Afraid of outdoors

Discussion in 'Dog Behavior Problems' started by jewels1, Apr 19, 2009.

  1. jewels1 New Member

    Jewels has been with me for a month. She is a four month old Chocolate lab mixed with Blue Healer. She has been afraid to go outside the apartment, and runs right to the door whining. She even has been afraid of people. She is awesome inside and uses her potty pad, but is getting to big for this. Today I got fed up and took her to the park. We ran into animal control there and the lady said that she needs socializing and told us where the dog park was. So I struggled to get Jewels back in the car and off we went. I literally had to drag her out of the car. But when we got to the dog park she had a blast! She played and played with other dogs even some humans. The only problem was she didn't go to the bathroom there either. But I think it's a good start, Any Suggestion would be great!! I just have got to get her to go outside and potty and poop there. Thanks look forward to hearing from anyone.:msnblushing:

  2. snooks Experienced Member

    Welcome. I have a few questions/suggestions is she a rescue, from a shelter, stray, mom's home or do you know her background?

    Yes she does need to be going outside and socializing but you want to make sure at this age that those are all POSITIVE experiences. Like known vaccinated nice dogs-not just here we are at the dog park and whoopsie there's that mean dog that bites. If she's already fearful that could be very scary and make things worse. People socializing who are CALM and not bending over reaching over her head for pets but chin scratches after sniffing the back of their hand whilst they squat down.

    Do not drag her or things may be very scary. Get some great treats meaty cheesy good treats-not kibble. Lean chicken or beef or string cheese and lure her or toss treats and let her go first. You squatting and coaxing and encouraging won't work with a scared dog. If it's an emergency she's still small enuf to carry to her potty spot.

    Let her approach people not the other way round. IF she chooses then fine but don't force her to submit to anything even pets if scared. I have a reformed shy dog and fostered another reformed very scared dog. You can train around this but give me more info. Until then keep things positive and be calm and above all PATIENT. It's hard but she’ll sense tension from ur concern or impatience and think well if they're upset maybe I should be worried.

    It's going to take 8 weeks for her to start feeling at home. It’s a HUGE change for her like you moving to a new country where u don't speak the language or know the customs or even where the bad side of town is.

    Tell me more of her background and exactly when she's afraid and what she's doing & what ur doing about it? Don't worry this isn't a huge deal if u have a little help. :dogtongue2:
  3. snooks Experienced Member

    Here's Nikki's video. It took me 4-5 weeks to get her happy to go outside. You see a shot of me carrying her early on. Watch her face though as the video progresses and you see the change. It takes patience and time and patience but it pays off in more love than you can imagine.


    Did you see the free downloads I posted for the other fearful puppy???
  4. jewels1 New Member

    Thank you so much for the replies. Today I will buy some chicken and boil it up to coax Jewels outside.
    Yesterday we went to the Dog Park and she had a blast! I couldn't believe it. However she didn't go to the bathroom.
    Someone replied and told me not to take her there because of her shots. I gave her the first round the other day. This is a shame if we shouldn't return because this is the only place I have seen her interact with anything. It was such a joy to see her happy outside.
    I agree I shouldn't drag her out of the car, so will try the chicken or cheese this morning.
    I get very frustrated with her and I know she senses it. I just loose any patience when she won't budge, she is getting to heavy to lift. I look forward to talking with you some more. I haven't watched your video but will now and will get back to you.. Thanks so much--- Talk to you again after park...:msnwink:
  5. jewels1 New Member

    Snooks, OMG I cried when I watched Nikis video! It was so beautiful to see her light up after time, you have given me inspiration... Jewels came from a very run down home, The man didn't even take care of himself. The house was torn apart by the dogs inside. He wouldn't let us in, he brought the puppies outside and they just cowered in the corner by the door, shaking and pee all over. Jewels was the only one that let us pet her. In my opinion we saved her life. I have often felt that I should have reported this home for investigation. I believe that they were all abused and neglected. Jewels was sick the first few days I had her. He had them eating regular dog food by the looks of it. I switched her to Beneful Puppy brand. How ever her coat has dry dandruff on it. She seems to like it though, but not shining like it should be, her coat. I was thinking about putting egg in her food. She has the habit of eating her poop, and I have heard that this is because she is lacking something in her diet. What else should I give her. Right now I am unemployed so can't afford premium brands. Any advice I appreciate greatly!!!!
  6. snooks Experienced Member

    thank goodness she found you.

