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Archived Message
Requires LOTS of attention
by Lucy C

Requires LOTS of attention I have a five month old female Maltese who requires LOTS of attention. She has difficulty being alone. It used to be "cute" at first, but my pup follows me EVERYWHERE around the house. She follows me from couch to couch, to the restroom, to the kitchen, to the front door. When I'm taking a shower she will bark outside the door until I let her in the restroom. She will even wake up from sound sleep to follow me to my next destination. When I do sit on a couch, she will have to lie or sit on my lap always, never by herself. Although, I care about the pup dearly, I was wondering if this type of behavior was common for this breed or will it be something she will grow out of as she matures. Otherwise, she is a wonderful pet without any other problems.
Maybe you have given her to much attention on the beginning. Alex follows me to every room also, where I go, he goes, even to the restroom. He is funny, when I flush the toilet, he stands up on the bowl and watches the water go down. But I don't mind. When I don't want him to follow me somewhere, I put him in his crate and close the door. He likes to sit on the reclining chair with me when I watch TV. But when I want to read the news paper, that's where I draw the line. I tell him "no". If you don't make her change, she is not going to change her behaviour by herself. By the way, when I take a shower he does not stay in the bathroom, he goes somewhere else because he thinks he is going to get a shower to.
Holy cow! Does your dog sound like mine, exactly to a tee! She's a yr. now so far it's got a little better, but not much. Age will tell. Try not to pay attention to her.I even saw this on t.v. keep walking around the house closing and open doors walk in and out. You probably eventually drive her crazy and she'll get tired of following you, don't even look at the dog when your want to leave the room. That helped me too. I read it in "Separation Anxiety" from Jay, go down the list from the directory. I'm sure that will help you out a great deal. Best of Luck!
Lucy, my Buster(5 1/2 mos old) is the same as your little girl. Follows me everywhere. Wants me to hold him even as I type here. He's finally learned he can get up and down from the couch so if I go to the restroom he's right there. I don't have a solution other than if I have something to do, like house cleaning, I put him in the kitchen. We have a baby gate I put across the opening to keep him in. I did get him a Kong Toy, which you put yummies or somekind of food in it to give him when you go away. Tried it one day when I was at home. This keeps him amused for maybe 10 minutes or so. He bounced it unitl the yummies came out. Smart guy! Someone told me I needed to take him to obedience class so I can learn to teach him to be independent. I would welcome suggestions also.
Libby & Buster
Lucy - Get used to it. I don't even try to close a door inside the house anymore. They are afraid they might miss something. Another Maltese might help some so they can have company but they will still want to know what you are doing just in case they want to do it too.
Lucy: My Skippy did this too. Since he has gotten older it has tapered off somewhat. He still likes to be with me but he also likes to be alone . Just be patient she will probably grow out of it. She just loves you so much that she can't stand to be without you.
Lucy, Rocky is our two year old male maltese. It almost sounds as though you are describing his behavior. He MUST be with someone at all times. If my husband and I sit on the couch, Rocky sits between us. When I read a book, cook or do housework, Rocky watches me. If I am on the computer, he's on the floor, under my chair. Even when he is so tired (that he can't keep his eyes open), Rocky will not depart from us or our guests to find a dark, quiet place to sleep. Is this typical of the breed? I'm not certain. One thing I do know is that he brings me so much joy and shows me such love that I've just adjusted to his ways, well...because that's his personality. I must admit that I'm constantly watching my every move, making sure I don't step on him. Indeed, it is frustrating at times, especially when I'm walking in the house with bags of groceries in my arms. Hang in there. Your sweetie's just trying to tell you that she feels safe around you. There's no where else she'd rather be.
Liz C.
I started to laugh when I read your message, Lucy. This is my first Maltese experience and my 5 month old Annie also follows me everywhere. I think it is pretty normal behavior. Have you gotten her used to a crate at all? It is a good place for them to go when you absolutely need them away for awhile and to be safe. Annie loves her playpen/crate and is comfortable there but of course can't be left there all the time. I read the cutes thing on this web site called the "Ten Commandments of Dog Ownership" I believe. The commandment that stuck with me the most was something like this. "Remember, you have your friends, your job, your hobbies, your family and all your acitivities and all I have is you." I think that about says it all. These puppies are very loyal and just want to be with us. Good luck.
