Crazy dog : Life with emotionally/mentally disabled pets

crazy dogCrazy dog. I know them. I live in what is essentially a group home for pets who were unwanted, neglected, or abandoned. The dogs and cats who are a part of my family are rescues with a range of physical, emotional, and mental disorders or disabilities. Whether these are caused by genetic or environmental influences, they cause problems for many pets and their owners.


A lot of the time, owners of crazy dogs (or cats, or whatever your pet may be) feel stigmatized or embarrassed. You want to constantly apologize for your antisocial dog’s behavior. You’re pretty sure the neighbors think you’ve abused your dog who screams like a toddler throwing a tantrum any time you leave them alone. Your friends can’t come over to visit without a long, involved process that includes crating your dogs in separate rooms and turning on ceiling fans and radios for “white noise.” You constantly wonder what you could do differently to help your dog.

Here are just a couple of tips for other folks out there who may have a crazy dog:

  1. Take a trip to the vet

This is your first move.

Make sure that your pet isn’t suffering from a physical problem that’s leading to a behavioral response. Pain or discomfort can lead to a plethora of crazy dog issues—from timidity to aggression. A vet can also help to determine if your dog may need medical or pharmaceutical support to help overcome or live more comfortably with their specific case.

  1. Stop feeling guilty

Your dog’s emotional and mental health may or may not have been influenced or caused by your actions. That’s in the past. Learn from past experiences, commit to helping your dog and move forward!

  1. Don’t be embarrassed

Any pet, of any breed or upbringing, can suffer from illness, disorder, or disability. It doesn’t only affect rescues. It doesn’t necessarily mean that a dog has been abused or neglected. We can’t assume a dog’s background by its behavior.

  1. Commit to a scientifically-based system of rehab/treatment

There are a lot of TV shows, books, YouTube videos, and local trainers who claim to know the answer to your crazy dog problems. Maybe you’ve been using the same techniques that were taught before the insights provided to us by modern animal behavioral psychology. Scientific understanding of animal biological chemistry has come a long way in the past 20 years.

Take the time to study up on scientifically-based and scientifically-proven treatment plans.  Stefani Fortney at Guthrie Pet Hospital offers one on one obedience training and group obedience classes.  Call today for your behavioral consultation!

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