How To Deal With Separation Anxiety In Dogs

  • 13/07/2020
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The day has come. You have to leave your dog alone at home. It wouldn't be a problem if your pup didn't have separation anxiety. Not many people know that it is one of the most common problems when raising a dog.

Separation anxiety is defined as the dog's excessive attachment to its guardian or another object, e.g., a specific place. It means that the dog experiences stress when isolated from the attachment object.

This condition looks differently - some dogs can be slightly nervous during the owner's absence, while others can tear up the house when nobody's around. Other symptoms of separation anxiety include barking, urination and defecation, digging, and destructive chewing.

If your sweet dog is stressed and sad each time you are about to leave, don't punish it. As its owner, you need to take measures and help your dog deal with separation anxiety. Here is what you need to know about treating this condition in dogs:

Teach your dog how to stay calm

It might not be the easiest thing to do, but you need to introduce your dog to a kennel. Indestructible dog crates can teach your dog responsibility, reduce anxiety, and provide a sense of security when you are not around.

To teach your dog to love the crate, you need to create positive associations with the help of games and treats. For instance, you can give your four-legged friend a treat once it spends some time in the crate.

If it's their first time in the crate, consider leaving it open so that your pup can open it with the nose and enjoy autonomy. Also, you should put a bowl with water, food, and toys in the crate.

These little tricks will help your dog build positive associations with their new, cozy place.

The question is, for how long can a dog stay in their crate? All you have to know is that it is unacceptable to leave your pup in a crate for 8 hours straight while you are at work.

Dogs can spend a maximum of 5 hours in a crate, depending on their age. While adult dogs can handle sitting still for seven hours straight (if it's not an everyday thing), puppies shouldn't stay in a crate for that long. Otherwise, it will hurt their mental and physical health.

Protect your pet after you're gone

Remember about the safety of your dog when you leave the house. Especially for puppies, it is natural to bite and tear things apart since it helps them to calm down more quickly. Especially if your dog changes teeth from milk teeth to permanent, then he has such a need to bite. Don't treat it as malice, it's just their nature.

It would be a good idea to leave your dog's favorite teether. However, special care should be taken to secure all cables and cleaning agents, which could poison the dog. Make sure that all rooms that the dog should not have access to are closed. The pooch mustn't hurt himself when you're gone.

Control your emotions

Before you leave, it is worth leaving a piece of clothing with your scent so that the dog does not feel lonely. If during the day you have turned on the TV, or listen to the radio, leave some device that makes sounds playing. We do it so that our dog does not feel the time spent alone is somehow special. Try not to make saying goodbye an emotional ritual. Because your goal is to teach your pet that it is completely natural that the guardian leaves the house - this situation does not give the dog the impression of concern.

In the same way, it is worth restring your emotions during the greeting. Check if the dog excites outside your door or whines and squeaks before your entrance. If so, wait a moment. Otherwise, you will teach the dog that the louder the howls, the faster you react and come.

Enter the house ignoring the dog, calmly take off your shoes, and then say hello to the dog when the emotions subside. If, after returning home, you notice that the dog has demolished something, you absolutely can not punish him for doing so. The dog will not associate the destruction of an object with the punishment that comes with it. However, it can associate that when the owner appears in the house, the atmosphere is tense, and it is facing a penalty. You risk then destroying a healthy relationship based on trust.

Summary

One of the main causes of a dog's separation anxiety is improper socialization in the puppy age. Weaned too soon from the mother, it directs all his love and attachment to us. And if we don't take the necessary steps in time, then the problems can worsen.

Dogs who show signs of fear of parting often interpret us leaving home as abandonment. Sometimes it may be worth consulting with a behaviorist who can find a solution if we don't know what to do next. Rarely, these issues disappear on their own, and ignoring them can lead to the consolidation and deepening of problems.

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