How to Train Your Dog to Not Whine When You Leave

Hard
2-8 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

If your dog whines when you leave, loiter outside the closed door and listen for a while. Or, if in doubt, ask the neighbors what happens after you're gone.

If the dog whines but soon quiets and settles down to sleep, then your work is done. He's already learned that crying isn't rewarded (you don't come back) and after a brief whinge, he stops. This is an acceptable state of affairs because interfering could backfire badly and make him cry more.

However, the alternative scenario is the whine is just the beginning, and after you are gone the whine gets louder and crescendos into a full-scale howl or bark. You wouldn't be the first pet parent who has a dog that suffers from anxiety in your absence and makes a noise in order to call you back to end the isolation.

This is a worry for the wellbeing of your best buddy, but it's also bothersome to those in adjoining apartments. To keep the peace, you need to know how to train your dog not to whine when you leave.

Defining Tasks

You can teach a dog the "Quiet" command, but this may only quiet him while you leave and after you're gone he may resume barking. Instead, it's best to create a new way of being alone where the root cause of the whining is addressed by teaching the dog to be content when alone.

This can be difficult to do since the behavior may be deeply ingrained and, in some cases, prescription medication from the vet may be necessary. However, if the dog has merely gotten into bad habits, then there are steps that will quiet him.

Be aware that accidentally rewarding the whining will reinforce the behavior. Thus it's important to ignore the dog when he makes noise, so he learns it is of no benefit to him. The other side of the coin is to respond and praise the dog when he is being actively quiet, so he learns this is a good thing to do.

Some dogs learn to deal with separation better when crate trained. If your dog is otherwise calm then consider this. However, if your dog's whining spirals into chewing and destructive behavior when you're gone, he may become unduly distressed by being confined and it may make matters worse. If in doubt, consult a qualified animal behaviorist.

Getting Started

Get set for success by equipping yourself with the following:

  • A crate: Crate training can provide a sense of security that comforts the dog when you aren't there.
  • A super-tasty, long-lasting treat or a puzzle feeder: This is to occupy the dog and distract him while you leave so he doesn't notice the moment of departure.
  • A TV or radio: The volume left on low can work wonders for some dogs.
  • A special toy: This is given to him when you leave and removed when you come home. This is the doggie equivalent of having a written note saying you will return.

The Desensitize Method

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Desensitize method for Not Whine When You Leave
Step
1
Shake things up
Before leaving, you tend to do things in the same order, such as putting on your shoes and coat, reaching for the car keys, and picking up your bag. These act as cues, which tell the dog it's time to start whining. Instead, throw him off the scent by doing things in a different order.
Step
2
Desensitize him to leaving
Again, try wearing your shoes in the house (so he doesn't only link them to being left) or walk around holding the car keys. The idea is to break the link between the keys and leaving, so he take these things in his stride and ignores them.
Step
3
Short abscences
Practice leaving him for ultra-short times - such as putting the rubbish out. Only come back in when he's quiet, so you reward the silence.
Step
4
Don't make a fuss about leaving
Drop the habit of reassuring the dog you'll be back soon. The dog will all too easily read this as he's right to be concerned because you're about to go. Instead, be totally nonchalant and ignore the dog when you go...and return.
Step
5
Low-key reunions
Don't make a big thing about coming back, In fact, don't immediately greet the dog but putter around while ignoring him, until he's calmed down. This reduces the significance of comings and goings, making him less likely to whine when you go.
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The Set the Scene Method

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Set the Scene method for Not Whine When You Leave
Step
1
Quiet place
Set up the dog's bed or crate in a quiet part of the house. The idea is for him to have a safe place he feels secure and won't be disturbed by outside noises.
Step
2
Pheromone therapy
Plug in a DAP (Dog Appeasing Pheromone) diffuser beside his bed. This gives off soothing hormone messages that keep the dog chilled
Step
3
Draw the curtains
A dark environment is calming. It also muffles noises from the outside world that make him reactive.
Step
4
White noise
Leave a radio or TV on with the volume low. This provides a blanket of noise to quiet him.
Step
5
Ultra-tasty treat
As you leave, give the dog a long lasting ultra tasty treat (One that is safe in your absence, such as a Kong stuffed with peanut butter). This distracts him so he's too busy licking to whine when you leave.
Recommend training method?

The Keep Busy Method

Effective
0 Votes
Keep Busy method for Not Whine When You Leave
Step
1
A tired body
Some dogs whine when left because they have plenty of energy and would prefer to go with you, for a walk. Make sure the dog is pleasantly tired when left, by giving an appropriate amount of energetic exercise.
Step
2
Exercise before you leave
In addition, consider walking the dog immediately before you leave. When he returns home tired he's more likely to snuggle down for a snooze than complain he's left behind.
Step
3
Mental exercise
A bored dog may whine when left, after all, it's going to be pretty dull when you're gone. Instead, make sure he has plenty to keep his mind occupied during the day, so a break is a welcome relief. Training is a good mental workout, as is giving his meals in a puzzle feeders. Also be sure to play with him and give lots of one-to-one attention.
Step
4
Daily training
Regular daily training sessions can work wonders, as they also makes him feel more secure and understand you are in control.
Step
5
An "I will return" marker
Some dogs settle when they understand you're coming back. This can be achieved by giving him a toy that he only has when you're gone and you remove on your return. Since you always come back to retrieve it, the dog waits patiently in the knowledge your intention is to return.
Step
6
Provide a distraction
Give the dog a Kong, or similar puzzle feeder, stuffed with wet food. This will distract him while you leave, so he doesn't whine. Then hopefully with food in his tummy, he'll settle down to sleep.
Recommend training method?
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Written by Amy Caldwell

Published: 10/17/2017, edited: 01/08/2021

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Obe
Staffordshire Bull Terrier Cross
20 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Obe
Staffordshire Bull Terrier Cross
20 Weeks

Cries when I leave the house has a crate but is only quiet in it overnight.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I am happy to hear that Obe is good in the crate at night - that will help the issue of when you go out. Make sure that you exercise Obe well before you head out; a very long walk in the morning is ideal. Give Obe a Kong in the crate when you leave. Purchase a Kong, fill it with moistened kibble, and a smear of dog-safe peanut butter (no xylitol because it is toxic to dogs). Freeze the Kong so that it takes longer for Obe to work at it. Only give the Kong in the crate when you are leaving, so that Obe associates your leaving with a good thing. Although Obe may not have a serious case of separation anxiety, there is still loneliness and stress evident. Read through this entire guide for good pointers:https://wagwalking.com/training/stop-separation-anxiety All the best!

