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Thread: Was my baby abused? How can I help him?

  1. #1

    Unhappy Was my baby abused? How can I help him?

    Hi! 1st time posting. So about 2 weeks ago I adopted a 5 year old beagle mix from the pound and I named him Jambalaya. Well the pound told me that he was found on the streets that week before I adopted him. But I think he had a owner because he has a little belly going on and the strays I seen around my town looks like they are barely making it.

    So I brought him home and I'm getting him settled. He's getting used to me and is excited when I come home from work and going outside isn't a problem. But he will not leave the kitchen unless I'm sitting in a chair in the dining room. Then he walks over for petting. But he just goes back. I try to coax him to other parts of my house but he will not leave that area. He doesn't like treats (but I think it's too hard for him. Even that chewy ones. But he also doesn't eat dry food). But he sometimes cries when I leave the kitchen because even though I want to, I can't spend all my time there. Most of the time he just lays there. And he walks up to me and sometimes my mom with his head low or body to the ground and he crawls to me all submissive. Like he's afraid I'm going to hit him. I don't know what to do. I want him comfortable and I don't want to trigger any bad memories. He subdued but I know he likes us because when we are in the kitchen he always wants to be petted. I just want he to be happy here.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Belmont, MA, USA
    Aww, bless you for adopting a full-grown dog. It is hard to know what his past was, but at only two weeks in, he is still likely adjusting. Just give him some time, try not to spend more time in the kitchen than you normally would, and he will get the idea that it is okay to venture other places. He was probably confined to that kind of floor in his previous life. Has he had a vet check, just in case there's some issue that makes his paws more comfortable on the kitchen floor?

    Lots of walks outside on a leash, any training you can do, like sit, down, give a paw, spin - whatever, will help build his confidence, and he should come out of his sill more and more as time goes on!
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Massachusetts; USA
    LOL about all I can do is echo what Karen wrote.

    Well done on adopting a 5 y o! Thank you for caring for this dear pup.

    Go about your normal routine. Have a bag of high value treats with you and reward him any time he is near you. And spend some time with him doing training, both inside and outdoors.

    High value treats are treats he ONLY gets during training. At this time, approaching you even in the kitchen is a big deal! I use hot dogs, cheddar cheese and chicken breasts.

    Hot dogs: cut into small bits about the size of the tip of your pinky finger. You can spread them out on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 for half an hour to make them less oily. Store in a baggie in the fridge. One hot dog can make up to 68 treats! That gives you an idea of how small these bits are.

    Cheese: I use Cracker Barrel extra sharp cheddar. Cut in small bits, store in a baggie in the fridge. I don't make as many of these at a time because they tend to get sticky fast.

    Chicken: boneless, skinless chicken breast, boiled and cut up into bits. Store in a baggie in the fridge.

    So anytime he does something you want, you can treat that. The treats are all ready there handy for you to get one. Or take a baggie (or 2) in your pocket when you work on training. Recalls - the "come" command - would be a good one to include. Be at one end of the kitchen, call him and treat when he comes. Initially you may want to 'jack pot ' - which means 5 to 10 treats! - just to reinforce that is a good thing, just what you want him to do. You can move around the house - SLOWLY - after a week of training only in the kitchen.

    Outdoors, you start the recalls with the dog onleash. Progress to a long line -- hook a few leashes together, or make a 20 foot line with a clasp. You can buy the line and clasp at the DIY store. Eventually work with the dog off leash IF you have a fenced in yard to work in. (Keep the doggie safe!)

    When you walk him around the neighborhood, let him sniff all he wants. You can reward that initially, if he seems hesitant. Work on sits, recalls from the end of the leash. Remember, you do not want "come" to mean the fun is over and it is time to come inside. So doing recalls on a walk is a great idea, in general. The dog comes to you (all 6 feet of the length of the leash, lol), gets a reward, and goes back to sniffing.

    Do you think you can take him to some classes? Group classes are very helpful with overcoming fear/ caution. The dog gets to be with other dogs and humans, and sees that all is well. You - and everyone in the household over age 8 or so - all attend the classes, and do all the homework and practices with the dog. So he is working with each of you, getting lots of repetitions and praise, and all of you are using the same hand signals and verbal commands. Remember a dog doesn't learn much in an hour class; YOU learn -- how to read your dog's body language, how to communicate with your dog. All the important work happens between classes, at home, doing the exercises. If you want to find classes near you, put your zip code in this search:

    You want a place which only uses positive reinforcement methods of training.

    Even if you can't manage classes, working on the things outlined above will help build confidence in the dog.

    And it does sound like he was taught to remain in a kitchen environment. So give him some time, praise and rewards, to learn the new house rules!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    100% agree with Karen and Sandie! He is still adjusting. Go about your normal business. Do not baby him about being in the kitchen because then he'll think that it is ok to want to stay there. Is it possible to block off the kitchen so he can't go in there? At my house, that isn't possible. But if he can't be in there then he would get used to the rest of the house. And I'm thinking that you should (if you can) do this maybe in a couple more weeks. The kitchen is his safe place. Let him have that until he gets adjusted to the household.

    And thanks for adopting an "older" dog!
    Our goal in life should be - to be as good a person as our dog thinks we are.

    Cindy (Human) - Taz (RB Tabby) - Zoee (RB Australian Shepherd) - Paizly (Dilute Tortie) - Taggart (Aussie Mix) - Jax (Brown & White Tabby), - Zeplyn (Cattle Dog/Pit Mix)

  5. #5
    I hope all goes well. He is lucky to have you! I think it may take time but your caring attitude will be just what he needs!

  6. #6

    Red face Rescue dogs can take a while to trust anyone and feel comfortable in their new homes.

    I actually talked to someone today to rescued a dog with similar issues. The dog constantly wanted to hide, so she would use a collar and leash to gently walk the dog though the house and gave her a reward and a lot of praise each time the dog was in a new space. As for treats, I don't give treats to my bully but small amounts of unseasoned meat, veggies, fruit, or ice. Treats can by very heavy on the dog, and natural foods in small quantities or ice seem to be more desirable for my bully. First you rescue needs to become more comfortable in the house and with you. Then I would take the dog on short walks if up to it and increase the walking area little by little so that it can become comfortable and feel safe in the world. I've met some people who bring their rescues to the dog park before they are in a comfort stage with being out and about or trusting the owner. The result is not good when introduced to many excited dogs at once. But when they go through the gradual process they become some of the most loving dogs.


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