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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I feed Gracie twice a day. We have a fan right in the office doorway. So when we feed Graceful we have to move this huge fan. She is afraid of it while she eats. We can't figure out why for the life of us. We just recently figured out why she wouldn't eat. For a month or so we had to dump her food on the floor for her to eat. Is there any way to get her over this fear? I am fine moving the fan every morning and night then moving it back. As long as my baby girl eats. I have tried to teach her that the fan will not hurt her, I give her treats when she walks past it and so on.

She is also very afraid of cords, she will not cross a cord no matter what. We figured out that, that is what who ever hog tied her used to do it. Is there any way to get her over that fear as well? Could that be why she is afraid of the fan so much? Could she maybe see the cord and not want to eat because she remembers what happened to her?

Sorry this is so long I am just looking for advice on this.
 

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Well I am not real sure what to say here, but I am a firm believer that you have to get your dog over their fears. Like my girl Takira was afraid of sprinklers I mean terrified of them. So what I did was first set the sprinkler up and then let her smell it and look at it. Then I put her on leesh and turned the sprinkler on, we sat there watching it for a few minutes until she calmed down. Then I proceeded to walk her over to the sprinkler and we both got soaked by it she was going a little crazy but I put her in a Foos and we just stayed there. After a few minutes she was fine, loving it! We ran through the sprinkler and played, moral of the story is confront her fears and help her get over them.

The only suggestion I have for the food and maybe this is way off base but I would let her skip a meal, get her good and hungry I mean really hungry. Then put the food out and see if she eats near the fan then. My 2 cents, hopefully someone with more experience can chime in and help you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I tried letting her get good and hungry. At first we thought that maybe she just wasn't hungry. She went 3 days without eating. After the first day we figured that she just wasn't hungry that we were feeding her to much. We got up the next day her food was still there. So I thought that she still wasn't hungry very unlike her but I never had a dog that ate at certain times all the time. The second night when it came to her feeding time and the food was still in the bowl we emptyed the bowl figuring it got stale or something. Gave her fresh food and there it sat. That night we went to bed, we figured she must not be feeling good. In the morning I woke up went to call the vets office and while I was dialing she would grab a mouth full of food and drop it on the floor until her food dish was empty then she would eat it off the floor. So I hung up the phone and gave her more food in the same spot she put all of hers at. We moved the food dish thinking that maybe she didn't like the cats drinking out of her water and pushing stuff off the counters into her food dish. We moved her food dishes closer to the fan. So now we just shut the fan in the office. So that way she eats her normal twice a day.

I just want to say that I agree with you 110% she needs to get over her fears of things. But at the same time I don't want to push her to the point where she thinks of me as evil. I tried to put her on a leash to go over cords, she pulled me back. She has a lot more muscle mass than I do I guess or at least more power. How else can I help her get over her fears? Should I take a cord and lay it outside? Maybe she will cross it out there then I can slowly bring it inside.

Like I said before this is MY first dog. We had a dog growing up but she was my brothers no matter what. So I am clueless as what to do. I tried to research ways to get her over her fears and I tried almost all of them. I feel so bad seeing her afraid of things. I feel helpless because of her past. :sadcry:
 

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Gracie have you put alittle water on it and heated it up at all where it would be alittle warm so she could smell it better..... have you tried mixing dry with wet and alittle water maybe adding some lunch meat and heating it alittle to peak her interest... that is what i have to do with tasneem... she refuses to eat unless it is alittle warm with both wet and hard plus a tiny water and meat... picky dogs... :(
 

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I wish I could offer more in the way of advice but I don't have any solid answers. I deal with almost the same type of thing with Ava, although not as extreme. She's very sensitive to any changes in her enviroment and the slightest thing she notices. For example, we had bought a new light fixture for our computer room which is a little bigger and a lot different looking than the old one. As soon as Ava noticed it, her hair went up and she started growling at the ceiling and wouldn't come in the room. Once I realized what she was upset over I just ignored it, not wanting to make a big deal. It took her a little while but she soon realized it was nothing to worry about.

Recently, I bought a new mop and she was terrified of that. Wouldn't come near me if I was touching it and would hide in the bedroom if I were using it. My husband is in the process of building a new fish pond and we had to transfer all the fish into a big inflatable pool for the time being. Once Ava saw the pool, she began shaking and panting although she didn't act as skittish as she normally does anytime there's a change so that left me feeling better.

With everything she acts funny about I do my best not to react. I figure if I coddle her and tell her it's ok, that will just enforce her fear, letting her think I approve of the way she acts. I hope you'll be able to find a solution to Gracie's problem. Perhaps you could contact a local dog trainer and have him work with you.
 

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You are on the right track by treating and praising her everytime she passes the cord. I would take it one step further. Be prepared to feel like and idiot though. I would hug the fan (cord), tell Grace that it is a GOOD fan (cord). Make a huge deal about the fan in a very positive way and hopefully she will see that it isn't a threat. Lots of praise and treats when she does come up to the fan. I mean have a party with her when she goes to it. Good luck, it will take some time. One thing you don't want to do is force it on her.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you every one for the really gread advice! It is much appreciated. I will be trying some of you ideas. Putting water in her food and heating it, I do that every so often. I don't do it every day but once in a while I do. She doesn't eat it if she can see the fan.

Dobe_Paws: I don't know how you do it. It would drive me crazy if Gracie freaked out of every little change. I hate seeing her in fear now when she is but to see it every time you change some thing that would be rough. Will you give her a big hug and kiss for me?

Oh I have another question to CoAl-s-Mom: I should hug the cord, I understand that part. If Gracie is laying in the office should I pet the cord to let her see that it isn't going to hurt me? Should I also try to pet her with the cord to let her know it can be a loving thing? I didn't even think about having a party with a dog and a cord but it is a really good idea.

Thank you all again for you advice and stories!
 

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I wouldn't try to pet her with the cord until she is more comfortable with it. You don't want to expect to much from her so soon or it could backfire on you. You are desensitizing her and it will have to be baby steps.
 

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Dobe_Paws: I don't know how you do it. It would drive me crazy if Gracie freaked out of every little change. I hate seeing her in fear now when she is but to see it every time you change some thing that would be rough. Will you give her a big hug and kiss for me?
I really don't see it as a major issue. I won't let it become one. If she gets sketched out by something it's usually short lived.... Except for her fear over the vacuum cleaner. Other than that once she's had a chance to check out whatever the new object or change is, she's fine with it.

And I will give her a big hug and a kiss. :) You don't have to ask me twice.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Dobe_Paws said:
And I will give her a big hug and a kiss. :) You don't have to ask me twice.

Lol. I would hope that I wouldn't have to ask twice with such a sweet dog like Ava.

Gracie is doing a little better today with the fan. She ate her breakfast with the fan in sight. So tonight when I give her dinner I will move the fan a hair closer to her food dish. I figure if I move it slowly then she will get use to it and not even notice that it has been moved. Along with working with her on how nice the fan can be. :D
 
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