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Bailey
Labrador Husky
5 Years
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Bailey
Labrador Husky
5 Years

The problem is when I come home, when he smells me outside or senses me I guess, he starts barking and whining. When someone in the family approaches the door instead of me, not a peep. Help as my apt. Neighbours are fed up.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Jennifer, First, I suggest purchasing a high quality remote stimulation collar or bark collar (not citronella). A bark collar will only correct the barking and not the whining. For the whining you will need a remote controlled collar so you can control when corrections happen. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he standing and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this - all of this is to figure out what level to use in training for it to be effective without being too high for him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him where he tends to go when he hears you or in the crate if he is crated. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. After a bit come back home. As soon as you hear him barking or or whining on the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or whines, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet for at least 1 minute straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can calmly greet him but don't make a big deal of it - don't act like you were gone, just normal, calm interaction - you don't want coming home to be exciting. If he stays in a crate, which can also help, then when you let him out after you come home and ignore him for a bit, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Practice this protocol as many times a day as you can to desensitize him to you leaving and coming back and to help him overcome the issue sooner - 10 times in one day would not be too much if there were calm breaks between training, but at least 1-3 times a day. Let any complaining neighbors know that there could be extra barking for a few days but you are actively training him to stop the issue and it should improve soon. If you get stuck, Jeff Gellman from SolidK9Training does paid Skype Training sessions and has used similar separation anxiety protocols with hundreds of reactive, fearful, and aggressive dogs at his facility, so would be a good problem solving resource even more experienced than myself in this area. You can always ask further questions here too though. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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harley
cockapoo
1 Year
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
harley
cockapoo
1 Year

i just moved into an apartment building and my dog will not stop whining, howling and pawing at the door when I leave! I bought a two way audio camera to watch him. He does well when left with another dog he knows, there are no issues there. So I thought I solved the problem, I bought another puppy and it seems he is not comfotable with her and still howls and crys. They have only been together 3 days though. I have tried pretty much everything listed above but I do not know what to do because I feel like I cant leave the apartment or he will disturb my neighbours

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Payton, First, I suggest teaching Harley the quiet command by following the "Quiet" method from the article that I have linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, work on adding structure and boundaries to his life, and building his independence. Teach him a "Place" command and work up to him staying on that for up to an hour while you move about the house and leave the room. He needs to learn how to cope with being by himself, and practicing a place command while you leave the room is a great way to start. Also, work on Down-and-Sit-Stays on a long leash outside. Practice the commands on a thirty, forty, or fifty foot, non-retractable leash and work up to backing away from him the entire 30+ feet length of the leash. Work on teaching him to stay in a crate even while the door is open. If you have not introduced a crate, then check out the article that I have linked below and start the "Surprise" method. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Once he can handle being in a crate when you are there, then get him used to staying in the crate with the door open. To do this, clip a leash on him, put him in the crate, and while he is quiet open the crate door and if he tries to leave, close the door quickly again. Repeat opening and closing the door until you can open the door and he will stay inside. Tell him "Okay!" in a cheerful tone of voice when it's time for him to come out. Overtime, practice backing away from the crate while the door is open. If he bolts out, grab the leash that he is dragging and put him right back in. Practice this until he will stay in the crate with the door open for up to an hour while you move around the house or sit on the opposite side of the room and ignore him. By doing this, you are teaching him to cope with his anxiety and be a little more independent. You are giving him something specific to do - stay in the crate willingly, opposed to just closing the crate door and him trying to escape. If he can get used to being in the crate while you are out of the door and the door is open, then you will more easily be able to put him in the crate with a food-stuffed chew toy, like a Kong, when you leave, and he will better understand how to calm down in there. Once he has developed a habit of being calm in the crate, then you can give him freedom in the rest of the house again. He needs to learn a calm habit first though. Work on the above. If you are not seeing progress, then the next step is to interrupt his frantic-ness using an electric collar that has a vibration setting also (he may not respond to the vibration so you need both stimulation and vibration - if he does respond to just vibration then you can use that). When you choose a collar, only get one that has at least thirty-levels. Cheap, poorly made collars can be dangerous and collar without enough levels can be too harsh or not effective enough. E-collar Technologies, Garmin, SportDog, Dogtra, and Petsafe all make decent collars. E-Collar Technologies and PetSafe have the collars that go down lowest in dog weight I believe. You can also try using a remote controlled unscented air spray collar (AVOID citronella - only use unscented air or you might make your problem worse). Honestly, many dogs will not respond well enough to the spray collars though. I highly suggest hiring a trainer who is experienced with separation anxiety and using e-collars to help you. You want to find the lowest level that he can feel on the collar. You want to set a good foundation for him by doing the other training that I mentioned above to at the same time to help him learn independence. You also want to reward him when he is calm. To use the electric collar you would: 1. Get him used to wearing the collar around while it is turned off. 2. Find the lowest level that he responds to - called a "working level". 3. Set up your camera to watch him again. 4. Leave the house, drive down the block so he thinks you are gone, then walk back and hide next to the house - so the collar and remote will be in range. 5. Watch him on the camera and listen for howling, scratching or him getting really worked up whining. 6. Stimulate the collar when he howls, scratches, or starts to get worked up whining (a brief whine is okay but not anxious-continuous whining). 7. When he gets quiet for two minutes, go back inside, ignore him for five minutes (he should be in the crate when you first practice this). When he is calm, then open the crate door, but don't let him come out yet - if he tries to rush out, then close the door quickly again and repeat the opening and closing it exercise until he stays in there while the door is open. 8. When he will stay in the crate while the door is open, then ignore him for another five minutes while the door is open. 9. Tell him "Okay" to let him know he can leave the crate at the end of the five minutes, but act really boring and nonchalant with him when he comes out. 10. Practice the training sessions, correcting him from outside with the collar while watching on the camera, coming back in when he is calm, ignoring him for a total of ten minutes, then acting boring when you let him out. This protocol sounds very harsh I know. It is important to practice him being independent of you through things like "Place", "Stay", and being in the crate. He needs to learn how to cope with independence so that he will be able to handle being alone. When you correct him with the collar, you are correcting him at a more reasonable stimulation level that is high enough for him to feel but not so high that it's any harsher than it needs to be. Right now the anxious response is his go to. He needs an opportunity to choose a different response. When you correct him, you are interrupting his anxious state of mind and expression - which will get more and more anxious as it builds. When you remove that option from him, then he has to find another way to react. By coming back inside, you are essentially rewarding him when he is being calm - showing him that you come back and that it's alright for you to leave. Also, showing him that being calm is how he gets you back, not by getting worked up. He has an opportunity to learn in that situation. Being in the crate simply makes it easier for him to learn because his only other option is to chew on a chew toy and rest. He cannot pace, destroy things, pee on rugs, or try another type of behavior when the scratching, whining, and howling are not options anymore. After he has learned calmness in the crate and that has become a new habit, then it will be easier for him to be calm outside of the crate when you are gone too. If he has issues with when the time comes to let him out of the crate again - after he has formed good calm habits, then you can go back to the same camera and electric collar exercise, but he will likely respond to it even better by then because he already learned what he should do when he is corrected for getting worked up - which is calm down. He will be less likely to try other anxious behavior because he will understand why he is being corrected and what to do better. When you put him into the crate, be sure to leave a dog food and liver paste or cheese or peanut butter (NO Xylitol sweetener -it's toxic to dogs!) stuffed- safe- hollow-chew-toy for him in the crate, so that when he calms down he will have that to chew on - he probably won't chew it until he is corrected and learns to calm down though. Dogs typically won't eat when they are anxious. When he learns to be calm and is ready to do something other than get worked up, you will want him to have it though, so that he can learn to enjoy himself in the crate or in your home when you are gone. You can also try an automatic treat dispensing device, such as an AutoTrainer or Pet Tutor. Depending on the level of his anxiety he may or may not care about those treats though. The device might only work once you have interrupted his frantic state and he is looking for something to do or focus on. Either way the device will be great for the new puppy when he is older though - to prevent separation anxiety. I highly suggest crate training the new puppy with dog- food stuffed Kongs to prevent separation anxiety. You can download a free pdf puppy e-book that talks about all that and more: www.lifedogtraining.com Clip on the free downloads tab once at that website. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden I suggest that you do all of this under the guidance of a qualified trainer though. You have to be careful to use e-collars correctly. They can be very effective tools when used correctly, but they are powerful and can be severely misused if you don't understand how to use them. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Oliver
Terrier mix
2 Years
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
Oliver
Terrier mix
2 Years

