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My dog hates our new place.

shihtzulover

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 30, 2010
Messages
717
My fiance and I just moved into an apartment complex in a new city, and my dog is not loving it here. I don't know what to do, and I feel kind of guilty for bringing him here. We just brought him here on Sunday evening, but so far, he hasn't really adjusted at all. He has always been really sensitive, so this is hitting him hard.

He is not acting like himself at all. He is normally very playful, but he has only played a little bit since we got here. Every little noise scares him. He wants to spend most of his time on my lap, hiding under the bed, or even in the bathroom or under blankets. I just found him sitting by the toilet, and he whimpered when he saw me. It's breaking my heart.

He doesn't sleep well here, and he gets up and starts walking around. I wake up and look at him, and he will often be either looking at me, walking around, staring at a wall, or sitting with his head to my dresser.

He also isn't going #2 as much as normal. Whenever I take him outside, he is always nervous, and he just trots around with his tail down and then wants to head back for our apartment whenever something scares him. There is usually a lot going on outside - traffic going by, people walking around and talking, and maintenance men using noisy equipment. Sometimes he starts to circle like he's going to go potty, but then changes his mind. I understand that dogs feel very vulnerable when they go potty, so they won't do it if they feel unsafe. He is fine with doing #1 though.

I am also worried about the fact that he's not eating much. We free-feed him, since shih tzus tend to eat little bits throughout the day. He normally eats a few mouthfuls here and there, but I have only seen him take a little bit of food the night before last. I have been giving him some white bread too, since he is known to have a sensitive stomach and I want to make sure that he's eating something. He does eat that when I put it down, but he just isn't going for his food bowl. He has been drinking water, though.

I haven't gone anywhere since I got here, other than to the leasing office for a few minutes. He even follows me in the bathroom before I shut the door. I really want to be here to help him feel comfortable, but I would really like to go out with my fiance to buy groceries and also to pick out some things for the apartment. I also need to do a few things for my new job before I start on Monday, and I really want to have a manicure so that I make a good first impression.

Do you think that he will ever get used to it here and love it like home? I'm so worried. I have to start my job on Monday, and even though my fiance will be here since he works from home, I think he will totally freak out without me around. He doesn't even want to go outside at all unless I take him - if my fiance goes to get the leash, he tries to hide. On top of that, I have to go away to training for 1.5 weeks, and that starts in a week.
 

sctsbride09

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Sep 3, 2008
Messages
555
Hi Shihtzulover, your poor furbaby! I completely understand your feelings of worry for your pooch, its awful when something is amiss with them. When I first moved in with my now DH, I brought my dog Frank with me (1 at the time). He HATED it and behaved in a very similar manner as you describe your pooch. He would also pee on Dhs stuff :oops: . I am happy to say he is now fine, it did take awhile for him to adjust though. We let him sleep in bed with us for the first few months, and slowly transitioned him back to his own bed, that seemed to help. The only reason I did that though is because Im a super light sleeper, and he was making me insane with his pacing, lol. Also, I had to pander to him abit in the food department, ie mixing in some chicken bits or cheese to get him to eat a full meal. As for the not going #2, He STILL wont go in his own yard. I have to walk him a 3xs per day to, ahem, get the colon moving, and I just walk him until he goes. Maybe try walking your pooch outside the complex and see if that helps. You are so right about dogs having to feel "safe" to go potty, maybe there is a scent your dog is uncomfortable with in the complex, or something else us humans just wouldnt get.

Odds are your pooch will be a bit uncomfortable without you, but he/she WILL adapt eventually. Just give it some time, leave toys available when you are gone, and try not to make a big deal out of leaving the house. Oh I used to leave tshirts that had my scent on them too, and that seemed to help.

Sorry for going on about my experience with my dog, I just hope it will help you in some way with your dog too. I hate to think of upset doggies. Fingers crossed for your furbaby.
 

MichelleCarmen

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 8, 2003
Messages
15,880
Yes, he'll get use to it. I've moved A LOT - and in fact just moved into a new house and my cat acted odd for a few days. He didn't eat at all so I kept an eye on his liter box to make sure he was still drinking water and he was. We had the box spring portion of our bed leaning against the wall and he hid behind it.

I think it'll become easier once your place starts to have familiar scents to your dog. Did the previous tenant have a dog? It's really important that carpets are cleaned and walls painted so a pet doesn't feel like there could possibly be another animal in the residence. If it's too late for that, keep the apt a bit cluttered with items (and even blankets that haven't been washed since before you moved) that he's attracted to so he feels at home. I also found that my cat hid under our bed comforter for a lot of the time since I hadn't washed it (wanted to be sure he recognized it as it was before we moved.)

I've never owned a dog, but have had many cats over the years and all have been fine. Moving is suppose to be high up on the stress level as divorce and other major life traumas and it's the same for pets. They need settle in time!

