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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi! Our family has been fortunate enough to find a male Cockapoo in need of a home through a rescue shelter. He escaped from an abusive, backyard breeder and was on his own for many months. CS joined our older standard Poodle and our busy family before Christmas. He is around 2 years old and has a wonderful personality, sweet heart, and tons of energetic fun!

Anyone else have a rescue out there? We would love to know how to help CS get over separation anxiety - he scratches at any closed doors - and does damage. Other than that lingering behavior, he has settled into a great routine.

Thanks for any help you all can offer!
 

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I think you'll have a double dose of it to deal with because many non rescue cockapoos find separation very hard as well. They are so incredibly devoted to their families and your dog has very good reason to be worried because of his rocky start. My sister has two rescued bassets, not a breed known for separation anxiety, and hires a sitter when someone is not home otherwise they bark like crazy.

The normal solutions are radio on, small cozy space, lots of stuffed kongs and chewy things to keep him occupied, but our Rufus gets so miserable when we leave he won't chew. I've heard of dogs destroying whole rooms in their fear frenzy. I'd leave him as little as possible, hire a sitter when possible and replace the good door with a sacrificial door. I know some people use a mild sedative but I've also read that is only effective for a little while.

Good for you for taking on this challenge.:)
 

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Sounds like CS has fallen on his feet - have you any photos?

I got Molly from her family who could not cope with her when she was around 18 months old. She came with fairly severe resource guarding, and bad separation anxiety so was not quite what I had bargained for as I work and had been assured she was fine when left.

I filmed her initially to see if there was a level she was coping at and she wasn't coping at all and went into full scale panic the second the door was closed. We settled on a temporary solution of her going to a friends house while I was at work (and I was looking for a better home for her at this point) and at weekends and evenings she came everywhere with me :rolleyes:

Because she was not having to cope with being left she was able to settle and cope and as my friends house is busy she was always with loads of other dogs with people coming and going and got used to brief moments of no humans around. From there is has been a steady build up to learning to cope with longer on her own and with less other dogs around.

She would still prefer not to be left :rolleyes: but now has my other dog for company and the pair of them are fine left for a couple of hours.
 

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I had a resuce hooligan rottie cross who had severe separation anxiety, he was about 8 months when we got him, the size of a small horse and able to rip the back off the sofa and plaster off the walls within moments.... he also destroyed the back of my car when I left him for about 3 mins to pick up a parcel from the PO....
For my sanity I introduced Hooch to a crate - I had never used one before. He destroyed the liner and used to salivate everywhere - but I persisted leaving him only for minutes at a time. When I came in I'd walk past his crate ignoring him for several minutes, I'd then flip the catch amd continue to ignore him. I had two other dogs (GSD and JRT) neither of whom worried about me leaving and I think were amazed/horrified by Hooch's antics. I also had a 2 year old and a 5 year old. Boys - who loved our hooligan with a passion. Our house was busy and I was constantly in and out and although mostly at home I was involved in various things. Hooch did settle into our routine. The crate stopped me worrying about what he was going to destroy next - consequently I was less stressed and more relaxed and I think that fed through to him. He calmed down a lot and within 5 months the crate was out in the garage and he was left with the run of the downstairs of the house with the other two dogs. He was a great boy and worth more than anything that he destroyed....
Your boy is lucky to have ended up with you and I am sure that he will pay you back for giving him safety and your love with all of his hear. I'd love to see some pictures.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Thank you so much for the replies! I think you all are right about the layers of this behavior.

CS is primarily scratching at a door in a panic when he asks to go outside and we don't go out with him. If there is a squirrel to chase, he and Poppy [red poodle] take off happily around. If we shut the house door, he scratches frantically. Not knowing his history, I am not sure why he is so afraid. So we are enjoying lots of extra bugs - and heating and cooling the entire world - by leaving the door ajar! He does not mind being out ever as long as a human accompanies him.

Do you have suggestions to keep him from shredding the weather stripping other than leaving the door open?

We live in the country on several acres with an "invisible fence" surrounded by farms - CS particularly enjoys the horses, deer, and foxes, but not the elk!
 
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