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19 Jul 2010

Basset scarred for life?
My husband and I adopted a female basset via the SPCA when she was 10 months old. She was treated very badly by her previous owners and we had a lot of problems to deal with when we first got her. We gave her a lot of love, her own toys, blanket etc to show her how welcome she was. She has made tremendous progress and in general she is quite an obedient dog. The problem is that, first thing in the morning, she wets herself if you try to touch her. And we can see she''s a bit frightened. It happens especially when my husband tries to touch her unexpectedly. When he gives her her food and pats her on the head before she starts eating, she wets herself. We can''t understand it, it has been 8 months already, why is she still so frightened? As I said, she was abused by her previous family. Will this behaviour ever change or is she scarred for life because of her history with her previous family? What can we do about it? We have talked about getting her a play mate, another small dog. Will that be a good idea?
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Expert
CyberVet
CyberVet

01 Jan 0001

Hi Lara

This appears to be a case of submissive urination. What you may need to do is change how you interact with the dog. Do not approach the dog but let the dog come to you. Greet the dog calmly by kneeling down at the dogs level. Let the dog know you are there. Most imporatantly never raise your voice or change the tone of your voice when the urination starts as this may make the situation worse.

Give this lovely basset time and she will respond to the love and attention that you offer. I do not think that you need another pet at this stage.
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