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Constant General Anxiety in 7 Month Old Sheltie

Discussion in 'Behavior' started by Chris Parker, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Forums Novice

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    Dec 11, 2018
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Hi, we got our Sheltie, Shadow at just under 4 months of age and he is now 7 months. He seemed OK and only mildly anxious for the first 6 weeks (doesn't like car travel, extremely distracted by other dogs, but never aggressive in any way). For the past 6 weeks he has progressively worsened with a general anxiety that causes him to be unable to relax. He is often whining, howling or occasionally barking and sometimes trembling. I work from home and I am home with him, in his presence, nearly all of the time, so it doesn't seem to be separation anxiety. We exercise often -- even after a long walk, we can come home and he will start walking around, whining and barking, unable to decompress and lie down and relax. He is always "on." We've been to obedience classes, do regular training sessions thoughout the day (sit, down, stay, leave it, place, etc.), and I'm constantly available to him. However, his anxiety that manifests itself in constant whining, howling, barking is becoming an extreme irritation and annoyance. I try to always try to remain calm and ignore the whining and not respond to it in any way until he is silent. I am not able to identify any trigger or specific situation that is causing it (other than car travel) -- his anxiety seems general and always present. Help? Thanks, Chris and Shadow
     
  2. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

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    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    I can feel for you! I have the same issue with my 7 month old Sheltie!

    I am also at home all day! I work from home so he is with me constantly! I also have taken him to puppy classes and a CGC class.

    He whines in the car and at class and is ON whenever outside. He is scared of other dogs and people he does not know.

    I have tried everything to help him through his anxiety. I am now going to try CBD oil to help with his anxiety.

    I hope this works for him as I feel bad that he is so anxious. He is a very smart and sweet boy who has never been mistreated. I got him at 10 weeks and he was a bold little guy. I have two older Shelties he plays with and is quite the bully! Go figure...

    If you want to try this product let us know how it is working for you! Just ordered mine. Should be here in a few days and I will post my results!

    https://nuleafnaturals.com/product/full-spectrum-pet-cbd-oil-high-grade-hemp-extract-50mg-ml/
     
  3. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Forums Novice

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    Dec 11, 2018
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Thank you for the reply. I have read about these aroma therapy treatments for anxiety and may give it a try. This is my second Sheltie and quite different from my first (or any other dog I've had before). He's not timid really and always wants to meet other dogs and people. This anxiety thing is really puzzling re: why he is so amped up and apparently stressed all day long.
     
  4. Calliesmom

    Calliesmom Moderator

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    have you talked to your vet about this?
    constant whining/barking and unable to settle could be due to pain or undiagnosed/untreated illness...........................
     
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  5. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Premium Member

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    If you have stayed in touch with your breeder, you might also run it by them, they may have tips for you.
     
    ghggp likes this.
  6. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Forums Novice

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    Dec 11, 2018
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Thank you. I think I will bring it up with the vet and get him checked out, to specifically look for issues that could cause his anxiety. He had a physical check-up a little over a week ago, but I didn't bring up the behavior issues with her at that time.
     
  7. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Forums Novice

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    Dec 11, 2018
    Chapel Hill, NC
    That's a good idea. I plan to call the breeder this weekend when my wife returns from a trip and we can both talk to her at the same time on the phone (she lives several hours away from us). She's been breeding and showing Shelties for decades and we got our first magical Sheltie from her 15 years ago.
     
  8. Piper's mom

    Piper's mom Forums Enthusiast

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    Is he only like this at home or does he display this behaviour elsewhere and is he neutered? If he's intact and is only doing it at home it's possible that there could be a female in heat in the neighborhood. Some dogs are extremely sensitive to this.
     
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  9. Caro

    Caro Moderator

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    I'd be asking the vet too, the whining and unsettled behaviour can be pain related. My male was diagnosed with arthritis at around 3 years old and for a long time people would say it's behavioural. I shouldn't have listened, it was a relief in a way when I got the diagnosis.

    Also, dogs go through an adolescent fear period so maybe the worsening is related to that.

    There's been a couple of recent threads about managing shy dogs that may help.

    Another thing. He's a sheepdog and may be relying on you to entertain him. Can I suggest using his food so he can keep himself entertained? Don't give any of his food straight out of a bowl. Kibble can go in treat dispensers or hidden around the house/yard, soft food can be put in Kongs or something similar. Dogs love working for their food and gives them something to do that doesn't involve you.
     
    Piper's mom, Hanne and ghggp like this.
  10. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Forums Novice

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    Dec 11, 2018
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Hi is intact for the time being, and he's displaying this behavior at home and is especially worse when we visit other family members.
     

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