Pal’s bed

I’ve been watching a lot of It’s Me or the Dog on Animal Planet.  It’s like Supernanny, for dogs.  I have a nervous dog.  He’s nervous about car riding, he’s nervous about being home alone, he’s nervous about being somewhere new.  He’s happy and friendly, I’ve never seen him get aggressive with anyone.  But when he’s alone, he’s nervous.  The episode that I was most recently watching was about a dog that, among other things, left little “surprises” when he was home alone.  That’s what Pal Does when I don’t put him in the crate when I leave.  It’s fine with me, of course, if I put Pal where he feels safe and secure when I’m gone.  But I wish he could feel safe and secure in the apartment without me.

I got a few ideas from the doggy supernanny about “independence training.”  One of the suggestions was to have the dog sleep somewhere other than in the owner’s bed.  I think that many dogs do just fine sleeping with the owners.  But in the case of a nervous dog, sleeping in his own bed can reassure him that being without me for a little while is okay.  I think I’m going to try it for a few weeks and see what happens.  I don’t know if I’ll shut him out of my room, or just keep commanding him off my bed.  I tried the latter awhile ago.  Night after night, I would tell him to get off my bed as many times as it took, he would settle himself in his bed or on the floor, then about 7 hours later, I would wake up with him cuddling my feet!  🙂  I think I’d better shut him out!  I’m also going to try things like leaving and coming back every day without putting him in his crate, taking him for car rides that just come back home again, etc.  My goal is, by the end of the summer, to have not such a nervous dog.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Becky
    Jun 22, 2008 @ 23:00:26

    Good luck! Let me know how that turns out. Blake and I have been working on treating Sophie more like a dog and less like the only child as a means of preparing for the baby. Since we have some of the nursery set up, we have also been spending time in that room so she gets used to it. I hope it works!


  2. Betty
    Jun 23, 2008 @ 22:30:52

    Our dogs love their crates–Marty, who doesn’t use a crate, has basically created his own–when Riley and Jaz are told “kennel up” Marty goes directly to the sofa or futon and lays down. I guess I compare the crate to me getting in the warm comfy bed or under a fleece blanket. I wonder if being in the crate when riding in the car would have a similar calming effect for him?
    What an adorable little face he has!


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