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I need your help 🙁
I have an 14 month old Standard poodle named Elsa. Since her heat ended (about 3 weeks ago), her behaviour inside changed alot. In the past I was so proud of her because she always slept inside and was active outside, she would drop on the floor and sleep like a stone after a walk. I know dogs need 18 hours of sleep per day however Elsa won't achieve even 14 anymore.
It is not about the exercise, she gets enough mental and physical stimulation. Sometimes I have a lot of things to do so I take her with me and we are on our feet for the whole day. Even then she won't sleep when we get home.
I try to sum up her behaviour:
she will "sleep" (she lies on the floor but is kind of still watching us) for about 15 minutes to 1 hours, then she jumps up and either follows us and stares oder just stares at us when we lie on the couch, or bed. Then she will start to bark, 1-3 very very loud barks, and then she stares again. The thing is we never react. We always ignore her. So why doesn't she get that barking gets her nowhere?
I also started to silently give her treats or calmy praise and pet her when she lays calm on the floor. It doesn't work.
She stares at us for 10-15 Minutes and will then lay down again for 15 minutes – 1 hour and then all starts again.
When she stares at us and barks even a laugh between my girlfriend and me is rewarding for her so we sit there silently, and try to not even look at her.
So it is kind of exausting and we can't have a chill afternoon anymore. And since it doesn't get better we are getting frustrated.
She has cow ears to chew on and toys. I dont know what to do. Is this still adolescence? Is this because of her heat?
The problem is also that she is so intelligent. You cant just reward good behaviour after bad behaviour because then she will think that she has to do the bad first, then the good and then she gets a treat. And since she only barks 1-3 times and then stares, we cant reward her for being silent because she will still think we reward her barking AND staring. And when she finally settles after the staring, we can't reward her because she is not really sleeping or resting it is also some sort of waiting, so praising her in this state will be a confirmation for the whole staring, barking, waiting package. 🙁 Help
I wanted to add that she is not a hyperactive dog. This is absolutely new behaviour. She has good manners and listens well. Also she has no problem with sleeping through the night. Her restlessness appears only during the day till 23-24h
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