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graphene

3,094 posts

42 months

[news] 
Monday 8th October 2012 quote quote all
Simpo Two said:
Well done OP for taking the replies better than others who for some reason find the stark truth unpalatable.
'Stark truth' - sounds a little dramatic? Most of the replies are sanctimonious, rather than actually helpful.

Fozziebear

1,055 posts

27 months

[news] 
Monday 8th October 2012 quote quote all
Separation anxieties are common in puppies when then have been removed from the pack. Try to understand they need to know they are safe, t shirts with your scent on them, a radio playing and toys that are stuffed with treats to test their minds help. It could stop tomorrow or 5 years down the road, or even stop and restart. Me mutt ate through a door, the plasterboard walls and a 240 volt cable before he chilled, he now sleeps in the bedroom all day, the pack room, and also at night. They need to know the have a place in the pack and how low/high they sit in it.

Paddy_N_Murphy

16,265 posts

71 months

[news] 
Monday 8th October 2012 quote quote all
OP, I don't feel what you are doing is out of the ordinary, I also think that stimulation and variety is also key - can Yoda roam around the house?
Also - tbh it is all repairable and he should grow out of it.

it is what it is, he is not going anywhere is he?
Frustrating I know, ours went through a habit of loving to eat Radiator thermostats. 20 quid a pop the little st.
Anyway, it''s called dog ownership, its fun.
Don;t beat yourself up - there are hundreds and hundreds of dogs out there with a far more horrible life.

jenpot

466 posts

74 months

[news] 
Monday 8th October 2012 quote quote all
My dog had horrendous separation anxiety as a puppy and would trash things if we left her alone long enough to go to the bathroom, or take a shower. A combination of shift work and crate training really helped though, crate made her feel safe so she slept while we were out and didn't destroy things (apart from the couple of times she got out...).

Nowadays, I have a wonderful 4 year old dog who doesn't touch anything, sleeps on the bed given half a chance and gets annoyed on my days off when I'm doing housework in nap time. But it was a lot of hard work.

That puppy is scare, bored or a combination of the two. As others have said, its a long time to leave a wee one alone. It does get easier as they older and calmer.

icetea

846 posts

29 months

[news] 
Monday 8th October 2012 quote quote all
Paddy_N_Murphy said:
Anyway, it''s called dog ownership, its fun.
Don;t beat yourself up - there are hundreds and hundreds of dogs out there with a far more horrible life.
Why does this excuse keeping getting rolled out... just because lots of other people treat their pets badly, that doesn't mean you should too.
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Paddy_N_Murphy

16,265 posts

71 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
icetea said:
Paddy_N_Murphy said:
Anyway, it''s called dog ownership, its fun.
Don;t beat yourself up - there are hundreds and hundreds of dogs out there with a far more horrible life.
Why does this excuse keeping getting rolled out... just because lots of other people treat their pets badly, that doesn't mean you should too.
I didn't make it an excuse. Puppies do what puppies do.
Most have a destructive phase - ours knackered very little.

Not sure we don't need an adult sized crate round these ways sometimes tbh.

base

318 posts

67 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
icetea said:
JFReturns said:
Or are we doing something badly wrong? frown
Yes, you selfishly bought a dog when its completely incompatible with your lifestyle. The poor guy is bored to tears in there on his own... no wonder he's wrecking the place.

If you needed to have a dog you should have took an older one from a rescue centre.
And that there is the truth of the matter

Piglet

6,090 posts

142 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
The fact that it's not working out for this pup doesn't mean it's wrong that anyone who works has a dog so I don't think there's much need for the debate about whether it is ever right or for those who do work to defend their choice.

The fact is that it is clearly not working for this pup and the OP needs to deal with that swiftly to avoid long term problems.

I'm not sure that separation anxiety is automatically the issue, the OP hasn't said anything about the dogs demeanour, it may be that the dog is hugely anxious or it may be that it is just bored rigid - either are an option and neither are gong to improve on their own.

