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4 Signs That Your Dog Suffers from Separation Anxiety

4 Signs That Your Dog Suffers from Separation Anxiety

This article is for those of you who are unaware that dogs can suffer from separation anxiety. Yes, it is very real and should be taken seriously. Some people get confused between separation anxiety and love. Some dogs are on the edge of a full-blown attack of separation anxiety.

Behaviours to watch out for in your dog, include:

  • He needs to be within a few feet of you at all times.

  • Your dog gives you a frenzied greeting every time you come home, whether you have been gone for five minutes or five days.

  • Your dog watches your every move and its mood starts to change as you get ready to leave your home.

  • Your dog engages in behaviours while you're gone, that it doesn't do when you're home.

  • Another mistake owners often make is to assume their pet's destructiveness in their absence is simple misbehaviour. They believe their dog is acting out of boredom or anger at being left behind.

Signs of Separation Anxiety

If your dog has genuine separation anxiety, it feels extreme nervousness when you're away. What it's experiencing is the equivalent to a human panic attack. Your dog has no control over it and it's likely exhibiting one or more of the following inappropriate coping behaviours in your absence:

  • Vocalising: It typically involves barking, whining or howling and usually starts before or after you leave and it will continue for most of the time you are gone until you return. The chances that your neighbours have told you about the noise, or will be telling you soon, are great.  

  • Drooling: Experts consider excessive salivation, which only occurs when a dog is alone or believes she's alone, as a red flag for separation anxiety.

  • Accidents in the house: You find your dog's toilet behaviour in random locations around your home, rather than in one consistent spot. This also only happens if your dog is alone or thinks that it is alone.

Destructive behaviour: Dogs with separation anxiety typically cause damage to doors or windows (exit points), or personal items such as clothing, pillows or the TV remote control. Confining these dogs to a kennel or carrier often causes an escalation of the behaviour and can result in self-injury.

It's often easy to know if your dog is having a problem when it's home alone, because there's evidence of it: a scratched-up door, a puddle of drool, or a pile of poop on the floor, or perhaps a nasty note from an annoyed neighbour taped to your door. If you're confused about whether your dog is suffering from separation anxiety or simple boredom, keep in mind that the behaviours that result from separation anxiety occur only when you're not around and every time you're not around.

Here is a link for a more detailed blog on separation anxiety: