Are You A Hostage To Your Weimaraner?

By Chris Conklin | Last Updated: July 13, 2021

Imagine this: You are held hostage by your Weimaraner. You cannot leave the house to do any brief errand and leave your Weimaraner alone because he will destroy the house, become completely unglued, and bark and howl in misery. Does this sound familiar?

Weimaraners are notorious for being prone to separation anxiety, but some behaviors are normal and due to boredom. True separation anxiety is a highly anxious mental state where your Weimaraner cannot cope with your absence, and this is manifested in negative behavior. When left alone, your dog may drool, bark, or howl excessively; he may inappropriately urinate or defecate or be extremely destructive.

Separation anxiety can have genetic roots so one of the easiest preventive measures is to purchase a pup whose parents are not prone to it.

Some early signs of separation anxiety typically involves a Weimaraner that paces, whines or cries when an owner leaves the room or the house for a short period, especially when other family members are still present.

With a new Weimaraner puppy, establishing a routine that involves crating the puppy not only when you are gone but at set times when you are home will get him accustomed to his crate and being alone.

It’s also important to give your puppy behavioral responsibilities like waiting when entering and exiting doors and at dinner times. Do not give your puppy, no matter how well behaved, all of the privileges of an adult dog like sleeping in your bed or being loose unattended in your home.

Older Weimaraners such as those newly adopted from rescue should should be treated just like a puppy with a bigger attention span. Don’t move them in like they have lived with you forever, reserve privileges for them to earn as they learn the rules and routines of your household.

If you have a Weim with separation anxiety here are some tips on how to deal with separation anxiety.

Why Are Weims Prone to Separation Anxiety?

As a very intelligent breed Weims are often given privileges in the home that they are not emotionally capable of handling or that make their owners appear weak or submissive. 

As Weim owners we tend to make them integral to the functions of our households and lives without giving them enough behavioral responsibilities.

They begin to think we cannot function in our own homes without their input or presence, so when we leave they are brought to a state of panic that we, as submissive pack members versus leaders, are alone in the bigger world without them. In a pack situation only the more dominant members leave for hunting; lower, weaker and submissive members are most often left to watch young and guard the den.

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About Chris Conklin

Chris was a long time dog trainer, and was especially adept at training the owners. She was also the founder of Michigan Weimaraner Rescue and bred under the kennel name Celestial Weimaraners.

71 responses to “Are You A Hostage To Your Weimaraner?”

  1. Jessie says:

    I have had my Weimar for 2 years and I can leave him at home up to 7-9 hrs alone. How? He and I are very active!!! Just like a Weimar should be. I believe these pups love to be tired and they need to be out with their owners doing things that will make them tired. Murph and I spend most of our time outside walking, running, playing, or just sitting outside. Try this method and see if you have any changes.

  2. Tonya O’Hara says:

    Ha. We had a Weimaraner that tore up the house when it was left alone. We also had a Weimaraner cross Pointer which demolished our sofa one day when left alone. She was a really emotional dog but so gentle, I often have dreams about her.

  3. laura says:

    We have helped our 3-year old Weimeraner curb her separation anxiety by: 1) keeping her very active and making her tired; 2) keeping her entertained – fill a Kong with pumpkin, applesauce and 1/4 cup of Turdunkin (merrick wet food). Freeze it. She’s focused on getting all the yummy bits and 3) Leave her alone for a few hours at a time and come back. Add more time and repeat. Don’t make a big deal when you leave. In fact, don’t say anything, just leave. Weims are incredible dogs…Enjoy!

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Great tips, especially the kong recipe! Thank you!

    • Oz says:

      Great advice. I’ll try it. I have 3 mo. old Weim and a 4 mo. old Aussie-Lab mix. The Weim has recently started howling when I leave the house and specially if she catches a glimpse of the other dog. They both stay/sleep in crates in separate rooms. He’s fine–she’s starting to show bad separation signs.

  4. Marysia Appleton says:

    We bred these dogs for years and never experienced this with any of ours?

  5. Melissa Pleshek says:

    My weim is 7 years old and has recently started to destroy our home when we leave for work. I left and 2.5 hours my husband came home to a chewed up pair of jeans (his), the handles off my school bag, the blanket in the living room, the rug in the kitchen, and drywall off the hallway. PLEASE!! help I am at my wits end! She isn’t crated during the day anymore because for 1 year she has been a good girl. Now this and I need to start crating her again but do not want to because she cries.

    My husband leaves early, my children at 7:30 and I leave at 9 or 9:30 and the kids return at 3:30 each day. She is let out before and after, and is usually sleeping during the day.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Oh my it sounds frustrating, I’m sorry you are going through this! I think though that you should put her back in her crate since she’s “abused” her out-of-crate privileges. Try it for a few days, go through the crying and see what happens when you give her loose privileges again, I’ll bet she won’t need the reminder for too long before she gets the picture. She might just need an attitude adjustment 😉 you know how these Weims are… especially the girls it seems!

