How To Deal With Dog Separation Anxiety
Pet parent guilt is real. When you have to leave the house and leave your dog home alone, chances are you’re worried whether:
- He’s lonely
- If she will chew your favorite shoes
- If his separation anxiety can be addressed to make being apart not as traumatic for either of you
Handling separation anxiety can be tricky, but remember to be patient, because it will take time.
Separation Anxiety in Dogs
Dogs who suffer separation anxiety get either overly excited when you leave the home and are overly excited when you come back. They can be destructive, have bathroom accidents in the home, lick or chew themselves to the point where they’re missing fur and could be “overly” clingy aka velcro dog when you’re home.
We certainly want our dogs to be happy when we come home, but we don’t want them to make themselves ill when we’re away nor do we want them to destroy our homes.
Signs Your Dog Has Separation Anxiety
Here are some signs that your dog might have separation anxiety:
- They destroy your home and/or furniture
- They bark incessantly while you’re away
- They lick or chew themselves
- They pace
- They try to escape by breaking through a window
Ease Your Dog's Separation Anxiety
If your dog has mild separation anxiety you may be able to address it through behavior modification and short separations, followed by longer times apart. He may come to realize that even though you’re leaving, you are coming back and that may ease his anxiety.
Talk with your vet to rule out any medical conditions. Your vet may recommend anti-anxiety medications if your dog is truly having a hard time coping with your being away.
Get a pet sitter to come and stay while you’re gone. This may not be economically feasible, but if you have a friend or family member who can come and stay with your pup, that might help.
Give your dog a special toy or treat that he only gets when you’re leaving the house. He will come to equate this special and unique treat with your being gone.
Turn on DOGTV. This is special television programming scientifically developed to be of comfort to your dog when you’re not home. Rather than leaving your dog in a completely silent house, DOGTV will provide companionship that will help calm your dog, keep him company and keep him entertained.
Put them in “clothing” that will help with separation anxiety. Items such as the Thundershirt or Surgi-Snuggly’s Wonder Suit wraps your dog in a comforting embrace and that can help him deal with separation anxiety while you’re away from home. Wearing a Wonder Suit might make it possible for you to come home to a house that remains intact!
Clawguard to Protect Against Separation Anxiety
Use CLAWGUARD products to protect those areas of your home your dog destroys while you’re away -- doors, window sills, furniture. There will be some dogs who simply will suffer separation anxiety and as a pet parent it’s up to you to keep him safe and secure and still protect your home from damage.
CLAWGUARD builds shields that help protect homes from damage caused by dogs and cats. Products include door shields, couch guards, and universal protective tape that protects commonly scratched areas like window sills, furniture, banisters, weatherstripping and more.