The Most Dog Friendly Community Online
Join and Discover the Best Things to do with your Dog

Welcome to Our Community
Wanting to join the rest of our members? Feel free to sign up today.

New home with 16 month old Labrador

Discussion in 'Dog Behaviour and Training' started by MillieTheLab, Apr 30, 2018.

  1. MillieTheLab

    MillieTheLab New Member Registered

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hello all,

    I wondered if I could get some help and advice please (newbie to this forum!).

    We moved into our new house at the beginning of April with our Labrador Millie. We had a week off work to spend with her and get her settled in the house. She knows where her home is now and when we take her for a walk and tell her to go home and goes back and waits next to the door. She is completely settled when we are there, the issue is when we leave her.

    We don't leave her for long, we both work full time and I know from past experiences on other pet forums I will probably get bashed for working when having a dog but she has visitors every hour. We do not work long hours and she has a 40 minute run around the field in the morning before we go to work and a 1-2 hour walk when i get back at 4pm. At our old house (where she grew up) we had a relative who came in to see her every 1-2 hours to let her out and have a play with her and take her for a walk every 3 hours.

    We have tried to go back to basics and leaving her for 5 mins a time and then 10 mins etc. We have a camera in the kitchen where we leave her (a very large kitchen so plenty of space), and when we leave she whines and cries for about 10 minutes, she then settles for about 15 mins and then gets up and barks again.

    I am aware it is stressful for her being a new a new home and being left alone but just wondered if there is anything I can do to help her? She would be fine alone in the old house and play with toys and the stuffed kong and keep herself entertained, however in this house no matter what I leave her to play with she will not touch it (even her favourite treat) and as soon as we walk in the door she will get it and eat it so I am well aware that she is stressed when we are not there but I know she wasn't bothered about being alone before so I just want her to get back to that stage.

    I leave the radio on for her, her bed is in the kitchen with my dressing gown, she has toys left behind and treats hidden in the kitchen to stimulate her but it isn't working.

    Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays she is going to my family members house all day until I finish work. Wednesday she will be alone with my mum (who lives a few doors down) will be going in every 40 mins or so. and Friday I am only at work 4 hours so again my mum will go in every 40 mins but I am just worried about stressing her too much.

    So sorry for the long post, please do not say I am a bad owner as previous forums have done as I know my dog and I know what we can do with her and when she is sad which is why I am seeking help because when we get home she has a big smile on her face and tail is wagging it is just when we go out I can't get her to not be anxious.

    THANKS EVERYONE.
     
  2. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,306
    Likes Received:
    1,983
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Hi. No bullying here, we know it isn't always possible to have the luxury of not working, and many people do work and have dogs.

    A question first though; did this behaviour happen at your old house or only since the move?
     
  3. Mad Murphy

    Mad Murphy Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    615
    Likes Received:
    1,116
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Im not going to bash , it sound as if in spite of working you have taken the time to really make time for Millie.
    Its only been a few weeks so she might still be coping with new smells and sounds that you didnt have in the old house.
    Im sure someone will have more advice but maybe she still needs time to adjust and get used to the fact that this is her home and you are coming back and havent just dumped her somewhere new. Also, could she be picking up on your anxiety? you do sound quite stressed, which is understandable but dogs do pick up on our moods so easily..
     
    Mayblossom likes this.
  4. arealhuman

    arealhuman Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,764
    Likes Received:
    1,714
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Hello and welcome to the forum. It's a friendly place, so no need to worry :) Is trying an Adaptil product an option for you?
     
    JoanneF likes this.
  5. MillieTheLab

    MillieTheLab New Member Registered

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Hello,

    Thank you! Yes, I have had a look in pet stores for calming remedies but there are so many different things such as tablets, collars, plug ins etc and i just don't know which is best to use... do you have any advice on which i can try??
     
  6. MillieTheLab

    MillieTheLab New Member Registered

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Thank you - yes we really do make time for her, when we are home she is our main priority and she has long walks, play time and treat time etc. she truly is spoilt.
    I did think sound may be an issues, we lived in a cul-de-sac before so no through traffic and we are now on a road where traffic passes regularly and people walking past so this could be very new to her i guess.
    I didn't even think about her picking up on my anxiety, i need to act more calm! I am just worried and i don't want her to become depressed because of me leaving her.
     
  7. MillieTheLab

    MillieTheLab New Member Registered

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Very true, on the Labrador site I was on before it was as though you weren't allowed a dog if you worked, I would understand if I worked long shifts but I don't.
    No, at the old house she would sleep in her bed, she would entertain herself and play with the toys I left, she wouldn't bark or whine at all, she could be left hours at a time without a noise from her. As soon as we leave the new house even for 10 mins (we went round the block yesterday and left her in the kitchen), she whines straight away. She will settle after 5 mins of whining for a couple of minutes and then start again. It is a bizarre sound, it isn't a bark, its a very loud whine and other odd noises she makes so I know she really isn't happy. Its difficult as it makes me not want to leave her but the more I don't leave her the more she gets used to company all day.
     
