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Old May 2, 2014, 06:10 AM
Miss Miss is offline
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Australia
Posts: 41
Default Sudden fear of stairs 😰

Little jacks is nearly 8 mths now and has suddenly developed a fear of going down and upstairs. It started a few days ago, I have 2 flights of stairs in my house and he has been confidently going up and down them since 3 mths. I have a suspicion that he may have slipped or fallen down them while I was at work, I have had him vet checked though and the vet found nothing wrong. Anyway, I came home from work and he didn't run to meet me at the door, he just stood at the top of the stairs (which means I he did fall down them, how did he get back to the very top again?). So I carried him down and for the rest of the day he wouldn't go up or down those set but he did go up and down the other set. He is very food oriented, but no matter what I brided him with, he wouldn't go down or up! Now today he won't go near the other ones either. BUT if I gently stand him at the base of the stairs or top step, and place his paws on the next step , he will do the lot!!!!! He WILL not go near the stairs unless I take him, which means , as the toilet is upstairs , he is peeing inside (twice ). So , I've sat at he top of the step with him, just patting etc and soothing him and given him loads of encouragement and a treat when he does the climb. Any suggestions? I'm worried 😯
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Old May 2, 2014, 08:17 AM
Caro's Avatar
Caro Caro is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Canberra, Australia
Posts: 4,577

It sounds like he has hit the adolescent fear stage. Who knows why it happens, they just suddenly lose confidence over things that were second nature the week before. My female developed a fear of drains and to this day won't walk over the top of them.

You are doing the right things, don't push it too much and let him work it out. It's all about building his confidence again.
Caro and the pups - Deska and Tully
& Tully's cats.
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Old May 2, 2014, 08:57 AM
EJHUNTL's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Ontario, Grand Bend
Posts: 672

My Hanna (11 months tomorrow) has never liked stairs. She will go up, no problem on outdoor stairs only. She practically runs to get it over with. The only way she will go down is if I put her front feet on the first step and get her started - then she does the rest of them without any further assistance or prompting, even when there are 20 or more open stairs! I have yet to be able to get her to use the hardwood stairs that go to our basement. There are 2 sets of 5 with a big landing in the middle. It does mean that she stays where we put her

I really don't need a gate to keep her from getting off the deck - we use an xpen at the bottom just in case she ever musters up the courage to have a go on her own. So far not even leaving a pile of her favorite treats on the stairs and at the bottom has been sufficient enticement and she is highly food motivated!

In your case it does sound like a new fear that your pup will get over with time and encouragement, since he was doing them before.

Mom to Hanna ( smerle born June 3, 2013)
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