Separation anxiety in dogs

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Dog owners often complain of unusual behavior from their dogs that they regard as impolite. Nonetheless, dogs hardly act out for no apparent reason. One thing for sure, they are super loyal and attached to their owners. When they become whinny when you are about to leave the house or destructive only when you’re away, it is more likely that your dog suffers separation anxiety.

While an ignorant guardian may initially ignore this behavior, the situation is likely to deteriorate fast and eventually lead to abandonment when no professional advice is sought.

What causes separation anxiety?

  • Abandoning your dog for long hours.
  • Change of ownership.
  • The loss of a family member they were hyper attached to.
  • Changes in routine.
  • Adoption from a shelter to a new home.

Signs of separation anxiety

You know your dog is in distress or suffers from separation anxiety when they display either (or a combination) of these demeanors when left alone:

  • Restlessness and frequent pacing in an obsessive manner.
  • Extreme vocalizations such as growling, howling, whining, or barking.
  • Dogs may begin to scratch at windows and doors, dig holes, have potty accidents, chew cushions, and other materials.
  • Unusual drooling, panting, or salivation.
  • Desperate attempts to escape confinement that can result in self-injury.
  • Super excitement on your arrival and continually following you around for they are insecure when you would leave again.

Before ruling any of the above signs as separation anxiety, monitor your dog’s behavior when you are around them and away. You may install a video cam that can record their activities when you leave the house.

How to deal with separation anxiety

Seek a professional’s advice from vetsend and get guidance through your dog’s recovery journey. Our experts will help you rule out any medical conditions that could be mistaken for SA.

Once you are confident your canine’s misdemeanor is from SA, consider taking the following steps to ensure your dog’s recovery.

  • Keep a low-key profile. Do not let your going out or coming in be a big deal to your dog. Normalize leaving your dog for short periods that progress to longer ones over time. Upon your return, avoid overly emotional greetings with your dog.
  • Break from your regular departure routine. For instance, every once-in-a-while, grab your keys and head upstairs rather than to your car. It will make your dog less anxious about your departures.

Also, train your dog to get comfortable with new experiences.

  • Under extreme conditions, your vet may recommend anxiety-relieving medicines for your dog.
  • Leave your dog with busy toys for destruction. Consider leaving pieces of your dirty laundry to provide a calming scent once you go.