I’ve had Oliver for 2 weeks now. He whines and barks whenever I leave. He’ll whine in the crate and when left loose. He even managed to grab a blanket through his crate and rip it up while I was gone. Oliver is also heartworm positive but is going to get treatment but for now I’m worried that he’s stressing himself out while I’m gone. How do I help him cope with me being away?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amanda, First, be sure to give him a food stuffed hollow chew toy in the crate with him when you leave. Second, work on structured obedience commands that are calming and encourage independence. I suggest teaching a Place command, structured Heel (when he can go on walks again), Down-Stay from a distance, and to stay in his crate with the door open. You want to teach him to handle you leaving the room and let you be in charge in a calm way - this can help with general anxiety as well. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo While he still has heartworms the above is all I can suggest without you checking with your vet first. Once he is clear or if your vet gives permission now you can also discipline the escape attempts using something that interrupts him and gets his attention, like a vibration collar, low level stimulation remote training collar, unscented air spray, or something similar to interrupt his anxious state of mind and provide an opportunity for him to learn to calm himself. When he gets calm and stays calm, then you can return to him from a nearby location where you were spying on him with a camera, and sprinkle treats into the crate as a reward for being calm - then leave again; repeating this several times before returning home, ignoring him for 10 minutes, then letting him out while he is calm. Check out the information below for more details: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mushu
Shih Tzu
11 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Mushu
Shih Tzu
11 Weeks

Mushu cries when I take a shower, leave to go to the bathroom, etc. I leave him for 3-4 hours at a time on a daily basis during the work week. On weekends, I spend all day with him. But I once brought him into the bathroom with me and he started to cry after 2 minutes. I tried to just let him cry it out for a while, but he started to really yelp and bark as if he was getting hurt. I don't get to finish showers or pee without him being there. He knows that he goes into the bathroom when I leave for work and in there is some toys, his crate, pee pads, and everything, so he has a little room to move. I'm just not sure what else I can do since he is so young, I figured he is just crying because he is a baby? I don't know what to do.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Olivia, First, you need to encourage yourself that he's not being harmed when he cries desperately - my own puppy sounded like she was dying when we first worked on this. She is now 6 and does great alone. This is going to take some tough love and conviction that you aren't hurting her. It's important that puppies learn to cope with being alone now, being given opportunities to learn how to self-sooth and self-entertain - practicing those things actually prevents more serious separation anxiety later. When you are home, work on teaching a Place command and the crate manners protocol and insist that she stay in those spots while you walk in and out of the room - this is going to take persistence and practice. She needs to gain some independence. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Is she crying while you are gone in the pen, or just when she knows you are home but not with her. If she does fine while you are gone, great! Practice her spending time away from you and letting her cry. Follow the Surprise method from the article linked below - only returning when she gets quiet - expect it to take her a couple of hours to get quiet for even a few seconds at first - but some good earplugs. She needs to learn that the way to get you to come back is by waiting patiently. Surprise method - this can be done in a crate or exercise pen - crate training is great for anxious pups even though that can seem odd: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate If you live somewhere were you can't wait out the crying, it's too hard on your nerves, or the crying is continuing after you leave too, then you need to use a gentle punisher to interrupt her anxious state of mind, then follow that up with the training in the Surprise method from the article linked above once she is quiet. At her age I would simply use a small rolled up, soft towel, a Pet Convincer - which is a small canister of pressurized air, or a small bump on the side of the cage - the goal here isn't to give a punishment but to interrupt her anxious state of mind enough that she will think for a minute and get quiet - which gives you a chance to reward quietness and teach her how to spend her time in a better state of mind - a calm one. So for example: Her: crying, crying, crying... You: Say "Ah Ah" calmly, bump the pen or crate with rolled up little towel/puff of air at her side from a foot away, then wait to see if she stays quiet, and praise and reward if she stays quiet for several seconds. Correct whenever the crying starts back up again, reward when she has stayed quiet - gradually waiting longer and longer before rewarding so she is getting better and better at staying quiet before being given a treat. Leave the room between corrections and rewards when she can stay quiet for more than a couple of seconds. Don't use citronella scent for anything - it's too harsh, keep your tone calm during corrections and praise, and don't correct at her face - no air near the face. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Toby
Cavoodle
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
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Toby
Cavoodle
3 Months

We are trying to teach Toby to be alone. He’s fine when we are around however as soon as we leave the room he follows us. He starts winging when we shut the door and then gets louder. What do we do?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hannah, I suggest crate training him, teaching Place, and beginning Down-Stay - and gradually working up to distance. For the Crate Training, check out the Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Crate manners - more impulse control practice: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Place - gradually work up to distance, and walking out of the room while he stays. This will take a lot of practice at this age but is great for building self-control, calmness, independence in a healthy way, and impulse control: Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Learning to be alone will involve crying - it's super important not to return to puppy when he cries. Wait until he gets quiet for at least a couple of seconds and when you do return ignore him for a few minutes at first, to make coming and going less of a big deal, and teach pup that crying isn't the way to get you back, waiting patiently and calmly is. Giving pup a chance to eventually quiet down on his own, and not rescuing him, is super important for preventing separation anxiety later in life. It is extremely rare for a young puppy to already have separation anxiety- most pups are just struggling with learning something new that's a bit hard - i.e. being out of your presence. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Dakota
Labrador Retriever
16 Months
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
Dakota
Labrador Retriever
16 Months

My dog is not crate trained but is confined to a room while left alone. She whines and scratches as if her life depends on it. She scratches at the door and has ruined carpet. I exercise her daily and even give her a KONG as a treat only when she is left alone. Im not sure how to stop her destructive behavior.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Claudia, I highly suggest crate training her. This behavior is a lot easier to address while she is in a crate. Left free she is able to work herself up and express her anxiety in an unhealthy way. Using a crate and a separation anxiety protocol you can interrupt her anxious state and help her learn a better behavior in place of it. Check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating crate anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of her life too. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Britt
Lab mix
9 Weeks
0 found helpful
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Britt
Lab mix
9 Weeks

