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January 9, 2019 at 10:33 am #1009263
WARNING: I have listed a few triggers here that I haven’t seen mentioned elsewhere on this forum. If you have a dog and haven’t been bothered by this kind of stuff yet you might not want to read further.
We have a very sweet and loving but also fairly anxious dog. She is very shy, clingy and emotionally demanding. She follows me everywhere I go, making an incessant ticking noise on the floor. I keep her nails trimmed but it doesn’t help at all (as you all know this is not about volume). We’ve put rugs down but they only help so much. Besides putting her in another room, the only thing that helps at all is socks, but they make her miserable so that’s not a real solution either.
Then of course there is eating and relentless lip smacking. First thing in the morning she greets me with happy lip smacking, then lip smacking while she waits for her food, then slurping and gobbling her food, then lip smacking after the food…. on and on and on. She greets me with smacking lips frequently throughout the day, and she typically spends about ten minutes smacking her lips with very slow exaggerated noises while she is falling asleep.
Her frenzy of barking when people come over has conditioned me to feel heart pounding anxiety every time I see someone turning into the driveway, so I’m greeting people at the door in a state of high tension rather than warm welcoming.
When people are visiting I struggle to focus on the conversation when the dog is wandering around. I try to tolerate it but eventually lose patience and have to ask her to lie down, sometimes even mid sentence, which can be awkward and embarrassing. People don’t understand my reaction and having to explain it is just uncomfortable and doesn’t help anything.
I find it really hard to deal with this emotionally. My husband can’t relate but he does try his best to be understanding, and he gives me the space I need to try and cope.
I can’t vent about it to other people, because everyone must love dogs unconditionally or they’re going straight to hell, right? People do not ever want to hear negative things about dogs. I do love her and I do everything I can to make sure she has a good life. I want to have her in my life, but I can’t deny that she is a minefield of misophonia triggers.
When PMS comes around I become so much more sensitive that I can’t even stand the sight of her. On the worst days I just pretend I am away at work, and I keep her in another room for part of the day (with chews, stuffed kong, etc). I think it’s healthy for her to learn to have alone time for when we actually do go out, but I still feel bad shutting her away when all she wants is to be near me. Knowing that I’m causing her to feel unhappy makes my anger so much worse, I’m angry at myself for being like this, and angry that I can’t seem to do anything to fix it. It’s infuriating on many levels.
I guess I just need to feel like someone out there actually understands how frustrating this situation is. Are dogs just not meant for people like us? Have I done all I can and this is as good as it gets, or is there some other way to cope that I haven’t discovered yet? Can anyone relate?