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Discussion Starter #1
Those of u y'all that have rescued abused animals i need your help! watching my beautiful girl over the past week, i am wondering if she was abused at some point. Everytime i go up to pet her or raise my hand quickly she ducks and runs. She is scared of everything in the house and outside. For instance i was swatting a fly saturday morning and when the swatter made contact with the wall she freaked out, jumped over the coffee table ran out to the back yard (our doors were open) realized she couldnt go anywhere out there and shot back through the living room and up the stairs to hide in my daughters room. Ever since then she wont come near me. She acts like i am going to smack her. We took her to the park later that morning to throw her rope/ball toy and every time i would throw it she would cower down until it was released from my hand, then once it was mid air she would chase it, but not bring it back-like she feared getting hit by it. We went for a walk yesterday and were passing a tree, the branches swayed with a big gust of wind and she jumped and tried running. Luckily i had a good hold on her leash-i tried showing her it was just a tree and wouldnt hurt her, but she wouldnt go anywher near it, we had to walk a different way back home. i even tried bribing her with a piece of grilled chicken from last nights supper and you could tell she wanted it, but wouldnt move from her post by the side of the couch to come near me to get it.  It isnt only me that she is acting this way with. She is also acting this way with my boyfriend. The only person in the house she will go straight to is my daughter. She doesnt seem to really fear her or anything she does. I am at a loss here. i know it takes time and lots of TLC and such, but i am dumbfounded. I have never had a dog act like this before.
 

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Oh lord Andrea, my heart breaks for that girl...She sure sounds like she could have been abused..My Tia was abused physically before we got her at 9 mos and she startled easily if you didn't apaproach her right. I learned not to pet her from above her head. Make sure she could see my hand coming. One of the biggest things that did it tho, was my wonderful Buck. He has the most giving and loving heart and gave her everything of his, including his food  :) ...It took about 6 months for her to realize that no one was going to raise a hand to her, other than in love. No body was going to shout at her, altho I sure wanted to when she would dig my plants up  :lol: We lavished love, attention, praise, everything on her and also on Buck and she saw that.. Boxers are not stupid, as you know, so eventually she became the Tia we knew was there...

Samson was taken away from his owner due to neglect. We also suspect that he may have been used as a "bait dog", but he never has been vicious, just a bit leery at times.. Loud noises startle him bad and he's a bit shy of anyone who pets him over his head also..I used the same approach with him as I did with Tia..Not baby them, but calm them, make them realize that there is nothing to fear...

Another thought for you...Do you know if she has been a house dog? I notice with Angel that things I don't even think about, really startle her...The microwave, the bread machine. It's like she's never heard these noises before. And they spook her at first....Reacting that way to a fly swatter is a bit much, so what I would try is lay the fly swatter close to you, like on the floor. Get down on her level and let her investigate it. Let her see on her own terms that it's not something that will hurt her. Angel had the broom fall on her and that's what I did and now she's fine with it...

Something else to try doing is a calming massage. A friend of mine uses the command "settle"...Gets down on the floor with her boxer, and gently starts massaging. Start with the ears, rub the head, and work your way down, all the time, in a very soothing voice repeating the word settle...

Is there any way that you can get some more info on Savannah's background? At this point, the more you know, the easier it will be to deal with issues...I'm not surprised that hse doesn't find your daughter a threat....She a little people, Lol..Any bad experience she has had more than likely came from an adult....

I hope some of this has helped and please please please keep us posted , ok? I am soo sorry that you are having these problems with her.... She is such a sweetheart, if she was abused, I'd like to get my hands on the person that did it....
 

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Excellent tips from Samsonsmom.
I also think Maddie was slapped around a bit. When I first got her I would go to pet her head, and she would cower and run. She can't even look at the fly swatter without going running, also a newspaper. It really is so sad that people actually hit dogs with these things, and don't even realize what they are doing to them. Dumb, Dumb, people...  :x
I've had her for 6 months now and she has gotten ALOT better. I can now pet her on her head without her going running, and I can actually swat a fly now.  :?  It does take time for them to gain your trust, but she will come around. She will soon learn she is in a house where people love her now and she won't get hit or yelled at anymore.  Such a sad situation. I'm glad she's with you now. Let us know how she progresses. One step at a time....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I left a message with the breeder i got her from on sunday, i am waiting to hear back from her. The info i have on her from the breeder is that she hasnt ever been at another home-born and raised by the breeder. She was going to be used for breeding but after one litter that she had some complications with-it was decided that she be spayed and not bred again. She was an outside dog, so i know she will be a little leary of noises she isnt used to. Plus she lived in the country so she isnt used to city noises. i wouldnt figure shewould be scared of a tree though :eh: Neither my boyfriend or myself have ever raised a hand to her or shouted at her. Heck we havent even raised our voice at all to her!! I still plan on getting a boxer pup from the original breeder who sent me to savannah's breeder. I am hoping that that will help my girl some. I just have to wait a little over 4 months for that though! We tried starting commands with her as far as "sit" or "lay down" and she looks at us like we are nuts. At this point she wont even take a treat. We went to Petsmart and bought her both liver and bacon flavored and she wont touch them. I am patient with her, but it is just so frustrating.
 