we are trying to crate train britt and it has been horrible. we tried to put her in her crate at night, but she cried ALL night that eventually we just let her sleep with us. i know she is very little right now so things will change in the next few months, the thing i am most concerned about is her howling and whining when we leave. we have a 3 year old chocolate lab who is with her. we tried to keep Britt in her crate while Bella was left free to roam around the house. Britt cried for hours. Bella went to day care the next day, britt cried for 46 minutes straight, then stopped, fell asleep, woke up and cried for 38 minutes straight. so we decided to just gate off the kitchen and leave her in there with her crate open so she could roam around there, she cried. we put bella in the kitchen with her, she still cries. if she doesn't see people she loses her mind. im not sure how to break this habit. thanks!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ashley, If it has been less than two weeks this is normal. The hard truth is that you need to let her cry for a week and not save her from it - every time you go to her when she cries she learns that that is the way to get you to come back and actually learns to cry even more. Some very determined puppies will cry for hours! Some adjust right away, but the hours puppy is also normal. If you leave them to cry you give them opportunity to learn that they are safe and they have the opportunity to calm themselves down (usually by becoming so tired they fall asleep), then they learn to stop crying because it does them no good. Most puppies take three days of very consistent training to adjust. Some very determined puppies do it for two weeks - but each day tends to be a bit better than before. It sounds harsh but you are actually preventing separation anxiety later by teaching them how to self-sooth and be alone now. When they have to go potty, try to wait for a quiet second before you return to her -you may have to be fast. You can correct the crying too. I typically only recommend this for older dogs because crying is normal for young puppies and almost all of them will adjust if given a chance for two weeks, then be fine in the crate for the rest of their lives, but there are circumstances where waiting it out is simply not an option. For such a young puppy I suggest crating her in a room by herself (no other dog around or you will have to do this all over again when your dog is gone). Work on getting her good and tired when you are home so that she will not be able to fight sleep as easily in the crate. Give her a food stuffed chew toy, and work on the Surprise method from the article linked below during the day. At night, wear earplugs or crate her in a room where the crying will not interrupt your sleep. Set an alarm to take her potty every three hours since you will not be able to depend on her cries to wake you up when she needs to go - later you can use an audio baby monitor and wait until she wakes up to take her potty. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate If you find you need to correct, then tell her "Ah ah" and use a rolled up dish towel with a couple of rubber bands around it to bump the edge of the crate just hard enough to surprise her enough to stop the crying, then leave again. When she cries, return and bump the crate and leave again, and when she stays quiet for a couple of minutes, return and sprinkle treats in the crate - correct crying/reward quietness. Practice this during the day. You do not want to give food at night because it can make a pup need to go potty at night or cause them to stay awake in hopes of food. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pippin
Corgi
8 Months
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Pippin
Corgi
8 Months

We just got our corgi 2 weeks ago and he seems to have separation anxiety. He will not go out side (or even go to the bathroom) without one of us out there with him or else he will cry and bark. While we are at work during the day we put him in a kennel in a separate room and leave the fan going with TV in the background. We also leave a toy in there for him but he still whines every time. I do walk him in the mornings before we leave and a longer walk in the evening. I don't know what to do to get him more comfortable on his own.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello K, I recommend a few things. First work on commands that increase independence, such as Place, Crate manners, and Down-stay from a distance using a long leash. Practice Place and Down-Stay while you walk in and out of the room, or walk away outside (while he is on a long leash for safety and consistency). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Second, add more structure to his routine. Anxious dogs tend to need extra structure in their routine: Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Dog Training Do’s https://www.solidk9training.com/sk9-blog/2016/09/08/the-ten-commandments-of-dog-training-and-ownership-do-2 Third, work on things that build confidence. Agility obstacles and certain tricks can help with this. You can build a few simple agility obstacles out of things like boards or PVC pipes, or buy things online. Working a dog through something new and uncertain can help the dog learn to be more adaptable and confident. Fourth, you can follow the surprise method from the article linked below to help him learn to entertain himself and calm himself in the crate. Practice this training when you are home but in another room or have pretended to leave. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Finally, if the barking continues after building confidence, independence, and spending time getting him used to the crate, you can use a more strict protocol to address separation anxiety. Many dogs will calm down with the above training, but occasionally the anxiety continues and something more strict like the method below can help. check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating crate anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Purchase a stimulation or vibration bark collar (the vibration may not be strong enough for him though). Have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking the collar should correct him. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. As soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Practice all of this during the day at first. Once he has learned that e-collar corrections are for barking and is able to calm himself back down during the day, then you can transition the training to night time when he tries to bark then - if you are certain that he does not need to pee at that time. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Arlo
Husky Shepherd Pitbull
14 Weeks
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Arlo
Husky Shepherd Pitbull
14 Weeks

I live in a high rise and the minute my puppy is alone even if I’m in another room he starts whining and howling/barking really loud. When he’s beside me he sleeps or is just generally quiet. He doesn’t bark at people or noises just silence until he’s alone. I have tried leaving a radio on, giving him food before I leave, giving him toys. I was keeping him in a crate when I would leave so I tried leaving him out and he just soils all over my room and destroys my carpet. My neighbours are complaining that he cry’s the whole time I’m out the longest being yesterday from 9:00am- 2:30pm. But most of the time it’s a couple hours max. I don’t know what to do about it without bothering my neighbours more. Especially if he doesn’t stop.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Branda, In general most puppies will learn to stop after a few weeks if given a food stuffed chew toy and placed into a crate with crate training, but because of your neighbors there is another protocol you can use that tends to work faster - it's typically used for dogs but can be used by a pup when the first protocol of waiting isn't an option. First, work on teaching calmness surrounding the crate. Check out the video linked below and regularly practice that training while you are also implementing the rest of what I will discuss here: Crate Manners and calmness: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Second, when you put him into the crate, put a food stuffed chew toy in there with him. If he gets the food out quickly, you can make it last longer by putting his puppy food into a bowl, covering it with water, letting it sit out until it absorbs the water and turns to mush, mix a little peanut butter (avoid the sweetener Xylitol - it's toxic) or liver paste or cheese into it, then freeze it overnight in a baggie in the freezer. You can stuff several hollow Kongs ahead of time and freeze them so that you can grab one as needed. Finally, when you are home, practice crating him in another room. When he cries, use a vibration collar with a handheld remote or a small canister of pressurized air called a pet convincer - DON'T use citronella. Tell him "Ah Ah" and vibrate the collar or spray a small puff of air at his side through the crate wires, then leave again - stay very calm while you do this. The pet convincer is a bit stronger if he isn't sensitive and needs more of an interruption than the vibration. If he stays quiet for five minutes, return to him, sprinkle some dog food into the crate without letting him out, then leave again. Repeat correcting him with the vibration or air spray when he barks or tries to escape, and rewarding with treats when he stays quiet for at least five minutes. As he improves, wait until he is quiet for longer before you reward him until you have worked up to a couple of hours between rewards. Practice this for shorter periods at first and work up to at least two hours while you are home as he starts to improve. When he gets used to doing this while you are home, set up a camera to spy on him and pretend like you are leaving, putting him into the crate, and spy on him through the camera from outside to see if he is still barking when you are completely gone. You can use two tablets or smart phones with Skype or Facetime on mute, a computer and phone with Skype, a GoPro with the Live app, a security camera, video baby monitor, or other camera device for this. If he does bark or try to escape, correct again. Return to him when he has stayed calm for the amount of time you have previously worked up to while you were inside, or a bit less time if he is struggling now. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Fin
Lurcher
1 Year
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Fin
Lurcher
1 Year

Hi, I rescued my dog Fin when he was 8 months old and was completely untrained. I have had my dog for over a year now, and he excels in every aspect of being an excellent dog and friend. The problem I have, is every time I personally leave the home, he whines and will even howl occasionally. My partner will be home, but Fin continues to do it. But if my partner goes out he isn't bothered. Similarly, the times I have left for multiple days, he finds the first few hours challenging, but then he doesn't whine for the duration of me being away. We have a few different people visit whom he enjoys, but he doesn't whine when they leave. This leads me to believe it is only when I go out.
I can't go five mins away to the shop without my partner telling me how much he has whined. I have tried all the tips on this page, and others. He has had success with Pet Corrector sprays, but not with this issue. Any guidance will be greatly appreciated
Kind regards,
Dave

