Our Shiba Inu is suddenly nervous, panting & barking at the door constantly!

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.


I\'m a Princess
Barked: Sat Jan 22, '11 2:53pm PST 
Our 3 year old Shiba who is generally pretty mellow and sleeps about 70% of the time, suddenly is barking at the door every 15 minutes, pacing and trying to get our attention by pawing at us. At first we thought she had to really go to the bathroom, but she barely does and honestly going from 4 walks a day to 4 walks in 2 hours is a little bit odd.

When we let her out on the deck (unwillingly since its 25 degrees right now) she won't come back in - even with bribes of chicken! Clearly she's cold since she is shaking, but no dice. I have to go out there and pick her up and bring her back in.

Also, she is sleeping under the bed or under the couch (this is very rare in normal circumstances).

We can't figure out what has happened. Nothing has changed in our environment, nothing scary, no thunderstorms, fireworks, etc. The ONLY thing we can trace back is that our neighbor 2 floors above had some friends over last weekend and they brought a couple dogs with them. She is very protective of our apartment and extraordinarily territorial. We kind of dispel this idea though since the party was on Sunday and she didn't start acting weird until Tuesday. Also, when I sink gurgles she hides under the couch and shakes but our sink hasn't been gurgling recently so not sure about that reason.

Does anyone have any experience with their dog suddenly behaving like this? If so, what did you do? Of course my biggest fear is that she has some kind of disease and my second biggest fear is that she is going to be like this for the rest of her life (which most likely will drive my husband and I into an insane asylum). Sooo any help and ideas and remedies would be very appreciated!!

Thanks a ton!
Zelda's Mom
Jax (earned- her wings- 5/30/12)

Give me your- toy.
Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 7:58am PST 
Have you had her checked by a vet? We had a Dobie once who was going blind (we didn't know it at first) and her behavior changed suddenly because of it. Once we found out the reason for her behavior change, we were able to help her adjust. Good Luck!

I want to play!
Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 8:13am PST 
Has her Thyroid been checked out shiba inu seem to be prone to thyroid stuff..

Saya hasn't done this type of thing she's young still year old and will be two in April..

Maybe the noise from the dogs and people just set her off?

Any change in routine?

Hows her exercise been?

Saya loves the cold she'll be out in 25F weather running around all happy.


Dog About- Rosedale

Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 8:17am PST 
Any sudden change of behaviour is well worth a visit to the vet.
Also, keep in mind that sometimes the dog's sense something that WE cannot. Check your house for gas, wiring issues or CO. Seriously. Then make an appt with the vet if the house checks out.
Tsuki, Kit,- Kiba &- Buckley

Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 10:56am PST 
I agree - check with the vet. It won't hurt for the vet to do a physical and do a simple blood panel/urinalysis to check her vitals. It's worth the expense.

For what its worth, I've know about shibas with thyroid issues and strange behavior. I've known of 2 shibas who have either gotten painful glaucoma at a relatively young age (See Dogster Mia on the Shiba Forum).

It could honestly be something as innocuous as the sound of your heating system freaking Zelda out. Last year out of the blue my 2yr old shiba started to shake, whine, hide and want to be outside because the radiators we installed made a hissing noise she wasn't used to.

I would make a vet appointment though... better safe than sorry.
Misha- (R.I.P.- 4/29/13)

Play or hide?! I- dunno... @_@
Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 11:11am PST 
If the vet and the house check out, you'll want to start desensitizing her to areas that make her afraid. Something could have happened that you aren't aware of to change her behavior, and with that all you can do is damage control. The door seems to be a problem area, so maybe start there? Try playing games with her there with treats she loves. She probably won't be up for any intense obedience training, but any games are good as long as it redirects her attention and starts to get her into the mind space that the door is a happy place to be. When she's barking at the door, again, try and redirect her attention to something positive like playing with a toy. Above all, remain calm and try not to get frusterated with her behavior. She will notice if you get irritated or angry and this will only serve to reinforce in her mind that something bad is going to happen.

With the sleeping under the bed and the couch, I'd say she's definitely feeling insecure or unsafe. She's looking for a den-like area.

Hope you get things worked out! smile

I\'m a Princess
Barked: Mon Jan 24, '11 5:22am PST 
Thanks for your responses - she has calmed down a bit in the last few days. I think it might have been the noise and dogs upstairs however I agree with both of you guys and I think I might have her checked out just in case.

Appreciate your feedback!!!!!
Zelda's Mom

Mine! Mine!- Mine! Mine!!!!!
Barked: Mon Jan 24, '11 11:31am PST 
I would check with the Vet if it continues. But shibas are very prone to acting strange when something changes. It could have just been a couple of loud noises.

I am the Sock- Bandit!!!
Barked: Mon Jan 24, '11 11:36am PST 
Cracker is right. I know of a dog that behaved like that and the furnace was suddenly not firing properly, CO level was very high!

Check your house for levels, and it certainly wouldn't hurt to make a well visit to the vet just to be sure.

Good luck and I hope all is well and that it was just the visitors that threw her off.

I want to play!
Barked: Mon Jan 24, '11 7:17pm PST 
I'm glad she is doing better it was probably the visitors upstairs and the dog, but who knows.. Please updates us. =)

Zelda is a cute shiba inu I love the name.