How To Deal With Separation Anxiety in Dogs
Everyone experiences anxiety at one point in their life. But humans are not the only ones who experience the nasty feeling in the pit of their stomachs; our beloved furry friends are prone to anxiety as well.
Some dogs display destructive behavior like barking, howling, and chewing up furniture. Many of these behaviors can be corrected with some good obedience training, but sometimes the problem goes deeper than simple house manners; some of the most loyal breeds are plagued with separation anxiety. Our best friends miss us when we are gone and do not know how to react when we are not there. Imagine being left alone for hours on end with no apparent return insight; it can feel like abandonment.
I have my own issues with animal separation anxiety. Mr.Zeusy-Poo, or Zeus for short, has recently received a complaint from neighbors as he howled and cried while I was gone for a few hours. Some breeds are more prone to experience anxiety than others.
For instance, Pit Bulls and separation anxiety often go hand in hand. Signs of their anxiety can include excessive digging outdoors and chewing on furniture or clothing like shoes and socks. Meet Sox; he loves socks:
The Crossroads has the Pet Resort on Main offers obedience training that can help with pet anxiety. I spoke with the head trainer and manager, DeAngelo, who explained ways the Pet Resort can help with anxiety issues among animals. He explained that as a puppy, bonding and socializing are very important; they may need to stay with the puppy for hours at a time to get it comfortable.
DeAngelo explained, "There is no one cure-all; it really depends on the dog." He suggested that mentally and physically exhausting the dog could be helpful. Supplying the dog with puzzles and mental activities could be extremely useful; it would give the dog something to do and keep them busy.
The Pet Resort on Main also has a dog daycare where you can drop your furry friend off. The daycare is a convenient option for people who may be going out of town or those who may just want to socialize their animals. The daycare provides an "Escape for dogs and people because things are so crazy. It gives you a peace of mind that your dog can go out and enjoy," DeAngelo pointed out.
The Pet Resort has some entertaining activities going on. They host various outside events and even celebrate monthly birthday parties for your four-legged friends. There is also a Facebook photo contest, and the winner gets various gifts that have included a free spa day at the Pet Resort and even a spot on their billboard ad!
After having my own issues, I did some more research and found another approach to separation anxiety. There is a wonderful woman in the Crossroads who runs Holistic Touch Therapy. Dr.Sue offers a holistic approach to anxiety by healing your furry friends through canine massage therapy and canine acupressure. Dr. Sue is an accomplished author and has been featured in multiple magazines like Prevention Magazine, Dog Fancy, Cat Nip, and Cat Fancy. In 1995 she formed Holistic Touch Therapy School of Canine Massage and Acupressure; it's safe to say, this woman knows her stuff!
Dr.Sue suggested giving your furry friend extra toys, and mentioned dogs are just like humans; they need to be relaxed just like us. Dr. Sue offers online classes to learn the techniques and how to ease your dog's anxiety or even pain due to arthritis. Dr. Sue explains the benefits of canine massages, "Just like massage calms a person long after the masseuse is gone, regular canine massage can keep a dog connected when his person when he is out of sight." Due to COVID, she currently has switched her classes to Zoom. She will be having her next one on April 15, which will go over dealing with separation anxiety and other canine anxieties and you can sign up for it here. Visit the Holistic Touch Therapy website or give Dr.sue Sue a call at 618-339-0425 for more information.
Some dogs do just fine and dandy alone, while some crave your presence and cry and howl until the moment your return. Coco doesn't mind as long as she's dressed to impress.
As for me, I will cuddle with Mr. Zeus, schedule some extra playtime, and dip some CBD treats in peanut butter and see how that works.
What do you do to treat your dog's anxiety? Do you schedule extra playtime, go the holistic route with massages, or maybe even give them some CBD treat? Tell us below, maybe your doing something completely different that could help everyone else out:
LOOK: The least obedient dog breeds
KEEP LOOKING: See What 50 of America's Most 'Pupular' Dog Breeds Look Like as Puppies