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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I have a 1 1/2 old maltese. He is a male and has been neutered. From the first week we got him he attached to one person (me) and really doesn't want anything to do with anyone else. When I leave he sits by the door and patiently waits and won't move, even if someone else is in the house. He has always had some anxiety but it was manageable. He began compulsive licking. He licks everything (except himself). Our sheets will be wet when we wake up from where he has licked all night long. In addition to his licking, as soon as I lay day down at night or whenever he can get to my hair, he eats it!! No kidding, one night he ate so much of my hair that he actually coughed up a hair ball of my hair!! I have long hair so I don't always realize it when he is eating the bottoms of it. One of his other habits that has gotten worse if the barking. He barks all the time. If my husband gets up to go to the bathroom and comes back he barks and bites him!! My husband even says his name so he knows its him and he still bites him. If we are sitting and my husband reaches over to touch me, he will get bit. He has even resorted to having nervous diarrhea. Last night I reached over to touch him and he bit me, twice!!

We have been to the vet, nothing physical is wrong with him. She gave him prozac. Well, unfortunately, one of the side effects of that is excessive barking and un-controllable urination. Wouldn't you know it, we got both. Ultimately, we had to discontinue that course of treatment. We have tried behavioral modification exercises, homeopathic remedies and nothing works.

We have an 11 year old daughter and I always fear when she has friends over they will get bit as well. So far no one has gotten severely bitten (even though that behavior is completely unacceptable. When we have guests over I have to put him in another room, he will bark the whole time, even though we have reassured him that everything is okay. When he is in an other room he barks non-stop.

Please any recommendation would be helpful.
 

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Hi and welcome, I am so sorry about your little one biting, and hope you get him checked out a little more at the vets. A few years ago I had the most loving malt then at 6 months old she started changing. I got her at 10 weeks old and probably from a BYB but didn't know about them then. Anyways at the age of 6 months she was so aggressive even towards me at times and drew blood and then would immediately start licking me and was sweet again. You never knew when she would go after someone. We finally had her tested more and they found a tumor in her head which was causing the problems when she was in pain. It was so bad the vet couldn't do anything for her and had to put her to sleep. Please check him out thoroughly, something is wrong. I hope you can find the cure for this if he is not sick, then maybe he had a very bad beginning and might need additional help with the behaviorist as mentioned. Good luck and keep us posted please.

Hugs,
Lucy, Breeze, Savannah and Sparkle
 

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If the vet has thoroughly checked him out and there is nothing physically wrong then you need to call a behaviorist to do home training, asap.

The biting when people return, touch him, etc... sounds like resource guarding and can be worked on. As for barking non stop after you "reassure" him everything will be okay - the dog does not speak English, he does not comprehend what you are telling him. I would start with not allowing him to sleep on the bed or up on the couch. If he is being free fed, I would also stop doing that. Since he seems to be mostly reactive towards your husband, have him put the food down and/or hand feed him some of his food. Never let him out of the room/crate when he is barking - wait for even a split second of silence THEN open the door. Barking should never get attention, when it does it is rewarded and will continue.

I'm not sure if you have actually had a behaviorist come to your home but that is needed and with a child in the house, it is necessary to do it asap. The behaviorist can evaluate him and get you started on training. At only 1 1/2 he has many years to go and you want to "fix" these issues now rather than later when they are much worse.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The vet recommended some therapeutic exercises for him. To the best of my knowledge there is not an animal behaviorist in our area (Delaware). He has been to the vet numerous times as well.


QUOTE (MandyMc65 @ Dec 29 2009, 03:54 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=867917
If the vet has thoroughly checked him out and there is nothing physically wrong then you need to call a behaviorist to do home training, asap.

The biting when people return, touch him, etc... sounds like resource guarding and can be worked on. As for barking non stop after you "reassure" him everything will be okay - the dog does not speak English, he does not comprehend what you are telling him. I would start with not allowing him to sleep on the bed or up on the couch. If he is being free fed, I would also stop doing that. Since he seems to be mostly reactive towards your husband, have him put the food down and/or hand feed him some of his food. Never let him out of the room/crate when he is barking - wait for even a split second of silence THEN open the door. Barking should never get attention, when it does it is rewarded and will continue.

I'm not sure if you have actually had a behaviorist come to your home but that is needed and with a child in the house, it is necessary to do it asap. The behaviorist can evaluate him and get you started on training. At only 1 1/2 he has many years to go and you want to "fix" these issues now rather than later when they are much worse.

Good luck![/B]
 

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QUOTE (WAHMof1 @ Dec 29 2009, 10:05 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=868089
And how much do these "behaviorist" cost? We have already spent an extensive amount on this issue already.[/B]
Vet schools are generally cheaper than private practice. You can call and ask for a price.

The cost is minuscule compared to euthanizing your dog for behavior issues.
 
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