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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All, I looked through the threads and couldn't find anything like what we're experiencing.

Mac has always paced a bit when he's excited...like when its time to go outside or for a ride in the car. But lately, its getting weird.

A few examples are in the morning when my husband takes a shower. Mac goes nuts and runs back & forth from the bathroom to the kitchen. He grabs the bathroom rug, shakes it and then tosses it.

If we're all sitting in the livingroom and one of us stands up to go in another room-he does the same thing. He's destroyed my livingroom throw rug.

We're obviously trying to work with him and train him not to do this. But, I'd like to understand why he's doing it.

The only changes except for of course the cold weather is that we've been leaving him alone more often because of the holidays. My gut says he's afraid we're going to leave. Like he knows when my husband or I take a shower it means we'll be leaving soon.

I don't know if I'm explaining this exactly right...its strange behavior. Does anyone have ideas?
 

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Maybe you're on to something with the separation anxiety. Is he getting enough exercise? All the normal routines and schedules go out the window over the holidays so he might need a good workout and an obedience refresher.
 

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The running back and forth from room to room and throwing rugs around is part of the zoomies. Rocky still does it at his age. If he seems anxious it may be that he is, but with my dogs it's always just been high spirits and playfulness.
 

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Sounds like zoomies. Max does this more often when it's cold outside.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks to you all for the feedback.

He's had the zoomies before and stepping up the exercise did help a lot. This behavior seems like more than just the zoomies. He seems panicked or something...

Since Christmas he's been getting a lot of exercise because my husband has been home during the day. They go ice fishing for hours...long walks....etc. I don't know maybe I'm over thinking it...its probably just the zoomies...
 

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I had to look up what the zoomies were...
...I had a pretty good idea and, turns out, I was right :)

Xander was doing that a minute ago :) It's hilarious to watch!

Not meaning to hijack but - when do they start to outgrow the zoomies? (if ever) :)

====

Sorry about your living room rug though...

On a side note Macy's is having a big rug sale :)
 

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Sounds like anxiety but I wouldn't say it's separation anxiety (yet).

More exercise may help.

Also, you may be going through the same routine each time you do these things and you don't realize it. He may be starting to associate these routines with you leaving him for a long time and is getting anxious about it. I'm sure you shower before you get ready for work or to go out. Along with the process of getting shoes on to get ready to go outside or get in the car.

There is a good protocol in Patricia McDonnell's booklet I'll Be Home Soon about desensiting your dog to these acts. It's a cheap booklet and easy to read.
 

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That shower may be causing him some distress.

When I took my pup to my parents house over the holidays she was a bit stressed. She paced a lot and took it out a lot on the throw rugs.
 

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My 15 month old GSD will get that way when I'm putting on my shoes or when I put on a jacket. Because I know he'll do it, I prepare before the action starts. Because of his size, zoomies aren't allowed in the house.

He knows that those two things means we are going outside. If we haven't exercised yet (so he is 100% full of the zoomies) I'll make him down and stay. If he is way over reactive I'll start first by asking him to do several of his commands. And end on a stay. He has to stay while I get ready to go outside. Then I'll release him, he'll go straight for the door - many times banging his head on the door like he thinks it will magically disappear if he hits it hard enough. So, I'll make him wait while I open the door. Honestly, I want to set him up to succeed, so if he is really full of it, I don't make him wait long. If he is a bit more mellow, I'll make him wait a bit longer. He wants to do it right but the zoomies take over his brain and he will break.

Sometimes I'll go through the motions (putting shoes / jacket on) and then taking them back off again. Just to get him to realize that going outside doesn't happen everytime a person puts on their shoes.

If your pup is reacting to your motions, you already know that it is going to happen so you've got a head start on how to fix it. The action is already a controlled factor. Make your plans to work on it before your pup reacts.

However, I wouldn't permit him to pick up any rugs - they aren't his toys so he shouldn't play with them. You can redirect with one of his toys.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks so much to all who took the time to comment & provide advice. You've all given me & my husband a lot to think about and some good ideas.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Maybe I'm the one with the Zoomies & Anxiety....Mac is behaving perfectly today and now I'm worrying whats causing that.....LOL
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Maybe you're on to something with the separation anxiety. Is he getting enough exercise? All the normal routines and schedules go out the window over the holidays so he might need a good workout and an obedience refresher.

We've been monitoring his behavior and I think it is separation anxiety. He only exhibits this behavior when one of us leave the house, the room or takes a shower.
 
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