To me, both sessions that the dogs is left for are too long, leaving a 8 month old for over four hours at a stretch on a consistent basis seems pretty difficult - what does he do about going to the toilet? When you started leaving him presumably he was around 12 weeks old and at that stage I would have been expecting him to need to toilet every hour or so - how did you deal with that?

Personally, I think you need to be thinking about someone to come in mid morning and mid afternoon with you doing the lunchtime shift and that would still not be ideal, dogs are pack animals, they like company and they are hugely loyal to their owners, it's heartbreaking to think that he is locked away all day and is scrabbling at the doors to try to get out frown

I'd suggest you get a video camera and rig it up in the kitchen to try to get to grips with what is happening - it may not make very pleasant viewing though.

What breed is he?

Paddy_N_Murphy

16,265 posts

71 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Just re-reading :

OP says "He chews up something in the kitchen maybe once or twice a week"

This suggests it is not a permanent - everytime - thing.
I think there has been some fairly damning comments and finger pointing on here TBH

Chilli

17,005 posts

123 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Get another dog.

Edited, I meant for him to play with, not to replace him!

Sexual Chocolate

1,583 posts

31 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
My lab was a chewer when he was young and yes we did leave him alone when we where at work. In the end we left the back door open on nice days so he could trot outside and do stuff and he could freely roam around the house during the day. Even with all this in place he still chewed and even when we where at home he would still chew stuff. I think he just enjoyed it as he used to sneak off whatever he was about to chew and take it upstairs so he wouldn't be spotted.

This is a list of what he destroyed.

2 x TV Remote controls
big patch of kitchen line
1 x hands free phone
Various socks stolen from the laundry basket.
Couple of hunderd quids worth of the wifes underwear
Stair carpet
Wall paper in the hall way
Anyting that came through the letter box
Next door neighbours garden gnome.
Cushion at my mums house when he stayed there for a few days
Skirting boards.

Superficial

753 posts

61 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Haven't read all the replies so apologies if I'm covering old ground.

Destructive behaviour is usually a sign of either boredom or separation anxiety. If Yoda is only being destructive a couple of times a week when you're at work I'm 99% sure it's boredom. If he had separation anxiety he would be damaging things every time he was left, even if you were at home but in another room. If you have any doubt set up a video camera to record him while you're out and see if he shows any sign of distress.

Labs are very people orientated and don't do well to be left alone for long periods of time. They are also a 'mouthy' breed; their instinct is to use their mouths and chewing in itself is a pleasurable activity for dogs. Firstly, is there any way he could harm himself in the kitchen? If so, I'd recommend crate training him so that he can't destroy anything and injure himself but whether you use a crate or not he needs a lot more interaction in the day. Depending on where you live you could employ a dog walker for about £10 per hour, that would at least get him out the house and tired out. How is he walked at the moment, on lead or off? On lead walking has its place but dogs like labs need to run to tire properly. Another option would be doggy day care, for a commercial place you'll pay more but when I used to work at the groomers we had day boarders for £10 a day which is very cheap. Do you have any neighbours who are home during the day and would appreciate the company? That could be free, or a case of a favour for a favour.

At 8 months I doubt he'll grow out of it naturally, if anything he's hitting adolescence and inappropriate behaviours need to be nipped in the bud before they become more cemented.

Good luck smile

Karyn

6,003 posts

55 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
OP, my sympathies! You've been properly lampooned here, rightly or wrongly.

1-2 times a week is boredom, I'd wager. As others have said, if neither you nor your wife can come home at lunch for longer (10 minutes is nowhere near enough) look at either a dog-walker or day-care for your pup. Pronto!

Ours started to chew at about 8 months, and we foolishly didn't do much about it, figuring she'd "grow out of it". She didn't, and it's now a cemented behaviour, which we're struggling to undo.