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello David, I suggest working on a bit more independence in your relationship. Work on commands that foster this such as: Place - work up to 1-2 hours overtime, with you being both in and out of the room and him staying on place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners - work on this a lot too: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo A distance Down-Stay using a long leash outside Keeping interactions calmer. No super exciting, highly arousing interactions right now - your relationship should be calm, a bit business-like, and matter-of-fact. You should convey confidence and calm. Praise should be calm and even-keel, and pets should be rewards for him doing something like Sit first - and not for him demanding it. No wrestling right now. You want his relationship with you to change enough for him to learn to cope with anxiety, increase independence, and view you more as leader than playmate. That doesn't mean you can't have fun or ever be more casual - but right now is anxious dog bootcamp. Have your partner practice the same things too so that Fin is less demanding of them - especially a structured heel and crate manners for them. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Hi, thankyou for all the guidance. Fin is well trained skills-wise, and enjoys a lot of freedoms outdoors, without a lead. I have him play with dogs, and don't wrestle with him very often. The only issue I really have is the whining when only I leave the house, he isnt bothered by anyone else leaving. He is almost two, when do I stop having a business like relationship with him?

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Ymir
Boarder collie
11 Months
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Ymir
Boarder collie
11 Months

I have a dog who is almost a year old. I have him crate trained and he loves his crate. My issue is that he whines, cries and digs at his kennel for hours when I go to work. My second dog is great but as soon as the younger one starts doing his behaviors, she gets upset with him and will start growling and barking at him from her own crate. When she barks at him (usually just once) he will calm down for about 5 minutes, then he starts again. Usually after about 2-3 hours of this, the dogs will go to sleep. I have tried stuffing Kongs with treats, I have the radio (youtube) on a 12 hour music video for "calming dog music", they both have toys and treats, I tried a kennel cover on the kennel but so that he can still see the other dog and isn't "lonely", I have put a collar on him that stops his barking (It is the only part that was successful). I even tried doing the "fakeout" with a remote trainer so that when I left, I would hide outside my front door and when he started, I would use the vibration setting to stop him. After 3 weeks of this, it finally started to work. A month later, he went back to his old habits. He exercises for 2 hours in the morning until both of them don't want to move anymore, I don't make a big deal out of my leaving and I even tried a Thunder Shirt on him. I am at my wits end. My landlord is threatening to kick me out due to "excessive noise" not that I blame him. If I had a tenant whose dogs did this for hours a day, I would evict them as well.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Shawna, Based on what you have shared I suggest doing something a bit similar to a couple of the things you have already done, but a lot more comprehensive so as to address the need to learn independence, self-soothing, better self-management, and anxiety coping skills. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. When you are home, he should be practicing staying on Place or in the crate with the door open a lot - he needs to learn how to calm himself when not confined - this exercises self-control. Don't be overly affectionate or excitable or anxious with him while doing all this - your attitude should be super calm and a bit business-like, you don't want him overly dependent on you right now, but still trusting of you and respectful toward you. Focus on making him work by having him do things that require self-control and calmness from him - exercise is great but he needs mental stimulation more probably. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Practicing the crate manners protocol should also help with him not building up anxiety whenever he goes into the crate, because it will become so routine even when you don't actually leave. I suggest purchasing a remote collar, such as e-collar technologies' mini educator. I wouldn't use vibration. Since it took so long to get a response I don't think it was the right tool for him. Go to stimulation, but use a collar like the mini educator that has 100 hundred levels so you can find the correct level for him. You are going to make his current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead.This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. An important thing to note about this is the use of stimulation and not vibration for your dog (you should see some type of difference in just a few sessions) combined with rewards - your return, for being calm, and a huge emphasis on challenging his brain to teach him better self-coping skills, calmness, and self-control in general so that he is able to succeed. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, both prongs making contact with the skin, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Practice all of this during the day at first. Once he has learned that e-collar corrections are for barking and is able to calm himself back down during the day, then you can transition the training to night time when he tries to bark then - if you are certain that he does not need to pee at that time. I would put a lot of that time exercising them into stimulating his mind - continue with a decent amount of exercise, but as a border Collie he needs to work mentally on things that challenge his mind and require concentration for him almost more than he needs to run. When my own Border Collie was young I used to take him on walks and hikes but also spent 30 minutes -1 hour minimum each day teaching him new things every day...he learned almost 100 commands during his first three years of life - not because I had a goal to teach that many things but because I was trying to wear him out mentally to keep behavior issues in check. Border Collies are incredibly smart and need to be stimulated mentally to take the edge off. Some breeds need to run all the time, others need to think a lot. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Carter
Chihuahua
1 Year
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Carter
Chihuahua
1 Year

When I leave for work or gone for a few hours from the house he will tear at the carpet and other little things. He always whines super loud and I got him a crate BUT I feel if I lock him in the crate it will make it worse but if I leave it open things will keep getting destroyed

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hannah, You do need to crate, for his safety with the chewing, as well as the sake of your stuff, and for the behavior not to turn into a long-term super hard to break habit. Right now it is probably related to age partially. For the crying in the crate, I suggest working on a few things to teach calmness in the crate: Crate manners protocol: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Surprise method - do this in addition to the crate manners protocol, and not in place of: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Most dogs will adjust to the crate and learn to relax in it or chew on a food stuffed chew toy within two weeks of doing the above. If your pup is still having a hard time past that there is a protocol you can do to interrupt the anxious state of mind and teach a calmer one. It can feel harsh since it uses a correction to interrupt but it tends to be easier on the dog in the long run. I would suggest trying the crate protocols above first though because that's all that's needed for most dogs for a couple of weeks. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator is also a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar should be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Brody
Cocker Spaniel
12 Weeks
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Brody
Cocker Spaniel
12 Weeks

Hi! My puppy is great on a night. He sleeps through and doesn’t go to the toilet until we let him out in the morning! The problem is when we leave him alone in the house. He will just sit in his pen and bark and cry. We walk him and play with him before we leave and give him a kong to keep him entertain but once he’s finished with that he barked for about 45 minutes. Will he grow out of it?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alice, How long has he been doing this? If it's been less than two weeks, this is still normal and he is likely still learning to self-sooth and self-entertain and it typically gets better if you stay consistent and don't let him out when he cries - unless he truly needs to potty. Instead, wait until he is quiet for a second before freeing him. Almost all puppies cry when first learning to be left alone. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and practice the training from that method when you are home - to teach quietness. You can also purchase an automatic treat dispensing device that helps teach puppies to be quiet by periodically rewarding them with a treat when it senses they have been quiet for a certain amount of time. AutoTrainer and Pet Tutor can be set to do this I believe - double check the one you choose before purchasing though. Surprise method for teaching calmness in a crate or exercise pen: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Walter
Miniature Schnauzer
2 Years
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Walter
Miniature Schnauzer
2 Years

