One of the most common complaints of pet parents is disruptive or destructive behavior while their dogs are left alone. Their dogs may urinate, defecate, bark, howl, chew, dig or try to escape. While house manners may need to be taught, more often than not, these behaviors are indicators of distress, or separation anxiety.
Separation anxiety occurs when dogs become upset because of separation from their pet parents (or for a lack of better terms, their owners). A dog’s attempt to escape often causes destruction and injury, especially around doors and windows. When a pet parent attempts to leave, some dogs may get agitated while others seem depressed prior to leaving. Some dogs may try to prevent the guardian from leaving-interrupting tying of shoes, hiding needed items like car keys, or they may simply cry. Others may wait until right after their pet parents leave to bark, scratch and howl – then once the pet parent returns, regardless of the short period of time, the dog will be super excited.
The best solution for working with a dog suffering from separation anxiety is to help them with coping or reducing their anxiety. Easing the fear that results from the anxiety will calm your dog and make the separation more tolerable. A short walk before getting ready or a few more minutes of play time before getting ready to leave may help.
Warm Wags and Smiles,
A woman and her dog