How To Relieve Your Dog’s Separation Anxiety
Just like most young children who are separated from their parents for the first time, dogs are also prone to experiencing separation anxiety when their owners leave for extended periods. Most cases of separation anxiety in dogs occur when the owner doesn’t go home for the night for instance, during which the dog might pace around the house continuously, groom himself too much and pant constantly.
A Behavior Problem – Severe Separation Anxiety In Dogs
However, there are also more severe cases of separation anxiety in dogs, where the animal will demonstrate strange and unnatural behavior after the owner has been away for just a few minutes. In extreme cases, the dog will begin to soil the house, bark incessantly or even destroy objects just as soon as the owner leaves his sight.
Which Dogs Are More Prone To Separation Anxiety?
Certain dogs are more susceptible to separation anxiety than others, like those that have been rescued from the streets or adopted from a place where they had been trapped in a kennel for very long periods. You can’t undo the traumatic experiences that these dogs may have gone through but there are things you can do in order to reduce the risk of separation anxiety in dogs like them.
Here are a few five tips for you to start with:
1. Give him his own comfortable place to sleep in. Some dogs prefer being cooped up in a small cozy bed or dog crate while others feel much better when allowed to roam freely around the house. Observe your dog to see what makes him happy.
2. When you absolutely have to confine your dog to a crate when leaving the house, place the crate in a spot where he can see outside the house, like beside a large window. Oftentimes, this is enough to reduce or even eliminate separation anxiety in dogs.
3. A lot of people believe that separation anxiety in dogs occur because they are scared that the owner will not come back but oftentimes, this is actually just the result of boredom because they don’t have anything to do when left all alone. To avoid this, you can keep your dog entertained while you are gone by teaching him games that he can play on his own.
4. You can also prevent separation anxiety in dogs by providing him enough treats and toys to keep him busy the whole time that you are away. Hide some of his favorite toys where you know he can find them — this technique keeps most dogs busy for hours at a time.
5. Studies have shown that dogs are able to relax considerably when listening to music. Before leaving the house, play some classical music on the radio and leave it on while you are away. This will stop most dogs from going through the entire experience of separation anxiety.