    Aw Jewels I got all teary too hearing about your pup's circumstances. You are an angel for rescuing her. Thank goodness she found you. To me it sounds as if she was unsocialized and neglected which even without physical abuse is still abuse. She's going to need some TLC for a while until she figures out that humans are things she can trust and look to for guidance. She doesn't have the human figures in her life from birth that reassured her and that her mother trusted and looked to. So you unf have to prove to her that we're not all bad. Luckily for us a dog's capacity for forgiveness and love is incomparable. Even from a good home it would take her 8 weeks to settle in so give her some time. Some good socialization advice

    I know she's getting heavy but Nikki was 55 lbs and I just had to do it. If you live in an apartment you could get a long line and attach to her collar and put little breadcrumb trails of chicken outside for her to follow. They sell 20-25' woven cotton leads at Petco etc. It took a while for me to get Nikki outside that way. I spent hours baking in the Houston sun sitting on my deck back to her ignoring her. Scared dogs are sort of counter intuitive to human reasoning. What we think should make them feel good or makes us feel good scares them. Coaxing and attention and eye contact and hugging all feels to a scared dog like they are on center stage and it's very nerve wracking. What do I DO??? So ignore her. It seems mean but it's really not. To her it will take the pressure off. You can drop little bits of chicken by her and ignore her and keep walking. Soon you will become that wonderful human that makes chicken rain from the sky.

    Also the best way to make a dog feel good is to succeed. if you teach her to go potty on command then potty gets a lot less scary esp when you give her a great reward. Teaching tricks is a great way to boost confidence too. Any little thing. I bet she makes some progress every day. Concentrate on that and you'll see it. One thing is teaching targeting. See the write up on helping shy dogs blossum with targeting. Helping Shy Dogs Blossom Using Targeting | Karen Pryor Clickertraining You may need to sign up free to see the entire write up.

    Let her approach you, you could sit on the floor and surround urself with chicken and just let her come and take it and sniff you without reacting. Maybe quietly saying good girl if she isn't scared by that. We have to teach dogs that good means good by reinforcing it with food so that it is associated with a GOOD thing to the dog. As a puppy, which is little mouth on paws food is the basic good of life. They are instinctual beings at that age and food motivates all of their life. When pets and human talk become associated with food then they too become good. So you may have to teach her that even pets are good because you have a handful of chicken if she lets you scratch her chin. If she shies just hold ur hand out and have the other with a piece of chicken closer to you. Don't move either hand but make it so that she has to touch your other hand with her chest or side to get the food. That way a little touch becomes a good association. Progress to stroking under her face and chin as they are less scary to a dog.

    Face her side on not head on and don't stare at her. Even our imploring stares saying come on it's okay are a little threatening. Stares are discipline tools in dog language. So no eye contact is what a dog uses to communicate I mean no harm. They will turn heads or sniff rears not head on encounters if they are polite and wanting to give off the vibe I come in peace. It may seem like a lot of food at first but tiny pea sized bits is all you need and you will fade it as she gets older but if she is able to bond with you now when her brain is still in that learning phase of growing it will be so much faster and easier for both of you. I bake it and let it cool and it slices small very much easier than any other way i tried.

    A couple of the books I recommend are thin and cheap by Patricia McConnell. Cautious Canine, The Other End of the Leash, Puppy Primer, and two free downloads before you get your puppy is great after you get your puppy has a bit on cowardly puppy or scared puppy it's free but you have to sign up like on this forum-no big deal and they don't bug you. some great links from dog professionals and videos about all kinds of issues you might run into. There is info about related podcasts, radio shows, etc.

    If you have any questions just ask here-we're here to help you and feel very very free to private message me. I know what you're up against and you can do this. hang in there. Consider also a well run puppy class where the dogs are required to be vaccinated and the training is POSITIVE. No leash pops or scolding for a scared girl. In the right class if you explain your dog is scared the trainer will make sure she is safe and exposed to good things and good interaction. Other dogs are great role models too. I could never have done as much with Nikki without my very sweet dog Chisholm. She showed Nikki that outside wasn't so bad and that the car was exciting. If you have a friend with a nice dog that you're sure will be fair and good with her then arrange a play date or just a side by side walk. The more she see's safely that's it's okay the more she'll get the idea-it's not so bad.
  7. snooks Experienced Member

    Unf Beneful is one of the worst kibbles there is. I hate to tell u that b/c I'm sure you bought it after seeing the great commercial where the guy just loves his dog. Unf dog commercials are made to sell to people not dogs. So we get snookered in by the clever shapes and great taste. Beneful does taste great to dogs because it's mostly sugar. It's not good for them an may be why she has a bit of dry skin dandruff. It's kind of like feeding a kid captain crunch 3 meals a day. They'd be on a sugar buzz 24/7 and probably feeling a little ill.

