As a child, did you ever freak out when you thought your parents were gone? Do you remember the emotional trauma of feeling afraid and desperate? Hopefully not, but your furry companion is experiencing this. Their fear is VERY REAL. If possible, try your best not to leave your dog alone.
There are experts in separation anxiety called Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (CSAT).
Separation Anxiety Dog, Moira Hechenleitner DVM, CSAT
Remote support anywhere in the world, in English or Spanish.
Here are some links to understand separation anxiety:
Separation Anxiety playlist by Dog Liaison
Separation Anxiety and Beyond by Tracy Krulik, CTC, CSAT hosted by Your Dogs Friend
Separation Anxiety versus Independence issues
Shelter and rescue dogs may experience some separation anxiety. There are things you can do to help prepare your dog when you leave.
Separation Training for Puppies and Adult Dogs by Dog Training by Kikopup
Capturing Calmness - how to train calmness in dogs by Dog Training by Kikopup
Schedule and Routine
Create and maintain a schedule and routine. “Many dogs find “living in the moment” and spontaneity to be nerve-wracking. In fact, much of a dog’s life is about anticipating future events. Dogs thrive off of predictability and routine.” Dog Liaison, Jenna Romano
Please make sure to provide enrichment. CHAAMP highly recommends reading the following book: "Canine Enrichment for the Real World: Making It a Part of Your Dog's Daily Life"
Podcast with Emily Bender: Doggy Dojo: Practical Canine Enrichment with Allie Bender on Apple Podcasts
**FREE** Dog Enrichment course by Instinct Online School
Dog Enrichment course: Your dog's behavioral health is dependent on providing them with outlets to engage in important natural canine behaviors. Learn how to use enrichment games & activities to fulfill your dog's behavioral needs & reduce problem behaviors.
My dog is freaking out!
If they are a puppy, they just left their siblings and the warmth of their mom. Please consider having them sleep in the same room with you with a blanket from their mom or a piece of your clothing with your smell. They are just a baby, and the new environment is VERY scary. Dogs any age experience anxiety when introduced into a new environment. They don't know the people or the environment.
You cannot tell them it is ok with a firm voice because they do not understand. They need your help. They cannot cry it out --- doing so only makes it harder for them the next time you need to leave.
Your dog may have potty accidents even after you just walked them. This is caused by stress. They are not in control of their emotions. Can you imagine being so scared or stressed that you have a potty accident?
Please make sure you are able to read their dog body language.
Please pause and remember that your dog is not giving you a hard time, he/she is having a hard time.
Books on Separation Anxiety
Separation Anxiety in Dogs - Next Generation Treatment Protocols and Practices by Malena DeMartini-Price
Treating Separation Anxiety in Dogs by Malena DeMartini-Price
Be Right Back!: How To Overcome Your Dog's Separation Anxiety And Regain Your Freedom by Julie Naismith
I'll Be Home Soon: How to Prevent and Treat Separation Anxiety by Patricia B. McConnell
Don't Leave Me! Step-by-Step Help for Your Dog's Separation Anxiety by Nicole Wilde