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Separation Anxiety in Dogs

Treatment

 

Separation anxiety is based on fear. It is important to assure the dog that it is safe when the owner is not present and that the owner will return. Behavioral and environmental modification is important. By gradually eliminating the dog’s fear and fostering a sense of safety for the pet, many behaviors can change. The first step is to assess the current environment and behaviors:

 

  • What does the dog do as the owner gets ready to leave?
  • What does the owner do as he/she gets ready to leave?
  • What does the dog destroy?
  • Where is the dog? Are there other pets?
  • What toys does the dog have available?

 

Environmental changes like rotating different toys, adding more interactive toys, and gradually getting the dog used to a crate or other type of environment can help. Behavioral changes start with cues from the owner. A change or elimination of the routine when an owner leaves or returns home may help. It is important for the pet to stay calm before an owner leaves and when the owner comes home.

 

Behaviors take time and consistency to change, so consulting with a behaviorist or experienced trainer can make a significant difference in the success of the training. Antidepressants or anti-anxiety drugs (anxiolytics) can be given to dogs with separation anxiety, but should not be relied on as the sole treatment for separation anxiety.

 

Living and Management 

 

Being consistent when trying to change separation anxiety behaviors is critical. If behavioral symptoms do improve, an owner may be able to taper the amount of medication given and potentially discontinue using medications after a period of time. Other options that might work if behavioral and environmental modification do not help include doggy day care or a pet sitter.

 

 

Comments  3

Leave Comment
  • BAD separation anxiety
    02/05/2015 04:25pm

    Our dog had such bad separation anxiety, she destroyed everything in sight. When we crated her, she yelped for HOURS. We got a training program and it literally saved us. Here's the program http://99fb025jr0398vcjm1p6uoihwe.hop.clickbank.net/

  • Puppy Howls A lot
    03/07/2016 10:03pm

    I took my puppy from a dog foster home about a year ago. I love him to bits; he has a great personality, and I feel that he loves our family so much. BUT, he howls a lot when he is alone at home. How to stop it?
    My husband and I were thinking about taking him to 'doggy school', but then again, it’s extremely expensive, and the nearest 'doggy school' is far away from us. Maybe you have some advice? THANK YOU!!!!

  • 03/07/2016 10:10pm

    I feel for you...we had problems with our dog also. He used to howl like crazy when we were not at home, and our neighbours complained a lot because of that. Both my husband and I work a lot and had no time to take our Bud to dog training classes. We asked one friend who works in foster care (he is always surrounded by dogs) what we should do. He recommended one online dog behavior trainer. I love this trainer http://bit.ly/1Tm6XWg
    It helped us a lot, and I strongly recommend it for you.

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