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Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 19836
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
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My dog, a 7 mo. old dobie/shepherd mix I acquired at a

Customer Question

My dog, a 7 mo. old dobie/shepherd mix I acquired at a shelter at age 4-6 weeks (prematurely weaned/socialized) who is developmentally delayed (at 7 mo has 4 mo teeth & 20 lbs underweight) gets severe FRAPs after she eats and often after BMs - it doesn't matter what the food is (we have tried everything) tho some items are definitely worse. She has them after getting flea meds or even after topical applied too. FRAPS mostly involved jumping over everything at high speeds, digging behavior into couch pillows, chewing on carpet, tearing paper with some aggression if anyone attempted to contain her. Out vet told us to feed her in crate undisturbed for me hour with everyone out of room - well all she did was redirect & chew on the actual crate, destroy her bed/shred pillow etc. We tried giving her HTP before her meals which did work great on her behavior - but gave her very loose BMs.We had to board her two weeks ago and now her FRAPS are much more aggressive/including many bites (ruined a
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

In order to supply you with an informed answer, it is necessary for me to collect some additional information from you. When I receive your response or reply, it will likely take me between 30-45 minutes to type up my reply if I am still online when I receive notice that you replied. I hope you can be patient.

What type of obedience training has she had?

What type of exercise are you giving her?

How long are her walks?

do you let her investigate on these walks and socialize with other dogs and people?

What type of crate do you have?

What do you do when she acts out in this matter?

Is she spayed?

If she is not spayed, when was her last heat cycle?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She has had basic obedience with "sit/stay" etc. - when she has the FRAPs she ignores all commands, even offerings of "good" treats or "wanna go to Petsmart"; her exercise consists of fetch at least 3 times a day for 30 minutes, and walks once a day (I am a disabled physician). She has never had issues with socialization - she gets her nails done every ten days at Petsmart and approaches other dogs with curiosity but no aggression; if anything has been fearful of some little dogs with big barks lol. People often approach her because she is so pretty/cute, and to date no issue but I am concerned with this recent more aggressive change in behavior. She has only had owner-related aggression, again after immediately meals, BMs or meds. Her crate is actually a little too large, wired HD Titan two door. We now try to ignore her when she acts out, but she still does it. We are not sure she has had a heat cycle - again she is developmentally delayed.. she had spotting in her urine twice consecutively but that was it- she happened seen be her vet at that time, thought her valve might be
slightly swollen" and he wasn't convinced it was heat or pro-estrus. She has a left hip mass we are "watching" and the vet wanted me to wait a little bit before spaying her - concerned about a fibrotic dysplasia. When I called boarding her first day they told me "she got aggressive with other dogs" but I was surprised because she wasn't supposed to have group play due to her spay status - I called the next day and they said "oh, I got her confused with another dog, no she she's fine and in private play"...pregnancy has crossed my mind. I know there is a behavioral issue - thats why she is going to a boarding trainer - my question for this site was could there be a medical trigger, like PSS that we did rule out.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I should add she does not have "food" aggression - when she is eating or playing with toys, even her favorite chews/bones, she lets me take them away without a fuss. Its when she is done eating she acts out.
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.

Thanks for the additional information. You did state that she is developmentally delayed. As a result, her fraps might be relatively normal for a younger dog like a 4 month old dog. Younger pups frequently act in the manners you describe so her behavior might be a continuation of her developmental issues.

I think boarding training isn't a bad idea, but you need to know that the dog will need extensive training with you as the handler. I always suggest you train at least 30 minutes a day (two 15 minute sessions). Dogs learn to respect the person doing the training and see them as the boss. While another trainer can teach the actual commands, you also need to teach the dog to see you as the boss and that is where doing the training yourself comes in. I would start making your dog work via the Nothing in life is free program (NILF). It is outlined below.

I strongly suggest that you do more extensive exercise with her. I'd have her growth plates checked and if they are closed or almost closed, up her exercise to some fast paced walks. Don't let her sniff and socialize. If that isn't possible due to your health then you might consider a treadmill. Tire her out 2-3 times a day with a good fast paced walk or run on the treadmill.

It sounds like your crate is good but keep all the extra stuff out of the crate. No blankets or pillows or other things she can destroy. Put her in there for meals or if you have a yard, feed her in the fenced yard and ignore the running around. The more attention she gets for it, the more they will display it. Try to have her in a place where it won't matter if she displays frap behavior. Most dogs will outgrow the behavior if you don't reinforce it with attention. I suspect her developmental delays are helping contribute to her still displaying it this late more so than reinforcement but have to mention it.

You might also find her a playmate of similar size and preferably a neutered male. This will help her get out excess energy through playing with another similar sized dog on a regular. Another dog might also help her learn to control the fraps as well.

You might try a DAP collar as well. Normally it is for anxiety, but it might help keep her calm and it is not medication but a pheromone so shouldn't affect her bowels or interfere with other medications either. Give these suggestions a try and see if you see improvements.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer.

Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Jane Lefler
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
She is in her boarding-training. I am waiting on the DAP collar, that is the only thing we hadn't already done prior to your advice. Turns out she may be a Beauceron, which explains a lot of her behavior (ankle/calf nipping) and developmental delay as well as personality.
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 2 years ago.

I'm not sure I mentioned that I'm really not a fan of boarding training though it does teach them the commands. You will need to reinforce the commands once she is home so she sees you as the boss. Remember to not up her exercise until you are sure her growth plates are closed or close to it. You don't want to cause future problems by exercising too much too soon. You didn't mention that you had a male playmate for her to run and play with. That can help a lot, so if you do, get them together at least 3 times a week if at all possible. He needs to be close to her size and similar in age to have the same play drive still.