  6. Terri says:

    My Weimaraner will be 4 next month he has started weeing everywhere and opening doors to get in rooms he isn’t allowed in to wee. Please help he has been such a good boy till about 2 months ago. He hasn’t got an infection I’ve been to the vets. I just think he doesn’t like to be left but we have to go to work.

  7. Nate B says:

    I adopted a 7 year old weim from a shelter. When I was adopting her they said she had been returned because she was over active. No problem I already had a 1 year old weim male in the house and knew how to handle their outrageous energy. We put her in good metal wire crate and less than 4 hrs after putting her in there she broke out cutting herself on the metal, tore up flooring, tore up dry wall, and so much other stuff. Weve been to multiple vets and behavioralist, been medicating her on clomicalm and trazadone but still have to wore about her hurting herself or burning the house down….literally I came home today she had managed to turn on the stove. The behavioralist and even a weim rescue contacted suggested putting her down. We dont want to because of how close she has become to our family especially our other weim. They are inseparable. But its become hard not to truly consider that option. Any advice you have would be helpful thank you.
    I know ill probably get some flak for considering putting her down but it is bad.

    • Nate B says:

      And both people who suggested the euthanization of our dog are very respectable in their fields and we dont take the thought lightly

      • Anne Taguchi says:

        Hi Nate, first kudos for all the effort you have put in with your girl. I wish I had something to add to what you have already tried, but I’m afraid that I am at a loss. I do know someone who went through a very similar situation with an adopted Weim. They were also experienced Weim owners, and did everything they could to rehabilitate him and spent a couple years and many dollars, but unfortunately they did have to euthanize him. He was not adoptable and they were literally a hostage to the dog. I hate replying in such a manner, I hope someone else has words of encouragement for you.

    • Ann says:

      Hey Nate,
      I have never had that personal experience, but my parents did. What they ended up doing was making the dog purely a “outside” dog, and put him in a solid area (“doggie prison”). It’s not ideal, and the dog never really got his head on straight, but he was able to live out the rest of his years happy for the most part. He destroyed whatever was in the yard with him, so they just went ahead and let him have stuff they didn’t care about being destroyed, and it kept him happy.
      Like I said, it’s not an ideal solution, but if you are really attached to this her, it might be a way to keep her from hurting anything, and let her live out her life.

      Whether or not my words help, I hope things work out for you.

    • Debbie says:

      My Weim is now 6, he also destroyed nearly everything in our house and also turned the gas cooker on, how the house didn’t blow up I’ll never know. He has calmed a lot but continually begs and steals food, we have a lock on the fridge and any food has to be stored at head height as he opens all the cupboards, I have child safety gates all over the house to prevent him getting into certain rooms. I can cope with all that but he now whines during the early hours until we get up, it’s a steady high pitched whine and it’s driving us insane. My husband and I are like zombies most days. Have you experienced this problem too?

      • G says:

        Weims can be very difficult to handle. A bark collar helped us some in the morning and while away. I don’t think its a good idea to get rough with a Weim. He nipped me once and got a muzzle and shock collar in exchange. Today he’s as sweet as could be. Is left alone sometimes for hours. doesn’t steal food, and waits at his bowl to be told when to eat. He will drop when told, nt always on first time. Have plenty of hard plastic toys for him as he will chew almost anything into pieces including kongs, and lacrosse balls. He is 5 and typical Weim stubborn, but knows to retreat when I raise my voice. I try never to raise my hand and he’s too tough to put on his back. Yet he knows I’m boss of everything.

        • Sue says:

          The vibration ( shock) collar has saved my boy’s life. All I have to say is one word and he is submitted. I rarely have to use a level higher than tone and we are still addressing issues one at a time. Needs to be a high quality collar, bought through a hunting store or something like it.

  8. Marthena Scollon says:

    We must remember, Weimaraners were bred as companion hunting dogs, that means they need their companion to do their job. A crate should be treated as their private special place and signify that they are “off duty”.

  9. TC says:

    We have a 6 month old Weimaraner male. He has severe separation Anxiety. We have to crate him when we leave or he will destroy the house. He has already torn the blinds down, eaten the door frames, doors and base boards trying to get out of the house. When we leave we do not make a big deal about it and when we return we do not touch him until he has gone outside and done his business. Most mornings he is given ample exercise for about a little over an hour.
    While getting ready for our day he will follow me from room to room whining…(can’t remember when I went to the restroom by myself without being whined at or leaned on)…
    He has a great personality and I am sad that he feels so insecure when he is left alone. (even from room to room)
    I have read every article and advice blog I could but We really need help to help him grow into a secure self-confident weim. I would love to eventually do away with the crate and allow him free reign of the house so he can sleep in his big bed while we are gone. Please let us know if you think you can help! 🙂

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      I know what you mean about wanting him to feel secure. A couple questions… Is he calm in his crate? Do you crate him when you are home?

      • TC says:

        Yes, we crate him when we are gone. At first he barked for a long time. Now he is calm. Although he ate through the clamps that hold the corner of the crate together.
        I was trying to acclimate him to being free reign in the house while we are gone since the crate is so large and our house is not.

