It happens every time you leave the house. Your dog begins to circle you, cries, whines, and barks. You try to ease him with calm words, cuddles, giving him a hug or a kiss before you say “goodbye” and shut the door behind you but nothing helps: Even as you walk away, you can hear your dog, upset about your departure.
For dog guardians it isn’t easy to handle separation anxiety and it takes time for the training to yield results. Therefore we collected some helpful tricks on how to manage it:
1. Keep It Casual When You Leave
If you make a dramatic scene out of leaving the house – giving your dog hugs and kisses while repeating the word “bye” – he’s going to know you’re leaving. And, that’s going to trigger his separation anxiety. Instead, be nonchalant when you leave.
2. Don’t leave behind a hyper dog
Tire your dog out before leaving. A long walk, a run, a fetch/ tug of war session – whatever works for you and your pup. If you are gone all day every day and your dog is alone, he’s probably bored and lacking exercise in addition to dealing with separation anxiety. Ask a family member, friend, neighbor or professional dog walker to come to your home and take your dog for a walk.
3. Keep your companion busy with toys and chews while you’re gone
Make sure you give your dog plenty to do while you’re away. A busy dog won’t chew your couch or eat through your door. Here is a variety of toys and chews that are great for dogs suffering from separation anxiety:
- Treat Dispensing Toys
- Smart Toys
4. Leave Behind Your Scent
Provide your furry one with comfort by leaving an item – an old shirt, for example or a blanket – that has your scent on it. It’s often an effective way to calm an anxious dog.
5. Put music on
While separation anxiety is a common problem with dogs, it is possible for your dog to learn how to calmly and peacefully stay home alone. The key is to be persistent until you find what works best for your dog.