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Submissive behavior?

Discussion in 'Rescue & Adoption' started by Hobartian, Feb 17, 2017.

  1. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    Hello, new to the site and need some suggestions. Adopted 2 six yr old dobie pair (m/f) that had been together all their lives in a rural acreage but owner needed to RE home due to divorce and moving to small patio home. The female seems to be adjusting well to her new home (5 acre with 1 acre fenced yard and free access in/out house). Our male is not adjusting well. After a week in new place, seems very forlorn and submissive when in the house, won't eat, won't come when encouraged, stands submissively in one spot or tries to go back outside even though really cold (believe the dobies were restricted from previous house but had their own 8x8x8 heated/aircon dog house plus acre yard). When we take him for a ride, is happy, tail wagging, eats a bit, then returns to submissive behavior and spends most time of day outside (even cold night on lambswool bed) while female spends most of her day inside on her bed. We've had dobies for 30 years but this behavior is new to us. Sorry for long post but looking for possible solutions (realize this transition is going to take some time).

     

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  2. Gelcoater

    Gelcoater Expert ThreadCrapper $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber

    How long have you had them?

    I'd probably start with a visit to a vet for a check up.
    Dogs do weird things when they don't feel well.
    As it happens, what you are describing about self isolation is exactly to a T the way Rocky my boy acted when he got sick within a couple of months of coming home.
     
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  3. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    It has been only been 5 days so realize this may not be long enough of a transition after 6 1/2 years in the previous place. Plan on a vet visit within next couple of weeks as due for annual shots. Made him stay inside this a.m. after a ride and a treat and now snoozing half asleep on his bed. Has not eaten this morning but had dry food close by if he needs it. No signs of possible bloat or other obvious illness. Will let him out if he gives signs he needs to go out or when it warms up a bit.
     
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  4. Gelcoater

    Gelcoater Expert ThreadCrapper $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber

    @Hobartian

    Do you trust him enough to take his temp? If he's not running fever then is probably just continue to encourage him to come in.
     
  5. Gelcoater

    Gelcoater Expert ThreadCrapper $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber

    Which should be 101-102.5 by the way.;)
     
  6. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    Probably. He is very passive and sweet but I think I may try to get a vet visit early next week.
     
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  7. Gelcoater

    Gelcoater Expert ThreadCrapper $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber

    Great.
    Until then I find the easiest path to a shy dog is food!
    I mix up the treats to keep interest. Could be turkey, chicken, salmon, a piece of hot dog, etc.
    little nibbles here and there to entice them out of their shell.
     
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  8. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    Treats work just don't want to overdo it or use it as regular food. Seems to have better disposition now that they are both outside checking out the scenery - I think time and keeping aware of their actions will make for a smoother transition. Thanks for the suggestions. He may be more an outside dog than we realize but we will monitor his outdoor time.
     

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  9. WiglWerm

    WiglWerm Hot Topics Subscriber

    Give it time, he may have been more attached to the other family than the female. He will come around, he is probably a bit scared and confused.
     
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  10. Tropicalbri's

    Tropicalbri's $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    When I adopted Maddie (our beagle) it took about two to three months for her to feel completely comfortable and confident being in our home.
    When the puppies arrived she was on cloud 9 with them, still is. Lol
     
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  11. My2Girls

    My2Girls Notable member

    When we got Princess at only 10 weeks from a BYB she would not go into the kitchen. I think it took almost a month before she was comfortable to go in on her own. I had to inch her food bowl slowly into the kitchen since that was were we wanted to feed her.
    I think it will just take time.
     
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  12. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    Thanks all. I do agree it will take time perhaps a couple of months but happy to report his disposition is a lot better today but still spending more time outside than we are use to (with our other past dobies). I think we might have a reason for his behavior that just elevated in the past 2 days - overfeeding. Found that my spouse with best of intentions was giving him far more treats than reasonable (overdoing the love through food thing!) I also made an adjustment, adding to his normal dry food, giving him less of it but added a couple of "satin balls" (for those that don't know these, check Google) to help with the extra dry scaly skin he had plus his 10-15 lb under weight condition. Too much too soon and too many different foods (I explained to my spouse what killing with kindness means plus dangers of bloat!) Just dry food today and 2-3 treats of biscuits and a slice of turkey plus one calming pill and he is in good spirits and more engaged. We'll see how he does over the next few days with a more consistent diet. Going for a drive really lifts his spirits!!
     
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  13. Oh Little Oji

    Oh Little Oji Formerly Tad Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Welcome!

    If they were not allowed in the house before, I'd say it doesn't feel right to him to be in the house. Maybe he had gotten yelled at for coming into the house in the past.

    I bet this will just get better with time and calm treatment and not coddling.
     
    • Agree Agree x 4
  14. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    From talking to former owner, seems they were fed in the house but think they didn't stay there much. Her ex apparently didn't spend much time with them and rarely went to their doghouse. He preferred his blue healers (one of which attacked the male dobie at least once). Time is key! We think it will be ok.
     
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  15. Oh Little Oji

    Oh Little Oji Formerly Tad Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Aww, shame on the mean Blue Heeler. Just kidding. Shame on that Hubby.
     
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  16. Hobartian

    Hobartian New Member

    I just re-read my post and saw I misspelled Heeler (well, I blame my I-Phone, ha ha). Yep, maybe that's one of the reasons he is an ex husband!
     
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  17. Drogon

    Drogon Hot Topics Subscriber

    If he will play tug-o-war, play with him and let him win. That is a good way to build confidence.
     
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  18. JanS

    JanS DCF Owner Administrative Staff Moderator Hot Topics Subscriber

    I don't have much to add but wanted to say welcome. It sounds like you're figuring things out as you go so it's probably just a matter of time and him adjusting to his new lifestyle.
     
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  19. Tropicalbri's

    Tropicalbri's $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Good enough reason for me. Hahaha

    :welcome:
    From Florida
     
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  20. Tropicalbri's

    Tropicalbri's $ Premium Subscriber $ Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    @Hobartian it may be the dogs equate the house with a negative. If the couple were getting divorced there may have been a lot of arguing and raised voices in the house.
    I know dobermans are sensitive to and pick up on any disagreements or mood changes in their humans. They will become very stressed over it.
     
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