  10. Therese Smith says:

    We have an almost 6 mo. old Weim we got 2 mos. ago. She is being crate trained and is doing well with that-especially since we both work 9 hours of each day. She likes to play and fetch but my question is: She will not walk on a leash. I am a huge power walker and always enjoyed walking with our previous dog. She halts and will not move even with treats and a lot of praise. Is there something else we can try? Unable to understand this behavior. She was the last of 9 puppies to a breeder who was gone long hours and she and her mother had the run of the back yard/garage all day and night but was never put on a leash or walked. We are also working on more social interaction with people and other dogs and she is doing better with this all of the time.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      This is something that comes up now and again and I think as you suggested that it’s related to the fact that she didn’t have as much socialization as maybe was ideal. I actually am working with a dog that was also under-socialized and has some of those tendencies as well, and I do wonder if it’s more that just the lack of experience on leash and more related to not wanting to be restrained. Besides praise, treats and patience, I’m not sure what else to suggest other than to mix it up. With mine, I have tried making sure the destination was something fun. I’ve also tried changing routes as in the beginning I thought maybe something startled him on the walk. Our situation gets better as well, but it’s a slow process…. but you are saying she does better all the time and with her age, I think you are on the right track. Good luck!

  11. Kyndi Newman says:

    I have an 11 mo old male weim, he’s recently in the past month taken on being randomly aggressive. This is very new. I have taken him in numerous public places before and this has never happened. Then suddenly I will be walking him and he will literally go into bark attack mode. I take him to daycare during the day where he plays with other dogs and seems very socialized. And I cannot figure out the pattern of his aggression. It’s not particular to make or female or kids or even what they are wearing. And he us actually a very sweet dog otherwise. I desperately need help.

  12. Nicole says:

    We have two weims: a 22 month old female and a 11 month old male. Our male has not been neutered yet but it is our intention to have that procedure completed soon. We’re looking for suggestions on how to cope with separation anxiety as it seems like he is definitely showing signs. We stopped crating him several months ago because whenever we came home there would be piles of saliva outside the crate and small cuts on the top of his nose. We didn’t want him to continue hurting himself so we started leaving him (and our girl) in the living room/kitchen area with all other rooms closed off. He frequently urinated on our couch (causing us to replace the couch) and chewed up anything he could manage to find. Our dogs are only left alone for a few hours here and there. During the week while we’re at work they go to my in-law’s house where they can run around and get plenty of exercise. Now that we’ve replaced the couch and he is not having accidents in the house we’ve started keeping them in our bedroom. After several short absences (going out to dinner, grocery shopping, etc.) he has scratched the paint off the corner of the bedroom door, pulled/chewed the bedskirt off our bed, ripped holes in our sheets, and chewed holes through several comforters. We leave plenty of toys in the bedroom for them and have tried leaving the tv or radio on while we’re gone. We’re sure that our female has helped with some of the weim crimes but are fairly certain she’s not the main culprit because we didn’t experience these problems when it was just her. Any positive advice would be greatly appreciated!!!

  13. Kelly A Koren says:

    I have gates all over my house. In the beginning I lined ALL of my furniture with the wire gates to keep any chewing at bay. They are in the great room which is 40′ by 70′. Plenty of room and most important a dog door. A dog door is going to save your sanity and your pocketbook. Plenty of toys, that I to this day rotate. I just reintroduce them in a month or two. They act like it is the first time they ever laid eyes on them. Lol I also get hugh bones (10” or larger) from the butcher with the marrow inside. I do not cook them for 2 reasons. 1) I feed a raw food program with supplements. 2) a cooked bone can splinter, whereas a raw bone will not. They will last for months and keep them occupied. All of the above works, but perhaps the most valuable way to help or eliminate SA….A pet sitter/walker. The best investment you will probably make in your dogs. Mine comes 2 time a day. Two meals and 2 walks every time I leave. “Your pet sitter is your best friend”. They are worth every dollar I pay to them. When you go on vacation or a weekend outing, use a pet sitter. No stressful trips to the boarding house where they will be locked up in a crate without anything that is familiar to them. Truth is…I went on a 20 day vacation recently. I thought for sure when I got home they would be extra happy to see me…not so. You see, my pet sitter is another “Me”. I was the one that really missed them. Believe me when I say “you won’t regret having a pet sitter” No stress for you or them, just peace. I also like someone watching my house and most important, making sure my babies are safe.

  14. Tori says:

    I have been reading through these comments and am glad there are others out there struggling. And I’m at a desperate level now with my weim, so I thought I would put this out there for any more suggestions.

