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Okay so I have no idea what to do at this point. My 9 month old female is going CRAZY. She has separation anxiety. We get that. She’s on meds for it. But it is NOT working at this point. We leave even for 10 minutes and she has the place destroyed. I get she’s a pup still. But this is beyond words. We always put her in her kennel before we leave, she somehow manages to always escape. We’ve put clip locks on and still.. somehow manages to escape. She has her own room we put her in. We’ve tried comforting her with a blanket, shirts with our scent on it and she will literally eat them. Shes Absolutely wrecking the place. She’s also hurting herself in the process of this. She’s well behaved when we’re around. Trained great. Something has to give. I got off work at 7 this morning, bout the time my boyfriend was leaving for work. Went to my parents for a couple hours and return to THIS.
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someone please help me understand what’s wrong with this situation. Are we doing something wrong? Is she just broke or something!? Ugh.
 

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How much exercise is the dog getting before being crated?

What type of crate?

What meds?

Do you have a trainer that you work with?
 

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Oh Lord that is rough. I don't have experience with SA. I would reach out to your vet and discuss that the meds aren't working. Maybe there is a different med you can try. Do you have a trainer or behaviorist in you area? I understand with Covid those options come with their own obstacles. Do some research on CBD oil. There are some studies that suggest it may be helpful. You have to be sure it is a quality product with NO THC. Obviously some behavior modification is needed which I don't have experience with.
I wish I had more. I'm feeling for you and your pup.
 

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Oh boy. I've never had to deal with SA to that extent but have had friends who came home to blood splattered walls. I would advise a kennel she can't break out of and she can't hurt herself on like a Ruff Tuff. And find a really good trainer that deals with behavior.

Where are you located at? maybe a trainer can be recommended to you.
 

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I went through this with my Dane. It sucks. A wire crate will not contain a dog with SA and may result in serious injury.
I used to come home every day and just sit and cry. I know how horrible it is.
And it's a pretty involved and lengthy process to correct.
Exercise before leaving. Practice short, like 5 minute, time periods. Make sure you are leaving her the right way.
Meds may help, but often not.
The good news is that catching this while they are young makes the chances of success higher.
 

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We went through a very similar phase with Gunnar, who had just turned 3 when we adopted him. The tornado aftermath that you posted above is all too familiar. I'm a noob when it comes to these types of dog issues and I hope you can find a trainer or training method that helps you.

I will say, hindsight being 20/20, that our problem would've resolved MUCH quicker and easier with a better crate. We went through 3 (2 plastic and 1 wire) and each explosive escape only emboldened him more. Once we gave in and bought a more escape-proof crate, Gunnar's SA type behavior rapidly declined.

It's important to note that the higher quality crates also make it MUCH more difficult for your dog to injure herself, e.g. no bent bars or cracked plastic etc. My wife and I started getting anxious that Gunnar would end up hurting himself during an escape attempt, but now, he doesn't even try.

Ruff Land (what we have), Impact, Gunner, all make really nice crates.

Not a complete solution, but maybe a good start.
 

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My old girl has separation anxiety. She escaped her crate and literally chewed through a wooden door frame once. Even trazodone wasn't enough to keep her from trying to break out of her crate. If you have the time to work with her, you can try reading a book by Patricia McConnell called I'll be Home Soon. It's a very quick read and expounds on Sabis mom's suggestions. I saw progress with my dog using these methods, but it takes a lot of time and dedication.
 

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We went and got a Ruff Land after my MIL failed to properly latch our Mal in when she checked on him when we were at the hospital when our son was being born.

Realizing escape was possible definitely emboldened him, paid like $40 to get it here in two days. Once he realized escape from the new kennel wasn't happening, things went back to normal.

I'm not qualified either to speak to the rest of what's going on, but I can anecdotally add to what everyone else is saying that a kennel they can escape from is only making this worse.
 
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I echo some of what David is asking:

How much exercise is she getting? At least 1-2hours a day? Doing what?
Were you home constantly for COVID and recently went back to work?
If not, when did this first crop up and what did you try before drugs?
Is she nervous at other times, strangers, dogs, new places?
You say "trained great", what has that entailed besides the basics?

