Dog Separation Anxiety
Please Don't Leave Me!
Dog separation anxiety affects about 30 percent of
all dogs, making this the most common of all dog behavior problems. No wonder, we love our little babies, pamper them, feed them, cuddle with them,
and then GO OUT! Your little mite is not sure when you are
coming back and can suffer from an extreme separation phobia.
Every departure is seen as abandonment.
Neurotic dog symptoms are expressed in the following
- Heavy salivating or drooling
- Whining or yelping
- Constant licking
- Destruction of property
- Desperate escape measures
- Rigid posture
- Dropped tail
- Tail under body
- Loose their toilet skills
These can all add up to a very miserable animal and a
destroyed home on your return.
They may howl for hours while you are out, they may
defecate and destroy your furniture. They are not being naughty they are
genuinely stressed and are acting out their unhappiness at being apart from
their beloved owner. Small dog breeds are particularly vulnerable to this
neurotic (dog separation anxiety) behavior as they are usually even closer to their owners, being lap dogs,
and are usually treated like Royalty by the doting parents.
They pick up your body language
that you are to leave home, the alarm clock, you putting on your "going out
shoes", even applying make-up or any other routine that you may have before
leaving home, is recognized instantaneously by your ever constant
companion. You may change your routine to confuse your pet, but
doing everything in order and following the suggestions below, over time, should
overcome his anxiety of being abandoned.
Now that we have identified the problem and symptoms of dog separation anxiety, we need
to rectify the situation.
Do not use the crate for this
exercise, as confining your pet when he is stressed will only make
matters worse. He must not consider the crate as punishment, and your
little pet can certainly hurt himself if he is very stressed and is trying to
get out in a fit of anxiety.
Dog Separation Anxiety is a real fear.
Stay calm, do not make any fuss
about leaving OR coming home.
If you make a big fuss when you get
home, you are re-enforcing his bad behavior. Any attention, is in fact,
seen as a reward.
You need to teach your little pooch, that you are coming
back. So, start with leaving for just a few seconds,
but before you do leave, give your little baby something to chew on.
DON'T make a fuss about leaving. For a good
10 minutes before you depart, ignore your dog, and calmly leave. Don't
talk to your dog, do not acknowledge him at all.
When you return after just a few seconds, do not talk to
your dog, ignore him completely for several minutes
and certainly until your dog has calmed down and is not jumping up or barking.
Gradually increase your absence by just a few seconds at a time. Continue
to not make any fuss about leaving, and no fuss when you return.
taking any notice of your pet, he will soon realize that he will not be rewarded
for his neurotic behavior but more importantly he will learn, by the repetitive
short burst of you leaving, that you will be coming back,
his greatest fear overcome.
This will take some time, as this behavior will not easily
be eradicated, particularly if this has been an established pattern over many
Be patient and your dog will read your body language which is the
only language he understands. Shouting and
hitting your baby will not make
it better ... only worse making it even more
difficult to overcome.
He has to become confident that he is not being abandoned.
Other dog behavior related Articles:
- Training ABC
Dog Training - Education is Key
- Pleased to meet You!
Potty Training - Your first Gift to your Dog
Behavior Training - Dogs will be Dogs
Dog Poop Eating
- What's for Desert
Return from Dog Separation Anxiety to
Dog Behavior Modification
Dog Separation Anxiety - Patience is Key
Go from Dog Separation Anxiety to About Small Dog
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