Sometimes you may notice that when you leave a room your dog instantly follows, or when you leave for work your neighbors report your dog barking, and when you come home your dog whines, jumps or pants excessively. This is an indication your pet has separation anxiety.
If you go to your veterinarian they may prescribe some medications to help alleviate your dogs anxiety. While these might seem effective, work only by masking the true issues your dog has. Separation is often caused by behaviors you taught them, while you never taught your dog to whine, bark or chew up your house when you leave you did reinforce those behaviors , by giving your dog attention for their naughty actions.
Anxiety in dogs is often a learnt behavior this behavior can arise when you make a big fuss when you leave or come home. By paying too much attention to a dog that jumps, whines, or pants when we come home we are only rewarding the dogs behavior. Naturally humans want to pet there stressed pup, to let them know that it’s okay but that is actually the wrong thing to do. You need to show them that it’s okay for you to come and go. By rewarding him you are letting him know that it’s good to be stressed when your are gone. Instead you should reward patience, calmness, and obedience, this will increase your dogs confidence in you as a leader, as well as their confidence in their self.
Techniques to naturally correct your Dogs Anxiety:
One of the best things you can do with your dog is to make sure you give your dog enough exercise. You want your do to be resting and sleeping while you’re gone. Some people think you should distract your dog with stimulating toys but this might further cause your dog stress. If you give your dog a toy that has treats in it and it runs out of treats they might look for other things to chew on. Make sure to give your dog at least 30 minutes of exercises each day, and try do this before you leave.
Another important way to help dogs anxiety is by teaching them to be obedient. You can teach them to sit, stay, lay down when you leave the room. You can do this gradually increasing the time you spend away from them. By doing this you are teaching them good behavior habits, they will know that when you are away they will be okay. This is great for boosting you pets confidence.
Another more drastic approach is by roll playing by turning on your car, do your normal routine you do before you leave, leave then wait a while come back in, doing this several times a day will help get your dog used to you leaving. When you do this it is key to ignore your dog and only praise them when you call them to your attention by sitting at the couch and then rewarding with a treat or belly scratch only after they are calm and you call them over to you.
While it is no magic pill, this is the most effective way to reduce your dogs anxiety level naturally.