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Seperation Anxiety (Dogs)


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#1 Ellivort

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 07:31 AM

So we're noticing a little bit of separation anxiety with Medic. I know it could very well be because he's had a rough week and is new to our home, but I've been looking into info and tips online and there is SOOO much info and such a varying range of opinions on how to deal with it.

Has anyone here had success in reversing this behaviour?

We were thinking of leaving him for very short periods to start 5-10 mins and increasing as he gets better. I was thinking of just leaving casually out of his line of sight then returning. I want to give him a treat on return, but i'm hesitant as i dont want him to feel whining and barking will get him a reward.

A lot of what i've read said to put him out of line of sight and wait for him to quiet then give a treat, but that seems a little torturous.

Any advice is welcome.

Thanks

#2 murkywaters

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 08:24 AM

there's LOTS of info on this out there!!
What works for me is leaving them with a chew. Making sure they have something to do to keep them busy. :)

#3 Lilacmom

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 08:33 AM

I had the same problem with Roxy. It took time(about a month) for her to be comfortable being alone. I would leave her sight for 10 to 15 minutes and then gradually longer. I also bought a kong and put a few treats in it and turned the radio on while i was out. It worked. Good luck :) he'll be ok.

#4 Trea

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 08:35 AM

Talk to your vet or a trainer who specializes in behaviour.

This is the #1 reason for dogs being give up.

First make sure he is not allowed to follow anyone around the house. He should be taught to be in a room alone. If he is following somebody everywhere (including the bathroom) he needs to be trained not to. Give him a special toy for only when you leave. When you do leave, and come home, do not make a big deal of it. Just leave without saying anything to him and ignore him for at least 15min when you get home. The toy you choose is important. I love frozen Kong toys for this. It give them something interesting that will keep their attention for a decent amount of time (if they go for it). They need to be "occupied" for a minimum of 20min after you leave.

Doing "fake" departures is an idea also. Do all the things you would do to leave...coat, shoes that sort of thing...then don't leave. Just take your stuff back off, ignoring the dog the entire time and for 15min after.

You can help a dog through this. It is a LOT, LOT of work! Some dogs need to be medicated, some do not.

good luck. Call Crossroads. Jean will be able to help!

#5 Kindermom

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Posted 02 May 2012 - 12:52 PM

We had to work through this issue with our rescue girl. By the time she came to us she had been through hell: abandoned multiple times, adopted and sent back, dumped at the side of the highway and left to die etc. Needless to say, she had extreme separation anxiety. She had to be by my side always and knew every last cue that we had for leaving. We tried it all, did it all and nothing ever worked 100% except time. Even as an old lady, she would still start to stress when she knew we were leaving, though, by that point, she knew we would always return. She was an amazing girl, I still miss her terribly. Enjoy every second with your new boy, he's so lucky to have you!

Edited by Kindermom, 02 May 2012 - 12:53 PM.