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 Post Posted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:09 pm 
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Location: Fort Worth, TX
Shoes has been obedience trained, but since my divorce, he has regressed and I don't know what to do. He spends 10-12 hours by himself every day while I'm at work. I give him free run of the back yard.
He's been pooping in the house constantly, which he never used to do, barks constantly when crated, which he had gotten over before, and won't listen to me unless I use a pinch collar, shock collar, or use a really mean tone and intimidate him. He's 11 months old and I'm not sure if it's a training problem or if he's mad about me being gone most of the day. He has a bad case of separation anxiety... Freaks out when I leave until I get back, even if he's with other people or dogs. I almost feel like I need to find him a new home... He doesn't have a ranch to run around on anymore, I don't get to hunt every weekend and give him tracking jobs. On the other hand, I love him and he still likes me. Any ideas on how I can fix his behavior issues?

With the pooping in the house, I'm almost positive its on purpose. He's been house broken, but now I can take him outside and he will pee, try to get him to poop, he won't, and the second I turn my back in the house there is crap on the floor. He doesn't pee in the house and asks to be let out to pee... He just won't to poop.


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 Post Posted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:45 pm 
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You need to send him down south. I'll keep him busy

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 Post Posted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:24 pm 
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I'm sorry to hear of your problem. I dont know much to tell you, except to me, he sounds just like a child that would be going thru the aftermath of a divorce. I would talk with a good trainer as he sounds like he is really having some serious issues.

There are also some natural remedies that you could get and try. I have used a product called Nerve Tonic by Hylands, which is pretty good. Or, go to a health food store and see what they might have and recommend. I have never given any other product, but I do know that there are things out there. I would still, tho, deal with the issues and a trainer, as I wouldnt depend on a medicine or alternative medicine to handle the issues alone.

Just my opinion. I hope that you can resolve the issues.

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 Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:56 am 
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Location: Alto, TX
Betty L. wrote:
I'm sorry to hear of your problem. I dont know much to tell you, except to me, he sounds just like a child that would be going thru the aftermath of a divorce. I would talk with a good trainer as he sounds like he is really having some serious issues.


I agree...His world has been turned upside down. I'm no dog trainer, but it sounds like a control issue. Maybe he feels like where he poops is the only thing he can control. You may want to contact a trainer.

Courtney, do you have any advice?

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 Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 12:33 pm 
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Your problems are fixable.

Your dog needs some stability in his life, exercise, and a job to do.
Some of the issues could be due to handler error. It sounds like you are using a lot of aversives to punish away bad behavior when what he really needs is a calm, confident leader with whom he shares a working relationship. And by "working" I mean a relationship where he earns everything he wants in life by working for you and under your direction.

Start with the home. You need to create a stable environment for him. A chaotic or tumultuous environment creates a lot of anxiety and stress in dogs...especially a young dog.

I will type more later when I'm at a computer but if you are committed to this dog and you are willing to put in the time and money...you will both be able to overcome this challenge.

Feel free to give me a call. 214-679-1801.

I would recommend seeking a trainer that specializes in working breeds.
I found a wonderful trainer through Petco that handled bomb detection dogs in Iraq and specialized in behavior modification. It was worth every penny.

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 Post Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:25 pm 
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Location: San Angelo TX
I have started giving my dogs rescue remedy from the health food store. My oldest dog Ben was getting really bad about clinging to me and my wife. He never once pooped in the hose as a pup but once we moved out here to the new house he would sneak off in the boys room and.... We'll you know. Part of the problem was that we no longer had a doggie door but it took awhile for him to adjust to the new environment. Also when we go out of town we will take them out to the ranch which they love, but just after staying a few days out there both dogs just act weird when we get them back. The drops have seem to help and are super easy. All I do is put them in there water and done. I would also suggest getting him out and doing something. I can tell when life gets busy and I don't spend enough time challenging the dogs they will drive me nuts! Sometimes all it takes is a run in the pasture to make them happy again.

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 Post Posted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 12:46 am 
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Most dogs also go through a couple of defiance or regression phases before the mature, where they are either testing you or trying a new approach to the world in general.

It happens pretty often when dogs are in training. It would be like one day they woke up and bumped their head and forgot everything they had been doing so well.

They can be a handful for a few weeks.


Yours is probably more situational - the simple answer is to spend more time with him.

You can always go back to a crate for in the house to help out with the poop problem.

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