Does My Dog have Separation Anxiety?

Does My Dog Have Separation Anxiety?

"My new puppy has separation anxiety," the caller on the other end of the line tells me. More likely, the young puppy - a social creature by nature - has simply never been taught to stay alone. Other owners tell me, "My dog won't stop barking in the yard - I think it's separation anxiety." "Could be," I'll say, "but it could also be those darn squirrels that are so much fun to bark at."

Eliminating in the house could be related to separation anxiety, but it could also be a simple housetraining issue or an indication of a medical problem. Chewing up furniture or your shoes could be a sign of separation anxiety or a lack of exercise and mental stimulation.
Some of the indications that your dog truly has separation anxiety are:

Another common thing to see with true separation anxiety is that the dog is exhausted in the evening. Although they may be excited and energetic when you arrive home, they soon have to lie down and sleep all evening because they essentially spent the day running a marathon. All of that pacing and stress will wear a dog out!

If you're not sure if your dog has separation anxiety, contact a canine behavior consultant or veterinary behaviorist for help!


Written by Cara Shannon, who is the owner and one of the trainers at Buddy's Chance, LLC Austin Dog Training and Daycare. She teaches dog training classes for pet dog owners in Central Austin and consults on problem dog behaviors.