    I suggest a few different kibbles but let me preface it by saying that just because it's more $$ per bag means you probably need to feed less per meal for the same safe weight gain and growth. This is because the ingredients are better quality and digestible. Many of the companies like beneful pump up the volume by using indigestible fillers like gluten, cellulose (wood), waste products, undigested gut contents, dead animals, and if from China a lot of dogs died of contaminated ingredients lately. If you look at the bag the amounts suggested there are always wayyyy too much so you don't need what you will calculate from the bag. Check out the costs on some of these kibbles that I give you and try a bag. See if it doesn't last longer and your dogs coat look better. Nikki went from that flat lusterless coat to red and glossy in just a few weeks.

    She needs a large breed puppy or adult food. Adult food for most large breed puppies is fine and what my breeder recommended because it has lower calcium and they grow slower and make stronger bones. Evo, Innova, Natures Balance, Canine Caviar, Solid Gold, Wellness Core, Wysong, Artemis, Instinct, Diamonds kibble lines. I prefer Evo and Innova as do my dogs. Nature's balance gave one dry skin. Wellness was great but my younger didn't like the taste. They both eat Instinct canned now. These you won't find at a grocery store, most not at Petco and the like. Wellness Core is there and maybe Nature's Balance. The others go to a pet supply store. I have a little local place that's great and takes back the food if they don't like it. YAY!

    You can do a comparison between any of these and just look at the ingredients I put a copy of the first page at bottom of this post. I compared Evo large bites adult dog food which I like, to Purina Beneful Original. If you look at the ingredients you'll get the idea. Ingredients are by weight listed with the most volume first in decreasing amounts. By the time you get to the fat source which in beneful is beef tallow ew the ingredients after are such small amounts as to not contribute significantly to the protein or nutritional value of the food. You're paying for a bag of corn, flour, sugar, beef tallow, gluten (a waste product they don't bother to remove) and some chicken by product meal. Most of this food is corn which a dog can't use to live off of and it has no protein. It would take much more of this food to keep your dog gaining weight and it wouldn't be healthy weight. Corn is what we make high fructose corn syrup out of.

    Don't feel bad - most people don't know this. That's what's great about having those before you like those before me learn for us. Beef tallow is what McDonalds can't fry their fries in anymore because it was killing people with clogged arteries. whoopsie. Evo has chicken fat listed after several protein sources which is much better. As for the byproduct meal it needs to go in the trash. I'll give you a great site called the dog food project and specifically what ingredients to avoid. That is where I got the info on the ingredients below. I know this is a lot to wham u with but you can at least go to the EVO compare site. And take a list of the kibbles I gave you and see what suits your price range. Remember you'll need much less than the bag says and your dog will be able to digest and use it for her growth rather than all that sugar and corn. She's not a cow - corn isn't good for cows either, they were meant to eat grass but it's cheap so we feed it to them. The result is lower quality cattle meat which is why you see better meat advertised as grass fed.

    Beef Tallow
    AAFCO: Fat with titer above 40 degrees Celsius, obtained from the tissue of cattle in the commercial process of rendering. Also called Beef Fat.
    Dogs and cats like the taste of this fat, so it is often used to make low-quality food more palatable. Beef tallow is very low in linoleic acid and much cheaper for the pet food industry to use than a good quality vegetable oil or nutritionally rich chicken fat.

    Chicken Byproduct Meal
    AAFCO: Consists of the dry, ground, rendered, clean parts of the carcass of slaughtered chicken, such as necks, feet, undeveloped eggs, and intestines -- exclusive of feathers except in such amounts as might occur unavoidably in good processing practices.
    Chicken byproducts are much less expensive and less digestible than the chicken muscle meat.The ingredients of each batch can vary drastically in ingredients (heads, feet, bones etc.) as well as quality, thus the nutritional value is also not consistent. Don't forget that byproducts consist of any parts of the animal OTHER than meat. If there is any use for any part of the animal that brings more profit than selling it as "byproduct", rest assured it will appear in such a product rather than in the "byproduct" dumpster.
  8. sara Moderator

