:35 pm

Aw, that must be so awful to witness! I hope this resolves soon!
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Re: Anxiety

Postby Emiloid » Sat Dec 03, 2011 7:13 am

Any news on Bonnie? I hope she's doing better.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby vegankitty » Thu Dec 08, 2011 3:42 pm

No, she's still having separation anxiety. She's upstate now with DJ and she jumped a 31" gate. She knocked it down when it was pressure mounted. She peed and pooped on the floor even after an hour playing with him in the yard. She broke a lamp and tore down the curtains that were in the front window. DJ's not working so he hasn't been going anywhere he can't take her. Luckily its been warm enough still he can take her to the grocery store and she can wait in the truck (she loves it in there) and people up there are less likely to object to a dog going places. He even took her to visit his mom in the nursing home. Everyone loves her to pieces.

I ordered the Patricia McConnell book on anxiety and some Clomicalm. She's coming back down but obviously we need a plan for when we do move permanently.

At least she is getting along really well with the cats. She's been sleeping with them.
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Re: Anxiety

Postby downwithapathy » Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:03 pm

I'm sorry Bonnie's feeling so anxious. :( Hopefully, things will improve for her soon!

I feel I should report in, as Zoe was sort of the canine anxiety poster child in my VRF days.

Zoe will always been a stranger-anxious dog, but things are so much better than they used to be!

As much as a I dislike where my life has taken me (back to my home town, culture shocked, and feeling like a failure--heh), I think it has been good for Zoe. We share a home with my grandma, who babysits, takes in stray humans (I don't count as a stray--I pay to live here and *technically* own the home :P), and to whom every member of my extended family gravitates when they need to complain about life. Ordinarily, I wouldn't consider this a positive environment for a fearful dog, but it does seem to have convinced Zoe that people aren't so scary, on the whole. Certain visitors still get the initial barkity bark bark, but she isn't really going over threshold anymore. If she can't be called away, "Zoe, do you want peanut butter?" usually does the trick (I can't tell if I'm rewarding bad behavior or teaching her that strangers bring peanut butter--probably the former). She isn't terribly comfortable with my aunt's husband, for example. However, she quickly learned to use his scariness for her own personal gain. Because I threw her treats when she neared him without barking, she learned to walk quietly to Bill, then look to me for a treat. Then walk back to Bill, then back to me for a treat, and back to Bill... and back for her damn treat. I'm sure I could give treats intermittently and curb the manipulation, but he doesn't come around often enough to make it a routine. Bad DWA, right? :)

One 'issue' Zoe developed in early adulthood was reactivity to certain types of dogs. She doesn't dislike all toy breed dogs, but she snarks at them often enough that I don't let her in the dog park when there are tiny dogs present. It isn't just that I worry about traumatizing a tiny dog. I worry about further traumatizing Zoe with my own behavior. For example, I once stayed at the park when a tiny pug arrived. Zoe has historically been good with pugs, but I was nervous and leashed her. Annie greeted and played with the pug, which upset Zoe and when the pug finally did venture toward her, she snarked. I think it was barrier frustration or something about the situation more than the dog. In other words, I made things worse. :( Sometimes the multi-dog factor really complicates social situations. Annie prefers to play with small dogs and is sometimes fearful of the big dogs Zoe loves. Both get fewer dog park visits as a result of this incompatibility. In any case, I think this has improved as well. I've been experimenting with treatless walks without issue. *shih tzu yells at us as we pass* *Zoe looks to me for her treat then sees she isn't getting one and is still okay with the yelling shih tzu.*

Thankfully, Zoe has never suffered from separation anxiety. I think she kind of likes it when we leave. It gives her a chance to try to raid the food pantry. :wink:

I do give Zoe fish oil daily because I really feel it took the edge off of her reactivity. I had tried countless other calming and anti-anxiety supplements and supplement blends. Fish oil is the only one that seemed to have any effect. I would surely switch to something like v-pure if I could afford it.
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