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Old October 16th, 2008, 12:47 AM
cattychew cattychew is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 12
I had this problem with my dog when we moved, dealing with it required a lot of restraint.

When I would get home, my first reaction was to go to my dog and calm her down and reassure her that everything was OK. But this is the worst thing you can do for a dog with separation anxiety. It's hard, but when you get home and your dog is excited and seeking reassurance you have to ignore him. Which means no eye contact, petting or anything until he reaches an appropriate level of calm. Once he is calm you can praise him all you want.

The same goes for when you leave the house. You need to treat your leaving as no big deal. Which means no petting, goodbyes or treats. Get what you need ready a little beforehand, put your dog somewhere he will be entertained and wont injure himself (do it without talking to him) and then go.

See, in dog language petting and fussing over a dog when they are upset isn't saying "I'm sorry, I missed you, too." but rather "You were right to be upset. Something horrible could have happened."

You can also give it a few practice runs with varied lengths of time away. My dog managed to get the point in about a week or so. And she had been so bad she would urinate on the floor if she thought I was even contemplating leaving. She still gets a little upset when she sees me get my shoes, but she deals with it well.

Good luck!
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