Dog Separation Anxiety


Owning a dog who shows signs of Separation Anxiety can be a worrying time for many dog owners. Separation Anxiety is described as a dog that gets overly stressed when left alone by its owners. It can manifest itself in destructive behaviours, for instance: –

  1. Recreational chewing, digging or tearing.
  2. Excessive barking.
  3. Hyperactivity, like constant pacing or stereotypical behaviour such as running up and down the stairs repeatedly.
  4. Psychosomatic problems like diarrhea or vomiting.

Or it can manifest itself in a more personal basis to the dog, for instance: –

  1. Depression.
  2. Anorexia – refusing to eat before or after the owner has left.
  3. Self-mutilation, like paw chewing or excessive licking.
  4. Aggression when the owner leaves which may include growling, blocking exit or nipping at the owner’s ankles.

There are many ways of treating separation anxiety, which involve environmental changes and systematic desensitisation. Systematic desensitisation means the dog is first kept calm and then introduced to the fear-evoking stimulus (being left alone) at whatever level the dog can tolerate without showing anxiety. Then the stimulus is gradually intensified at whatever rate the dog can handle whilst staying calm.

Environmental changes will be beneficial in the training programme too. These may include introducing a crate, if the dog does not already use one, can be useful and every effort should be made to make the dog comfortable and confident in their crate so that this becomes the dog’s safe haven when they are left alone. Giving them something to chew on like a bone or stuffed Kong and looking at the dog’s exercise requirements.

Lastly, seeking the advice of your vet for anti-anxiety drugs can also be an option for many dog owners to help during the early stages of training.


To follow up or make an appointment or find out more information about Ringwood Dogs, Ashley Heath on the Hampshire and Dorset border, please contact Isabelle Adams-Papé by clicking on the Contact Me tab.

I look forward to meeting you and working with your dogs.

Happy dog training.

Isabelle Adams-Papé IMDT
Ringwood Dogs, Ashley Heath on the Dorset and Hampshire border.
Dog Training, Dog Day Care, Home Dog Boarding, Dog Walking

Ringwood Dogs Home Dog Boarding with PetStay Dorset & Bournemouth  IMDT - Institute of Modern Dog Trainers  Ringwood Dogs - adheres to the IMDT UK Dog Behaviour & Training Charter.  Kids Around Dogs (KAD) Approved Trainer  Member of Dog Care Professionals UK - a Facebook Group for licensed and qualified dog care professionals   ISAP - International Society for Animal Professionals Accredited Reactivity Specialist Trainer from the Dog Training College  Ringwood Dogs - Three Legged Cross on the Dorset, Hampshire and New Forest border supports Dorset Dogs who champion positive management for people with dogs in town, coast and countryside and promotes responsible dog ownership   Unleash the Power of Play. Discover what a KONG can do.  Buy your KONG from Ringwood Dogs - Three Legged Cross on the Dorset, Hampshire and New Forest border.   Wholesome Goodness Natural Treats from the Ringwood Dogs Online Dog Shop   Ringwood Dogs listed on ThreeBesteRated for Top 3 Best Dog Trainers in New ForestRingwood Dogs listed on ThreeBesteRated for Top 3 Best Dog Trainers in New Forest  


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