  8. JudyN

    JudyN Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    2,680
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I would try the Adaptil plug-in. You might want to consider whether she would feel safer in any other part of the house (on your bed maybe?). Some dogs are better given the run of the house but it can make others more anxious - maybe because they feel they have more space to protect?

    The main thing I'd do, though, is avoid leaving her alone at all for a few weeks (can you bribe your mum?). Then, assuming she's fine being in one room in the house while you're elsewhere (if not you need to work on this first), practise things like picking up keys, putting on shoes, and then sitting down again. She might start out being stressed just by this, so repeat until it doesn't worry her. Then, get keys, put shoes on, walk to the front door and touch the handle... and sit back down again. Then you take a step outside and come back, then shut the door behind you and come straight back in, then stay out for 2 seconds, then 5......Building up in baby steps in this way, where she's always in her comfort zone, can feel like it's going to take forever but is the most reliable way of getting results. When your mum is with her she can also go through this routine - just because your dog gets used to you picking up key etc., she'll have to learn it all over again with your mum.

    A great booklet is I'll Be Home Soon by Patricia McConnell: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ill-Home-Soon-Separation-Anxiety-ebook/dp/B001CSLJR2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1525089206&sr=1-1&keywords=i'll+be+home+soon You could also contact Emma Judson of Canine Consultants thecanineconsultants She is an expert on separation anxiety and also does remote training services, where she can observe your dog's behaviour on video and guide you accordingly.
     
  9. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,306
    Likes Received:
    1,983
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I suppose it is a good thing that it is just the move because that would point to it being easier to resolve. I think it is just keep doing what you are doing, leaving her for moments at a time and returning before she gets anxious, maybe even for less than 5 minutes. Leave her while she is not interacting with you to make your exit less noticeable, maybe while she has a Kong or similar and try to be back before she has realised you are gone - aim for her reaction to be "oh, you are back - I didn't notice you leave".

    Also you can do things like putting on your coat and shoes, picking up your keys, then just sitting down and not going out, to make her less likely to pick up on things that signal you leaving.

    Adaptil is good for many dogs as mentioned by @arealhuman. It comes in a spray (for blankets etc., not for directly on to the dog), a collar and a diffuser. It replicates the hormone a bitch has after having puppies and has a calming effect on dogs.

    Tagging @JudyN as she has experience and may be able to offer more.

    I don't think you are at this stage yet but if you do struggle to resolve this, Emma Judson is one of the UK's experts inseparation anxiety and does very reasonable remote (online) consultations

    thecanineconsultants
     
  10. JoanneF

    JoanneF Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,306
    Likes Received:
    1,983
    Trophy Points:
    113
    @JudyN - we did it again!
     
  11. JudyN

    JudyN Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    2,680
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Great minds:D
     
  12. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,509
    Likes Received:
    664
    Trophy Points:
    113
    .

    I think Adaptil / DAP / Dog Appeasing Pheromone is a wonderful help, but IME the pump-spray is both less expensive & more effective. :)
    The vapor from the plug-in dissipates around the unit, so the further U go from the receptacle that the diffuser is plugged into, the less effective it is; the dog is unlikely to hang around a particular electrical receptacle in the wall, LOL, it's not as if it dispenses tidbits every 5-mins! :D
    If s/he's 3-ft away, the concentration of pheromone is higher than if s/he's 10-ft away on a sofa or lying on their dog-bed [or hanging by the entry door, waiting for Mum to arrive]. If the dog has free roam of the house, they are unlikely to get a therapeutically-effective "dose" of pheromone.

    The pump-spray, OTOH, can be put anywhere the dog will be, & refreshed at will - there are no 'overdose' worries & zero interactions with food, meds, etc. U can put it directly on the dog's collar 10 to 15-mins B4 U leave, & yer mum can refresh it when she arrives [take the collar off, spritz, rotate to opp side, spritz, put back on dog].
    It lasts 90-mins to 2-hours, so no worries about the dog being too long without it, either, as Mum comes by so often.

    U can spray anything that's washable - it won't stain or mark; when i work with anxious or reactive dogs, i spray my pants on the outside seam [knee-high for larger dogs, calf or even ankle-high for toy-size dogs], the cuffs of my long-sleeved shirt or my coat in cold weather, my gloves, & my boots / shoes.
    IMO it's saved me many a snap or bite from highly-defensive dogs, when i first enter their home - i spritz my clothing / shoes just a few minutes B4 i enter, & don't talk to or look at the [barking!] dog when i go in - i just enter & stand quietly after closing the door. // Within 30-secs, they usually begin to ramp down - their hackles fall, their pupils shrink, their bodies loosen up.