    My weim is 9 1/2. He has battled separation anxiety throughout his life. I’ll say right now we’re in ‘episode 3’. When he was a puppy, less than a year old, he went through separation anxiety. He whine and howled and destroyed so much at the time – he learned to open doors and would find anything he could eat. For example, he at my razors once. At the time then, he was put on medicine to calm him and also saw a trainer . The combination of the two got him to calm down. He could freely roam the house while I was gone with no issue. Then around 4 years old, he had the ‘episode 2’. Again, We went through about a 3 month process of training and medication again. This time he learned to be crate trained and eventually he got to the point that he knew if he went into his crate, I was not ‘forgetting’ him and that I would come back to get him. Well, since the summer now, we’re in ‘episode 3’. He seems to be going crazy when he’s by himself. (Which is about 2 full work days and then a handful of hours here and there.) Again, he’s back on medicine and I also started from scratch leaving him alone – starting with a few minutes, then an hour, two hours, etc etc. He’s howls so much I had to soundproof the room. His new thing is that he bites on the crate and moves the wires of the cage. He has taught himself how to open one latch and squeeze himself out of the crate through the one opening. He hyperventilates so much that there are puddles of water from his saliva. His heart is racing when I come home. I have worked so hard over the last few months when this started to get him to feel better – but it’s only getting worse.

    I am seriously not sure what else to do anymore. 🙁

  15. Karen says:

    We have a 14 month old male Weim ( our second one, first is deceased). He is CRAZY and stubborn!
    Our biggest problem is that he swipes anything he can get; scissors, razor, cork screw, eyeglasses, clothes etc… and he will not drop them. I have tried treating in exchange and sometimes after 20-30 minutes he will drop.Sometimes though when you reach for it he will be aggressive and bite. I have tried putting him in the small bathroom ( which is what we use vs a crate). He now drops the item immediately but if you reach for it will snarl and bite you. If you leave him for 20minutes and come back he is standing over the item and still refuses to surrender it. If we do nothing and ignore him he destroys the items. Alot of times he will do this while you are engaged in play with him, at other times, while your doing something else. Doesn’t appear to be a pattern. He is not aggressive any other time ( not with food or his toys). I’m looking for help with this situation.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      What happens with the treat exchange? Does he just refuse the treat, and eventually trades for the treat after 20-30 minutes? Or is it after he’s bored with what he has? When you say he’s not aggressive with his food, does that mean you can reach for his bowl while he’s eating and take it away?

      • Karen says:

        Treat exchange scenario: I will sit down in a chair, he will come to me with the item and sit ( but not look at me- looks down, ears usually back). I will hold a treat in my hand and he will put his snout on it, look away etc. Eventually 20-30 minutes into this scenario he will drop the item and take the treat. End of situation, however, sometimes if I reach for the dropped item he will bite me.

        Regarding his food. Yes I can take his bowl away while he’s eating, I can drop a treat into his bowl and reach for his food etc. Nothing. He really could care less about his food. The only time he is aggressive ( snarl, bite) is if I try to take the snatched item from him.

    • Rikki says:

      I have a 20 month old weimaraner that does just about the same thing. He won’t give up rawhides or toys, but comes and puts his head on my lap while making a purring/growling noise. It is a constant battle of wills over who gets the item. I’d love to hear what you think, Anne!

  16. Jade says:

    Hi there

    I am currently raising a little Weimar cross border collie pup (11 weeks old) and I am struggling with his separation anxiety. The issue with my Remi is that he is beside himself when I leave the room, even if my other family members and dogs are in the room. This behavior has been going on since I brought him home the first day. He is my complete shadow and will not leave my side. I absolutely adore him and would happily have him by my side permanently, but I feel that he is almost insecure when I’m not around which is unhealthy. I am a student so I cannot always be at home so he needs to learn how to spend a couple hours alone.

    Just a side note, he gets plenty of exercise during the day, as much as is healthy for his bone development. He is attending puppy class and we practice several times everyday to exercise his mind. He also has plenty of toys to occupy him, although I will only leave him with the hard plastic toys and kongs that don’t pose a choking risk.

    Thanks (sorry for the long post)
    Jade 🙂

  17. Jennifer says:

    We got our Weiner when she was 6 weeks old. Shes had ONE poop accident and maybe a handful of pee accidents. We now have bells by the back door and she rings it when she wants to go out. She’s smart, any command she understands after once or twice. She sleeps in her crate in the living room and enjoys it. I fill a Kong and put it in the crate with her. During the day, when the kids are in school, she lounges on the couch or sleeps in her crate on her own accord. She usually doesn’t get upset when we leave the house, we put her in the crate. If she starts to whine, I make a Kong and stick it with her, she forgets all about us gone. Lol. She’s super smart, super hyper and such a lover. My only complaint that I’m working with her on , is jumping on strangers. She doesn’t have regards for if they are a little kid or an elderly person. She’s only 4.5 months old so we are working on it! We went to puppy kindergarten and working on beginner puppy class!!

  18. Alison says:

    Had chewing problem with my sons wiener I adopted .She chewed all my new blinds and skirting boards when I went out.I tried closing all the doors in my house except 1 bedroom door.Pulled up the blinds and she is fine sitting looking out of the window.That is also where she sleeps at night.Didn’t want her on the bed but at least now I can leave the house.That room is now her domain where she feels safe

  19. Michelle says:

    My Weim is about 20 weeks old. He a good dog, walks great on a leash and gets plenty of exercise. He stays in a crate when we leave the house because we don’t trust him not to chew on furniture yet. i believe he has developed separation anxiety, almost every time he is in the crate he urinates and or defecates. It is getting really old, really fast. He sleeps in the crate in our bedroom at night just fine and he eats in his kennel- he’ll run right in the crate as if he doesn’t mind, but every time we leVe and sometimes when we are home and he’s crated (during dinner time) he will urinate. Any suggestions? Our next step is leaving him in the backyard while we’re gone, but I really would rather not do that. I just can’t keep spending half an hour every day cleaning poop out of the kennel that is in our laundry room,

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      That sounds super frustrating! Can you elaborate how much exercise he gets specifically?