Barbara Davis
My Gizmo goes everywhere I go also. In the morning when I get out of bed to the bathroom for my shower, he goes with me every morning if I lock him out he will claw at the door until I open it and let him in. Though when he is outside playing he is perfectly content to not be with me. I do feel the Maltese seems to be a little more needy that some other breeds. But thats part of why I love them.
Kathy S.
Joining the chorus -- better get used to it. I always joke that Andy is my co-dependent puppy. At a year-and-a-half, he is always no more than 3 feet from me (and that includes showers and bathroom time). I have found, though, that as long as they can "see you" they are better at being farther from you. For example, Andy climbs on top of the back of a big easy chair (I call it his perch) so he can watch me in the kitchen. But I tell you, no dog will ever love you more.
Harry and Andy
My dog is very attached as well. If I get up off the couch, he follows me. If I go downstairs, he follows me. If I leave the house, and rest of the family is home, he sits on the top of the stairs, and waits until I get home. He really is totally at rest when the whole family is home, and he knows where they all are. If one of our children stays the night at someone's house, he is always checking the room before we go to sleep as if to tell us 'hey, we're not all here, are you sure this is okay?" He is so happy when they return the next day. I think it's called devotion. -Patti & Buster
Well, for me this would not be a problem - my Yorkie was like this all the years that I had him. If I was not home for whatever reason he would simply go into the bedroom and pout, then come out when I returned and stay right with me constantly. Now Phoebe is doing pretty much the same thing. I do have her in a pen for a good bit of time, because my grandchildren are here - but when they are occupied or not home Phoebe is on my heels. Her favorite spot is my shoulder!!! I have had to learn to type one handed, she really likes that baby position, prefers it to lap sitting. She keeps me company in the kitchen, in the bathroom, wherever - even though I have restricted her free time and so on - she is definitely my companion and that is why I got her! The pen does allow me time for pursuits other than puppy inclusive things, such as reading or crocheting more blankets for my baby! Maybe it's working this well because her pen is in the living room and she misses very little of the families activities.
Leslie R
Maltese are a companion breed. Your Maltese is simply doing what comes naturally to him. They crave our attention. However, obedience training as well as an established routine can help. My Maltese has a pen in our heated garage as well as a crate to sleep in at night. My baby has been trained to stay in his pen and be quiet because he knows when I come back, he gets a "cookie." There are times when one just cannot have them around. I would never get the laundry done because Noah runs off with the socks, He just can't help it; he wants to play. When I get real busy, Noah is good to stay in his pen and when I come back, I can give him my full attention.
April B.
Even as I sit here at my computer, my Buddy is sitting on my lap asleep. Everywhere I go, he goes. He sits with us on the couch, he sleeps at the foot of our bed, and he follows us from room to room. I find this endearing that he loves us so much that he can't be without us. I'm thinking that this must be characteristic of the breed, because everyone I have talked to who owns one talks about how attached they are to us. I know that when I arrive from work that he is going to be so happy to see me, and I count on it. The Maltese is truly a loving breed.
My boyfriend says Spike & Fancy are my tumors....
Mary, Fancy, & Spike
I would just like to thank everyone for their responses and the Biancos for their truly wonderful website. I adopted "Tammy" about 10 weeks ago and she has been a joy to my life and love the pup dearly! My friends call her my shadow because she is always by my side following me. I am glad to hear that she this behavior is normal. Additionally, she is an intelligent little creature. When my parents call my name and I am not in her sight, she looks around looking for me, wagging her tail (according to them). Good luck to everyone in their Maltese rearing and hope your creatures fill your lives with joy as does mine.
Lucy C
I have two little shadows...if I don't hear eight little feet following me I know they are stuck behind a losed door somewhere...I used to have one (Data) and thought when I got my second (Spike, yes he thinks he's a Rottweiller) it would get better. NOT! My husband tries to make them stay behind when I leave the room, but they can"t stand it. I luv always having someone to talk to and hug.
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