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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have a 4 year old lab mix (we got her September 28th of this year) prior to us adopting her she was a puppy mill breeder, then stray for about 2 years then in the shelter for 1.5 The only issues we've had with her is that she bugs our guinea pigs and doesn't always understand the difference between MY stuffed animals and her toys. She's currently being treated for heart worm so shes crated alot during the day (a maximum of 9 hours) as per my vets advice as she needs to stay calm. Then around 10 pm we go into my bedroom and she gets to roam and stay in bed with me. We've never had issues with this until about Tuesday night. I had a tickle in my throat and every time is cough she'd get up and run around. Yesterday i woke up with full blown SICK and last night she was completely wild. She would NOT get up on the bed or even sit down, tried to rip up my bed, jumped onto my bedside table and knocked over a lamp, used her head to nudge everything off my book shelves then crawled in them, jumping on and scratching at my doors and walls, jumped on my dresser, jumping and walking all over me while I lay in bed. And shes showing obvious signs of distress (tail between her legs, shaking, panting, ears flattened against her head, wont relax, etc). Its to the point where her behavior is physically hurting both of us and any time she's not crated she needs to be leashed (and hurts herself trying to chew through the leash). When she is crated she cries the whole time and chews/claws at it. Last night I crated her for bed because was scared she'd kill herself if I left her loose and she freaked out all night but as soon as she was back out she was a wild beast again. She's at it again tonight and I'm honestly at my wit's end with her.
Has anyone experienced anything like this before? How can I get her to calm down and stop behaving this way? Does it have any actual connection to me being sick, or is that just a coincidence?

Edit: she's only like this with me. This morning my fiance got up and took her out and sat on the couch with her and she was perfectly fine and calm with him
 

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Sick dog that needs to stay calm. Sick human that is making the dog crazy with added bonus that crazy dog is worrying sick human. I think I'd put all her food into a baggie and keep it on me. When she comes to you give her a piece of it. When you know there's a coughing fit coming on get a handful ready and feed calmly and quickly until the fit is over. If that is too much for her then toss it. Even tossing several pieces at the same time might help relax her if you are really having a tough time.

I do think the coughing is bothering her. Coughing is loud and you aren't happy about having to cough. She may well think she is in trouble. I know when I'm upset at something not going right that has nothing to do with the dogs they still get upset and slink around with wide eyes.
 

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Check out Dr Karen Overall's relaxation protocol.

Donna Hill, kikopup, Pam'sDogAcademy, Zak George etc all have decent video tutorials on youtube for crate training.

However, since you've stated the dog is harming itself and you, I would suggest you seek guidance from a qualified trainer in conjunction with the above.
 

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I had a dog who hated coughing. He'd always give me a dirty look and ask to be let out of the room whenever I coughed, even just once. He was a very laid back dog. I can see a higher energy dog who hates coughing going a bit nutty - especially if it's making her afraid, and seeing as she's being cooped up in a crate and not exercised much due to her condition.

I know you're sick and tired right now (both literally and figuratively) but just try to get through this while you're sick and see if things get better - if not, I'd find a trainer and/or behaviorist.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
@petpeeve I looked into the relaxation protocol and we really likes her methods so were starting to train her using them so let's see how this goes! Thank you for suggesting that!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Sick dog that needs to stay calm. Sick human that is making the dog crazy with added bonus that crazy dog is worrying sick human. I think I'd put all her food into a baggie and keep it on me. When she comes to you give her a piece of it. When you know there's a coughing fit coming on get a handful ready and feed calmly and quickly until the fit is over. If that is too much for her then toss it. Even tossing several pieces at the same time might help relax her if you are really having a tough time.

I do think the coughing is bothering her. Coughing is loud and you aren't happy about having to cough. She may well think she is in trouble. I know when I'm upset at something not going right that has nothing to do with the dogs they still get upset and slink around with wide eyes.
I think you could be spot on with her thinking she's in trouble. I doubt she's been around many sick people since she's never had a home before.

Also, this has gotten even a little bit stranger now; I've discovered that the only place she stays chill is...in my closet? As soon as she has the option to get in there, she's completely calm.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I had a dog who hated coughing. He'd always give me a dirty look and ask to be let out of the room whenever I coughed, even just once. He was a very laid back dog. I can see a higher energy dog who hates coughing going a bit nutty - especially if it's making her afraid, and seeing as she's being cooped up in a crate and not exercised much due to her condition.

I know you're sick and tired right now (both literally and figuratively) but just try to get through this while you're sick and see if things get better - if not, I'd find a trainer and/or behaviorist.
Well, she certainly IS a high energy dog. A 4 year old lab that needs to stay cooped up is like a bomb waiting to go off.

She's thankfully being much better tonight and laying between my feet right now
 

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She Definitely needs mental stimulation. She is probably bored to death and since physical exercise is not allowed, you need to tire her mentally.
The relaxation protocol is good. Practicing other cues, like sit, down, stay, touch, etc...
Do you have any food toys/ puzzles? Get a black Kong & then get some peanut or almond butter or plain yogurt (just enough to bind dry ingredients together) - mix with dog food, treats, veggies, etc.. and freeze. Do this every night and then you will have one for every evening. You can vary what you put in the Kong. They even have ?recipes? on the Kong website.
You can also look up Canine Enrichment group on FB for more ideas.
 

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Relaxation Protocol is extremely stimulating mentally. Bucky's an anxious mess and I didn't want to encourage hyper activity so that was the first real training he had. He attempts to lay on the training mat before I can get it on the floor and is so delighted to stay put no matter how odd I act. Really good stuff. Do it. Start now.

He is now enrolled in obedience class. An hour without getting to race around chasing things and barking at dogs and people. Okay lots of cookies were involved. I suspect KORP is why he can behave as well as the more normal dogs in the class. We had to move away from dogs because they were getting too interested, he was staying calm and trusting me. Really good stuff. Do it. Start now.

How's your health? I hope as it improves she calms down.
 
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