Separation anxiety in dogs

Separation anxiety in dogs

Separation anxiety is a distress response dogs experience when separated from their owners. The distress may result in destructive behavior, causing damage to your house or yard, barking or howling, toileting inside the house and even trying to escape.

When treating a dog with separation anxiety the goal is to resolve the dog’s underlying anxiety by teaching him to enjoy, or at least tolerate, being left alone.

When leaving home make sure there’s fresh water available, provide toys and things to chew on , and leave out a special treat for your dog.

What else can you do to make sure that your pet understands that being left alone is only temporary and that there is nothing to worry about?

Don’t make a big deal before leaving:
It can be hard leaving the house with those big eyes looking at you. When you start to feel bad, worried or anxious for your dog, they pick up on your feelings and stress out even more.

Crate Training:
This is recommend for puppies but you can teach a dog at any age to be crate trained. When dogs are crate trained they feel safe and secure, like the crate is their own bedroom. They learn that it’s okay to be there while you out. Put them into the crate nice and calmly, give them a kong and the favourite toy.

Kong toys:
These help to keep dogs entertained. Fill them with their
favourite treat, dry food or wet food to keep your dog occupied while you are out. You can even freeze the Kong filled with a meaty treat to beat the heat!

Exercise:
Taking them for a long walk before you start getting ready to leave will help drain excess energy and should help them relax more when you are gone.

If your pet’s anxiety persists then a behaviour consultation with our Nurse Nina may be required for the best outcome