    • Chanda says:

      I totally understand you there . We have a 4 month old female weim and she using the bathroom in her crate . She sleeps in the bed with our daughter but if we leave the house she goes in her crate with a toy and pee pads. We come home to pee pads tore up and dog poop everywhere in her crate on the floor and the walls and where ever else she slings it. I really need some advice on what to do . She isn’t fixed yet but we are gonna have her fixed soon . We have 3 other different dogs in the house and they listen just fine but she isn’t learning at all from them. Help me please any ideas would be grately appreciated

      • Anne Taguchi says:

        You should separate her potty area from her crate. If you have pee pads in the crate, you are encouraging her to go in there. SHe’s still young so you can try re-training her to the crate. Hopefully she is still retaining her instinct not to go in there, but you will have to let her out of the crate before she HAS to go and praise her for peeing/pooping outside where she’s supposed to. Spaying her is not going to solve the problem. Best of luck!

  20. Penny says:

    I don’t know how many times I have come back to this article hoping for new comments on how to cope with a weimaraner. Our Blue was adopted from a rescue foundation. He is our first weim. Before adopting him I researched the breed, read articles and felt I understood what would be required to offer a healthy lifestyle. Blue is 7 and we’ve had him for 3 years. I am completely frustrated with my life with Blue. This account will make me sound horrible, I know, but I also know that other people are feeling the same. And if I am continually looking for advise and being frustrated, I know others are as well.

    Blue receives several outings a day. Running and playing with me or my husband. He’s a complete delight outdoors. Incredibly responsive, friendly – the entire neighborhood absolutely adores him. Indoors is very different. Blue is never content. No amount of petting, talking with, playing with, providing chews toys for him is enough. His countenance is desperate, sad, depressed. He requires more than I can give him. I told my husband last night in complete exhaustion that Blue is an empty hole of need. He just isn’t content. Ever. Ive tried not giving him attention and ignoring him thinking it had more to do with my own behavior. I try speaking happy, monotone, authoritative – nothing changes for him. One comment in this thread mentioned that weims are duty oriented. Taking that que, I’ve ordered Blue to his pillow as a duty. A task. His task is to be off duty. And I’ve told him that is what I want of him. This seems to make sense to him, (and me). But, then I find that I station myself in one place for concern of waking him, causing the cycle of need to begin again. I don’t open doors, I don’t walk out of the room, I don’t make phone calls, or verbally comment on anything since that will wake him and he will then start needing. Like I said, he gets several outings. He isn’t under exercised.

    Last week I tried having him in doggy daycare, for my sanity. That day “off” was so productive. I was energetic and accomplished a lot. I was happy. I know this sounds horrible. My husband of 30 years and I have had several animals, including four dogs. We’ve so enjoyed each and every one. But, this experience is overwhelming. When people ask what I do, (like work), I think to myself, “I take care of a dog”. It’s that overwhelming. I do enjoy Blue. Especially when my husband is home – Blue acts differently. I also should mention that Blue is not crate trainable. I have the best photo of my husband squatting in the back inside of a large crate trying to coaxe Blue in and Blue is just sitting on the outside, stubbornly. I can’t put Blue through another adoption. That would also break my heart. I will continue to offer him the best life I can give him. So, maybe there isn’t any advice. But, hopefully my account let’s others know they’re not alone.

  21. Charlie says:

    I did a lot f research on puppies generally and Wiems especially before getting one. Today is day one and it has been wonderful. He’s a real gent so far. We are bonding really well and I can already see that he is a quick study and will be quite biddable in training. Only issue I have at the moment is that I think he’s going to hate it when I go to work. I made a quick errand to the store and when I got back the babysitter told me he yelped nonstop while I was gone (he was in crate, a new experience with him).

    I really do not want to do anything heavy handed but considering a barking collar. I won’t reach for that though until I’m sure it isn’t just him missing his mother and littermates. This is day one after all.

    When I first saw the pup a few weeks back I left a blanket with the breeder which now stinks to high heaven but the intent was that it will smell like his littermates and mother. I’ll try that in his crate tonight and see how he does sleeping. If that turns out to be a breakthrough I’ll post back.

    Fingers crossed for the journey ahead 😉

  22. Sara says:

    I have a 7 month old male Weimaraner . I need help with controlling his yelping , whining and barking constantly . In a 7 hour period he goes on 5 walks and runs . My husband works nights so when I’m by myself with him he barks at my older 12 year old border collie constantly . Chew toys and treats only last so long . Help!!

