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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2008
    Location
    East Coast
    Posts
    377

    Default Behavior change of grieving dog.

    I have a 9 yr old Boxer/Lab who is grieving over the loss of her 16 yr old "brother". We rescued him as a 10 yr old that had been tied up his whole life. After a couple rough months and 3 pretty bad bites he figured out life was good and turned into a great dog. Two weeks ago he could not get up so I knew it was time. My promise to him was to make his last years his best years. Since then Abbey has become understandably withdrawn and not eating well. She also has developed a short fuse when it comes to my sisters dog. They always were great buddies playing and hunting together but now she snaps at him and doesn't even want to go for a walk if he comes along. I also have 2 cats that have always joined both dogs in their beds but now if either cats lays down next to her she gets up and lays on the floor. It is heart breaking to see her act this way. She has raised several litters of kittens and has always had that goofy Boxer sense of humor but now she is aloof and just not interested in anything. I was planning on getting her a puppy within the next month or so but now I'm just not sure.
    If there are no pets in Heaven then I want to go where they went !!!
    RIP Maybe June 13, 1993-Sept. 23, 2006,Dexter March 11, 1983-Sept. 23, 2009, Joey 1997?- June 21, 2012
    www.equistarfarm.com



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2008
    Posts
    4,538

    Default

    does she like to go for walks by herself?



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2008
    Location
    East Coast
    Posts
    377

    Default

    She does like to go by herself. She used to like to run through the fields rough housing with my sisters dog. Now if I start a walk with him along she sits and watches us walk away. He's getting confused too because then I will put him back inside and start with just her and she's happy again. We have 200 acres and miles of trails so I never have them on leashes. So strange.
    If there are no pets in Heaven then I want to go where they went !!!
    RIP Maybe June 13, 1993-Sept. 23, 2006,Dexter March 11, 1983-Sept. 23, 2009, Joey 1997?- June 21, 2012
    www.equistarfarm.com



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2005
    Location
    Illinois
    Posts
    405

    Default

    I just read an article (can't remember where) that talked about how dogs grieve in a very similar fashion to humans. Keep getting her out and doing things she usually enjoys, but my guess is that she, just like a human, needs time to grieve.

    They are sweet, sensitive souls, aren't they?



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2008
    Posts
    4,538

    Default

    dynamics change when an animal moves on or dies. Sometimes the change is dramatic. If the animal that is gone was a defender or protector, sometimes the response of the others change toward each other.

    For now, I'd take the dogs out for walks without each other. Some time and space may change things for her, or it might not. Since she is being so clear about how she feels, I'd honor that.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2008
    Location
    East Coast
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    377

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by threedogpack View Post
    Since she is being so clear about how she feels, I'd honor that.
    Thank You! I think I will follow her lead.
    If there are no pets in Heaven then I want to go where they went !!!
    RIP Maybe June 13, 1993-Sept. 23, 2006,Dexter March 11, 1983-Sept. 23, 2009, Joey 1997?- June 21, 2012
    www.equistarfarm.com



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2009
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    18,817

    Default

    Poor baby. From personal experience, it takes time. With dogs, cats and horses. My barn cat stopped eating when her horse died. After lots of tests and bloodwork, it was decided that she was grieving. She bounced back after a couple of weeks.

    Give her time and lots of individual attention.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



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