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What can I do to Help My Dog with his Separation Anxiety?

ANSWER:
Separation anxiety is usually cause by a lack of confidence and self esteem. If you build up the dog's confidence the anxiety will pass. Ways to build your dog's confidence are: obedience training, agility course training, teaching him tricks and lots of praise and rewards for being good.

Start by leaving her an article of clothing that smells like you, such as an old shirt that you've recently worn.

Next: Dogs learn to associate certain cues with the actions of their owners, so establish a "cue". I use the phrase "Be good girls, Ill be right back" as I walk out. After you use this cue several times it will tell them not to worry, and that you are going to be back.

Next: Work on desensitizing him. Give the cue, walk out the door, and then return right away. When you re-enter it is very important that you do not make it a big deal. Make it seam normal. If he's been quiet, praise him with a "good boy" and move on. Remember, make it NO BIG DEAL!

Repeat this as many times per day as you can. When he's calm give him a quiet "good boy" and move on. As he begins to get used to you coming and going, you can extend the time that you are gone by a minute or two. And so on.

DON'T get in a hurry. Work at HIS pace. This will take some time.


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