Puppy Forum and Dog Forums banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone, my wife and I have had many dogs, and raised all of them from puppies, with no major issues. We acquired Zora, our female Malanois / German Shepherd mix when she was a month old, and she's turning one in November. She has been in obedience training and has excelled in all the training we have done, and is extremely intelligent. Our issue lies with separation anxiety and destructive behavior in our absence. We crate trained her early on, but she would poop/pee in the crate. We got a partition for the crate to not give her so much space, and she would still poop/pee even though the space was smaller, and we even would feed her in the crate (door open of course). Maximum amount of time for her to be in the crate would be 2-3 hours at most.

My wife and I work full time, and 2-3 times a week, Zora will go to doggy day care for those days. The remaining 2 days of the work week, Zora is left home (loose, not in her crate) with our other 2 small dogs (also loose). My wife comes home on her lunch break to let her out, and nearly every time, she has pooped or peed in the house, as well as destroyed table/chair legs, shredded a table cloth, etc. It's roughly 4 hours of time spent alone. We have 2 large kong toys that we fill with treats, and it doesn't help with her boredom/anxiety.

I do think we can spend more time walking her each day, as I've read that they need 45 mins to 1 hour of exercise everyday. We are at a crossroads with her as the destruction in the house/poor bathroom habits are only getting worse, and with our full time work schedules, it's not going to get any easier for the dog. I don't know how much of this puppy issues versus breed behavior. We bought her as her parents seemed to strike a nice balance between both breeds, and not as hyper as a pure bred Malanois. We aren't sure how much more of this we can handle both mentally, physically, and financially.

Any advice would be appreciated, especially those who have experience with these breeds. Thank you
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,695 Posts
For this mix of breeds to happen it is likely neither parent was a quality representative of their breed. Typically this means that,along with the drive of both breeds you likely have considerable nerve.

The activity requirements of the Malinois is well know. These dogs often go all day and ask for more. If the German Shepherd in the mix is working lines then you have more if the same.

Taking a walk will not satisfy the work needs of this dog. They need mental and physical stimulation beyond what a pet home can usually offer. They do IGP (formerly Schutzhund) and ring sports. Malinois are close coupled and can do well in agility.

What they do NOT do well is "sit around."

Leaving this dog loose in the house is a recipe for what you are experiencing. These dogs have energy needs and if you cannot meet those needs they will find ways to meet them that you won't like.

This dog likely will not settle well in the house without a lot of engaging, high energy work on a regular (daily) basis. When you leave, this dog would be better off in a full size kennel (10' square with 6' sides) with a secure top and bottom outside or in your basement. It is likely the pee/poop you find is not so much separation anxiety as it is simply not being house broken. The dog is under one year and that is my guess. House breaking is not a short process

The other option is a plastic crate or a dog box (they run around $900 and up) that she must be in when you are not home.

Either way, confinement when not home is your answer.

Of course your dog COULD have real Separation anxiety but if she did she would tear a standard wire or plastic crate apart to get out when you were not home. Real SA requires medication. I suspect this is not that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
For this mix of breeds to happen it is likely neither parent was a quality representative of their breed. Typically this means that,along with the drive of both breeds you likely have considerable nerve.

The activity requirements of the Malinois is well know. These dogs often go all day and ask for more. If the German Shepherd in the mix is working lines then you have more if the same.

Taking a walk will not satisfy the work needs of this dog. They need mental and physical stimulation beyond what a pet home can usually offer. They do IGP (formerly Schutzhund) and ring sports. Malinois are close coupled and can do well in agility.

What they do NOT do well is "sit around."

Leaving this dog loose in the house is a recipe for what you are experiencing. These dogs have energy needs and if you cannot meet those needs they will find ways to meet them that you won't like.

This dog likely will not settle well in the house without a lot of engaging, high energy work on a regular (daily) basis. When you leave, this dog would be better off in a full size kennel (10' square with 6' sides) with a secure top and bottom outside or in your basement. It is likely the pee/poop you find is not so much separation anxiety as it is simply not being house broken. The dog is under one year and that is my guess. House breaking is not a short process

The other option is a plastic crate or a dog box (they run around $900 and up) that she must be in when you are not home.

Either way, confinement when not home is your answer.

Of course your dog COULD have real Separation anxiety but if she did she would tear a standard wire or plastic crate apart to get out when you were not home. Real SA requires medication. I suspect this is not that.
I agree, the parents had no papers, and this puppy was just a random find off of Facebook. She has gone through cycles of weeks at a time with good potty habits, and then reverts back to acting like she was never housebroken at all. Many times, she will signal to go outside, other times she won't. I'm fearful of confining her in an area as she has defecated in her crate many times. I am located in Socal, so leaving her outside in the heat of summer is also not a good idea (plus with all the barking, I'm sure animal control would get called). She has never damaged the wire crate she is in, but has shredded any bedding that was in there. I bought a k9 ballistics tray that she has not been able to destroy. I guess we could invest in some of agility items to set up in the yard for her to get some energy out. I am also curious how much (if any) she will mellow out as she matures.

The breeder claimed the parents only were needing one walk a day and that was sufficient to keep them from destructive behavior.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,695 Posts
You have mixed genetics. That's simply a crap shoot regardless of the immediate parents. The genetic lines and how they mix is the question. This is why I pay large money for a working dog from a long time knowledgeable breeder. A puppy can STILL be a crap shoot by I have seriously improved my odds of getting the dog I want!

That said my current working dog cannot have a bed in his crate or kennel. He makes a game out of destroying dog beds. In his crate in the truck he has a fitted sheet of plywood. He is a working dog. He never tries to break out of a crate.

I had an issue with my dog barking in the outside kennel when I went to work. I bought an electronic no bark collar. Problem solved. Excessive outdoor heat I put him in the full size kennel in the basement.

Again, I would crate/kennel the dog when I left thd house. Poop in a crate is easier to clean up than a destroyed house from a bored,high drive dog
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top