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Hi, Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm a licensed veterinarian and I'll be happy to help. Many dogs do scratch to make a nest for sleeping (even bare floors!) but since this is a change for Tanzy, it is appropriate to look for the cause of her behavioral change.
The first thing to do when there is such a change in behavior is to rule out medical causes. In Tanzy's case I'd first look for urinary problems. . .like a urinary tract infection (or UTI ).
tanzy is in good health I can't see how uti would make her destructive now unless you think she is in pain could blocked anal glands cause this behaviour although they are checked and are ok she is prone to this complaint again she has only started doing this since shutting herself in the spare room
and if not a medical condition[she will be checked by a vet] how do I stop her
Thanks for your response. . .You are very correct as this could be totally a behavioral change, but if there is something going on for her physically, it would be really important to find that. I could understand her scratching as she was when she was shut in the room, but to continue this behavior if she isn't acting nervous or fearful really doesn't make sense. I think she is trying to tell you something.
There are psychological problems that dogs can get as they get older. . .canine cognitive disorder or dementia is the most common. Is she acting confused or less responsive to you?
I don't thing that this is separation anxiety, since she is used to being alone while you are at work.
One thing that owners don't often notice about their dogs is a change in the amount of water consumed or a change in frequency of urination or the amount of urine produced.
Does Tanzy seem normal also in these areas?
Other changes in her environment (both in your home and outside) might also lead to this new behavior. Are there any new people or animals in your home or immediate neighborhood? Is there any construction near you. Have you moved furniture, bought new furniture or remodeled? These changes might also cause Tanzy's changed behavior.
apart from the physical she sees the vets every 6 months anyway for a check up I thought of separation anxiety but I also do not believe it is that she has plenty of toys to play with and a radio on and she can sleep where she likes and has her own bed in our bedroom at night not on our bed she gets 2 walks a day and fresh water every day which seems to be consumed no more than usual and she does not ask to go out to the toilet any more than usual and pees are normal while out and no accidents indoors and not desperate to go when I come in
Sorry that I have just been going
nothing new at home we live in a quiet area no roads pass my house and shes never worried when we have made changes in the house although outside she notices if things are different but I stay calm with her and she then accepts things
I did not think you were going on and you gave me something to look at but I feel like you just slammed the door in my face as I also asked if there were steps to stop it like only allowing her in the hallway area with a bed while I am out
thankyou for getting back to me I am worried about my tanzy and I will try some calming treatments and she will get to see the vet but going to the vets is extremely stressful for her it takes 4 of us holding her for a check up and boosters even with tranquilisers and 2 muzzles and I must admit that if tanzy has to have serious treatment (even putting eardrops in her ears is an ordeal) that I have to carry out at home on a regular basis doesn't bode well for her although she seems quite well in herself eating well chasing her ball etc.
I took tanzy to the vets on Saturday with a urine sample. the vet checked for infection and was clear, I had her anal glands expressed but they also were found to be clear heart and lungs were good. I explained what had happened and spoke of your advise, he said the 'calming medications' he didn't feel would work for tanzy and that confining her to a smaller area and gradually extending it would be a good start and then said if the problem persisted then they would recommend an animal behaviourist to advise me. this is what I originally requested from this site and apart from advising medical checks I feel I never got behavioural advise
thankyou for your reply I do have a rubber ball type toy that you put food into and they spend time getting it out I had forgotten about that so I will start using it. tanzy does get 2 walks a day both with places she can run free when she gets to chase after her ball the 1st walk is for about 20 mins chasing her ball the 2nd when I get in is about 30 mins lead walk and 30 mins chasing her ball I know when she's had enough. because of her nature i'me continually training her and encouraging good behaviour and though she may never be perfect she improves a little all the time I affirm good behaviour and only steer her away from negative behaviour with a firm verbal no and then quickly focus her attention elsewhere but if on the word no she changes her reaction in a positive manner on her own she gets extra praise. I also only use her name for positive communication never to tell her off. her diet is a sensitive gluten free food with no e numbers