General Question Bully not happy about being left alone

JordBully

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Jul 13, 2018
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Hi All,

We have had a little Coconut for nearly six months now and have posted a few times on this forum and received some great advice! When we go to work in the day our little bully is left in the kitchen which is her space for a few hours in the morning until our dog walker arrives and takes her our for two hours and then she is back on her own in the afternoon for a couple of hours before we return from work. This has never really been an issue in the past and we have a camera set up to make sure she is ok when she is on her own. We have seen a few barking session which last for about 5 mins but then for the rest of the time she is content and sleeps for most of it.

In the last two weeks she seems to have developed really bad separation anxiety when in the kitchen. Even if we only leave for 10 minutes when we return she is panting very heavily and has been jumping at the door to get out of the kitchen. We have had some fun and games recently as she used to be secured in the kitchen behind a childs stair gate, that is until she learned if she jumped at the gate she could knock it over! We then moved to closing the door and had no problems for about 2 months. Our very clever bully has now learned if she hangs off the door handle she can open the door and is free to roam the house(This is not ideal as she likes to pee in the living room on the carpet and sofa's when we are no around! :unsure:)

I am unsure to what would have changed which is now making her so anxious when we leave. My partner has been working at home recently for the last few weeks but we have tried to keep to the same routine of putting her in the kitchen for a period of time in the morning and in the afternoon as to not change her routine. I am not sure if she has got used to the presence in the house with her and now she unhappy that she is being left alone, or if it is a case of her not wanting to be in the kitchen and she has been able to get out into the rest of the house!

She has not displayed this behavior in the past when being left alone and seems to be worse in the last few weeks than when we first got her.

I have read the separation anxiety post and will start again with the steps to make her happier in the kitchen when being left but wondered if anyone else had been through this with their bully's or could recommend any tips that may help!

Thanks alot :)

Heres a photo of our girl at one of her fav spots,

Coco New.PNG
 

cefe13

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Sep 12, 2013
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Cute girl! You write she's been with you for six months - did you get her as a pup so she's now round eight months? In Swedish there is an expression (spökåldern) which literally means 'ghost age' which is used for dogs who at 6-9 months or so suddenly are spooked by pretty much everyhting. Places and objects that have not been a problem before (stairs, buses, the railway station, etc) suddenly become very difficult for the dog.

I'm not saying Coco sees 'ghosts' but perhaps she has reached an age when she is more aware of sounds and therefore reacts to them? Has there been eg construction work going on nearby or can she be afraid of something else that she hasn't reacted to previously?
 
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JordBully

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Hi Cefe13,
She is four years old she was a rescue dog :)
I think we are ok in the local area nothing different seems to be going on.
I have noticed If I was to open the door after 10 mins and go out side and not put her back in the kitchen she seems to be ok and calms down.
I think we have managed to pinpoint the issue being down to being put in the kitchen!
 

cefe13

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Ah, then Coco cannot blame the ghosts! Perhaps she just wants another location than the kitchen, then? Good luck!

Hi Cefe13,
She is four years old she was a rescue dog :)
I think we are ok in the local area nothing different seems to be going on.
I have noticed If I was to open the door after 10 mins and go out side and not put her back in the kitchen she seems to be ok and calms down.
I think we have managed to pinpoint the issue being down to being put in the kitchen!
 

Zedsded

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Mar 30, 2015
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Dudley (2015-2020) Wesley 2021
Hi Jord, we go through similar stages with our Dudley and he's nearly 4! :) Sometimes he will let me and his mum work in our office upstairs and then sometimes (like today) i had to go downstairs because he wouldn't stop crying because he was left alone. We too have cameras in the house we bought to keep an eye on him but sometimes think its worse if you can see him just sat in the middle of an empty room with his head down looking sad :( luckily he is generally on his bed asleep.
Coco's a cutie!
 
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JordBully

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Hi Zedsded,
Thank you, she is a cutie!
Hopefully with us going back to basics and getting her used to the room again she will get better over time. Strangely she is in the same room at night when we go to bed and we have no problems at all. She will go in and settle down and sleep all night with no problems.
 

2BullyMama

I'm not OCD....now who moved my bulldog?
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It is knowing your presence in the home... bulldogs love, love and need to be with their human... velco dog or shadow dog as I call them.

Try one of these gates instead of the wood baby gate

342966427541941d711df6cc188725ae.jpg


And give her a dirty tshirt with your scent to help comfort her. Along with the other advice from the gang.. she will settle back in.


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JordBully

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Thank you for all of your responses and replies, we have been to the vets and have some calming tablets and it would seem something has most likely happened which has spooked Coco whilst she has been in the kitchen alone. We have now started the process of reintroducing her to the kitchen slowly and calmly so she is again happy.