    I was just going to point out the food thing, until you did Snooks! lol Food is so important to overall health. I have gone completely grain free with my dogs, feeding Orijen, and raw bones, treats that are grain-free (freeze dried liver) most dog foods (including some of the "better" ones (Nutro, Science diet, Hills) are so chalk-full of grains that it's like feeding a kid Kraft Dinner 3 meals a day. Dogs dont digest grains, it just comes out the other end, so you have to feed alot more in order for them to get the needed amount of calories. All 3 (soon to be 4) as well as my sister's pup, are on Orijen 6-fish, they all have wonderful coats and skin, are a healthy weight, are bright, energetic and extremely healthy. all of the dogs are at different life-stages too, from the 16 week old Westie, all the way to 7 year old Lhasa x Bichon. they are all thriving. one 30 pound bag lasts them 4 weeks as my 2 smaller dogs get 1/4 cup 2x per day, and my mid-sized boy gets 1/2 cup 2x per day. the better the food, the less you have to feed them, and the less vet visits you have. The high-end, grain-free dogs foods are totally worth the extra money!
  9. jewels1 New Member


    Wow Sara and Snooks, I had no idea about this food thing. I am running up to Petsmart and getting some better food!! No wonder she eats so much and looks thin and her coat is dull and flaky!!!! Unbelievable! So I will look for something with the chicken ingredients. I will refer back to your post and write down this stuff before I go.

    We went to the Dog Park again and she had a blast. Socialized with more people too... Today Getting her in the car was great she just jumped in, I gave her some cheese to leave the apartment door, then when she got in the car. Getting out was soooo much better today than yesterday, she was excited and came right out, again I gave her some cheese.:msnohyes::dogsmile:, Today seems like a brighter day and she is responding, thanks to you people here I am inspired and happy, I believe that we can get through this together!!! She ran right back to the door when we got home, but we have had great progress today!!!! Thank you so much for the help and I will get back on after I buy the food, will list the ingredients to see what you think.. Take care till then and God Bless you girls your angels!!!!!:msnwink:
  10. jewels1 New Member

    Jewels new food

    OK Girls I looked up on the site where to buy EVO, so off I went and got a 13 lb bag of the chicken, turkey, eggs, garlic, apples, carrots and tomatoes in it. I am mixing it with her beneful because lady at the feed store said it will prevent diarrhea and I don't want that with her not going outside yet!!! UGH, then I went to grocery store and bought a chicken so am now baking one with potatoes. It is 95 degrees out today here in Tucson, AZ, I must be crazy!!

    I bought a KONG for her too at the feed store. I will fill it with Chicken, potatoes, and peanut butter with broth. Any better recipes let me know. Then I will freeze it, tonight I will set up the crate again and give it to her while I put her in for half hour. Sound OK???

    So far everything you have said has help tremendously so will continue to follow advice, also looking up web sites you sent SNOOKS, thanks all, and will continue to keep in touch as we advance with your help..:dogwub::msnohyes:
  11. sara Moderator

    Congrats on the better day, and change in diets! I am very happy for you! that sounds like a great recipe... I just put natural peanut butter in my boy's kong... maybe I should start cooking for him? lol I also put a raw egg on my dog's food once a week (the omega enhanced ones) shell and all, or part of a can of Salmon or Sardines. to help with the skin and coat... just so they look their best lol. and keep a bit of variety in their diets. I'm not saying to do this tho, as your already changing alot, but keep it in mind if your pup's skin doesn't get better... there are suppliments too, but my dogs didn't have a problem... this is just a preventative thing....

    I hope everything continues to improve!
  12. jewels1 New Member


    I haven't given jewels her Kong yet, it is in the freezer. I looked up KONG recipes and found a whole bunch of ideas. But today I stuck with rice cooked in beef broth, chicken I baked, potatoes, and some kibble mixed in chicken broth. I plugged each hole with peanut butter, so we shall see what she thinks.
    She has been so much happier in the last two days, I am very optimistic with her progress she made with getting out the door, then in the car then out of car by herself... That was major.
    Thanks for the help, give your dogs Hug's and Kisses from Jewels... TTYL:dogbiggrin:
  13. snooks Experienced Member

    Fabulous....see progress every day. I bet she'll make so much wonderful headway with a little TLC. Very good advice about the slow food change...I forgot to mention that. I usually take about 2-3 weeks depending on if I see any loose stool. No need to rush and make her feel yucky.

    Kongs are neat things it usually takes mine overnight to freeze really hard and last for an hour but sometimes they get them as is if i'm so busy that i've forgotten to think sweet potatos are better for them than white--the white tend to be very starchy like corn. As for rice white rice is easier to digest but both are a little hard to digest for dogs. They don't really need that much if any grains. The sweet potatoes provide nice fiber and are sweet so they satisfy that sweet tooth dogs have. Just watch how she looks to monitor the amount of food. A lean puppy (not skinny) is the healthiest as a adult.

