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Ask Dr. Loretta Your Own Question
Dr. Loretta
Dr. Loretta, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 28283
Experience:  25 years of experience in large and small animal medicine.
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Our 7 year old golden retriever Alfie gets very anxious. He

Customer Question

our 7 year old golden retriever Alfie gets very anxious. He locks himself in the bathroom and shreds what he can find . He hates "pinging noises" eg I phones texts etc. He has also started growling at other dogs on walks. He is otherwise such a good dog. My daughter has "googled" the situation and believes he might have dementia. There is soon to be another baby in our family and we hope we can do something to calm him. Thank you. Mike Fisher.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. Loretta replied 1 year ago.
Good Morning and welcome. I am Dr. Loretta, a licensed veterinarian and I am happy to answer your question. Anxiety is not unusual in some dogs especially when a new baby comes into the house. I believe that he has developed fears and these have caused this anxiety. It is unlikely to be dementia since Alfie is still quite young.This is a common trait in some dogs. They develop fears that cause extreme anxiety similar to those anxieties of humans. The only way to get him over this is "Desensitization" which means constant exposure until Alfie realizes that these fears will not hurt him. To do this, first avoid these while making your dog comfortable in his situation. You may need help in doing this since when you try, as you have experienced, he is too afraid to understand. Purchase a DAP Collar at the pet store. This is a canine pheromone that acts as a calming agent and will decrease anxiety.Thundershirts are useful since this is one of the most common fears causing extreme anxiety and can be very effective. If this is not enough, your vet will have medication to help him past this. Take Alfie to your vet for an exam to be sure there is not a medical cause for this and ask about anti anxiety medication such as Fluoxetine or Buspirone. Then expose him to the things he fears over and over, constantly talking in a soft voice and giving treats when he does something positive. From the sounds of Alfie's anxiety, the medication will be very helpful to get him past this. With another baby on the way, which is very stressful to some dogs like Alfie, it is worth a try. Does that make sense to you?Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please Reply so I can clarify for you Sincerely, ***** *****