Hello. I have an 8 yr old Rhodesian Ridgeback mix male. I have had him since he was just weeks old and of course throughout this "life together" we have had our ups / downs. But for the most part he is a pretty good 'primarily indoor' good, but defensive at times, and I have had him in basic puppy training when I first got him, which we passed : ) Anyways, he is unusually reserved and solitary as of recently. If there are people over or I say the 'walk' word, he is full throttle ready to go, or mention outside and he bolts.

When he is outside it takes some convincing to get him to come back in. Which has always been pretty normal. But recently when he is laying around the house, he always goes some where I am not to lay down. Now he has never really been a lap dog, but he used to "hang" with me. If I go to sit in the computer room, where his bed is, he leaves the room. If I go into the living room to watch TV he goes to the bedroom, and today I found him sleeping in the basement.

And it is pretty quick, if I enter the room and just grab something he will stay, if he senses I will stay awhile or sit down, he leaves. I praise him and pet him when he is alone and tell him he is a good boy and try to pet him when we are in a room together. But now he seems like he avoids me unless there is something for him, or some activity going on. As this is my first dog (and a very challenging, "different" breed) I am a little perplexed. Is this an aging thing ? What could this be signaling (besides my bad breath : )?

Thanks in advance.
Tim
Hello. I have an 8 yr old Rhodesian Ridgeback mix male. I

Anyways, he
is unusually reserved and solitary as of recently. If there are peopleover or I say the 'walk' word, he is ... not to lay down. Now he has never really been a lap dog, but he used to "hang" with me.

Hi Tim,
You might want to take him to the vet's office. Many dogs, and RR's in particular, can be stoic about pain. Dogs often just accept it and continue on, minimizing how much we can notice it in their behavior. This is especially true of chronic pain, IME.
I'm a fan of RRs and have an independent type breed myself. They don't really glom on to me, but we have a companionable existence and they usually follow me from room to room, sitting of laying down in their own beds. My male especially likes to have his space. Normal stuff, I think. Probably a lot like your dog.
Well, Shane has a bad back. On days when he is painful, he usually finds a quiet place to be alone (often his crate, fitted with an orthopedic bed). He still gets excited about food and walks and such and is basically just like always, but when his back is bothering him he prefers not to be disturbed around the house . Perhaps your boy is beginning to have some age related joint, neck or back pain.
Having a very good idea of how Shane moves, I can tell when he's hurting. Someone who didn't know him would not be able to tell because there's nothing that obviously indicates a problem. The adjustments are tiny, but significant. If you know your dog's movement pretty well, watch him closely when trotting outside. Otherwise maybe he needs a check up with the doc, and you can tell him what's going on.

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