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Old 11-22-2012, 05:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Is there something wrong with my Maltese?

Hi, I have had Keno for almost two years now. When he was first brought into our home he acted like a normal puppy. Playful, and loved being petted. But I did notice something strange when I first started taking him out for walks...Strangers scare Keno. I mean he hides behind me from them or he would lower him self and like slowly and very cautiously walk over towards them, and if they tried touching him he would run off and hide.
A few months later he started going under my couch and no matter how much I called him he wouldn't come out. I would have to wait for a few hours before he would come out from under there. Soon I had to start pulling him out from there or else he wouldn't leave. He wont sleep on my bed with me, he sleep under my bed and I soon stopped fighting that and put a dog bed under my bed.
When I made the decision to get a Maltese I was told they are attention lovers and very outgoing and all that. But mine seems like emotionally disturbed. He is easily frightened by many family members of mine and hides by me when they come over.
Is there something wrong with Keno?
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Old 11-22-2012, 05:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Aww poor keno ''!!... I would be going and seeking a great dog behaviour therapist to help there really good iv heard it might be a bit costly buy if you wanna keep keno I would recommend hope this helps xx
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Old 11-22-2012, 05:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hey, Danielle, I don't think there's anything wrong with him at all, he's just a little shy. I honestly believe that pets, dog, cat, bird, whatever, are a lot like kids and you just can't try and pigeonhole them into a stereotype. Some of them are shy and somee of them are gregarious and some are a happy combination of the two when it suits them. Honestly, unless Keno exhibits hostility or fear that petrifies him, I don't think I'd worry too much.

My Deer Chi, Freeway, who is a rescue from off the Freeway, sleeps with me unless it's storming or windy, in which case he goes under the bed and hides in between the shoe boxes. It used to really bother me that he did that till I figured out it makes him feel safe, kind of like a baby that is swaddled tightly, I'm guessing it is the way the boxes make him feel. I'm thought about getting him this thing called a Thunder Shirt which mimics the swaddling, but I'm still on the fence.

Anyway, Keno, is probably just a little people shy... maybe take him to the vet and rule out anything physically wrong just for your own peace of mind, but it could just be he's a little shy.

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Old 11-22-2012, 06:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Poor Keno. It isn't typical for a Maltese to be fearful. The breed standard even states that....well here is the temperament taken from the AKC standard...

Temperament
For all his diminutive size, the Maltese seems to be without fear. His trust and affectionate responsiveness are very appealing. He is among the gentlest mannered of all little dogs, yet he is lively and playful as well as vigorous.

Of course, all dogs have their individual personalities, but fitting the temperament is as important as looks.

How old was Keno when you got him? How old was he when you first started socializing him? There is a stage in puppy development when they are easily frightened, if something bad happened to him at that time it could have done a lot of damage to his confidence.

The best thing would be to find a good behaviorist, but if that isn't possible you will need to read everything you can find on how to desensitize him.
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Old 11-22-2012, 07:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thank you. I don't really have money right now so I will probably just read up on how to calm him atleast in his own home
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Old 11-22-2012, 07:43 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Ok well the idea that he is just shy calms me an awful lot. I guess that would make sense that the couch is his safe place. Thank you!
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Old 11-22-2012, 07:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Ok see I saw the temperament and that's when I started worrying. I got Keno at a pretty young age a few months old like three I think. Any experiences I can't really think of ..I do have depression so I don't know if he some how picked up on it? There has been times when me and family members have gotten into arguments and as hard as I try I know I usually end up yelling and that is sometimes when those arguments calm down we notice Keno has gone. So maybe that has had an effect on my poor baby.
Maybe therapy would help him.

Thank you.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenormous View Post
Ok see I saw the temperament and that's when I started worrying. I got Keno at a pretty young age a few months old like three I think. Any experiences I can't really think of ..I do have depression so I don't know if he some how picked up on it? There has been times when me and family members have gotten into arguments and as hard as I try I know I usually end up yelling and that is sometimes when those arguments calm down we notice Keno has gone. So maybe that has had an effect on my poor baby.
Maybe therapy would help him.

Thank you.
Oh yes. My DH and I never really argue, but sometimes we play argue or play smack each other...the dogs get really anxious and, I softly say we better stop fooling around, we are scaring the dogs.

There is a specific method of training to make dogs less fearful by getting them used to situations very slowly. Maybe somebody here will be more helpful. Today is not a big day on the forum, so please return. I'm sure there will be more helpful replies to your post.

Three months old is a good time to get a puppy.
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Old 11-23-2012, 12:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Kelly was scared of a lot of my family members when I first got her. She wouldn't even let anyone pet her and on walks she barked at everyone who walked past us. Since I started taking her on daily walks to the park where she sees different people everyday she's gotten so much better at it! She doesn't bark so much or isn't as scared of people like she used to be. It's all about socializing them without being too pushy you know? And your puppy's really young so it's the perfect time for him to get used to people
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