We hear many people talk about having anxiety in their day-to-day life, but we don’t usually hear about a dog with anxiety. It is said that roughly 70% of all dogs suffer from some type of anxiety and about 14% of that is related to separation in one way or another. Once we know what it is and what to look for, we can then help to ease the stress of this issue in our dogs’ lives.
What is Separation Anxiety?
Separation anxiety is when the dog feels more stressed or anxiousness when the owner is not around. They tend to get upset when left alone or when the owner isn’t present and can start to feel this way within minutes of being separated.
We aren’t sure why, but some breeds are more prone to feeling this way than others but there are signs that you can look for in your dog to pinpoint if this may be something they are dealing with.
Signs of Separation Anxiety
When a dog has separation anxiety there will be signs that prove that this is what is taking place and knowing what these are can help you and your dog in the long run. Your dog suddenly having behavior problems is the key indicator of separation anxiety.
These behavior problems can show up in many ways. They include chewing up furniture, urinating and defecating throughout the house, barking, pacing, or any behavior that is out of the ordinary
If you have a puppy doing these behaviors, then it is likely because they are young and in need of more time and training. However, if you have an older dog that is suddenly acting out in these ways, this could be the reason behind it.
What to do to Help
There are several ways that you can help manage your dog’s anxiety and the approach that you take will depend on the severity of the separation anxiety.
A few ways you can help include:
- Starting slow by only leaving them alone for short periods
- Being more discreet when you leave
- Showing your dog that picking up your keys, putting on shoes, etc., doesn’t always mean that you are leaving
- Give them your undivided attention and extra love when returning
- Give them calming medicine or CBD to help them relax
- Take them for a walk before leaving so that they sleep while you are gone
Each dog will be different and you may want to give a few of these tips a try to ease their anxiety. Aside from that, you always want to be sure to take your dog to your local vet if your dog is acting strange with a possibility of an underlying medical issue.
Some dogs just need a little extra tender love and care while others may need supplements to help keep them calm. Whatever the case may be, with your help, your dog will soon get through it!