My neighbour has made me aware my dog cry’s and whines while we are are work. My neighbour said he doesn’t stop the whole time we are out.
I don’t know what else to do.
I take him out for a 30-40min walk before we leave for work, I leave the radio on for him, he has two different kongs and a trixie toy. He does not chew anything, rip anything up while we are out and he doesn’t toilet in the house.
We’ve just got a camera that records and I left him for 30 mins top and he cried for 5mins then didn’t really hear anything from him.
When I get home I don’t great him with fuss I just put my bags away etc.
Any advice would be much appreciated.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Amiee, There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and continue to give him something to do in the crate during the day (such as a food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time for some dogs on its own. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport XC with Bark Limiter for this, or Dogtra or SportDog. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh-more than a correctly used e-collar in many trainers opinions, because of how sensitive a dog's nose is and how long the scent lingers - making the correction last a very long time). Another option is a stimulation (not citronella) bark collar - but you would need one that is high quality and will let you choose the stimulation level - the auto-rise settings are not always effective. You would then follow the same protocol with the bark collar as you would with the e-collar - which I discuss below - but the collar would just do the correcting for you while you wait for pup to become quiet to reward. Garmin Delta Sport XC with Bark Limiter collar has both a remote training setting and a bark limiter setting to use the collar both ways I believe - check with their manufacturer to be sure it includes what you need and be sure to purchase the newer model not an older Delta Sport - because the older ones aren't manually adjustable on the bark limiter setting. Although you can try vibration or spray collars, they are less likely to work, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. Many high quality e-collars also include a vibration level too. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours. Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave the room. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or one level on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar should be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. It's also very likely he is barking because of noises he hears - if that's the case the above training should also work but his barking may not be as consistent to catch him in the act. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Lexi
cockapoo
19 Weeks
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Lexi
cockapoo
19 Weeks

Every time I leave the room but stay in the house (go for a nap or a bath) Lexi whines constantly. This drives my husband mad as she won't stop.
If I leave the house she doesn't whine but waits by the door until I return.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Linda, You need to work on building pup's independence. I suggest the following commands to help build independence. Out command: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Distance Down Stay on a long leash outside: Crate Manners - great calmness and gentle respect building exercise : https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Surprise method - for introducing crate for first time: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Interactions with pup should be a bit more boring and structured for a while - especially with you. Don't act sorry for pup, don't allow pushiness, don't fuss over her when you leave or return. When you first come home from somewhere or return to the room, ignore pup for five minutes to condition a calmer response from her. Work on her staying on Place in one room while you move about the room and go in and out of the room (work up to that part). You want pup to have to exhibition and practice self-control and independence out of respect for you - staying on Place out of obedience in this case. Practice pup staying on Place instead of always trying to follow you. Teach pup a Quiet command. When pup whines at the door, tell pup Quiet once she knows that command well. Quiet - teach with a bark at first, then start using the command when she whines too and reward when she stops whining to help her generalize it to mean stop whining also: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When she whines, use a small canister of pressurized, unscented air called a pet convincer. Calmly tell her "Quiet" through the door, then if she continues crying, briefly open the door and spray a small puff of unscented air from the pet convincer at her side and leave again. If she chooses to leave the door and go lie down calmly, have your husband give her a treat calmly. All of this should be done with a calm, no none-sense attitude, not angrily or loudly. You want to express the attitude you want her to feel - which is calm and not sorry for her or angry. Only spray the air at her chest or side, do NOT spray her in the face. Also, only use unscented air, don't use citronella! Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ace
Lab mix
4 Months
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Ace
Lab mix
4 Months

How can I stop my puppy from play biting and whining when I leave

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Crystal, For the biting, First, if you can find a free puppy play date class attend one of those with him so that he can learn how to control the pressure of his bite by playing with other puppies. Petco and some other pet stores with training offer free puppy play classes if you call and ask for the schedule. If you have any friends with puppies under 6 months of age, set up play dates with those puppies too. Moderate the puppies' play and whenever one pup seems overwhelmed or they are all getting too excited, interrupt their play, let everyone calm down, then let the most timid pup go first to see if they still want to play - if they do, then you can let the other puppies go too when they are waiting for permission. Second, check out the article linked below. Starting today, use the "Yelp" method. At the same time however, begin teaching "Leave It" from the "Leave It" method. As soon as pup is good as the Leave It game, start telling pup to "Leave It" when he attempts to bite or is tempted to bite. Reward pup if he makes a good choice. If he disobeys your leave it command, use the Pressure method to gently discipline pup for biting when you told him not to. The order or all of this is very important - the yelp method can be used for the next couple of weeks while pup is learning leave it, but leave it will teach pup to stop the biting entirely. The pressure method teaches pup that you mean what you say without being overly harsh - but because you have taught pup to leave it first, pup clearly understands that you are not just roughhousing (which is what pup probably thinks most of the time right now), so it is more effective. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite When pup gets especially wound up, he probably needs a nap too. At this age puppies will sometimes get really hyper when they are overtired or haven't had any mental stimulation through something like training. When you spot that and think pup could be tired, place pup in their crate or an exercise pen with a food stuffed Kong for a bit to help him calm down and rest. Also, know that mouthiness at this age is completely normal. It's not fun but it is normal for it to take some time for a puppy to learn self-control well enough to stop. Try not to get discouraged if you don't see instant progress, any progress and moving in the right direction in this area is good, so keep at it. For the whining, check out the Surprise method linked below. Practice while you are home and work up to being out of the room for longer periods of time and even pretending to leave your home and spying on pup from outside - returning after a few minutes of quiet to sprinkle in treats before pretending to leave again. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Know that adjusting to be alone often takes about a month, so stay consistent and try not to get discouraged that it's not instant progress. Practicing other things that build independence like Place and Down-Stay can also help overall. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Toetje
Briquet Griffon Vendeen
8 Years
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Toetje
Briquet Griffon Vendeen
8 Years

