Dealing with a dog who has a meltdown when you’re not around can be tough, especially if you have a dog that barks or whinesafter you walk out the door. Fortunately, you don’t have to resign yourself to this type of reaction. Instead, you can be proactive and take advantage of some or all of these tips to help your dog deal with mildseparation anxiety.
Of course, if your dog has a more severe form of separation anxiety, such chewing on your belongings or biting or chewing on itself, you may want to consider consulting with your pet’s veterinarian to find out the best way to deal with those destructive behaviors.
1. Work to Desensitize Your Dog
Dogs often respond to cues. So putting on your shoes and getting your car keys can signal to your dog that you’re about to walk out the door and act as a trigger for anxiety.
You can desensitize your dog to these cues by putting on your shoes and then doing else around the house for a while. Or you can pick up your keys and then sit down and read for a little bit. Do these things over and over throughout the day while you’re home.
As you continue to exhibit the anxiety-triggering behaviors — put on shoes and pick up keys — without immediately walking out the door, your dog should associate those things less and less with you leaving.
2. Play With or Walk Your Dog Before Leaving Home
Spending some active time with your dog before you leave your house can help your dog expend energy and feel calmer. Take your dog for a walk or run, play a game of catch or engage in some other type of activity where your dog is able to run.
Remember: A dog with separation anxiety who has pent-up energy can be a recipe for disaster.
3. Hire Someone to Walk Your Dog
If there are days when you just don’t have time in your schedule to walk or play with your dog, or you’re planning to be away for extended hours, consider hiring someone to come to your home and interact with your dog. But don’t just hire anyone. It’s important that you find someone who is experienced in dealing with dogs who have separation anxiety and who will be sensitive to your dog’s needs.
Check with friends or family members for recommendations or consult with a local dog walking or pet sitting service to find someone who will be the perfect companion for your dog while you’re away.
4. Reserve Special Treats or Toys for Your Dog
One way to occupy your dog when you have to leave is to give it a special treat or toy. Because your dog will be unsupervised, make sure that you only choose items that are safe and don’t pose a choking hazard. When you’re in doubt of whether an item is safe, forgo it.
For example, there are various dog-friendly puzzle toys on the market that allow you to place small treats inside of them and your dog has to work to solve the puzzle and access the treats. This can take up a considerable amount of time. Once your dog works to solve the puzzle and gets the treat reward, however, it will likely be ready to relax.
5. Consider Giving Your Pet a Natural Calming Supplement
You can also use a natural calming supplement, such as Cannabidiol — also known as CBD oil — to help ease your dog’s anxiety. Cannabis plants contain many different substances or cannabinoids, including THC and CBD oil. THC is known for producing a high; CBD oil doesn’t.
Although some CBD oils on the market contain THC, the CBD oil available at https://plantaceacbd.com/ does not. Instead, this oil, derived from the flower of the Cannabis plant, will offer your pet calming properties without a high-inducing response. In addition to be-ing THC-free, Plantacea’s products are also organic and GMO-free.
6. Leave Out an Item of Clothing or a Blanket That Has Your Scent
Your dog may feel comforted if you leave something with your scent on it that it can lie next to while you are gone. If you crate your dog while you are gone, place the item of clothing or blanket in the crate. Or put it where your dog generally lies down to rest or sleep.
Your scent can be calming and comforting to your dog.