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I adopted a gorgeous 1 yr old boxer / pit mix recently. She is great indoors, house trained and mellow. Whoever owned before must have kept her in a box because she is a different dog outside. Everything stimulates her. She pulls on her leash and her walks are feeling like a chore. Additionally she cries when I leave my home. I feel trapped and regret her adoption. People are telling me things will change with obedience training, but right now I feel overwhelmed, my anxiety is sky high and I am struggling.
 

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The good things are these things are common and can be fixed with training. I'm more concerned about your well-being if common dog behaviors are causing so much stress that you regret the adoption. I would suggest watching a video on leash training, and one on crate training. Both are rather important for training in general, so always good to start with the fundamentals. Cesar Milan and Zac George both put out training videos on Youtube, as well and numerous others. They usually have a catalog of videos to make finding the right video in their collection for you to watch. On the walks, carry a bag of treats with you. Whenever the dog starts to pull, give him a command and reward him(sit, come, ect). YMMV.
 

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I adopted a gorgeous 1 yr old boxer / pit mix recently. She is great indoors, house trained and mellow. Whoever owned before must have kept her in a box because she is a different dog outside. Everything stimulates her. She pulls on her leash and her walks are feeling like a chore. Additionally she cries when I leave my home. I feel trapped and regret her adoption. People are telling me things will change with obedience training, but right now I feel overwhelmed, my anxiety is sky high and I am struggling.
Hi. Welcome to the forum. Sorry it's under the circumstances.

First of all, it's normal. Everything you're feeling right now is normal. You're life has gone through a 180, routine has flown out of the window, and you're responsible for a sentient being who is her own personality.

Please speak to someone about your anxiety, but there are some calming techniques that you can do right now. Here's a couple - and I promise you, they work.

Breathe. In, 2, 3, 4. Hold, 2, 3, 4. Out, 2, 3, 4. Repeat as often as required. You will feel yourself starting to relax and your anxiety coming down.

The 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 method.
Name:
5 things you can see right now!
4 things you can hear right now
3 things you can touch right now
2 things you can smell right now
1 thing you can taste right now (if you can't smell or taste anything, imagine your favourites).

Colouring in/mindfulness/meditation

Now.

What you're feeling is so common it has a name - the Puppy/New Dog Blues. It will pass, once you get a routine in place.

When settling in, it's common for dogs to be anxious when their human leaves. Both of my girls had it. Her life have done a 180 just as much as yours has. ;) This is a great article on separation anxiety and has a game you can play to help her get over her anxiety:

As for leash walking, check out Kikopup (actually. Check out Kikopup for most things dog training ;) )



I would suggest watching a video on leash training, and one on crate training. Both are rather important for training in general, so always good to start with the fundamentals. Cesar Milan and Zac George both put out training videos on Youtube, as well and numerous others. They usually have a catalog of videos to make finding the right video in their collection for you to watch. On the walks, carry a bag of treats with you. Whenever the dog starts to pull, give him a command and reward him(sit, come, ect). YMMV.
Please do not watch Cesar Milan or listen to any of his advice.
 

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Second all the advice by LMMB and just to say it does get better. They really just need time to adjust.

Ive had many rescues and they are used to whatever life they had ( no matter how bad) as being normal. They have to get used to your normal. But they will learn that you come back after going out , they will get fed on time, they will get walks etc etc. Once they realise this is normal they settle down.

also second the no no on CM and his like.
 

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Thank you all for the reassurance. I do have an anxiety disorder, I decided to adopt because of everything I read about dogs being great emotional support animals. Never anticipated the opposite. I hope with obedience training she will pull less on her leash, she is incredibly strong. I feel more trapped than ever but will try to stick it out, one meltdown at a time.
 

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Cesar Milan and Zac George both put out training videos on Youtube, as well and numerous others. They usually have a catalog of videos to make finding the right video in their collection for you to watch.
Don't watch or follow anything that Cesar Milan does or says. He uses strongly aversive methods that are not only outdated by decades, but are also cruel and ineffective. They train a dog to be afraid of you or of punishment rather than to work with you by choice.

I believe it is a rule of this forum not to promote any way of training that is not positive for the dog.

The video above is a far better way to train a dog not to pull.
There are variations on this that also work the same way, and that do not involve the aggressive methods of CM and others who unfortunately think the way to train is to dominate the dog.
 

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Thank you all for the reassurance. I do have an anxiety disorder, I decided to adopt because of everything I read about dogs being great emotional support animals. Never anticipated the opposite. I hope with obedience training she will pull less on her leash, she is incredibly strong. I feel more trapped than ever but will try to stick it out, one meltdown at a time.
I completely sympathize with you on this. The thing about emotional support animals is that they need to be rained to be that way for a person. The training isn't any where near as detailed or precise as it is for a service dog, but it is asking too much of a dog recently adopted from a shelter or rescue to fill that need right away. the dog may not even have the right personality to be emotional support, although with careful training and time many dogs are able to become that for their person.

Be sure to use only positive training methods with this dog, and be patient and 100% consistent. Taking a class and/or watching videos is a good approach as long as the training methods do not involved choke collars or shock collars or jerking the dog on a leash. Go see a class before signing up for it, and if you see this kind of thing, don't take that class. There are great training videos by KIKOPUP on youtube.

I encourage you to give this time, and be patient with the dog and with yourself. It might take a long time, months or a year or more, for this dog to become what you want. But you must have felt some spark or connection with this dog or you wouldn't have adopted her. She just needs to learn, through kindness, persistence, and patience, what is expected of her.
 

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I feel you. Last year I got a pup, everything went great until my other dog decided she hated her a few months later after they had gotten on so well.

Now barking, pulling, and the neediness of the newer dog can be...overwhelming. I just put her away, and take a break to avoid melt downs. Since the two of them must be separated 24/7 it can be very stressful but I find doing things WITHOUT any dogs helps. So if your feeling overwhelmed by your pup, crate him and go listen to music, read, or just do something you enjoy. Don’t feel guilty about taking an hour of “me time” for yourself! Definitely do training classes, always end in a good note and try not to anticipate bad behavior or you might accidentally encourage it.

Good luck!
 
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