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Please! Be patient that dog will love you twice as much after she gains some trust, can you imagine anyone living alone for a week? Maybe she didn't even know other people existed except her owner. And if she was abused you think the breeder is going to tell you?? Not even here in Malta we have no law they can hit there animal as much as they want and still they would not tell you.

I am sure these people gave you professional tips of what you can do there is nothing to add to what they said.. Boxers cannot be alone for a long time they get depressed.
 

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boxersaige\";p=\"5095 said:
Please! Be patient that dog will love you twice as much after she gains some trust, can you imagine anyone living alone for a week?
Boxersaige is right...she will love you twice as much. Rescue dogs work so hard at trying to please. So sad.. :cry:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
yeah i figured if the breeder did abuse her, there would be no admitting to it. Who would? i just now have to change my course of action with my sweet girl. You can tell she aims to please, but is scared of a negative consquence. The first thing i think i should do is socialize. She does WONDERFUL on her lead when walking, so i figure we would go to parks and such to socialize my baby so atleast she isnt scared of people. Then move on from there. would this be the best coarse of action or does anyone else have  any other ideas that i should start out with?
 

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I think socializing would be a great start!  :)  That way she would see that there are friendly people in this world that are just going to be friendly with her. Please keep us updated on that little angel.  :)
 

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If what you suspect is true and the breeder abused her, there has got to be a way to get the word out about this person....What a shame Andrea....Definitely if she does well on a leash, take her for walks, let her see that there are good people in this world that won't hurt her..It's going to take time and Boxersaige was right about being patient...She will come around and the fact that she loves your daughtet already is a very good start...Give that sweet gorl a hug for me and let us know how she progresses...
 

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This might sound silly but our Gabi was scared of tape measures among other things. She does not like the sound they make (metal twisting). What I sometimes do is pet the tape measure and praise it and she quickly warms up to it. Same thing goes for the vaccum, I acted like it was another pet and I praised the heck out of it and she made friends with it really quick. I also put a treat on the vaccum for her to eat while it was running (not moving). It's all about making positive experiences out of things. I hope that she was not abused! That would be aweful. Good luck with her and again, please keep us posted on her progress.
 

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Good advice from all.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
i just wanted to thank everyone for the wonderful encouragment and advice that has been given. Right now we have put up the toys including the fetch toys and only have out the rope she will drag every now and then and her squeeky bear she picked out from the store. These seem to be the only thing she is truly comfortable with. When i got home last night things were a bit better, she came up to me but shyed away when i knelt down beside her. Thats ok though-we can make it through. I know it is going to take time for her to become comfortable, but i am young still so i am prepared to take as long as needed- i wont be going anywhere anytime soon!! I love to sit back and watch her with the cat. My poor Prince isnt too fond of Savannah but she takes such joy in trying to play with him. It is almost like she is a puppy again- this is the most relaxed/natural state i have ever seen her in. As far as commands go, we are working only on sit for right now. i figure once we have mastered that then we will move on to another command. I figured it will take some time to move on though and dont want to throw too many commands out and end up confusing her. Thanks again guys/gals-Savannah and myself truly appreciate it!!
 

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It does my heart good to hear that you are seeing little signs of improvement in Savannah and I love your attitude..Yes, it will take time, just like with a child (as you should know  :) )..But I believe the rewards are so very much worth it...Good idea to put up the toys except for what she is comfortable with and yes, for now I would do just one command at a time...Take it very slow and before you know it, you will see the Savannah that she truly is.....

Best of luck and keep those updates coming
 

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now all you have to do is let her trust you by playing with her as if you have a small child try not to stand up when playing with her, go on your knees and try to exite her with toys and try to act like her, it is funny but it works. I managed to gain the trust of a retriever I rescued, He had never seen a house in his life.And do not shout when you speak.
 
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