SEPARATION ANXIETY IN DOGS
Knowing dogs are man’s best companion and being highly influenced by their adorableness in the internet you finally convince your family and then save up for a dog. The day you get it you feel like it is already a part of you. You can’t get enough of it in it’s initial days for it is the cutest living creature who could possibly do no wrong.
Everything goes well and the dog behaves like an angel in your presence. But as soon as you are gone it turns into a beast, shreds anything in sight poops and pees in the room and chews up your shoes.It barks non- stop and tries to escape from the house. It still looks adorable and the guilty face it puts up melts your heart but then anger management issues are kept at bay when you see the damages it has made. Some opt to even beat the dog in order to ‘teach the dog a lesson’ or ‘tame’ them. But do you actually think that beating or putting it in chains puts a halt to whatever it is doing and fear is the emotion you would like to instill in your best friend so that it does not make mistakes?
You might be misinterpreting your dog’s Separation Anxiety as it’s disobedience and/or it’s mischief .It is difficult to understand your dog and it’s needs for obvious reasons. Your dog can’t answer ‘why?’ but you can atleast try to understand what is up and what is going on.
In order to put a light on separation anxiety it is important that you are aware of the symptoms that it has you can figure out the difference between anxiety and misbehavior. Most of the times the activities that your dog does in your absence be just because its bored and it finds chewing your shoes an interesting activity. Also depending on the dog’s breed there are different levels of ‘active time’ they need in order to be healthy so spending time with them and making sure they have the required active time for instance walk or fetch is important. Their mischief might also be abundant when you don’t spend enough time with your dog. When your dog destroys your stuff and you punish your dog, it gets your attention which it takes as a reward. So this is not exactly what you want your dog to think because it will start doing more of the trouble making just get your attention. You can get rid of this habit by spending more time with your dog.
The main signs of a dog with separation anxiety are:
- Destructive behaviors, such as chewing pillows or furniture, mutilating plants, or relentless scratching at doors and windows • Constant barking, whining, or howling
- Urinating or defecating indoors
- Intense, persistent pacing • Attempting to “escape” a room or crate to the point of self-injury
- Physiological responses, such as dilated pupils or excessive panting Several factors indicate that the problem is serious:
- The behavior occurs every time you leave. • The behavior occurs only in your absence.
- Anxious behaviors begin even before you go. For example, your dog knows that when you put on your jacket, you’re about to leave the house. The minute you reach for your jacket, he begins pacing and howling.
Spend time training—not just classes once a week—often and consistently. Show your dog what you want from him in and around the house, and during daily routines. Two minutes here, five minutes there. Not just going for a walk but training him as you go to sit at curbsides, and sit when meeting others, people and dogs.
Teach your dog to sit at the door, lie down, and stay while you go out of sight for increasing periods of time energy. in your own house. Train your dog to sit and wait to be greeted by guests, move aside when you go to the refrigerator, and go to the bathroom on cue. In general, you should be teaching your dog in small steps to be a respectful and have confidence in himself.
You can avoid these problems if you are starting out with a puppy. For example when you have a puppy you take to take it everywhere you go and the puppy feels like it always belongs to you side, but after it grows bigger when it actually needs you by his/ her side you leave your dog at home this cause stress in the dog causing separation anxiety. Train your puppy that you going out is not always a bad thing. Keep some dog treats hidden where your dog can access it, it will keep your dog entertained. Also keep your dog’s favorite toys close so that it can spend the time playing with it. Introduce your dog to its crate properly so that it feels safe in its crate. Another way is to tire you dog with some physical and mental activities, so the dog will tend to use the alone time to take a nap and regain its energy
“TEACH YOUR DOG TO SIT AT THE DOOR, LIE DOWN, AND STAY WHILE YOU GO OUT OF SIGHT FOR INCREASING PERIODS OF TIME IN YOUR OWN HOUSE.”