Dog Forum banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 2 of 2 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
About a year ago I had to put down my 10 year male boxer mix. I also have another 5 year old male boxer mix that has known the elder since he was a little pup. The older one always used to get very nervous during thunderstorms as I have read this is not uncommon with dogs. But, the younger one always seems to not care or they did not bother him at all. This changed once I had to put down the older dog. Soon after the other seemed to pick up the same behaviors (panting\shaking\not eating etc) during the storms. I have also noticed other subtle changes in his behavior that reflect the older dog. Is this normal? And what causes it? I also got another pup about a month after I put him down last year if that might have anything to do with it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,860 Posts
I've had a lot of dogs, usually in pairs, and when I had to put one down, I never noticed any of others have a change in behavior that made them act like the dog that passed away. But, dogs are individual creatures with their own personalities and perhaps your dog started doing it because he recalled the other dog doing it.

Having said the above about my dogs. I did have a dog named Hey You and I had a cat who eventually lived to be 21 years old..but she was about 14 when Hey You had to be put to sleep at age 16. I had both my dogs, Sampson and Hey You when I brought Ashley home as a 1 year old kitten.

Hey You and Ashley, they never played, but often when Hey You was outside, Ashley was out there with her both laying on the porch close to each other. Ashley seemed to watch Hey You a lot, but totally ignored my other dog Sampson for some reason.

Inside the house, Hey You, always slept in the sofa, usually curled up against the left arm of it. Ashley would usually come sit on the back of the love seat near my shoulder.

A few days after I put Hey You to sleep, Ashley started looking for her....and it went on for almost two weeks. She would prowl the house, go outside the doggy door for a time, come in prowl the house again, then finally jump up on the sofa and go over and smell where Hey You use to sleep, curling her lips up as she smell the area...after about 4 days of this she got to the end of her search at the sofa and then let out this long, (and to me, heartbreaking) kind of a howl....kind of like ....aaahhhrrrrr. After which she laid down in that spot and slept there for the rest of the night. I had me crying for hours. And she did that again every single night for almost another 7 or 8 days...always ending up on the sofa where Hey You use to sleep and ending her search with that drawn out moan, then laying down and curling up in that spot and going to sleep.

I think the only reason why she stopped was Hey You's scent finally faded and perhaps the sense of loss finally faded. It was so hard to see her do go through it and no one will ever convince me that animals can't know long term grief, because I saw for my self that they can. When I had put Sampson down a few years prior to Hey You, Ashley never looked for Sampson....not once. So there was a bond between that Ashley and Hey You that was deeper than I realized.

Ashley had never slept at that end of the sofa until after Hey You was gone and for almost a month that was where she stayed. Eventually, she started to come over to me again and finding her spot near my shoulder on the back of the love seat, but until I moved from that house some 5 years later, Ashley could usually be found taking a nap on that end of the sofa.

So, again, while I never saw one of my dogs take on the habits of one of their lost partners, I did see my cat do so...in sleeping at the end of that sofa.

Stormy
 
1 - 2 of 2 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top