What is puppy separation anxiety? Simply put, this is a state of intense panic that a dog finds himself in whenever he is separated or isolated from his owner or from the other members of his "pack.
" Fortunately, there are effective ways to treat or prevent anxiety disorder in dogs, and one of the most effective methods involve something called dog behaviour modification.
What is dog behaviour modification and how is it done? This is simply a method of resolving behavioural issues in dogs, which serve to complement basic obedience training.
There are times when obedience training is just not enough to reverse behavioural problems manifested by your dog.
Now, here are three simple tips on how to promote behaviour modification in your dog.
Crate Training - One of the essential tools for basic dog training, crate training is also very useful in dog behaviour modification.
A lot of dogs find security and comfort in having a small, confined space that they can call their own.
You can tell that your dog responds well to confinement if he tends to sleep or eat his food treats in secluded corners.
If such is the case, then you should use crate training both when you are home as well as when you have to leave the house.
Remember that the dog considers the crate as his haven or "safe room," so it is definitely advantageous to let him spend as much time there as possible.
And one very important thing to remember is that you should never use the crate as a form of punishment because that will run counter to its purpose of being a safe room.
Identifying the Signs - Recognizing the signs and symptoms of puppy separation anxiety is the necessary first step in effectively treating it.
The good news is that it is not very difficult to find these signs as long as you pay attention.
Signs of anxiety are often manifested even before you leave the house, when your dog already senses your impending departure.
Panting, pacing, digging, trembling, whining, and the refusal to eat are all common signs of puppy separation anxiety.
When you notice your dog showing any of these signs, DO NOT give in to the temptation of simply patting your dog and telling him, "It's okay" or "You're okay.
" This will send the wrong message to your dog, telling him that this is an accepted behaviour.
What you need to do instead is talk to your dog, groom or massage it and then bring him to his crate just before you leave.
If this still does not calm him down, you should just ignore him and exit the door without looking back.
Fussing will only unintentionally reward his anxiety.
Exercise - Just as exercise relieves you of stress, it also works the same with your dog.
Therefore, giving your dog enough exercise will help keep him more relaxed even when you're out of the house.
It is therefore a good idea to take your dog for a long walk just before you leave.
What's more, it'll definitely give YOU some wonderful health benefits!