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Discussion Starter #1
We recently adopted a 3 year old rescue dog who is heartworm positive. Over the weekend, he got his immiticide shots after doing a month of the docycycline pills.

The vet said it's really important to only do short leash walks, and keep him crated and calm during the day. Before the shots, we were walking him about 3 or so miles a day (sometimes more), and because of that, he was mostly calm while he was in the house.

Now after the shots, we had to drastically decrease his walks -- we're only doing about 1/2 mile a day. Because of this, he is not as calm inside the house. The vet gave us a pheremone (sp??) collar to calm him, but it's not doing much, if anything. He seems more antsy because he's not walking as much, and he's doing a lot of pacing around the house. Not to mention that he wants to go faster on his walks but can't, and he gets excited whenever he sees other dogs or people.

I'm worried that he is going to increase his heart rate too much, since I know how important it is, but I have no idea to keep it down since he can't exercise. We were thinking about asking the vet for a mild sedative of some sort. Does anyone have any suggestions or advice?
 

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Frozen peanut butter stuffed kong, treat dispenser toys, and crate often. Or gate off in a small room. Personally, I think a 1/2 mile leash walk is too much. Usually it is just outside to the yard to potty and back in. A blood clot breaking loose can kill him.
If your vet can give a long lasting sedative that might help. Try to spend a lot of time sitting near him and reading out loud to him. Dogs will adjust to being crated/contained long term. The first week is the hardest.
 

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Thank you so much! I guess I'll need to take a trip to PetSmart tomorrow to get him some sort of mind toy.

I didn't realize that even a 1/2 mile is too much. The problem is that he won't go to the bathroom (at all) in our yard.
 

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See if you can get a friend with a dog (vaccinated), to come pee in your yard and mark. The scent will encourage your dog to pee there. For poop, if your dog hasn't gone in about 16 hrs, you can match them. basically it involves wetting a match head(many just stick it in their mouth to use saliva) and inserting the tip into the dog's anus. The dog will try to poop to expel it. People that show dogs often match them before going into the ring so they don't have an accident in there. It's harmless...just don't light the match, lol, or get confused and try to wet the end with your saliva afterwards...

Once your dog has pooped out back, leave it there, and then go back to that spot to ask him to go potty there again later. The scent will encourage him to go there. Dogs will normally poop about 12-16 hrs after eating. You probably have an idea of when he would normally poop. Use a cue word/phrase like "Go Potty" to get him to go, and reward heavily with praise and a really high value treat (like tiny pieces of hot dog/liver/cheese) when he goes.

You can try doing clicker training with him to occupy his mind, yet keeping him quiet. Teach him to touch something with his nose, pick up something, sit/down/shake/roll over/bow/etc. Or play guess which hand, scent discrimination. You may need to do more training to mentally tire him out, and entertain him since he will be bored/depressed.
 

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Well that just failed miserably! Tried the match trick, and he would go to the bathroom so I ended up having to walk him again and he still hasn't gone. Now I have a done who won't go to the bathroom, who can't get his heartrate up, who has a match stuck up his butt!! If I wasn't about to cry I'd probably be laughing hysterically right now!
 

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He got the doxy first and then the shots? My gal got the shots first and then a month of doxy where I had to keep her calm and quiet. She's a young Pit mix, so I feel you on the struggle of keeping an active dog happy and quiet. She got quiet pudgy during this time because all I could really offer her was toys and things to chew/eat. She was quiet/drugged up the first few days but after she started feeling better she just wanted to tear around. I spent a lot of time just sitting with her and rubbing her belly. She'd lay there and mouth my hands but it kept her from running around like a nutjob.
 
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