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Dog Behavior: Paranoia
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cmym3 posted:
My dog Buddy is a 6 year old terrier mix in perfect health, but has experienced a weird problem lately. In the last 6 months on about 5 occasions Buddy will start pacing, breathing heavy and goes to the front door where he whimpers to be let out. He's acts terrified, whimpers plaintively, trembles and absolutely wants out of the house. When I take him out he continues to breath heavily, tremble and whimper all the while wanting to not go back near the entrance to the house. He doesn't have to use the bathroom and refuses to go back inside the house. When I coax him back inside he will stay by the front door and continues to tremble, pace and act like he can't stand to be inside. I can't find anything out of place in the house or different from before he starts this behavior. Prior to one of these "attacks" he is very passive and usually laying down. He's not reacting to any outside stimuli like another animal, truck, noise, etc., he temporarily cannot stand to be inside the house. I have to comfort him by petting and stroking him for almost an hour before he calms down and returns to his normal behavior. The only thing that's different in his environment would be that we moved into a new house about 7 months ago and it was shortly after we moved in that he began this strange behavior. It's only happened about 5 times in 7 months. It is totally out of character for him to act this way and very disturbing for me especially with the possibility of this occurring while I'm gone all day at work and he can't get out. Could this some kind of onset neurological problem? Any suggestions how to treat this? Where could I find out more information about this type of canine behavior?

TIA

ewe24
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ShivaChi responded:
For one, you are reinforcing the behavior by coddling him when he acts like this. You need to ignore it. The more you coddle him, the more he'll do it. It may be that he was scared one time and you coddled him so he learned that acting that way got him major attention. Try ignoring him and seeing if that stops the behavior.

It may also be he's reacting to the weather. Dogs who are afraid of thunder start to get nervous even before we are aware there's a storm coming(by our own ears or eyes, not by the weather people saying it). So maybe it's certain kind of weather changes that affect him. Just try ignoring it period and see if it stops. If it doesn't stop in a month, I'd take him to the vet to make sure he's physically okay and if he is, look for a trainer.
 
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Libra_Witch responded:
Going out on a limb here but you said it didnt begin until you moved to a new home. Is there a possibility that your pooch might be seeing spirits? Animals can see things we don't. I know as a paranormal investigator we get lots of cases where this is the case.
 
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cmym3 responded:
I've had more responses about paranormal possibilities than "don't coddle him". Let me make this clear. I've only physically calmed him down once. The other times I did "ignore" him and it lasted all day until he finally wore himself out. The possibility of some neurological problem looms in the background. There does seem to be a correlation between the behavior starting around the time of moving in to the new home. My other explanation is that someone/something in the neighborhood is producing a sound/noise that he's reacting to. The problem with this scenario is that it will be almost impossible to determine where it's coming from. You know your dog like you know your kids and this is definitely something completely out of character for him. I know it's not him just wanting out because that's a completely different behavior and I see that every day. This has happened only about 5 times in the last 8 months. It's been more than 2 weeks since his last episode.

Thanks for the response.
 
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4Watermonkeys responded:
Your comment about someone or something making a sound that may be causing your dog's reaction caught my attention. We also have a terrier mix that gets nervous from time to time. I have noticed (much to my husband's dismay) that sometimes electronics or appliances make high pitched noises in the house that can be quite irritating. The only reason I hear the sounds is that women with asthma (as proven by research) tend to hear pitches that other humans can't hear. So, the possibility of it being a sound that is setting your dog off is definitely not out of the question. We've also had to have a chat with a neighbor that was using one of those ultrasonic bark collars on his dog - he didn't realize that EVERY dog within so many feet can hear it, not just his dog.
 
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LOVEMYBOSTON replied to cmym3's response:
My boston terrier has had grand mal siezures for two years now and has had to be on a lot of meds. He sometimes would get paranoid and do the same thing running around, scared, shaking, for hours. This happened about once a month but the other day he had a seizure and became paranoid and it never stopped. I took him to the hospital and they thought maybe the seizures finally tripped something in his brain. It has been four days and he is still paranoid. I need some answers as well.. Please help!!!!
 
