Does your dog bark excessively or howl when you leave the house? Have you experienced the misfortune of walking inside a totally disrupted house? Or are you constantly receiving complaints from your neighbors due to your dog’s crazy barks and howls?
Well, boy your dog may have separation anxiety. It is one of the common phrases used by every dog’s parents has described their dogs’ stress. Like human anxiety even dogs face anxiety. It is certainly a reaction that triggers when they see their loved ones leave them alone.
Separation anxiety happens when a dog is strongly attached to its owner. It makes them super-stressed when they are left alone. It is one of the frustrating conditions when the dog asks for the owner’s presence 24 hours. Staying close to them throughout the day is just impossible as we must fulfill several work and financial commitments.
Through this article, we shall explore the symptoms, causes, and treatments of separation anxiety in a dog.
Symptoms of Dog Separation Anxiety
Here are few symptoms dog owner must look for:
- Compulsive behavior
- Destructive behavior
- Excessive barking and howling
- Juvenile Destruction
Causes of dog separation anxiety
As stated by the Merck Manual Veterinary Manual, the anxiety felt by pets are caused by:
- Genetic disposition – It is said that dogs with high intelligence, energy have a high propensity of anxiety. Some of these breeds are Terrier breeds, Mountain Dogs, German Shepherds, and Cocker Spaniels.
- Fear – It can be caused by loud noise, strange or new environment, or due to previous trauma. Dogs can develop phobias when they are 1-3 years old. Abandonment, mistreatment, and abuse can cause anxiety. These can mentally and physically strain health. Pet trainers and vet can help to find out the anxiety occurrence.
- Medical issues – Hearing loss, encephalitis, hypothyroidism may experience anxiety. Any toxic situation can lead to a change in behavior, which may harm the owner. Immediate medical attention must be given or else the situation is sure to worsen.
- Separation – Nearly 14 percent of dogs find difficult to adjust with the anxiety and are unable to find comfort when left alone. The anxiety manifests surging in undesirable behaviors such as defecating houses, breaking furniture, and barking people.
- Age-related anxiety – It can be highly associated with cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS) therefore, the dog owners if are unaware of the syndrome can take help from the vets.
Treatments for dog anxiety
Considering their insecurities, we bring in a few homely ways which can help them minimize and fight against this anxiety consequence.
1. Change your “Goodbyes” routine
Pups like schedule. Dogs are very clever as they are aware of small changes in your routine. So why not use different doors at the beginning. Hide your coat, umbrella, etc. essential kinds of stuff inside a separate bag pack and leave. You can also leave back your essential items in your care. These small changes can help in building your dog’s behavior.
2. Take them “walk” before you go
Start your dogs’ day with a blissful walk. Make their walk enjoyable and refreshing. Then reward them with dog treats and freshwater. After long walks and satisfying treat, most of the dogs go to sleep. While they are sleeping you can go to work.
3. Keeping a caretaker
Hire a caretaker for your dogs. They can throughout the day take your dog to walk, feed them a proper diet, and keep them engaged in different activities.
4. Leaving their favorite pieces of stuff behind
Is your dog attached to any toys or place? If so, you can recreate the area by filling in their favorite soft toys where they can spend a wonderful time even in your absence. Limit your attention before he gets shortly to leave. So, this doesn’t make a problem as you’re out. Make comfort with its item. This will make him busy at his comfortable at his job. Make calm at his comfort zone as he can play with the kinds of stuff by himself if you’re present with him.
5. Treating them with Dog Treats
yak bone for dogs and toys these days are available in varieties of options. Pet owners can treat them every day with these treats. Try them and choose the best option. For natural chew treats, try Himalayan cheese yak chew
6. Stay calm and unperturbed while leaving
Being calm and assertive, when you are ready to go for work never be guilty, nervous and make you have the anxiety of separation. This will make your dog know everything. It will make them mentally prepared at these things and make as their quotidian schedule.
7. Obedience training
An essential tool in managing and preventing dog anxiety. It helps in establishing a healthy foundation and relation with great trust. A well-trained dog can easily cope with anxiety. They can socialize well even in a controlled environment.
8. Behavior modification
Dogs can easily unlearn or modify their reaction. To do so the pet owners can train their dogs at home or hire a trainer to properly manage their behavior.
9. Encouraging in socialization
As they must stay inside the house throughout the working days, dog owners can take them out for socialization. If there are any dog events in your community, you can take them, enroll them in any kind of game. You can also take them to parks every evening for an evening walk and give them a quick frisbee game. This will make them happy and active.
10. Adding another member
Loneliness can make them depressed. Therefore, adding another dog can make them a good companion. You don’t have to worry much about them throughout your day. This would reduce their anxiety and help them to keep up with the emotional level. Though it may incline the cost level, it will save your dog from depression at the same time allow you to concentrate on your work.
Remember that there is no magic that your dog will adopt these schedules immediately. So, you should never give up on them. It’s in your hand how you make your pup get rid of this separation anxiety. A long-lasting effective dedication is required. Commitment and planning through the above-mentioned points can help your dog to be patient.