Ask Ali - A Professional Dog Trainer Answers Your Dog Training Problems!

My dog startles out of sleep when we move on the sofa, what do we do?

March 26, 2023 Ali Smith Season 2 Episode 6
Ask Ali - A Professional Dog Trainer Answers Your Dog Training Problems!
My dog startles out of sleep when we move on the sofa, what do we do?
Show Notes Transcript

Today, I'm talking about my dog who is startling out of sleep and showing aggression. Leisha asks for my opinion on whether she should adjust the dog's medication and train. I share my insight on what I suspect this may be, and that it's most likely centered in deafness or pain, but that I would strongly suggest you see a good vet.

I hope you enjoy!

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 Welcome to Ask Ali with multi award-winning dog trainer, Ali Smith, answering real dog questions from real dog parents. LA girl 23 wants to know about her dog, who startles out of sleep when you move on the sofa and then they get aggressive. W she wants to know if I would recommend increasing the SSRI dosage and train.

So for anyone that doesn't know, the SSRI is actually. An acronym that refers to antidepressants. It's selective serotonin

re-uptake inhibitors. There you go. . And that's like your Prozac, your Zoloft Fluoxetine. Okay, , these sorts of medications are given to dogs when they are particularly stressed and they are struggling to get out of that zone. And it can just give us the opportunity to rebalance their chemistry inside and give us a better opportunity to train.

I've never been against medication when it's needed, and I do wanna say that and I'm just saying this for people that aren't Lacey girl, who is obvious. Gone through a process to get to this stage because medication is never a replacement for training. It's a really great assistance for training.

Okay. So cuz obviously we can't make progress if the internal biology is incorrect or not incorrect, but just misaligned. So it always helps. So let's get back to this dog startles on the couch and gets aggressive when they are disturb. To me, this is a really big sign that your dog might be either struggling with pain or they're struggling with their hearing.

These two things would both tell me that your dog needs to go to a vet and that I'm not the person you need to talk to. Knowing that I'm not a vet is quite important, and knowing that I am just a trainer,  is quite important too. So for me, I wouldn't just whack up the SSRI dosage and train. I would genuinely go to your vet, ask them the questions.

I'd get some physical tests done, some x-rays done, some blood tests done, if you can, if not, the easiest. Way to manage this in the short term is to and this sounds really sad and I hate recommending this, but I wouldn't let pups sleep on the sofa for your protection more than like a dominance thing cuz it's not a dominance thing.

We all know it's not a dominant.  It's a, it's a safety issue at this stage because nobody wants to get bitten and nobody wants to put a dog bite on their dog's record. Okay? So I would just encourage pup to sleep. If, especially if they're going into a deep sleep and you are gonna be getting up and stuff like that, I would just encourage 'em to go use bed because you are less likely to disturb them and you are less likely to trigger whatever it is that is triggering them.

 Safety purposes, that would be my strongest recommendation. Okay. And go see a vet. Sorry, I really wish I could do you give you more on that one. But I don't have, I don't have the information.  And I don't wanna give you dangerous advice either.   📍 Do you want Allie to answer your questions? Email woof and make sure to subscribe.