Separation Anxiety in Dogs

September 23, 2021
separation anxiety

Being apart is always hard, and separation anxiety is one of the most common behavioral complaints from dog owners. By identifying the problem and acting early, you can help your pet be content when you’re away from home.

Take a look at these separation anxiety tips from the expert veterinarians at Pet Paradise:

1: Start correcting separation anxiety behaviors as early as possible. The earlier these behaviors are noticed and worked on, the more likely you are to prevent long-term behavioral or anxiety issues. It’s never too late to start correcting separation anxiety behaviors, but the sooner you start, the better. 

2: Know the signs of separation anxiety. Symptoms include pacing, whining, shaking, vocalizing, or destructive behaviors. Some pets will chew on bedding, walls, doors or door frames, and may even tear at the metal bars of their kennel.

3: Use desensitization techniques to help lessen the stress of being alone. Plan casual, quick trips where you leave your pet alone for short periods of time (10-20 minutes). Don’t be too overly expressive when leaving or coming home, and try to make saying hello and goodbye a calm experience. Dogs can pick up on the smallest social cues, like jingling your keys, putting a jacket on, or packing a bag, so try to desensitize your pet to these tasks by performing them on a regular basis, even when you aren’t leaving your home.

4: Create a safe space for your pet to go to while you’re away. Whether it’s setting up a bed and their favorite toys in their favorite room, gating off an area of your home where they can roam freely, or using a kennel, your dog will benefit from having a safe, comforting place of their own.

5: Consider talking to your vet about medication. Your veterinarian may recommend a treatment plan to help your dog handle stress and anxiety while you’re away.

6: Bring your dog to day camp at Pet Paradise. Our pack leaders will keep your pet company and make sure they get their daily dose of exercise, socialization, and playtime while you’re away.

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