You May Think Chasing the Laser is funny, But OCD in Dogs Can Become a Serious Problem
Tail chasing and air snapping to licking and water bowl digging are all OCD behaviors
Your dog chasing a laser light beams may be good entertainment to you, but it can cause irreparable damage if you are not careful.
Compulsive Disorders is Genetic in Some Dog Breeds
German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers and Bernese Mountain Dogs are a dogs genetically predisposed to this disorder.
Pretty much just common sense not to promote that in your dog.
Guilty? You’re not alone.
It happened to a nice, playful and gentle Golden Retriever looking for her forever home
OCD in Dogs Can Affect the Relationship with Your Dog – Even Before the Relationship Begins
A possible new owner took an interest in her. She seemed almost as excited as this young Golden. But there was a niggling doubt.
You know the feeling. She wanted the dog but something, about a behavior made her hold back. She couldn’t put her finger on it but it was there.
There was one thing that stopped this adoption from moving forward in a normal fashion.
This sweet Golden stared at shadows all the time.
She “freezes in place” and fixates on any particular shadow. She stares at it for minutes at a time until her foster or another dog wanting to play “snaps out of it”.
Her head stays down all the time. She is searching for her next target and she’s off in her twilight zone until someone or something snaps her out of it again.
How We Begin Working the Dog Out of Her Obsession
Stress in the environment might have played a role in this dog’s disorder.
It’s critical to know whether there are any underlying social deficits like:
- Lack of exercise or
- An impoverished environment such as
- Little to no mental stimulation.
Here are some guidelines that we are working with the golden to get her back on track.
You can also work on these:
Put your dog on a “Learn-to-earn” program. Everything your dog gets from you including walks, he has to do at least a sit.
Start a rigorous exercise program of leadership walks. Be sure to have your dog
walk next to you for most of the walk.
Identify any stressors in your dog’s life and try and remove them.
Stop any family behavior (laughing and attention) that might be reinforcing your dog’s OCD.
One family got up and left the room every time their dog started his OCD behavior. He stopped it inside a month.
When you catch your dog doing his OCD behavior, get his attention and redirect to a sit then down then stay.
It does take consistency to work any plan whether obedience training or fixing a dog problem.
If your dog has an obsessive compulsive disorder, do something now.
While there may not be a complete cure, life with your dog can be manageable, happier and more complete.
Together We Can Raise A Happy and Obedient Dog
Jim Burwell, is Houston’s most respected dog trainer for 30 years, serving over 12,000 clients. Jim works with you and your entire family to help your dog be the best dog ever.