    SUEDE is a no-no, & obv, don't spray the leg of an antique table or anything collectible or precious - the silk Oriental rug, the hand-waxed century-old parquet... but modern household finishes are all safe, leather shoes & boots i've sprayed with no problems, & smooth leather upholstery is USUALLY fine [remember, not suede!].
    If in doubt, spray a hidden area & wait 24-hrs; check for color change or dye running, stiffening or other texture change. // Don't spray "dry-clean only" garments with DAP. ;)

    U can spray collars, harnesses, dog-beds, CRATE doors on the opening side & doorsill, sofa or chair cushions, a section of wall-to-wall where the dog likes to lie, exit / entry doors at sill level & on the opening edge of the door-jamb, car seats where the dog sits or lies, dog-coats, bandannas... the possibilities are limited only by imagination. :)

    - terry

    .
     
  13. Josie

    Josie Administrator Administrator Registered

    Messages:
    2,616
    Likes Received:
    2,566
    Trophy Points:
    113
    You won't get any bashing here @MillieTheLab , its clear how much you care for her otherwise you wouldn't have bothered to seek advice!

    Coming from a different angle..... Is your new house noisy? do the floorboards creak etc? maybe the sounds are making her unsettled to?
     
  14. Violet Turner

    Violet Turner Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,716
    Likes Received:
    1,127
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Welcome! The Adaptil products are good, but you could also use lavender essential oil. you can add 1 drop of it to her food, or give her a massage with it. i use lavender oil on Olive it is amazing. hope this link helps :) - Anxiety in dogs can be helped by using lavender oil
     
  15. JudyN

    JudyN Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,804
    Likes Received:
    2,680
    Trophy Points:
    113
    As I mentioned in another thread, it is generally recommended that you do not add lavender essential oil to dogs' food or water - I've found a few sites that say you can but I've also read that it can cause liver or kidney damage. In the absence of proper scientific studies, I'd err on the side of caution.
     
    leashedForLife and Violet Turner like this.
  16. Violet Turner

    Violet Turner Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,716
    Likes Received:
    1,127
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Okay @JudyN its only a suggestion
     
  17. arealhuman

    arealhuman Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,764
    Likes Received:
    1,714
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I'm a bit late replying, others have suggested types of Adaptil to try ;) We use the pump spray when our dog goes in the car, with a moderate effect. HTH.
     
    leashedForLife likes this.
  18. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    1,509
    Likes Received:
    664
    Trophy Points:
    113
    .

    this is a completely-safe lavender option -
    Bulgarian Lavender Water 250 ml Spray - Alteya Organics

    like any scent, it works best when it's been associated with happy / calm / safe, B4 it's used under stress -
    so spritz a cotton-ball & set it on a saucer where warmth will diffuse it thru the room, say on the TV or atop the refrigerator in the kitchen. Wherever the dog is, just find a warmish out of the way spot to set it.
    [Radiators are wonderful... ]
    this should be at home in the evening, when it's quiet - no guests, kids are abed, no explosions on TV or heavy-metal rock blasting from speakers. / Give her a pacifier to keep her occupied [cow hoof, whole-diameter antler, sterilized bone, _______ .]
    After exposing her 3 to 5 times to the fragrance when she's content & feels secure, U can apply it to her collar [remove, spray lightly, replace] or her leash a hands-length from the clip, B4 attaching the leash - each time it swings past her, she gets a whiff. // U can also put it on YOU - clothing below the knee, cuffs, gloves, etc.

    Lavender water can be spritzed in midair inside the car, about 10-minutes B4 loading the dog to depart. That gives it time to dissipate.

    It can be refreshed ad-lib; there are zero risks of 'overdose'. Yay! :)

    - terry


    ETA:
    Pheromones require no habituation - the species they occur in, is hardwired to respond to them, from birth.
    Pheromones are species-specific messages.

    .
     
  19. MillieTheLab

    MillieTheLab New Member Registered

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    9
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Thanks for all your replies - you have all been great. Just a little update - today is the first day of her being left at home rather than going to the dog sitters. I got some of the Adaptil spay, gave her bed a spray last night so she could get used to it and then again this morning and honestly it worked wonders. She managed 2 hours by herself and she was just playing with her boxes and in going to her bed. She could have lasted longer but my mum went round to walk her instead.
    First successful day and it would not have been without this forum so thank you so much!!
     
    Mad Murphy, arealhuman, Sezzy and 6 others like this.
  20. Violet Turner

    Violet Turner Well-Known Member Registered

    Messages:
    2,716
    Likes Received:
    1,127
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I'm glad it has worked out for you :)
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.