  23. Andrew says:

    I have been held hostage by weimeraners once. They are a vicious breed and I still dislike them. Several years ago I was living in a small neighborhood once, and I couldn’t even ride my bike up the road to leave the neighborhood because the neighbors had these really vicious weimeraners that would charge after me. They are nothing more than a lab that was spray painted a dull boring gray and given the personality of a pit bull. Sorry.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      So sorry to hear you had such a bad experience with Weims! This is a good example of Weims that can be terrors if their needs haven’t been met. They do have prey drive and misdirected to chasing kids on bikes isn’t unheard of.
      I hope you’ll get a chance to see a properly raised one one of these days!

    • Hilarie Bratset says:

      I’ve never met a weim who was aggressive. They are supposedly one of the most gentle dog breeds out there. I wonder if the Andrew happened to get one that came from a puppy mill or was previously abused or neglected. We moved our weim to Norway with us when he was 4. He is 8 now. He learned to be in his crate from the time he was a puppy, and we took him to puppy pre-school and basic obedience at our local Petsmart. In our neighborhood here in Norway, he doesn’t even need a leash really because he walks right beside us or just a little ahead, always looking back to make sure we are right behind. Our neighbors all love him and can’t believe how sweet he is and how obedient. We tried to let him out of his crate and just in a bedroom once, and he scratched the hell out of the door and ate the door trim, so we knew he would always need to be crated. For the first time ever, we’re having an issue where he is rubbing his nose on his crate and we come home and let him out only to find a bloody little sore on his nose. The only time he ever did that in the past is when he was at the kennel when we went on vacation. I don’t know why he is suddenly doing this. The only thing I can think of is that I was home most of the summer, and when I went back to work my mother in law would come and pick him up most days and have him at her house. He loves being with her. Could a schedule change be causing this? He is more in his crate now due to us all being back to work, but he is in there for fewer hours than he was before. Before we leave, we fill a treat ball with snacks that he needs to work to get the treats out. Any ideas?

      • Anne Taguchi says:

        Yes I think the schedule change could be causing it. I think you will need to be patient and do some crate exercises with him again to get him reacclimated to the crate. Best of luck, he sounds like a great dog!

  24. C.E. ‘Stan’ Standley says:

    Having owned first one, then two and finally three Weimaraners we learned a great deal about them. I had previously owned an unwanted male that stole my heart and I was forced to leave him when I retired from the Navy…the recipients wanted him desperately after watching him and playing with him. Shortly after that we got the first Weimaraner as an 8 week old female pup. One year later we got a male pup “so Hilde could have a playmate” but we just had to have another. Then we went on the northeastern dog show circuit. Soon Hilde was being entered in hunt tests and Blade was on his way to become a champion. We had hands full, but never had a problem with separation anxiety. In fact, they were both socialized with every dog we encountered and humans from age one to seniors. I ultimately wrote a book, Pawprints All Over Me, documenting some of our “adventures.”

  25. Doug says:

    We recently adopted a female Weimaraner puppy. She is eight weeks old and came from a responsible, high-quality breeder. So far she is doing very well considering her age. She is learning to go to the bathroom outside, she’s eating and drinking normally, she’s playing with her toys, and she’s very affectionate and calm. The main problem we have with her is that she really does not like being in her crate/cage. We would like to get her sleeping in the crate at night (from about 10:00 – 6:00) and we’d like to have the ability to leave her in the crate during the day for 1-2 hours. However, when we put her inside she starts whining and howling like crazy! The other day we went to a restaurant and we left her in the car in her crate. When we put her in she started complaining and 45 minutes later when we returned she was still protesting quite loudly. Does anyone have any idea how we can get the puppy used to the crate? This is going to start driving us crazy soon. Thank you.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Hi Doug, do you put her in her crate at night in your bedroom? If not, start that way. Most do very well like this. As for during the day, be sure to crate her for very brief periods when you are home – before she protests at all. Let her out and put her back in again, for a little longer. Give her a very special treat, something she really likes and only gets in her crate. Do lots of ins and outs, keeping it positive always, and then extend the ins for longer periods – at her pace. You might have to start with just a minute or two at a time at first. There are lots of great articles online if you do a search on crate training as well. Good luck, the effort will be worth it, and the sooner you start this the better!

      • Doug says:

        Hi there Anne, we haven’t started crating her at night yet, but she is sleeping most of the night in her doggie bed by herself. My wife is putting her several times a day in the crate for short periods of time, and she’s trying to keep increasing the amount of time in there. I think your advice is sound; thanks very much!

  26. Jenna says:

    We have a 5 month old female Weimaraner that we got when she was 8 weeks old. She is very loving, but also can be very naughty especially at night. It took a few weeks to totally potty train her, but the last week or so she started having accidents again. She will look at me and just squat to pee. Recently, as I was vacuuming she jumped on the couch and peed on a pillow. She hates being in her crate and will always pee in it and is only in her crate for 2 hours max. I have removed all the padding that was in the crate and she still will pee in the crate. I have had a female Weimaraner before and she was such a good dog. Very high strung but very loving and obedient. I am worried this one although loving and loves to lay right on us, can be very destructive, chews and runs off with everything, whines & barks when in the crate, started peeing in the house in random places, biting at us very roughly although she thinks she is playing, I am a bit frustrated as to what to do.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      After a vet check just to see that there is no UT or something going on, I would work on exercise and obedience. All this is likely age-related, but my guess is some structure, discipline and exercise will help tremendously. I know it sounds like these things are unrelated to peeing in the house, but I have seen this kind of thing before at this age, and the bigger picture solutions are usually the ones that stop the immediate problem.