My dog always cries, whines and even howls when i leave her alone and it's constant as i recorded her, she never stops until i'm home.
she stays in one place and doesn't move or do anything but howling and crying very loud (my neighbors call me every time telling me that she is so loud).
she is not into treats or toys, so i can't bribe her with food or toys. it was alright before because somebody is always in the house with her. but now we can't do that anymore as we need to leave the house for the working hours. we tried personal trainer but she said that she can't help with that as the dog is 8 years old and used to be with people all the time.
help please?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced with behavior issues, remote collar training, uses both positive reinforcement and fair corrections with boundary type training, and comes very well recommended by their previous clients. This training is best done using a crate at first. Later pup can likely be transitioned out of the crate once she has learned to be calmer. With a qualified trainer's help, first, purchase a high quality e-collar with at least thirty stimulation levels and vibration. Look for a high quality brand such as E-collar technologies (mini educator), Dogtra, Garmin, or Sportdog. Pay attention to weight ranges on these when choosing one. High quality e-collars can give much smaller/gentler corrections and are far safer than random unknown brands bought overseas. Have her wear the collar around for a bit to get used to the feel of it. Next, find the correct level of stimulation to use for her training, called her working level. To find this level, wait until she is simply standing around acting boring and not distracted. Without saying anything, push the stimulation button for a second. Watch her to see if she responds. This response might be subtle like scratching, acting like a bug is on her, shaking her head, looking around, moving away from where she is, or something else. She might yelp out of surprise, but if you are using the lowest level and a high quality e-collar a yelp is typically due to surprise. If she seems overly sensitive to the collar you can use the vibration setting instead but vibration tends to be harsher than low stimulation for many dogs. Repeat pushing the button three times at the lowest level and watching for a response. If she does not respond, increase the level by one and watch for a response again while you test that level out three times. Continue increasing the level by one and watching for a response, until you reach a level that she responds too - If the collar you are using has a lot of levels, like the Mini Educators' one hundred levels, then many dogs won't even feel it until around level ten. It all depends on their own sensitivity level, which is why you find each dog's individual level. Check out the video linked below, demonstrating finding the correct level for a dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM Next, set up a camera to spy on her while she is in her crate. You could use a GoPro with the Live app on your phone, two smart phones or tablets with Skype or Facetime with her end on mute so she won't hear you but you can hear her, a video baby monitor, security camera, or any other camera you have that you could watch her from outside on. Once you have the correct collar stimulation level and she is calm and relaxed again, start your leaving routine, put her into the crate, and go outside. Drive down the block and walk back if she isn't convinced you really left. From outside, watch her on the camera. When she barks or tries to escape from the crate, push the stimulation button on the remote for one second. Repeat the correction every time she barks. This will probably take a few repetitions before she starts to connect the stimulation on the collar with her barking. If it doesn't improve after seven corrections, increase the collar level by one, and again by one if she still doesn't respond. When she pauses barking for four seconds, while she is quiet, go back inside, sprinkle a few tiny treats into her crate without letting her out or talking to her, then leave again. Repeat correcting her when she barks from outside, going inside and sprinkling treats when she is quiet then leaving again; do this for 30 to 45 minutes each session. After about 45 minutes, while she is quiet, go back inside for good. Leave her in the crate and ignore her for ten minutes. Correcting with the e-collar without acknowledging her if she barks at you from the crate. After ten minutes, while she is calm, go to her and let her out of the crate using the method from the article linked below: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mn5HTiryZN8 You generally want to encourage calmness around the crate - being overly excited, anxious, or worked up can make separation anxiety worse because of the chemicals released into the body. Expect to need to repeat the crate collar training several times for 45 minute sessions for her to realize that the results are always the same and she needs to be calm and quiet in the crate. You can do this more than one time each day to speed up the process, just make sure she has breaks in between each session to unwind. When she is quieter in the crate, then when you leave, give her a food stuffed chew toy, like a Kong, to help with boredom and to automatically reward her for staying quiet. Once she has learned to be calm while you are gone, you can switch to an automatic bark collar - at that point she should understand that the correction is for barking and getting aroused, and not something random - which is why the e-collar training is done first to also reward quietness at the same time and have control over the training with the manual collar at first. You may be able to use rewards once the anxious cycle has been interrupted - many stressed dogs won't take food until the arousal is interrupted enough for them to learn better coping strategies - some dogs once calmer will then want to chew something like a dog food stuffed chew toy or a treat dispensing device such as Auto Trainer or Pet Trainer - it's just that those things don't always work at first when the dog is still in that anxious state. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Bubba
Pitbull/lab/corgi/cattle dog
1 Year
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Bubba
Pitbull/lab/corgi/cattle dog
1 Year

My dog bubba is an aggressive whiner. If I leave my room to go to the bathroom he starts whining if he’s left downstairs he will start whining and it will eventually turn into a whine-howl. Even if somebody is down there but say “the person he wants to be around” isn’t down there he will whine. If he’s in my room and he can hear our other dogs playing/barking/running around he will start whining. I’m planning on moving to an apartment in the future and I don’t want him to be doing this and annoying the neighbors. He can be alone but if he’s in a room alone but he can hear you he will whine. None of my other dogs do this

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Thanks for the question about cute Bubba. Is Bubba getting lots of exercise and stimulation? Do you think he may feel neglected when you leave the room? He is pretty young yet, and may not feel secure in his place within the pack (since you say you have other dogs). Obedience training will ensure that Bubba knows that you are the head of the pack. That is one important step to take. Another one is to make sure that Bubba has a safe place to go where he feels secure (a bed on the main level, a crate) when you leave the room. Give him toys to stimulate him such as a sturdy Kong filled with a safe treat. Perhaps he whines when he hears other dogs because he wants to have more social interaction. Does he play with his housemates? Take all of them for lengthy walks - this will allow Bubba to find his way in the pack and perhaps relax more. Talk to your vet about it, too. Good luck!

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Molly
Maremma Sheepdog
1 Year
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Molly
Maremma Sheepdog
1 Year

Hi, Molly gets walked 5km (or more) every day, we are with her all the time bar for maybe an hour or so when I cannot take her with me a few times during the week (ie when I am attending university). In this time she will bark repetitively and constantly (my neighbours advised it is very loud and one after the other for the entire period I am gone). We have tried puzzle feeders, kongs and white noise, as well as leaving items of clothing for her that smell like us to no avail. We we at a loss as to how to stop this, we are renting so it needs to be corrected ASAP as we could lose our place! She is very well loved and gets mass amounts of attention, what should I try? Thankyou in advance, Madeleine

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Madeleine, There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Gala
Coton de Tulear
9 Years
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Gala
Coton de Tulear
9 Years

I just moved into my new appartment with my 9 year old dog. I was gone for an hour and I decided to record her to see how she is coping with the new environment. The whole time she was crying and even howling. Now I feel really bad cause I dont want her to feel abandoned, but I have to do something as I have to leave for work or school everyday. Is it possible she is not familiar with the appartment enough so she feels like i am leaving her because the appartment is still unknown to her? Please help me, I do not want her to be unhappy here because this appartment is everything i have ever wanted.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lara, Since it's the first day, it might just be her adjusting to a new place and feeling uneasy about whether you are coming back - it may resolve itself soon as she sees that you always come back in the new home also. I suggest practicing the Surprise method from the article linked below. If you wish to leave her out of a crate, practice leaving her in the home and going out the door. Wait at the door quietly - you may need to walk away then sneak back if she can tell you are still there. Listen outside the door. As soon as she stops crying for at least a couple of seconds - quickly go back inside and place treats on a dog bed you have set up somewhere (don't just give the treats at the door - you want to condition her to go lie down and relax somewhere else). Say very little to her and keep your entrance boring. Drop the treats on the dog bed, then leave again. Repeat leaving, waiting until she is quiet, then returning and rewarding on the dog bed - always return on her quiet note. As she improves, gradually wait until she has stayed quiet for longer before returning - leaving her for longer and longer periods of time. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Finally, when you leave for longer periods, leave a dog-food stuffed chew toy with her for her to focus on while you are away, or invest in an Automatic treat dispensing device, such as Pet Tutor or AutoTrainer, or a doggie puzzle toy or Kong wobble type treat dispenser - to keep her busy and reward calmness while you are away. If she continues to cry despite the above training, check back here with an update on what you have tried. You will need to incorporate an interrupter/corrector, such as a unscented air spray, vibration collar, ect... also, to decease her arousal while barking before you will be able to use positive reinforcement effectively if that's the case. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Smokey
Mixed
2 Years
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Smokey
Mixed
2 Years