Best of luck!
 

shihtzulover

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 30, 2010
Messages
717
Thank you for your replies!

sctsbride09 - It sounds like my dog is acting almost exactly like your dog was. So far he has not urinated on anything in the apartment, but I've definitely been keeping an eye on him! I have been worried that he might try go #2 in here, since he doesn't really want to go outside.

I haven't walked him all that far yet, just because it's so HOT out, and he has a snubbed nose and thick hair, so I'm worried that he'll overheat. My fiance and I walk him a bit further during the evenings, but usually by then, it's quieter out and/or he just really has to go. When he does go, he picks the grassy area to the side of our building, so I walk him there every time I take him out.

MC - My dog has definitely been drinking water, but just not eating much unless I give him special treats. Also, I'm not sure if the previous tenants had pets or not. The carpet is actually brand new though - we had wanted to move in a little bit early, and they explained that we could, but that they had to make sure to get the new carpet in first. As far as the walls go - they seem really freshly painted, with no marks or anything like that. I think that it's standard for complexes to paint between tenants. At least, that's how it was in the other apartment that I've lived in, and the other complex that we almost moved into mentioned it, too.


I'm thinking that the boxes that are everywhere might be making him a bit more nervous. I've talked to my fiance about it, and he's going to help me stack the ones that we still haven't unpacked along the walls or something for now, just so that he doesn't have to walk through a maze to get around.

I'm not sure why he's so scared of this place. I have moved with him before, but he was younger then. He's only three years old now, but back when I moved to my first apartment when he had just turned a year old, he was much more carefree. I don't remember him being this scared. Of course, he wasn't afraid of thunderstorms or vacuum cleaners back then either, but he sure is now.
 

mayachel

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 2, 2008
Messages
1,749
Aww! How stressful for everyone. What about some puppy prozac of sorts? Or if you are into homeopathic remedies, we used to treat our golden retriever who flipped out during thunderstorms with a Bach Flower tincture called "Rescue Remedy".
 

dragonfly411

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 25, 2007
Messages
7,378
I have a yorkie/shih tzu mix, and she did this exact thing with a townhouse we moved into. She had moved before and adjusted well, but at the townhouse she wouldn't eat for a week, and didn't want to go out as much. She adjusted after about two-three weeks, and was fine after that!
 

shihtzulover

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 30, 2010
Messages
717
Thanks for the input you guys.

He seems to be doing a little bit better, but he's still back to his normal self yet.

I've found a place that he likes to go #2, even though it's a little bit inconvenient for me! I have been walking him on the side of our building, and there is a lot of grassy area around there - but there is also a steep hill/drop-off, I suppose for drainage purposes. There is a treeline next to it, but several feet of grassy area before you hit the trees. I think that he feels safer down there, so he goes. It's a steep hill to have to climb, but it isn't that big, so I'm just really glad that he's going there. He still isn't going as much as normal yet, and he won't go when there are people around or when he hears them talking, but it's better than it was.

I also realized that he's particularly scared of the trucks that he hears, which is something that he's never experienced before. Don't get me wrong - our apartment is really wonderful, and it feels very private. We don't even hear many noises from the other tenants at all when we're inside of our unit. We do live across from a shopping center though, and we can hear the trucks that come by to drop off shipments. They really aren't all that loud and it's mostly during hours that we'll be awake anyway, so it doesn't really bother us, but I've noticed that he starts walking around and acting very nervous when he hears them. I'm hoping that he'll get used to them in time, but I'm a little bit worried because he reacts the same way to thunderstorms, and even though he has been through several, he remains afraid of them - I'm hoping it won't be the same with the trucks.

He's still not eating as much as I would like, but he will still take whatever I hand to him, and he is also eating some of the food from his bowl. He has also been more playful, and he has been bringing us his ball and playing with some of his toys. We even left him for awhile yesterday, because I had to get some things taken care of for work, and we also wanted to pick up some new things for the new apartment. He was sad to see us go, but he seemed totally fine when we got home. :)

Now it's just still going to be a big adjustment for him when I start work. I have had jobs before, so he did get used to it then, but I have been unemployed for six months, so we will have to get into the swing of things again. I'm mostly concerned with how he's going to act when I go away to my training, because I've never left him for that long. Even now, when I go out for awhile (even before this apartment), his little ears go down when I say goodbye to him. He even tries to hide, I guess hoping that if I can't find him to say goodbye, I won't leave.

I'm just hoping that he continues to get used to being here. Weirdly enough, I thought that unpacking all of our boxes would scare him, but he actually seems more relaxed as we get things put away. Maybe this is silly, but it seems like he realizes that we're staying, and that this is his new home. I know though, I'm probably off my rocker for thinking that! :lol:
 
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