  27. Annie says:

    Hi there. My husband and I have five year old Weimaraner and we are just about at wits end with him. We cannot leave the house he blocks the doors or sits in the drive way next to the car. He doesn’t listen when told to go outside and when we try to touch him he bites us and crowls. He also does what he pleases in the house like lying on or bed and couches when you try to get him off he bites. We are not able to control him and since moving to a new house four weeks ago it has gotten much worse. Please help we need advice. I know he suffers from extreme separation anxiety and cannot be left alone ever. We don’t want to put him down or give him away but we are concerned especially since we want to start having kids soon. Do you have any advice for us?

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Hi Annie, It sounds like he rules the roost. I would start NILIF (Nothing in Life is Free) asap.

      So, what is NILIF? It’s a mind-set more than a training method. In other words, your Weimaraner needs to work for everything he gets. No free lunch – literally! He needs to sit before meals, wait before barreling out of his crate, wait for you to release him before he hops out of the car or goes down stairs. It doesn’t matter what work you ask him to perform for privileges, the idea here is to remind him that you are the one that has access to all good things in life, and YOU have the power to give those things to him. Well now, if that doesn’t quickly and easily change your Weim’s mind about who’s boss, I don’t know what will! YOU control the food, access to walks, playdates with other dogs – everything! Don’t give up your resources for free. Your Weim needs to work for them!

      In order to do NILIF he needs to know some basic obedience. If he knows the “sit” command, use it for this implementation. It is time for bootcamp for your boy!

      Best, Anne

  28. Amy says:

    I have am on my 6th weimaraner over my lifetime (they all lived to be 13 yrs. Obviously I’ve had two at the same time). And like everyone suggest, the activity level, crate training if possible, training boundaries, and brain training (making the use their brilliant brains) is crucial to a perfect dog, which are what mine have always been. Except one. I’m boasting here, but they are flipping awesome. And all were rescues that came with some issues. However, I think people are so easy to judge euthanization for behavior issues. Unless you have experienced what these people go through you cannot judge. You have never experienced a dog you cannot “fix”. My “except one” rescue. Little did I know that not all dogs can be helped. After spending $1000’s in efforts to find a solution, I finally euthanized him. A painful decision, but I felt he had been “passed around” enough and going to sleep forever was not cruel at all. He was wonderfull in so many ways, but a dog can hold a family hostage. And before you judge my effort, I run with my dogs, teach them tricks, take them camping, crate train them ( the doors are open and they still go into their space when they want to rest). Sometimes it is the kindest thing to do for your pet and families.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Thanks for your comment, Amy. And I totally agree. Often the right decision is the hardest of all. I also feel that in some cases euthanasia is kindest for the dog, living each day in constant anxiety. It’s no way to live.

  29. Aargh says:

    Thank you for this article, so spot on! I just rescued my 12th weimaraner (glutton for punishment, ha!) 10 years old and very well behaved 90 pounder. Just tried separation after 4 weeks and wow! He broke his crate! After a 3 mile run and all the usual prelims. I was gone 20 minutes…
    Thanks for your site. So right on!!
    Luckily he is fine in the car so it’s just time…

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      I’ve noticed that a lot of dogs that have SA can often be okay in the car, even if they don’t like crates at home, they seem to do okay in a crate in a car.
      Thank you for rescuing a senior! Seniors are the best!! 🙂

  30. Clint says:

    I got this plan from a Great Dane owner.
    We have a screened in back porch and a backyard with a tree. Our Willy is now 2, and we got him at 2 months old. The tree is the most important thing here.
    Willy became “evil” almost immediately. Wouldn’t eat, drink, potty OR play unless we were there. By 6 months he ate or destroyed everything in sight if we left, we couldn’t create him so he would bang his face on the wall, sofa, refrigerator, oven or anything else if he couldn’t see or hear us in the house. He got hours of playtime and exercise outside. Finally we asked our friend who owned the GD if he would adopt Willie because we just couldn’t handle him. He said no but gave us a training method that has worked. He said crate him in the porch area for about 5 min daily, all at different times, not on a schedule, followed by playtime. Buy a 2way baby monitor/camera and start talking to him through it from another room, see if he takes well to that (he didn’t at first). Finally he had us hang some toys from the tree in the backyard, all at different heights and strengths. Have him try and bring some down during play time. He should be able to reach a few and tear them off but others have high or tied very tightly so he can’t bring them down. Then leave him alone until boredom and he starts to whine or bark.