    It sounds like you're feeling better and doing a splendid job with your little sweetie. Keep it up, it's great to hear you sounding so much happier about everything. Enjoy that fuzzy baby!!
  14. jewels1 New Member

    oops jewels has the poops, lol

    Oh My Gosh, I think I over did it to the poor girl!!! She has the poops, though she loved her KONG. I don't think I will do that again for a while. Maybe I will just put water in it the rest of the week she loves ice cubes.
    Well I think we are off to a good start, because she did get out the door on her own and then the car. I pray this keeps up. It sure was a gift not to drag her around.
    She has started to snuggle up to me which can only be a good thing. Before she would lay on the other end of the couch not near me. Eventually I am going to have to teach her not to get up there but for now it's ok. I don't mind, but she will get bigger.
    I read the info on the clicker training, and it is very interesting. I will have to get one and start her training soon. She does sit when I tell her Sit, so I know she is capable of learning. I think the main thing we should focus on right now is getting her housebroken. I have the time as I am temporarily laid off. I will read up on it on the clicker training site. Any more info on this that you can think of I'm open to try. She is responding well to everything else.
    I look forward to hearing from you, tell me some more about your dogs. I really enjoy this site. TTYL:msnwink::dogwink:
  15. jewels1 New Member

    HELP JEWELS HAS BLOOD AND MUCUS IN HER RUNNY POOP. SHE WAS FINE UNTILL SHE ATE CHICKEN, BROTH RICE AND PEANUT BUTTER IN HER KONG.. WILL THIS GO AWAY, WHAT CAN I DO? I HAVEN'T FED HER TODAY BECAUSE OF IT... HELP PLS... I AM SO WORRIED ABOUT HER NOW....SNOOKS WROTE; (With the diet change you may see a few days of poop issues. Don't worry unless it doesn't go away in a couple of days or looks mucousy or bloody. Puppies sometimes do need deworming more than once so checking if it persists makes sense.) DOES SHE HAVE WORMS MAYBE OR IS IT JUST IRRITATION FROM THE RUNS???
  16. snooks Experienced Member

    Read ur PM's I sent u some info, and copied it in ur other post. I sent u my email address if u need help finding a vet open late too okay? Don't freak it could be a little irritation but you need to get it checked. Hopefully you can talk to someone tonight at a vet and get an opinion. If nothing else call when the vet first opens in the morning and get her in. Be sure she's drinking. Give her chicken broth or beef broth if you need to. They also sell doggie flavored things like pediolyte though broth mixed with water might be better and probably more handy even if you just boil some chicken in water and cool it. What you fed her didn't make her seriously ill, it just happens for many reasons to puppies. Evo and peanut butter isn't any big deal so don't worry that you did anything or hurt her.

    More likely getting of beneful is making her sugar crash and making her feel a little icky-like coming off a caffeine buzz it's not always the best feeling but it's better in the long run. My puppies have all gone through several bouts of this and I rush them in and it's usually give her a bland diet tomorrow and call me or antibiotics and call me. I'm a worry wart so I usually at least call.
  17. jewels1 New Member

    Hey Thanks, I Sent You A Private E-mail, Will Be Laying Low Today No Park Or Crate, It Is So Hot Already In Tucson, Don't Want To Chance Dehydration Any More Than She Has Gone Through. I Do Wish She Would Drink More, But She Is Drinking. She Is Sleeping A Lot To, So I Wake Her And Encourage The Water.
    Her Spirits Are Good Considering! Take Care And Will Keep Ya Posted, Hugs And Kisses From Jewels Also.
  18. sara Moderator

    my puppy, and my sister's puppy both went through this too shortly after we got them (different times tho) We both fasted them, for 24 hours and gave them Slippery Elm then fed them plain yogurt with their food for 48 hours... it cleared right up... for them it was just an irritated bowel, fasting them gives their bowels a rest, and the slippery elm helps ALOT too. it's an all natural product that helps the digestive system move things along, and coats the lining, helping with the irritation. I had a moment of panic too when I first saw the blood.... SCARY!
  19. jewels1 New Member

    Jewels Today

    Thanks Snooks, Sara, and tx_cowgirl,
    It was a very rough 24hrs, and still going through it. But for the most part she is feeling much better today. Drinking plenty of water with chicken broth. Last night though I sat with her with dish just dipping my fingers in it and Jewels would lick them and then lap up a sip of water in dish. I have been steam cleaning every spot, my carpet is going through hell. But will get the scent remover after I get some rest. I am exhausted, was such an emotional wreck. I suppose there will be many more days and nights like this with my baby through out the years!:msniwonder: I am going to take a nap now. Please let me know if I should give her food yet. She is playing around as usual now, it's me that needs the rest. LOL
    TTYL Girls, and thanks a bunch:dogohmy::msnblushing:

Share This Page

Real Time Analytics