Separation Anxiety can be painful for owner and dog. We want our dogs to love being near us, but we all need to leave them alone at least part of the time. Many times, we don’t know our dog is struggling until we get complaints from neighbors or come home to a house full of the evidence.
Dogs will choose many different behaviors to express this struggle. Barking, Toileting in the House, Ripping Through Furniture, Over-the-Top Crazy Behavior when You Return. It can all be signs of a struggling dog. It’s all in how your dog chooses to deal with being left alone. Some dogs choose very odd behaviors to cope, but it’s all coming from the same place.
Uncover the Actual Problem
Start by recording your dog for 15-20 minutes. Leave your home as if you would be gone for the day but set up a camera to capture video. Don’t worry if the dog is off screen for part of the time. Just try to get a feel for what your dog is doing and how long she is doing it after you leave. Then send or share this video with RosyDogs for our Professional Evaluation. You’ll be amazed by how much is revealed in those few short minutes.
Ask the Right Questions
Time for a gut check.
Is this behavior different from the behavior you see when you are home, or is it some of the same behaviors your dog chooses when you are near?
The answer to this question will lead us to right solution. Be honest. There are no wrong answers.
Now comes the big question.
What percentage of the day does your dog choose to spend relaxing?
Think about a day when nothing special is happening. Again, honesty counts. Is it 20%? 50%? 80%? The answer to this question pinpoints the solution for your dog. From here out, it’s all about change, but we need a solid foundation on which to build this new way of life.
At RosyDogs, we think of Separation Anxiety as a symptom, not a diagnosis. With that one simple mind twist we find our way to real life solutions that don’t require exacting protocols that eat through your vacation days. Instead, we identify the underlying struggles and design a RosyDogs GamePlan. The good news is you can still leave the dog for normal periods while she learns to cope with being left alone. We give you the strategies that have worked for countless dogs around the world. It’s a revolution in dog training. Leave the endless drills and record keeping behind.
Why My Dog?
In the past, Scientists thought they had discovered few risk factors, but newer research has reversed the science. Some common beliefs have even been proven false. Our dogs are not more prone to Separation Anxiety simply because they are a Rescue Dog or Taken from the Mother too Soon. It’s also been disproven that a Spoiled Dog is more likely to experience separation anxiety! Go ahead. Spoil your dog. Just play the right games while doing so.
One risk does seem to remain, and this one starts young. Really young. Like week 5. This is when puppies naturally begin to move apart from their littermates and mother. They begin to nap while the others play, and even wander out of visual connection. They are building the skills they will need in the future so if you have a young puppy, allow them some alone time!
Does that Mean My Adult Dog is Doomed to a Life of Struggle? Absolutely Not!
RosyDogs has a GamePlan for you. After we have a look at the video, we’ll get started. You’ll learn a super easy game that helps your dog appreciate separation from you and others in the home. You’ll also learn some fun games that teach your dog to see life through Rose-Colored Glasses. Your dog will shift from Pessimist to Optimist like a pro. Then we’ll tackle the changes you’ll need to make. Stay with me. These are easy changes, but they are radically different from what you may have heard from others.
Dogs who struggle with Separation Anxiety also struggle with Calmness. The two go hand in hand. By helping our dogs find calmness, we take a huge bite out of Separation Anxiety. Even better, by learning Calmness, other struggles begin to lessen. It’s a Win-Win!
It is impossible to tire your dog into calmness. You don’t have enough time in the day to physically exhaust a dog. They recover too quickly. In an hour or so, an over excited or highly aroused dog will be right back to the struggle, but this time with even worse results. This myth has been perpetrated long enough. We’ll cover everything you need to know about your dog’s Stress Bucket and how to empty it. In many cases, this single change can alleviate Separation Anxiety, but we don’t stop there.
Setting Up the Bunker So Real Change Can Take Root
We’ll talk about what to do tomorrow when you leave the house. We’ll pick a place in your home where your dog can be safe during the few days she’ll need to shift her brain into alone time. She’ll quickly learn what she may have missed as a 5-week-old puppy. And we’ll overcome her incredible ability to recognize that you’ll be leaving soon even before you realize it yourself by playing a game to help her understand that all those little signals she’s picking up on, don’t always lead to being left alone.
Forgive Yourself and Forgive Your Dog
You did your best, and your dog is not doing it on purpose. She doesn’t understand why she’s making poor choices so let’s help her make better ones. RosyDogs has the solution. It won’t be instant, but it will be quicker (and easier) than older methods that sentenced you to days of repetition with a stopwatch in your hand. If you stick with your RosyDogs GamePlan, you can expect to start seeing real changes in as little as 3 days! To make lasting change will require a couple weeks, but your dog will start to feel better in less than a week. *
A Few Simple Games + One Change = Happy Dog, Happy Owners, and Happy Neighbors.
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*If your dog has been struggling with Separation Anxiety for a long time, change may come slower, but change is possible through your commitment to the GamePlan.
Rebecca Porter has been fascinated by dogs for decades, but it took a frantic mixed breed to send her on a journey into innovative and real life solutions in dog training.