My dog just stands & stares at me in the evening from across the living room.


(Monterey, CA)

Regarding Buddy, my 3yr neutered male Pyrenees mix rescue (adopted him at 2).
These days morning & daytime, no issues. We have a good person/alpha-to-dog relationship including walks and "tug-o-war" play-times. He is not food aggressive. At night though, he keeps his distance from across the room and just stands & stares at me without emotion. He sometimes shifts his weight around but continues just to stand there. He absolutely will not come if called to join me on the couch (he is allowed; & I use only a friendly voice). Treats work but it usually doesn't last long unless he is very tired.

Anyone else experience this? ..or have any suggestions what, if anything to do about it?

There was possible abuse in his past. He had a wound that was stitched up/healed by the Humane Society. And he has a very odd fear of water, drinking water. Until he is very very thirsty, he will stay clear of any size shape or type of water bowl, even if it is next to his food bowl. (that fear whatever it is, is gradually going away.) He would rather lick wet cement nearby. ...He's an odd one.

Comments for My dog just stands & stares at me in the evening from across the living room.

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Feb 23, 2016
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Staring
by: Donna

First, know that you should not have an 'alpha' relationship with your dog. You need to work in a partnership with your dog which may be the issue at present.

Pyrs were bred as guardian livestock dogs. They do not need human intervention to do their jobs hence. They are quite happy to be by themselves.

You must respect your dog in order for him to respect you.

Pyrs are not eager-to-please so you must have patience when working WITH them.

See this article by world-renowned vet behaviouris, Dr. Sophia Yin.

http://drsophiayin.com/blog/entry/dominance_in_dogs_is_not_a_personality_trait

It's obvious, you are right, that there has been some sort of abuse. I would suggest going to sit with him on the floor (take a cushion for yourself) and just talk to him. Give him tiny bits of treats as you sit with him.

Know that Pyrs are aloof and don't necessarily want to hang out with their people all the time.

It's hard to help without actually seeing the whole picture.


Feb 23, 2016
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genetics
by: Anonymous

Ours will do that. We just call that "the look". Its penetrating. We can be napping in our comfy chairs and that "look" will wake us up!! He does not make a sound otherwise. Amazing.
Beyond all that, Pyrenees are programmed genetically to be active at night. Whatever Buddy is now, his ancestors were working dogs. Ours always asks to be let outside after dark so he can announce that he's there, and on task. Happily the neighbours are understanding souls. He needs to do this otherwise he cannot settle. And he asks much the same as your Buddy...stands there, shifts his feet, gives us the look. He's focused and will not be distracted.
So do accommodate Buddy...he has a need to check the perimeters. When he's satisfied he'll come back in for the snuggle you crave.
As for the water, how is he with running water? Cold water from the hose? You could try an indoor fountain. Make sure you keep it squeaky clean.

Feb 23, 2016
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It could be a temperature thing
by: Nashville

My GP looks to relax in the coolest part of the house in the winter. Our lab mix would avoid us in the summer and snuggle with us in the winter.
Maybe it's too hot on the couch.

I am not sure what the water dish has to do with this but I think consistently good treatment and love will trump past animal abuse in the long run.

Feb 25, 2016
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Thanks for the comments.
by: Anonymous

…."patience", I am trying. Buddy definitely has many "aloof" moments but I will hang in there and let us both evolve. It’s good to learn about possible "nocturnal tendencies".

Re: "…could be a temperature thing"

Don’t think so. We keep things pretty cool indoors, and he actually has short-ish hair for a Pyrenees (probably comes from the part white German Sheppard in him).

Re: "…water dish, ….how is he with running water? Cold water from the hose? You could try an indoor fountain. "

Not any better. There are nice "for dog" water fountains nearby that I offer on a long walk, but he’ll just lick his lips a little and back away.

Sadly I suspect it has to do with his early life. He was a mess and hurt so we were told, maybe there was some deranged person that threw things at him, or hurt him when he came around for water. Lucky for them I don’t know who they are if that happened.


Feb 27, 2016
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Frost Paws?
by: michelle

You could always try a frosty paws for a cool treat and he might start liking a water bowl after that.

Dec 01, 2016
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Frosty Paws yum
by: Buddy Pyr

He definitely loves them, carefully takes it from my hand and settles down on his comfy bed.
Unfortunately he is now almost 4 and water continues to bring some kind of strange anxiety to him. He hangs on for hours, licks his lips when I pour fresh water into his bowl. (when I or my wife do that, he slinks away like it is some kind of punishment.) We tried putting out multiple bowls in different places in case there are other issues in play. Eventually he will drink but it saddens me that he is so scared of it.
...When it rains or even just damp from a previous rain, he won't go out until he really has to, then goes along the roof line to take care of his business, right against the house! to stay as far away from 'moisture' as possible.
Ultimately, it's not that big of a deal as long as it is not stressing his health. We will continue to be supportive.
(Lately I have been bringing a fresh bowl of water together with his food bowl to see what happens. He'll very carefully avoid the water but maybe over time he'll think it 'ok'.)

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