what is OCD like in dogs and how do you tell it's not the breed or boredom?

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!


Vaccine free- -Disease free- goes pawinpaw
Barked: Fri Aug 5, '11 10:41am PST 
The dog I'm petsitting for is part english pointer and part GSHP and 1 1/2 years old.

When I saw some of her odd behaviors, OCD crossed my mind, but I know nothing about it and
it made me wonder how do you know the difference between OCD, boredom, and breed?
Tanuk CGC

Sherpa Tanuk of- Everest
Barked: Fri Aug 5, '11 10:47am PST 
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is generally pretty apparent. There are a few breeds who are pre-disposed to it, such as English Bull Terriers, and based on the mix of the dog you're keeping, it wouldn't surprise me. OCD generally occurs in working breeds who need a "job" and can arise out of boredom. It can also develop due to nervousness and other behavioral problems.

OCD behaviors can include incessant licking (which developed after an allergy perhaps), chasing lights, chasing the tail, spinning in circles, and other similar seemingly neurotic behaviors. The difference between OCD and mere boredom is that it is REALLY hard to break the dog out of a cycle once it's begun. Also, it's something the dog will tend to do constantly, whenever it's got nothing better to do.

I am Loved!
Barked: Fri Aug 5, '11 11:05am PST 
I knew Brutus had OCD when it came to toys. He was a good dog but if he saw a toy he wanted and if it was taken from him then he would sit where-ever he saw me take it. Even if it was placed inside a bin or cabinet. He would just sit and whine. No treats/food or calling would get him to leave that position. I would try not let him win but seriously he would sit until the toy was given back. The longest it ever went on was two hours and I'm sure it would of continued if he wasn't given the toy. I stopped taking him to dog parks because of this issue. People thought it was funny but there was no point in driving 30-40 minutes to the park when he would just sit and whine for whatever toy he wanted.


Barked: Fri Aug 5, '11 2:53pm PST 
What type of odd behaviors are you seeing? I have a house full of pointers and when they aren't exercised, some OCD like behaviors come out. Sometimes I'll get a foster that does strange things, but once they start getting the proper exercise and learn the daily routine, those behaviors go away.