We got a dog a few days ago. He's a 1 year old Chesapeake Bay/Lab mix according to the vet. He was found abandoned in the country, rescued, made it to us eventually. He's not yet neutered, we're going to change that. He starts obedience school in two weeks, but he already knows some commands (come, sit, paw, down). He's crate trained as well. He gets at least one, sometimes two, long walks every day and we have a decent sized yard.
When he's outside in the yard he's calm. He'll happily play, or lay in the sun or shade, or just watch the cars go by. He barks sometimes, but when told not to he listens. Outside he's fantastic.
Inside is a different story. When he's inside he's always pacing and panting excessively, sometimes he whines. He's unable to settle down. Sometimes he comes over and throws his weight against me (which I have a lot of trouble with). He's also taken to chasing the cats, which we're trying to nip in the bud.
There are a few factors I can see contributing to this, but I'm not sure how to help still.
- We have a cat and a kitten. The cat frequently will hiss, growl, or otherwise voice his displeasure any time he sees the dog. This seems to rile up the dog. The kitten is more afraid of him and the dog has pinned him down and cornered him a few times. We want to make sure the cats aren't injured. I can see how the cats can be a stress point for him.
- My husband is far from being a dog person. He's willing to tell the dog "No" or "Back" and defend the cats but that is the limit of his dog interaction. Having a person around he isn't allowed to interact with also seems to make him stressed.
- He can't really see out any of the windows inside. This is a combination of the height of the windows and the furniture arrangement. I've been trying to rearrange furniture to give him window access but so far he does not seem interested. I'm not sure how big of a factor this is.
- He doesn't have a ton of time at the moment. A filled bone, a kong, two small stuffed animals, an "unstuffed" squeaky animal, tennis ball, and tug rope. I'm very open to getting him more toys, I'm just not sure what to get him and how many he should have.
I know we haven't had him very long, and things will get better when we start obedience classes; but I'd really like to make his inside-life better in the meantime if I can.
What can I do to make him feel more comfortable inside? Does anyone have advice on training him that I am his human and my husband is not?
TL;DR: Dog is calm outside of house but stressed and anxious inside. How can I help him?