Behavioral Disaster?

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Behavioral Disaster?

This is a discussion on Behavioral Disaster? within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; I have a Great Dane/Bloodhound mix that just turned a year old today. Is this sometimes normal behavior for a large breed dog or are ...

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Old 07-09-2018, 03:34 AM
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Behavioral Disaster?

I have a Great Dane/Bloodhound mix that just turned a year old today. Is this sometimes normal behavior for a large breed dog or are there a few fries missing in his Happy Meal?

These are a list of the very bizarre behaviors that I struggle with:
*Disclaimer his vet has cleared him of any physical ailments if any kind save a sensitive stomach and insists these are all behavioral in nature, but is stumped as to why he does most of them.

TLDR version: no bladder control, doesn't stop to poop, eats non food items whole, is incredibly earplittingly noisy for roughly 18 hours a day, excessively clumsy, still doesnt respond to his name, barks aggressively at weird things, and has gone to obedience training to only learn how to "stay" for very brief stretches of time, sometimes.


1. He has no concept of bladder control. He does not lift his leg, or even stop to pee. He pees while sitting, standing, lying down, running, eating, just whenever.

2. He also does this while pooping.

3. He is on a prescription diet as his stomach cant seem to handle anything he eats.

4. Part of this may be because he eats whole anything he gets his mouth around. He doesnt chew them up, just swallows them ie combs, plastic bags, change, small containers, rocks, charcoal, socks, bottle caps etc. He cannot be left unsupervised for any amount of time.

5. He makes this full volume God awful noise every 45 minutes almost like clockwork. It's not a bark, whine or howl. It definitely is not hound baying. The closest thing I can connotate it to is the time I lived in an apartment next to a woman whose adult son was non verbal autistic. Sometimes when he was frustrating I could hear him shouting in garbled squealing wails. It's the same sound, but so loud he can be heard from outside my house and down almost to the end of my cul de sac.

A. It was suggested he was bored. He is now walked twice a day a minimum of 2 miles each, goes to the dog park 3 times a week. He also is let out to spend time (roughly 20 minutes) outside to run every 2 hours between the hours of 3 pm and midnight. He has toys, and all manner of things to occupy him. Even on walks, while playing he wails loudly.

B. This is so loud and persistent that I am only able to sleep when he sleeps, which isn't often.

C. It was then suggested that he is wailing for attention. We spent 5 weeks only interacting with him when he was quiet. His wailing behavior did not change but he peed inside alot more than usual (likely because he was being let out less while I struggled to not interact with him while he was being loud dog.)

6. We sometimes joking lo y refer to him in conversation as the Koolaid man. He uses his face to bully his way anywhere he wants to go. He is also incredibly clumsy. Not the clumsy of a dog that is overly excited, but one who is like a much smaller dog trying to pilot a big dog mech suit blindly. His spine moves in a serpentine motion when he walks and sometimes he just throws himself at things when his feet become too frustrating to manage. He will walk right through the baby gate even though now he is tall enough to jump it. He does however jump over the couch even though he can just walk around it. It usually ends in him tumbling over it and into furniture.

7. He does not respond to any verbal clues, including his own name. We honestly were convinced he was deaf until we realized he will come to me if I squeak his toy. I can be in another room, down the street, hiding out of his line of sight and he hears it and responds.

8. He barks aggressively at weird things. His arch nemesis is the broken fence post. He ran into one time and now he is convinced it is trying to eat him every time he goes outside. I have to cover it to keep him from trying to bark it to death. He also barks aggressively at the fish tank and the toilet when it flushes. He is not dog, people or food aggressive.

9. My other dog is my sidekick but he harasses her so often that if he is out and about I have to crate her. No amount of letting them establish their little dog social hierarchy seems to improve this. He continues to trample, push, shove, paw at her despite warning growls, snapping, and inevitable hiding. Shes stressed out by it all. I had hoped he would grow out of it but he shows no signs of stopping.

10. He has been in obedience classes 2 times. The first time was in a group. He was so loud and distracting I opted to pay the extra and set up one on one obedience training. The only thing he learned from the whole experience was how to stay in one place sometimes (which he will do by clicker for roughly 5 seconds before becoming distracted.)

It is a year later and I am still sleep deprived, exhausted, and it feels like I spend more time trying to get this dog to correct his behavior than anything else at all. There is no finding a dog sitter if I have to leave for an extended period of time. He has to go with me if I have to be away longer than a day (except he also gets carsick so it always ends in me cleaning barf out of my car.)

I dont want to give up on him. While he has become the bane of my existence I'm also attached. I am not convinced he is not in someway mentally impaired yet he is probably the sweetest, most good hearted dog I've ever known, just really really dumb. Anyone else who tried with him would like run into the same snags and he would be given up on again. My sanity, though, is starting to suffer.
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Old 07-09-2018, 06:51 AM
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Oh wow. I'm so sorry. It definitely sounds like some kind of mental impairment though. I really don't know what I would do in your position. What did the trainer say about him?
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Old 07-09-2018, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Francl27 View Post
Oh wow. I'm so sorry. It definitely sounds like some kind of mental impairment though. I really don't know what I would do in your position. What did the trainer say about him?
She suggested I keep working with him for now, and seek out further testing with the vet. It's the strangest thing with training. He can learn things very slowly, but it's like he can't seem to hold onto the information. He wants to do good dog things, but even at training he just winds up mostly wandering around wagging his tail with his tongue out.
The vet can't seem to find anything wrong with him. Shes witnessed the level of noisy pandemonium I deal with and thinks he just drew the short straw in the genetic lottery. She has given me some resources on organizations that take in and adopt out special needs dogs. I dont think I'm ready for that yet, but I am heavily considering contacting one to see if they have any further tips.

We have had a good day today so far. We couldn't go to the dog park since it was raining a little bit so hes currently in the backyard with me fighting to get out of the hammock (he hasn't figured out yet he cant get into it without getting stuck.)
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Old 07-09-2018, 12:02 PM
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Has he had a full vet workup and exam? That's step one, make sure there is no medical reason for his issues. Next is a good trainer, yes costly but, someone willing to work with him and you for months, not just a few weeks.
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