Older, adopted dog questions

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!


Barked: Fri Mar 22, '13 4:29pm PST 
We adopted Lilly last weekend. She is 8yo, has been trained to hunt (has her MH title), and produced a few litters of puppies for her previous owners. They spent a lot of time with her, but she did live in a kennel, not in the house. In spite of this, her house manners are almost perfect. She is settling in very well, and seems to have taken the change in environment in stride.

The two things I would like to work on are what I refer to as "kennel behaviors".

She doesn't seem to know what a doggy bed is (she slept on a cot type thing with a washable surface). I've solved that by placing soft comforters or a doggy bed anyplace it seems she likes to regularly lay down. For a couple of days there were blankets everywhere. big grin We've narrowed it down to 2 now.

The second is her insistence on laying in the one long hallway in the house. This typically happens when we are just sitting around in the evenings or other quiet times during the day. I am assuming that the hallway reminds her of the kennel, and makes her feel more secure. We would like her to feel comfortable enough to stay in the living room with us instead of feeling like she needs to retreat when we aren't doing an activity with her.

I don't think she's overly anxious as she does come out to get a drink, ask to go outside, or just to check in with us if she hears someone in the kitchen (she loves her food and treats). We haven't yet tried a crate because she's proven herself completely trustworthy when she's been left alone for a couple of hours. Maybe we should get one and put it in the living room?

I know this is not a huge problem, and probably has an obvious answer, but the other dogs we've had we've gotten as puppies and this was never an issue.

Black dogs rock!
Barked: Fri Mar 22, '13 6:47pm PST 
I was thinking crate before you even mentioned itsmile Bunny was not crated trained until he was 7 . When we moved into this house, I decided it was an ideal time. I just gated him in the kitchen and put cozy blankets in the crate so that it was the only comfy place for him to lay down. He seems to love his crate now. My husband tells me he often spends all day while I am at work in there. I *never* close the door either. I had no need to crate train him , but I decided it could come in handy someday. smile

It ain't over- till the fat- kitty sings
Barked: Fri Mar 22, '13 7:00pm PST 
We never used a crate but alot of people find them to be a good thing. You did good with the blanket situation. I wouldn't worry about her laying out in the hall, give her time and as she bonds to your family she'll keep moving in closer. I think the hall thing is almost like being a watchdog sometimes. Our dogs will take turns some nights. One will snooze on the bed with us or on the couch if we're in the living room. The other will lay in the closest hall, staying alert to who is walking around and outside noises. Then they switch places for awhile until both come in to sleep together.


Let's play tug!!
Barked: Sat Mar 23, '13 12:00am PST 
Are the living room and the hall the same temperature and flooring material? It may just be a comfort thing, like the floor is warm/cool or she's lying near a vent. You can keep treats in the living room and toss her one every so often when she chooses to spend time in there. Most likely that will result in her spending more time in with you.

I'm glad to hear everything is going so well smile
Jake & Sweet- Caroline

Tricolored- Hounds for life!
Barked: Sat Mar 23, '13 12:07am PST 
I had a similar issue with my beagle when i first brought him home. He didn't quite understand what a doggy bed was for. But he learned after i left my clothes on his bed when iwent out.

Caroline (my 10 year old adoptie) sleeps on an old toddler bed and jake sleeps in a wicker bassinet now. I do keep Jake's crate in the apartment dispite my mother's complaints i don't have the space for it. He likes it well enough if i'm home.

Happy to hear your new senior is doing great.

LIke someone else said. She may be sleeping there for comfort reasons. I know in summer jake loves the tile in the bathroom instead of the carpet in the "living" area of my studio.

The Muddy- Princess
Barked: Sat Mar 23, '13 7:01am PST 
Just give it time! She is still settling in and will do so for awhile. Of she doesn't seem anxious, I would not change anything.

She is a beautiful girl.

Edited by author Sat Mar 23, '13 7:03am PST


Barked: Sat Mar 23, '13 9:55am PST 
Thank you all for your responses. It's been a full week today since she came home with us, and that seems to have been the magic time for her. So far today she has hardly been in the hallway at all, and last night she joined us in a game of hide and seek with our 8yo. The fact that he had a pocket full of treats helped. happy dance

Fritz, cats are- fun when they- run
Barked: Sun Mar 31, '13 2:38pm PST 
A week is pretty good, it took me about six months to decide I could belong to yet another person. I finally took a chance, so far I haven't been given away or locked in a crate........ it has been several years now, I still haven't been given away and I don't really worry about it anymore.

You are lucky it only took a week.
Augusta,- CGC, RN

Such a Good Dog!
Barked: Sun Mar 31, '13 5:53pm PST 
I agree, a week is such a short time. Just let her do her own thing and settle in . . . . she'll probably change her routine as she adjusts. Give her fun reasons to come hang out in the living room like a game of tug or treats, but what's the rush?

Be patient and don't be in a hurry to "make" her settle into your idea of comfort, as long as she seems o.k. with where she chooses to lay. The dog you have 3 or 4 months from now will be much more in tune and confident in her place with the family than the dog you brought home a week ago . ..way to go

My 3 year old dog seemed comfortable, but was quiet as a mouse for the first couple of months---I knew she really felt at home when she started barking at knocks on the door . . . .laugh out loud

*Baby Blackdog*
Barked: Mon Apr 1, '13 9:35am PST 
If she's used to being outside she could just be adjusting to the temperature difference in the house. Our biggest guy spends quite a bit of time outside during the day year round and enjoys swimming in chilly, even icy, lakes and ponds.

He dislikes blankets/dog beds because they're just too hot for him and he prefers lounging in allways, breezeways and in front of doors because they tend to be draftier.

I suspect she'll blow coat on you at least once as her body makes the adjustment. It has nothing to do with the kennel space itself, animals simply adapt temperature wise when they live outside and when that changes it takes some time to adjust.