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We have a small white maltese/poodle mix, he's about 8 years old. Up until 3 weeks ago we also had 2 cats. One of the cats died, he was 19. He was our dog's best friend. They would go roam the property together and just hang out. Well, since this cat has passed away the dog won't let the other cat out of his sight, not for a minute. Even to get him to go outside we have to take the cat with us. This cat is 21 years old and although she seems in good health, I don't know what will happen to the dog when she dies. Any suggestions on how to get our dog to relax about this cat?
Karen in NE Indiana
 

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I always tell people that they should have 2 of any animal they have. Dogs especially since they are pack animals NEED companions.
Another cat is a good idea but a second dog would be way better:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I like the idea of another dog much better than getting another cat. I've been trying to talk DH into it.
karen
 

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LOL, twice now my bosses wife has just come home with dogs.. claiming she found them on the street and didn't have the heart to leave them;).... they have 6 in total now HAHA
 

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zookeeper16 said:
I second (third and fourth) the vote for another pet, whether it be a dog or a cat. The dog is in mourning over its best friend.
I've heard a lot of people say this affects ther pets. I vote for another pet too but it still may take a while for the dog to grieve. Poor little guy.

Patty
 

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Pets are just small furry children. They have feelings and they feel loses. Your dog lost a friend and is worried about losing another. Makes sense to me anyway.
I'd get another younger pet so that when the 21 year old cat dies he will still have a link/friend in this world.
 

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We actually had to get doggy downers for one of our dogs when he lost his brother. They had never been separated in 11 yrs. We were able to wean him off of them after about a month. I agree about another pet IF that is what YOU want as well. If not, then talk to your vet about his mourning and consider medication to help him through the initial loss.
 

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QuiltingLady2 said:
Pets are just small furry children.
Animals are not small furry children and should not be treated like children. They should be respected for what they are (animals!) and treated accordingly.

Karen: Your dog thinks more of the cat's companionship than your companionship or the dog would be happy to spend time with you, or go with you (outside or wherever) when you require. It's your decision whether you want to be #1 in your dog's life or let another dog or cat be it's center of attention. If you don't mind the dog being dependent on another animal for it's comfort let it follow the cat around or get it another dog/cat for a buddy. Or you could separate the two of them and keep the dog with you for a while, insisting the dog go where you go, stay with you, etc. You might even keep the dog on a leash, even in the house, to make sure the dog stays with you. Teach it to sit/stay or down/stay while you put groceries away, do the laundry, open doors, whatever, that the dog learns to wait on you. Give it a command to stay but also have a release command, I use 'OK' for everyday stuff or 'That'll Do' if we're working stock. Make it fun, love all over them for little successes. Start with short amounts of time, even just a few seconds of sit/down to longer periods of time. They learn that they will get a release if they wait. This is one way to give your dog a 'job' to do, some kind of task, pretty quick it won't worry about where the cat is anymore but will be wondering 'What's Karen up to? What are we doing today?'.

I have working dogs, cattle dogs, and you don't leave them loose with other dogs if you want them to look for you for directions. It doesn't take any time at all they'd rather be playing with that other dog than doing what you want them to, they learn to resent being with you because your jobs aren't free for all play like with another dog. I keep my dogs kenneled when not working. When they come out it's because they're going to be right with me or going to work stock (with me). Time with me is their play time.
 

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Animals are not small furry children and should not be treated like children. They should be respected for what they are (animals!) and treated accordingly.
Yes, Sunraven, they should be respected for what they are! You seem to be seeking control over animals that nature didn't intend to be isolated from other animals and then you expect them to behave like well programmed robots, catering to just your needs. Sounds rather Altruistic!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks to everyone for their comments. Some things I agreed with some things I didn't. At this stage of our life, we've decided not to get another pet but to talk to the vet to help ease our dog through his transition. He's always been a "caretaker" type of animal. Not only looking after the other pets but us as well.
Thanks again,
Karen in Indiana
 

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Step, do you know anything about training stockdogs? How about a working dog in general? They are not isolated from other animals. They are not allowed to run loose unsupervised with other dogs. A dog loose with another dog will learn to work for that dog and not for the handler- this doesn't translate well to working stock. I put rules on stock work (must send when told, must stop when told, must hold a group together, must bring them to the handler unless directed otherwise, are some basics) whereas another dog has no requirements for what it's buddy should do, just have at 'em, start when you want, quit when you want. A dog that doesn't look to the handler for directions won't be useful when working on it's own, it won't want to work within your rules or is reliant on the other dog to want to work in the first place or have courage to work. I want a dog to be able to think independently, which means training them on their own to respect the handler as #1 and understand how to control their stock, not relying on the other dog. They are not robots, if they are they wouldn't be useful because I'd have to be telling them every little move to make, the dog needs to be able to understand it's job and what is expected of it. It's instinct, it's bred into them for generations and generations of special selection- yes I expect them to cater to my needs, my needs are why I have dogs in the first place. The particular needs of people are why we have different breeds and why we even have dogs. Dogs are a man made creature, if not for humans and human needs, they would not exist.
 

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Sunraven ~ That was a wonderful explanation of the "use " of dogs..So true of any partnership formed with a working dog...Now I'm trying to figure out the little beasties that protect my home & hearth.."Chihuahuas" ..great early alert & foot warmers.....GrannieD
 
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