Separation anxiety is, in effect, a mental health condition that can have a severe impact on the health and happiness of your beloved dog. Below, we’ll go into details about why separation anxiety happens, what you need to look out for, and — most importantly — what you can do to restore happiness to your furry friend.
What is separation anxiety?
Many dogs suffer from separation anxiety due to loneliness. Their owner leaves for the day — usually to go to work — and they’re left in the house, bored, listless, and feeling denied the affection they usually experience. It has been observed to cause a kind of canine depression.
What are the symptoms of separation anxiety?
Separation anxiety can contribute to destructive behavior when you’re out of the house. If you come home to find the trash can has been raided by your pooch, or the sofa cushions have been dragged around the floor, separation anxiety may be the cause. Excessive barking and howling when you’re away from home is also common.
How do I know if my dog has separation anxiety?
One of the issues in diagnosing separation anxiety is that you are not present to observe it. If you suspect your dog is struggling while you are out of the house, it may be worth setting up a motion-detecting Wifi camera to observe them when you’re away from home. If you see destructive behavior, relentless pacing, or excessive barking or howling, then you can suspect separation anxiety as the cause.
Is separation anxiety dangerous?
Not in a physical sense, but it can be problematic for a dog’s general outlook on life, and they may exhibit signs of depression. The destructive behavior can be problematic, but it is rarely dangerous.
Does my dog need to see a vet?
The symptoms of separation anxiety are similar to other behavioral issues, so it’s always worth getting your dog checked over with a vet just to rule out any underlying causes.
What can I do about separation anxiety?
The fact that you have to live your home is undeniable, so treating separation anxiety is about making this circumstance more palatable to your dog. One option is using a doggy daycare such as Pampered Pets Inn for your pooch; this will keep them distracted and ensure the end to destructive behavior.
If you don’t want to use a doggy daycare, then entertaining your dog while the house is empty is a good option. Ensure they have plenty of toys, leave the radio on so they are not stranded in silence, and try to exercise them before you leave the house so they don’t struggle with pent-up energy.
Is there anything else I need to know?
Separation anxiety can be managed, and it will make a huge difference to your dog’s quality of life if you achieve this. Go through the solutions above and, hopefully, the issues you’re experiencing will become a thing of the past.