I have no experience with true separation anxiety after the fact but wondering if it could have been avoided/lessened beforehand
 

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We went and got a Ruff Land after my MIL failed to properly latch our Mal in when she checked on him when we were at the hospital when our son was being born...
He wasn't escaping, he was just testing how well you baby-proofed the house. Good lookin' out, pup!
 

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I seriously feel for anyone who has dogs with SA. A friend had a dog who seemed to do best outside when they left. Sometimes it seemed to be triggered by storms. SA seems to often go back to the nerve strength of the dog. Good luck with this.
 

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SA is not related to exercise or training. It seems to have a genetic component in that it runs in lines and also a breed component in that some breeds seldom have the issue.
It is definitely at the very least exacerbated by owner behavior.
Since we cannot see the OPs dog it's impossible to say if this is puppy boredom or actual SA but exercise and a good crate are never bad advice.
 

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Exercise and training are great suggestions.

Okay so I have no idea what to do at this point. My 9 month old female is going CRAZY. She has separation anxiety. We get that. She’s on meds for it. But it is NOT working at this point.
If current meds are not working, ask the behaviorist or vet you are working with to change her meds to something else.
Various meds can have a different effect on dogs, just like with people.

Is she spayed or could she possibly be coming into season causing more anxiety?
 

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What meds? Is it an ace inhibitor? If so that can exacerbate anxiety - complete opposite for what vets prescribe it for.
Look into herb Ashwagandha - natures xanax without the crash.
Training
A way better crate then a wire one
Tile floors, lol
 

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SA is not related to exercise or training. It seems to have a genetic component in that it runs in lines and also a breed component in that some breeds seldom have the issue.
It is definitely at the very least exacerbated by owner behavior.
Since we cannot see the OPs dog it's impossible to say if this is puppy boredom or actual SA but exercise and a good crate are never bad advice.
My experience differs. I've taken a couple dogs in our foster system that no one would keep because of SA. Incredible destruction in their houses.

I just wore them out, mentally and physically, and then did incremental crate training. Like 5 times a day. No drugs.

I'm not saying this will work for all dogs! Just sharing my particular experiences.

They went on to not terribly active homes and remained fine.

Having my dogs, particularly Fama, in the house may have helped a lot as well.
 
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Some of Gunnar's handiwork which we've yet to fix.

For us, the combo of crate, increased structured training and increased exercise intensity has kept the SA type behavior at bay.

Best of luck to OP!
 

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@David Winners absolutely. I was not suggesting either that exercise and training won't help or that drugs are the way to go. I never agree with a drugs first approach and I certainly think that wearing them out may aid in the training process. What I was trying to say was that a lack of exercise won't cause SA. Some dogs are prone and some are not.
I only finally resorted to meds with my Dane after she trashed a $700 crate in one day and injured herself badly in the process. I came home to a scene out of a B rate horror film, blood everywhere literally and great gaping wounds on the dog. Plus a shredded floor, door, door frame. She was beautifully trained, and had been for an hour long run before I left. I new SA was an issue for her and I foolishly underestimated her.
SA can be brutal but if owners commit to training and conditioning it's absolutely a solvable issue. The big thing I have found is how the owners treat the dogs, and how much of it is caused by that. In my experience once the owners are trained the dogs are easy.
 

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Marc Goldberg has a protocol for this using straw in an escape proof crate. I've heard from people who had success with it but I have never tried it. Couldn't be any messier than what you are already dealing with.

Impact High Anxiety crate if you are going to get an Impact.

I have a non anxious brat who would prefer to let himself out of things sometimes. He was pitching a fit at dock diving once and I saw him make the corner of his Impact door pop out. So I'd go straight to the big guns and get the High Anxiety crate which is designed for dogs like this.
 

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That is rough I have not had a dog with separation anxiety but heard of a gsd that was put in a garage during a storm while the owners were at work and a scratched at the door and shredded all of its paw pads. It looked like there was a massacre- finding the right medicine helped. When at a emergency hospital a female gsd was picked up on the highway and brought in during a snow storm. It looked like she had a litter of pups. The owner/breeder was found and came to pick her up and said she escaped because of the storm leaving her pups. A dog with that much anxiety I would think any kind of crate would be claustrophobic for the dog. Maybe a strong well made outdoor kennel set up fresh air might do the dog well. Or a another dog or cat to keep company or a doggy daycare if the dog enjoys that kind of set up.
 
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