Protective Corgi

Corgi is always on dutyBenny is a four-year-old Corgi. He lives in what one might imagine to be a dog paradise. He is free to go wherever he likes in a very large country house. He has a caring family and the company of two other dogs.

Watching the continual lip-licking, the yawning and the panting, it’s obvious that Benny is a stressed dog rather than one revelling in a wonderful life. He is on guard duty alert much of the time, and ready to rush to protect his owners at the drop of a hat, particularly his female humans. If a man suddenly walks in the front door Benny may appear from nowhere and go for his legs, even if he has met him before. He hates the postman. If someone walks towards his owner, or makes arm movements that Benny could interpret as a threat, again he will spring into action. It’s always legs he goes for, probably due to his own lack if height, and fortunately he’s not yet done serious injury.

I believe Benny will become a much more relaxed dog if he is given some boundaries – physical in particular. At present there are no limits to where he can go. If the lady of the house disappears behind a door, he barks and cries. If someone comes to the front door, he is in effect the first line of defense – there, on guard. It’s best if the owners avoid having Benny in front of them for now when someone approaches. After all, a dog protecting a pack member will always get in between her and the threat.

How can a smallish dog possibly look after so many people and protect such a large environment? Benny is doing his level best. No wonder he is stressed.

It is the leader/head of the family’s job to be the protector and the decision maker. If from the start he is accustomed to boundaries and sometimes being shut behind doors, a dog is far happier in a ‘den’ in a corner than rattling around loose in a large house, especially if he can rest secure in the knowledge that protection duty is not his responsibility. Bennie doesn’t actually spend much time outside in the large grounds because he dare not let his lady owner out of his sight. He follows her everywhere and cries if a door is shut on him. With patient work, he should eventually be able to let her come and go as she likes – and trust her to look after herself.

Putting in place a few rules and boundaries, slowly getting him used to being more independent in so far as demonstrating through leadership that the humans are there to look after him and not vice versa,  should make him a much more chilled dog.

I can help you, too, with these problems or any other that you may be having with your dog.
 

Tail-Chasing Stressed Jack Russell

Tiny Jack RussellIt was hard to take a photo of Tiny because he never remained still for long enough in the entire three hours I was there today. The little Jack Russell is one of the most stressed little dogs I have seen. He has a tail chasing ritual that is more or less continuous over long periods of time. He can only be distracted with other obsessive things like ball chasing. He pants and he barks.

You can see from his picture the tension on his face and around his eyes, and his panting tongue. If he were a human in this state, he would be getting help. Tiny now is.

He is a well loved little dog who lives with another terrier. Unfortunately his manic behaviour has an effect on her too. The dogs are seldom walked, due to both Tiny’s anxiety and the other little dog’s fear and aggression towards other dogs. A lovely park just nearby is impossible because of the number of off-lead dogs that run up to them. Now the two dogs will work towards going for very short walks again, in a way that is kept within their comfort zones.

Little Tiny will be learning how to calm down. His owners will be doing all they can to help him avoid obvious triggers for stress, and to take as much pressure of him as possible by giving him the calm type of leadership that he needs.

I can help you, too, with these problems or any other that you may be having with your dog.
 

Jack, Stressed Jack Russell X

PainJackI went to see Jack, a Jack Russell/Staffie cross,  four days ago. He lives with Amelia who is three years old. He is only fourteen months old himself, but is scared when Amelia approaches him. He does not want to be touched, pulled about or played with. He is stressed little dog.  About five weeks ago everything got worse. Weeing indoors increased. Because it was Christmas, more people were about. Dad shouted at Jack.  He is now weeing everywhere – the kitchen flooded in mornng. He wees on his bedding, he wees on his toys. His owner is at her wits end.

Dear little Jack was so stressed that he bites himself, circles, licks himself until he is raw and constantly yawns.

I had this email four days later:  “I still can’t get over the difference in him, he’s not done any wees inside the house, he’s only jumping on us occasionally. It was really great meeting you the other day, I just wish I’d got in touch with you soon, that way things would never have gone as far as they had”. I did tell her to expect good days and bad days while all the work was being done on his stress levels. I am sure with an owner like his, Jack will come through this to live a happy life.
I can help you, too, with these problems or any other that you may be having with your dog.
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Chocolate Labrador and Shiny Floors

scared of walking on shiny floorsI visited Cocoa, a Chocolate Labrador age four years old. She does a lot of jumping up and is quite stressed and anxious. One particular problem is that she is scared of walking over shiny floors, and her owners have a house with large areas of wood and tile. Poor Cocoa will suddenly stop and freeze. If she is very desperate to move she goes backwards. Interestingly, this happens randomly and not in the same place, in different rooms and in different houses. Cocoa’s owners will now be working on giving Cocoa confidence in them and in herself, in reducing her stress levels in general, teaching her some self-control and various strategies to help her overcome her fear of shiny surfaces.

I can help you, too, with these problems or any other that you may be having with your dog. me.