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Hi, I have joined this forum to see if any one can help me and my lovely new year and a half old greyhound which I got from the Dogs Trust four weeks ago. I'm a nurse, I work shifts, dogs trust were fully aware of this when finding the correct dog to match with me.

I took 3 weeks holiday to allow the two of us to settle in and bond before I started back work. Straight from the start I loved him to bits, however Within a week it became apparent that he was unable to cope for even a minute without me being there, he will howl continually and ram and try chuing through the doar to get to me. I get a behaviourist to help which suggest many things of which I have now tried all, hear is the list. Crate training, thunder shirt, extreme exercise, plugin calming refusers, muzzle, desensitisation training through repetition. I have even took him to the vet were he was prescribed a form of calms which I was assured will have an amedit effect. A week later nothing has changed, not even one bit. I contact the vet again and ask if there is anything else they can do, to my astonishment in told no, he has probably got a mental health problem just give him back to the Dogs trust! :mad: I then phone the Dogs Trust to ask what else I can try, they told me I'll have to give him back as he has probably got S/V separation anxiety, I've been made to feel like I'm returning some clothing to a shop because it doesn't fit!!! I'm hurting so much, I feel so much guilt and helpless and unsupported. I don't know what else to do, can anyone give me some advice?
 

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Unfortunately separation anxiety is something that is NOT going to be cured in a week, heck, most dogs still have issues but they are lessened. I, personally, would crate train and work on leaving for small increments at a time. This will take awhile to work, so if you can't invest time then I suggest you take him back.

Kikopup also has some videos regarding teaching your dog to be alone, but a real positive based behaviourist is what you need to help you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGxhcb-itO4
 

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The thing about severe separation anxiety, which is what it sounds as if your dog has, is that while teaching them that it is alright for them to be left alone you cannot leave them alone for any length of time. Every time they are left alone and have the severe anxiety attack it confirms to them that they are right to panic while the owner is gone. The other thing is that it can take months to fully treat them, there is no fast fix. From what you wrote you've only been trying to help him for 3 weeks, and you are jumping around with methods, in terms of counter conditioning that's a very short amount of time. Anti anxiety drugs take quite a while to build up in the system to therapeutic levels and the dogs behavior while on the drugs may actually get worse before getting better, a week is not long enough to know whether or not they are going to help. Also what drug was prescribed? Some, like acepromazine, will make the dogs anxiety and fear worse.

Here's a thread that may help you. http://www.dogforum.com/training-behavior-stickies/separation-anxiety-29576/

http://www.dogforum.com/dog-training-behavior/fluoxetine-summary-121178/ Fluoxetine is an anti anxiety drug.

Some other thoughts.. Unless she was crate trained and actually considers her crate her safe place even if the crate's gate is closed, then the crate will make the anxiety worse. Not only are you gone but you're gone and she's "trapped". Any medication should be used along with training, not as a replacement for it. Once again there are no fast fixes, it's going to take a lot of time to change the way she's feeling.
 

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@jimbob
I don't have too much advice as I am new to having a dog myself. But, I am so incredibly sorry that this is stressful for you. It sounds confusing and frustrating. I think you have to dig down and consider what is best for you and what is best for the dog. Will you be able to handle the possibility of extensive treatment for the dog and handle work and life? There might be other trainers/adopters/fosters who would be able to provide around the clock care for the dog. Is this something that you can honestly handle? If you are up for the challenge, then consider if you do want to keep the dog.
 

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something i do with my new pup, well he is 15 month old now, 11 when we adopted him, is leave a radio on when no-one is at home with him. he is confined to the kitchen/diner when no-one else is home with him, he has a crate, wich is left open. sometimes we put old items of our clothing in his crate. my partner is not here this week, so Ben (dog)has an old fleece of his to snuggle up with.

you can get some natural remedies to help;

Natural Help for Your Dog's Separation Anxiety - Dogs Naturally Magazine

or im sure you can purchase something to help the dog settle in in your local pet shop.

i can see why they choose a greyound for you, they really are incredibly lazy, and dont need as much exercise as most people think, so ideal for people working, they are just a pleasure. i used to work in boarding kennels, and the owner rescues ex racers.

you could try and spray the dog bedding with lavender scent, its supposed to have a calming effect.
 
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