Curbing Separation Anxiety

When you first get your puppy it is sometimes difficult to leave them alone, not least because of the fuss they make at your departure. Although at first you might misread this as bad behaviour from your pup, it is probably a form of separation anxiety, and there are things you can do to curtail the problem. In this series of blogs we will do our best to give you all the hints and tips you need for effective puppy training in Surrey.

We’ve all seen it, as we prepare to go out for the evening, our puppies suddenly start barking, howling, whining and scratching uncontrollably. This can be pretty irritating for the owner, but can be an absolute nightmare for the neighbours. You might also experience a lot of destructive behaviour, the extent of which won’t become clear until you return home, meaning a mass clean-up operation.

 

This kind of behaviour will be enhanced if you make a fuss of your dog before you leave. Although you might want to treat and comfort your puppy before you go out for the night, this will excite him and you could end up making the problem worse. As you play with your puppy, he will get worked up and be left with a lot of excess energy that results in this “misbehaviour” so it is important that you make as little a deal out of leaving the house as possible.

Make sure that you set aside at least an hour of playtime totally dedicated to your puppy every day, as this will help to get rid of the built up energy, and ensure that your puppy is left with lots of toys to play with – this will hopefully stop him chewing and scratching the furniture!

Remember that your dog might be distressed by your exit, so make sure that his environment is as comfortable as possible and is relaxed in it before you go. Try to get your puppy used to your leaving by doing practice runs, leaving the house for five minutes at a time before returning. This will reassure your pup that you will always come back to him!

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14/09/11

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