Seeing the sad, desperate look of separation anxiety in your puppy can be heartbreaking. Fortunately, we have some tips on how you can help your pooch get past it. Read on for more information!
You have a new four legged friend in your home! Congrats on your newest addition. Maybe it’s not all you thought it would be right away. Does your new pup bark constantly when you leave? When you come home, do you find he has chewed things he wasn’t supposed to? The legs of your chairs, some clothes? Maybe he has relieved himself on your carpet? Fear not, this is behavior that, with a little training and persistence on your part, you can help your new family member overcome. Here are just a few tips on how to deal with separation anxiety in your puppy.
Prevent Separation Anxiety in Your Puppy
- Crate training your puppy is very helping in stopping separation anxiety in your puppy. It gets him used to being alone and being okay with it. You want a crate that is large enough for him to turn around in, but not large enough where if he has an accident, he can move far away from it. Dogs don’t typically ‘go’ where they sleep. Next, you want to place the crate in a high traffic area, where you spend most of your time, so the puppy doesn’t feel alone.
- Make sure you put dog food and toys in there, but no water as it can get messy. Start out with small amounts of time and move on to longer amounts of time so he can get used to knowing that’s his safe place. Do not, by any means, make him to go to crate as punishment. This will only spark more anxiety when you need him to go there when you leave. Getting your puppy used to going into his crate will eliminate anxious behavior when you leave and save your house from being destroyed.
- Let your pup explore on his own (supervised of course). Many dog owners feel the need to always be ‘entertaining’ their furry friends, whether it be playing with or even just touching and petting, let your dog have some alone time. After all when you are gone, there will be no one there to do the entertaining.
- Reward your pup for patience and calmness. Dogs love to please their owners, and when they know you are happy with something they have done, they will keep doing it. It is very easy to get trapped in saying hello to your puppy when you have come home and they are excited to see you. By showing attention, you are rewarding bad behavior, and you probably don’t even realize it. So when you leave the house, pay no attention to your puppy. Grab your things and leave the house without saying anything. It sounds cruel, but you are provoking anxiety in your pup by letting them know you are leaving. Do the same when coming back home, do not show attention. Simply wait until they are calm and then say hello. When you do, reward their calm behavior with a treat.
These are just a few tips on how to handle separation anxiety in your puppy. Have you ever had an animal that exhibited bad behavior when you left them alone? Were you able to break them of those poor habits? We want to hear how you have overcome separation anxiety in your puppy! Post your helpful comments below!