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Annie_WebMD_Staff replied to LOVEMYBOSTON's response:
Hi Lovesmyboston,

You are replying to a discussion that is more than a year old so I would encourage you to repost your question as a new discussion so that the community members and our vets can easily "see" your questions. Please mouse over the orange "Post Now" button and click on "Discussion". You will open a new edit box window, simply type in your question and hit the "Submit" orange button.

Thanks!

- Annie
There's nothing better than a warm fuzzy hug from your pet!
 
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blue85caprice replied to ShivaChi's response:
I'm guessing that you see yourself as some sort of dog expert or a trainer? More likely that you get off on preaching and you believe your own message. I would never let anyone so cruel or uncaring as you near my dogs. You're one of those who thinks of your pet as a "Thing" and not an actual being. I realize that you learned this sort of nonsense somewhere, but you and your teacher are more wrong than you'll ever be able to admit. And you'll never admit it. I know a few people like you. I wouldn't let them near my dogs either. In fact, in my opinion, you and your ilk are just as abusive as if you'd beaten the dog with a crowbar. If I knew you personally and saw you treat your dog in this manner I'd call the police in a heartbeat and make damn sure the dog was taken from you. You don't deserve the love of a dog, obviously, since you're not capable of returning that love. A dog is not a "Thing". Not by any stretch of the imagination. You shouldn't be allowed to have a dog in your life. I suggest you give the dog up for adoption and go buy a few hand puppets instead. That's more your emotional speed. You can't abuse a puppet. Well, you can abuse a puppet, but we don't need to hear about that sort of thing. There are plenty of websites out there that would love to hear about how you DO abuse your puppet. Check it out. You'll be happier there. I apologize if I offend ANYONE (Aside from ShivaChi. I MEAN to offend you, scumbag. Your response here is absolutely idiotic and offensive and more than insensitive). I agree with you completely about behavior changes due to coming weather. 4 of my dogs dislike storms and start getting upset long before the storm hits. That's how I know really bad weather is coming, and in Texas, with the deadly storms we have on a regular basis, that's a LIFESAVER!!! All 4 react in different ways. And the very last thing I'd do is ignore any of them or make their anxiety worse in any way. If you're really that turned on by torturing your dogs (And that's exactly the message I got from your post), then my one and only hope is that someone else will turn you in to the authorities and you spend some serious time in prison for your abuses.
 
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blue85caprice replied to Libra_Witch's response:
Libra_Witch, this was EXACTLY my 1st thought on reading cmym3's post. I speak from personal experience. You're only going out on a limb for a small group of folks. You have no idea how many of us believe the same as you do. t.
 
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TaikoB responded:
My niece has a Maltese/Yorkie mix and he has had similar experiences. He gets into a paranoid state where he is constantly looking around for someone or something that is causing this reaction he's having . It happens about once every two months or so, but when the episode is taking place, he definitely acts as if he is looking for that "something" that is causing his reaction and does not want it to get him. He'll jump on one of our laps and insists on having a view of the floor when he's in someone's arms. If there is anymore suggestions or theories of this problem, or any resolutions, i'd like to hear them. I'm leaning towards the" spirits in the home" theory, His reactions point in that direction. We definitely think that he saw something. We're all ears.
 
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rohvannyn replied to TaikoB's response:
As odd as it may seem, and if there is nothing else to explain the paranoia, I might be inclined to accept the spirits explanation.

Though I try to be scientifically minded, part of that is paying attention to your senses, and I've felt furry bodies rubbing against my legs with no visible cats there, and well-loved forms sleeping beside me when the current cats are in another room. I don't believe in spirits, rather I've seen evidence that leads me to conclude that they exist.

When both my spouse and myself can independently point to where our old friend Orion is, and he passed on three years ago, I think there's something to it. I've also seen a lone cat acting as if she is playing with another cat, but no visible cat there, and I've seen pets of various kinds get very nervous and fearful with nothing present visibly or audibly.

The only thing I would say is, keep in mind that pets have very good senses of smell and hearing, so there could be something going on you are not aware of.


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