JB wrote to ask me about her dog having separation anxiety when she’s gone:
“My 4 year old adopted English Cocker is almost perfect except for barking when in her crate and we are gone. The neighbors are complaining because she supposedly barks and howls all the time we are gone. Otherwise she NEVER barks at anything. Also, she stays very calm and quiet when alone in the car.”
“She has perfect manners and is a sweet heart, but has velcro bonded to me. Help!”
Adam’s Advice On What To Do
About This Dog’s Separation Anxiety
“First, I would set up a video camera to make sure that your dog really IS making the noise that they claim it’s making. I’ve had experiences in the past where a neighbor would think it was one dog when it was actually somebody else’s dog.
Second: Start using the obedience exercises and stop touching her all the time. (Or letting her touch you). Put her on down-stays or use the “place” command. General obedience exercises will help too, as it teaches the dog clearly when she’s doing something right and something wrong… so she doesn’t have to guess.
– Ignore the dog for 10 minutes before leaving and after coming home.
– You can try the DAP Diffuser
– Talk to vet about Clomicalm
– Keep the dog in the crate while you’re home, frequently.
– Try the “Thundershirt”:
Regular daily aerobic exercise is important, too.