We will keep you posted on updates!
 

2BullyMama

I'm not OCD....now who moved my bulldog?
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Thank you for all of your responses and replies, we have been to the vets and have some calming tablets and it would seem something has most likely happened which has spooked Coco whilst she has been in the kitchen alone. We have now started the process of reintroducing her to the kitchen slowly and calmly so she is again happy.

We will keep you posted on updates!

Yes... please keep us posted


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JordBully

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Hi All,
so we have a new development! I am not 100% sure that this is separation anxiety!
After having a week off last week we kept to the same routing and went out in the day putting Coco in the kitchen as normal and we had no issues. There was some slight panting before we left and she would slowly walk into the kitchen when asked (Which she always does) but we did not have any more episodes like we did before, however that was until today!

Today our Xmas tree within the kitchen has become a victim and she has also pulled all the tea towels and other items from the work surface. We have tried to rule out different noises or item being the trigger for the behavior so we have ensured that the washing machine or dishwasher is not set to come on whilst we are out and there is background noise with the tv left on for her.

She has become obsessed with our lounge and that is where she spends most of her time when we are in. As soon as we let her out of the kitchen she is straight into the lounge and settles down in there. I am wondering more of this behavior is not actually separation anxiety and more of a protest that she wants to be in the lounge. We put her in the kitchen at night to go to bed and we have no problems and also recently we have put her in the kitchen when we are in the house and again no problems. I would have thought that if this was separation anxiety I would expect this behavior every time we leave her in there (although I am no expert!)

Has anyone else ever experienced their bully become either obsessed with a certain room in the house or getting to the point where they dont like the room they have always been in?
We are going to continue with the steps to make the kitchen a positive environment and hopefully she will become more calm about being in there.

Thanks,
 

Manydogs

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Actually, I can't believe that you put the Christmas tree in the room she is gated in! Especially if she has been acting out! That was begging for trouble!
Does she have toys(non edible) and nylabones(or similar) to keep her busy? She may just get bored. Has she got a crate to sleep in?
If she is penned in the kitchen during the day, and penned in the kitchen at night, she may be tired of being in the kitchen, and is trying to let you know! She does need to be with her family! If you have a smart?phone, maybe you can get a camera, and see her actions when you are gone-and may be able to solve the puzzle!
 

oscarmayer

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You might try a Thunder Shirt and a kennel big enough for her to stretch out in. Kennel benefit is 3-fold. It protects your bulldog. It protects your home from damage. It provides your bulldog with its own safe place.
 
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JordBully

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Thank you both, the thing with the Xmas tree is she has never destroyed anything in the house for the last 5 months, so we wernt to know this would happen! We actually think we may have got to the bottom of this, we have a camera setup in their with her and can see usually when we go out and she doesnt have an episode she sleeps for the hole time that we are not around. However on reviewing the video for this week i can see we have had a problem with our washing machine, when it went into the Spin cycle it vibrated very loudly as it had a problem. This has never happened when we where in the house so I think this has scared her. When we go to work in the morning we put the dishwasher or the washing machine on after we leave and I think this is scaring Coco.

As a test yesterday I went out for a few hours in the morning and put her in the kitchen as normal but this time I did not turn either of the washing machine or Dishwasher on and she slept for the hole time with no issues! We are going to try this again today and see if it is a case that she is now scared of those machine when she is alone because of the loud noise it made whilst it was broken.
 

Manydogs

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Happy that you checked the camera! The noisy machine surely could scare her, and feel like a monster coming after her!!! The whole place vibrates...As for leaving it on, when you are not home, I learned my lesson, as something broke and I came home to a kitchen in water, up to my ankles:w00t: Since them, I never leave it on when I am not going to be there. I surely hope you have found the answer!! [MENTION=18456]JordBully[/MENTION] :christmas18:
 

2BullyMama

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Thank you both, the thing with the Xmas tree is she has never destroyed anything in the house for the last 5 months, so we wernt to know this would happen! We actually think we may have got to the bottom of this, we have a camera setup in their with her and can see usually when we go out and she doesnt have an episode she sleeps for the hole time that we are not around. However on reviewing the video for this week i can see we have had a problem with our washing machine, when it went into the Spin cycle it vibrated very loudly as it had a problem. This has never happened when we where in the house so I think this has scared her. When we go to work in the morning we put the dishwasher or the washing machine on after we leave and I think this is scaring Coco.

As a test yesterday I went out for a few hours in the morning and put her in the kitchen as normal but this time I did not turn either of the washing machine or Dishwasher on and she slept for the hole time with no issues! We are going to try this again today and see if it is a case that she is now scared of those machine when she is alone because of the loud noise it made whilst it was broken.

Nice... hope you found the issue and she is all set now


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