Dog separation anxiety is the most common phrase used to describe the psychological state of your dog when you leave home – or when you just leave the room.
Dog separation anxiety can be defined as a dog behavioral problem that has symptoms such excessive barking, salivation, whining, destroying furniture at home, scratching the walls, and trying to escape from the house.
What are the causes of dog separation anxiety?
Very often, dog separation anxiety is unknowingly motivated by dog owners. We usually make a noise when we leave or come home, and while doing so, we offer treats to the dog as a compensation for our absence. This provokes more stress in dogs every time we leave them.
For the sake of socialization, we take our puppies with us everywhere we go, but a change in routine may trigger dog separation anxiety; when our puppies grow older, we can’t take them with us everywhere we go. This latter may affect them in bad ways.
More symptoms can be created by change in routine. Boredom and lack of exercise can also cause dog separation anxiety. Dogs are born to dig, retrieve things and protect but we are preventing them from practicing their instincts and natural behaviors by keeping them home.
How to prevent dog separation anxiety?
Usually vets prescribe drugs that may calm your dog a little, but they aren’t cure. These drugs provide support to assist dog owners in rehabilitating their pets. They are no more than a temporary solution.
A puppy often starts to cry when you take him out from the litter. It’s a huge change for the puppy that used to be accompanied by his pack. As a first reaction, we take the puppy and show him sympathy. Every time he cries, we reward his crying and this isn’t really a good thing to do.
From the start, we need to teach our puppies good behaviors, so instead of rewarding his crying, we should promote his calmness and reward his patience. When we’re out with our dogs, we should avoid interacting with them; they need to learn how to entertain themselves.
We need to teach our dogs to accept the crate and learn to explore the surroundings under our supervision so that they recognize the limits. All you need as a dog owner is to be consistent to reinforce good behaviors and prevent dog separation anxiety.