    At first the tree toys were the only thing that worked. He absolutely went crazy over them, but only for like 2 min if left alone. So we placed the crate on the porch area with the crate and porch doors open. When we went to another room with the baby speaker, instead of whining for us, he immediately went running for the tree toys! This time he played with them much longer. Now we can leave him on the back porch with no problems, even with the door closed now. He will whine but he doesn’t bark or potty in his crate if we chat him a bit through the speaker. He basically runs around the porch until we get home for tree time. When winter rolled around, we created him at the back door where he could see the porch but not go outside. He didn’t appreciate that much but we used the speaker to calm him down. The whole process took around 3 weeks.

    I hope this helps even one of you keep your weim, because we were on the verge of giving ours up. Thanks for this great site where we can all spread tips.

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Thank you for the tip! The detailed description is excellent for people that will want to try this. It is certainly an interesting technique, but hey whatever works!

      • Haley says:

        Hi! I have a month old female weim and she’s been having some behavioral issues like a lot of the comments here. She shows signs of severe separation anxiety even if we leave her outside for 5 minutes. We tried crate training her and she screams at the top of her lungs keeping my family from sleeping at night! My mom caved in and now let’s her sleep in the bed. I know we need to put her back in the crate when we leave and at night, as well as putting the crate in the bedroom at night but even then she howls at the top of her lungs. Her biting phase is a problem too, we’ve given her many stimulating dog toys to help with her chewing but she ignores them and still chews furniture and clothes and practically anything else she can find. Besides that we have two fully grown toy poodles and she often plays too rough with them, accidentally hurting them. Any advice on the howling, biting, and behavior with my other dogs?

        • Anne Taguchi says:

          Hi! How old is she? Sometimes it’s harder to “train” the people in your household than the dog. If it’s a “losing battle” with your mom letting her sleep in bed, you MIGHT want to make the decision to allow it — knowing the consequences. This is an acceptable choice for many people, they just take their dog everywhere with them and it’s like that for life. Otherwise, go the the “Dealing with SA” post and pick up some of the books listed there.
          For the biting, if she is biting things and chewing in appropriately, then you will need to pay attention (since the crate isn’t an option) and redirect her biting to something appropriate. For both issues, exercise and mental simulation will go a long way as well.

  31. Abi says:

    I know this is an older thread but I hope I can get some advice. I have an 8 month old weim that’s driving me and my family crazy. I’ll start but saying he is a very happy, sweet and loving boy but has so many issues. My husband has wanted a weim since he was a boy so we got one. We did a lot of research before and thought we were pretty prepared. He has been very difficult to potty train in my opinion. When we got him at 9 weeks old we started right away with potty training outside and it seemed to take months for him to really get it. He has learned to go and scratch the door to be let out but sometimes he sits there quietly and if we don’t get there in time he will pee by the door. He also drinks so much water, like a whole bowl at a time, and leaving our floors constantly covered in water streaks and spots throughout the house and then has to go out back to back for about 30 minutes. We started crate training him day one and he does show some separation anxiety but the biggest problem is he still pees in his crate. We use the crate at night and when we aren’t home. I let him out at 11 or 12 at night before I go to bed and a lot of times he has already peed in his crate by 7/8 am. I do put a towel or blanket in his crate because 1 – I want him to have some padding but not an actual dog bed that is too hard to clean and 2 – if there isn’t something in there when he pees he will scratch and kick and splash it out onto the floor and get it all over himself. We understand he is a hyper breed so we try to let him outside in our fenced in yard for exercise but he either digs holes and plays in the dirt/mud, destroys whatever he can find, chews on rocks, or doesn’t want to stay out long at all because he wants to be with us and opens the door to let himself back in risking letting our cat out so I have to run to shut the door. Because he doesn’t like going out for long he pees right outside our door and has burned the grass all along our patio and it smells so strongly of pee we cant stand to go out. He is so high energy and constantly trying to play with our 2 mini schnauzers that are 5 and 4 years old which drives them crazy and we can tell they don’t like it. He also seems to have an unquenchable hunger. We feed him very well and he still eats our other 2 dogs bowls of food and is constantly trying to get our food off the table when we eat and eat anything we through in the trash can. He also eats out of the cats litter box frequently and there isn’t a way to block him off from it without blocking them or move it to a different place in the house. He also gets on our couch and is very stubborn about listening to us telling him to get down and he walks on my lap leaving my thighs covered in scratches and bruises. My husband has worked with him teaching him basic commands that he picked up very easily but we need serious help with all these other issues but do not have the money to do expensive training so that’s not really an option for us. Any and all advice would be greatly appreciated!

    • Anne Taguchi says:

      Hi Abi! So sorry you are having so many problems! He sounds like a handful for sure, but nothing that unusual for a rambunctious 8 month old with energy to BURN! You didn’t mention what you do to exercise with him. Putting him in your yard by himself doesn’t count; as you said, he just gets into trouble and then wants to be with you. Try doing things with him or take him to cool places. Dog park, hiking, a jog. They have attachments for bikes that you can hook your dog onto with a harness. Agility classes are good too. Weims are people dogs and are originally bred to hunt with their person, they want to be with you and do things with you. I think you’ll find that he’ll be much easier to handle, even with his potty habits if his energy needs are met.

      • Abi says:

        Those are good suggestions that I will try. I guess I just need to find a way to wear him out. I like the bike idea. Thank you.

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