How to Deal with Puppy Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is distressing for both you and your dog, and more puppies than ever are experiencing separation anxiety. In this guide, we’ll offer some pointers to help you determine if your dog is experiencing separation anxiety or just being a puppy. Then, we will offer some suggestions to help you start improving your dog’s separation anxiety.

Signs That Your Puppy Might Have Separation Anxiety

The key to figuring out whether or not your puppy has separation anxiety is looking for trends over time and whether or not those behaviors are associated with their parents’ absence. All puppies usually exhibit a little bit of this behavior when they are young and still maturing, but they often do it when their humans are around and usually grow out of it as they age. Dogs with separation anxiety will specifically engage in these behaviors when separated from their owners and will usually not grow out of them as they get older. Here are some signs to look for:

  • Your dog may cry, bark, whine, howl, and otherwise vocalize their feelings when you are gone. They may also pace constantly when left alone. There are usually no other triggers except for the absence of their human.
  • Your puppy may follow you around wherever you go, especially after you return after being gone. They often want to be picked up, held constantly, sit in your lap, and otherwise maintain physical contact with you 24/7.
  • Your puppy may urinate and defecate in the house when left alone. If it’s separation anxiety and not a regular house training mishap, it will happen only when you are gone — not when you are around.
  • Many dogs engage in destructive behavior when their owner is gone or they are shut up in a room alone. This can include chewing on furniture, jumping on door frames or window sills, trying to tunnel out of the room, and breaking household objects like lamps.
  • On a related note, your puppy may try to stage an escape when left alone in order to be reunited with you. This usually involves trying to dig under a door or get through a window.



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