Although it was nerve-wracking, giving her free reign of the entire house, instead of one room, helped matters. Midday dog walker also helped. Hiding "long-lasting" toys (e.g. frozen tuna-yoghurt inside marrow bones) in places helps, too - toys that will keep them interested for about half an hour.
More aerobic exercise first thing in the morning, too - look to try and get him running round for 15 minutes or more, instead of just plodding along next to you on-lead.

It might be worth re-visiting the "acclimatisation to leaving" training - leaving him for 5 mins, then 10, then 20, etc... but I understand that that might prove difficult if you both work. Plus, given that I'd bet at least 50p that it's down to boredom rather than separation anxiety, it might not offer that much in the way of reward.




Last restort would be get another dog... wink

SGirl

7,259 posts

148 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
I agree with the person who said above that a longer walk at lunchtime would be a good idea. Our lurcher pup was always happy to snooze all day at the age of 8 months, as long as she had a long walk first thing in the morning, a quick run round the garden at lunchtime and another longer walk later in the afternoon - but then again, I work from home so I can also interact with her when she needs company (which is usually any time I open a packet of biscuits or at 10-minute intervals for about an hour prior to her official walk time!). Now that she's 20 months old, she's happy to just have the early morning walk and an afternoon one, she doesn't need the lunchtime games in the garden.

Doggy daycare is potentially a good idea, too - the bloke that looks after my guinea pigs if we're away looks after a dozen or so dogs while their owners are at work. The dogs seem to love it - they get loads of exercise and company, and they're always happy!

Good luck with your pup, he looks gorgeous! smile

Paddy_N_Murphy

16,265 posts

71 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
AFAIK - Doggy Day cares are generally not accepting of 'Dog's that are fully intact in their undercarriage.

ali_kat

27,007 posts

108 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
JFReturns said:
A typical day would be:

- 40 minute walk first thing, rest then feed
- Kitchen sprayed with horrible tasting stuff, toys prepared to keep him entertained
- Leave around 8:15, back home at 12:45 for 10 minute walk and lunch. Prepare more toys for the afternoon
- Leave at 1:30, back by 6 then a good hour work with training and food and play time
JFReturns said:
I forgot to add that we have family coming over twice a week for a walk and play for a couple of hours at lunch so it is three times a week he only gets a short walk at lunch. We leave the radio on (SWMBO insists Radio 4, maybe that's the problem!). He was fine for the first few months, it all started when he hit six months old!
So he chews once or twice a week?

Which days? The ones he gets family over, or the ones he is left? Or a mixture of both? Is there any pattern to it?

Trying to work out if it is something that makes him anxious or if it is just boredom.

Karyn

6,003 posts

55 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
^^ Just call her Nancy Drew... wink


Good idea, Ali. yes


Mr Gearchange

4,635 posts

93 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Upatdawn said:
Would you leave a toddler alone for 4 hours?
A good well balanced point incorportating both a sense of perspective and a very relevant comparison.

sidekickdmr

2,388 posts

93 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Hate to say it but I agree with the majority, its not really fair leaving her alone in the kitchen for hours on end.

We have just got a puppy and both work full time (wouldn't have chosen to have a dog until OH gave up work but we didn't really have much choice (apart from putting her down)) and we are out the house from 7 am till 6 pm with no option of going back at lunch.

We initially looked into getting a dog walker in at 10 am and 3 pm for a hours walk, but thought this would be unfair on her too, so we now use a "doggy daycare" woman.

We drop the dog off on the way to work and pick her up on the way home, this lady is a proper registered/insured dog sitter and looks after about 5 dogs a day, they live in the house with her and have attention all day and go for two 2 hour walks a day.

By the time she gets home she just wants to curl up on my lap and sleep!

Only £15 a day too.

If you need to know more PM me!

graphene

3,094 posts

42 months

[news] 
Tuesday 9th October 2012 quote quote all
Mr Gearchange said:
Upatdawn said:
Would you leave a toddler alone for 4 hours?
A good well balanced point incorportating both a sense of perspective and a very relevant comparison.
Excellent
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