We moved not to long ago. He cried for about 2 days when left alone. Then he stopped, the past 2weeks he started up again.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Carlos, Is pup crying just when left alone? Is pup crated while you are gone? Since pup used to do well, I suggest working on some structure with them to help pup feel more secure and giving pup something entertaining to do while alone - that also rewards quietness. For the structure and independence building, practice things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ There are automatic treat dispensing devices you can purchase, which can be programmed to detect when pup is quiet and release a treat during those times. Auto Trainer and PetTutor are two such devices. You can also feed pup via durable puzzle toys - being sure pup practices them ahead of time and knows how to get some of the food out so that it's interesting, and dog food stuffed Kongs. Spend time getting pup interested in one or more of those devices while you are home, then give pup the entertainment when you leave also. The above may be all pup needs, just to help them feel a bit more secure in the new location. If the issue continues despite doing the above for a week or two, you will need to take additional steps. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and he will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if his level is 13 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 16 right now. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting him from outside when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when he is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he probably needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Roxy
Fox Terrier
4 Years
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Roxy
Fox Terrier
4 Years

Hi and thanks for your time.
My dog is a rescue, ive had her about 2 months. She is perfect in every way except when I go out, she becomes very stressed and howls and whines.
Neighbours have complained 😕

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Claire, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. There is also a device called an Automatic Treat Dispenser or Pet Tutor. The right model can be set to detect when she isn't barking and to dispense a treat at that time, to help train and entertain her. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Chevy
Catahoula Leopard Dog
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
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Chevy
Catahoula Leopard Dog
2 Years

Chevy already has separation anxiety. She consistently whines whenever I leave the room at my parents house. When I go on long runs without her she always whines. I exercise her daily to tire her out but the second I leave the whining starts. What would be a good way to stop the whining?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Take a look at the methods outlined here: https://wagwalking.com/training/stop-separation-anxiety, Does Chevy have a place she loves that she can call her own and go to as a way to relax when you are not there? This special place (like a crate with favorite toys inside), where she feels safe is essential. You don't have to crate her - just provide the comforting den-like atmosphere for when you pop out. Taking Chevy to obedience training classes is a way for her to gain confidence and independence, as well as beef up her socialization skills. Any steps that you can take that will make her more confident are worth it. When you leave, give her an interactive toy with high-value treats to keep her busy for the short time that you are out. Start this when you are leaving for 5 minutes and she will see that you come back. After a while she may be very attached to the toy, relieving her anxiety. You can gradually make the times longer. Good luck!

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Muffin
Mix pekinois
8 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Muffin
Mix pekinois
8 Months

When i leave my dog will never stop crying /barking and eating its way of the house i literally have the biggest hole in the front door and it never stops till i come home

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Hope, First, pup needs to be crated and a durable crate used. https://www.k9ofmine.com/heavy-duty-dog-crates/ There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Elsa
Standard Poodle
6 Months
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Elsa
Standard Poodle
6 Months

We’ve had Elsa for just over two weeks. She is very attached to me. When I go out of the house even briefly, she whines, yelps and rings the bell at the door even when my husband is home. When I put her in her crate and then leave, she complains for a while but eventually stops. However once this past week, the upset lasted an hour and a half again even with my husband home. What should we do?

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Elsa is attached to you and it is time to get her used to your husband, too. Does he feed her? Have him take her on one of her daily walks and as well, be involved in the playtime each day. When you have to go out on an errand have your husband walk Elsa as a way to distract her but also as a way to form a bond. When you leave, you can also give her an interactive toy filled with treats - if she likes the toy you can even feed her part if her daily meal in it. It's a great way to stimulate her mentally as she needs that, too. What about her obedience classes? If your husband consistently takes her instead of you an excellent bond will be formed. The Turns Method described here is a mentally stimulating lesson that will give Elsa and your husband a good training session while on walks: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel. Take a look here as well: https://wagwalking.com/training/be-alone. Good luck!

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Benji
Golden Retriever
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Benji
Golden Retriever
10 Weeks

My puppy cries And whines loud when I leave for work, he’s usually okay when I come home and spend a bit of time with him then leave him outside for some alone time during the day, just the mornings he’s really loud as the neighbors have told me

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Benji is pretty young to be left alone so it is only natural that he will cry. What type of area do you leave him in? Maybe he feels insecure. Try setting up an exercise pen area for him. Here is an excellent article on how to do that. https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. Benji may feel safer there. Leave a radio on for background noise. Talk to your vet about dog appeasing pheromones that may calm Benji down while you are out (it's a diffuser that emits a calming aroma. All of these methods are good: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-whine-when-you-leave. Give Benji a Kong (stuffed with softened kibble and then frozen) when you leave. Because it is frozen, it will take him a while to get through it. I'm not sure that leaving little Benji outside when you are not home is a good idea - unless your backyard is very,very safe and secure and he has shade and water. Good luck!

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Loki
Pomsky
10 Weeks
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Loki
Pomsky
10 Weeks

- How to get him to stop crying when he is left alone in his crate or pen.

- How to get him to walk on the lead and not bite the lead when walking.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Loki is pretty young and will need your help in adjusting to being away from his mom and littermates. Take a look at this guide on helping your dog to like a crate. Work on the methods every day (such as the Surprise Method) so Loki associates the crate with good things: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate. You can also try an exercise pen as described here: https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. Of course, if you are training Loki to potty outside, you do not need the litter box. As for not biting the lead, this guide has excellent tips: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-bite-his-leash. Try the Leave It Method, which will come in handy in many situations. I have given you a fair bit of reading to do, but am confident the tips will help. Good luck and have fun!

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Henry
Dalmation
10 Weeks
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Henry
Dalmation
10 Weeks

Struggling when it's time to leave the house. I have tried 5 mins and then extended to 10 but he cries the whole time. I have tried the radio and left an exciting toy.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Unfortunately he is at that age where he is going to cry no matter what you do. Puppies start to feel a little more secure around 12 weeks, then by 16, you can feel pretty confident in leaving them. Keep doing what you are doing, and as time goes on, he will get better and feel more secure while alone.

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Question
Spot
Jack Russell Terrier
14 Months
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Spot
Jack Russell Terrier
14 Months

Spot was fostered by a family with a dog. He was crate trained. When he came to us 2 weeks ago we went to bed and put him in the crate he cried. We brought the crate into our room and he was fine. He is now sleeping in a bed at the side of our bed. We are trying to leave him in the house on his own for a while during the day so he is used to it by the time I go back to work. We left him for a few hours yesterday and our neighbour told us he sounded very distressed for around 3 hours. Should we go back to the crate. Thanks. Andrea

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello! It sounds like he has a form of separation anxiety. I would definitely put him in the crate while you are gone. Unlike us, dogs tend to get more anxious when they can roam around in larger spaces. Try the crate. If he is still having issues after a few days, please feel to write back in and I can send you some more advanced info on separation anxiety.

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Question
Oakley
Blue Heeler
4 Years
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Question
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Oakley
Blue Heeler
4 Years

Oakley will be 5 this year and her whole life we lived with my grandparents. My grandma stayed home with her 24/7 and 2 weeks ago we moved. In that transition she has become very vocal with barking and crying/whining the whole time I am gone which is usually 10-10 1/2 hrs a day. I moved to an apartment and I need help getting her adjusted from being home with someone to being home alone without barking or crying.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi! It sounds like she has some separation anxiety going on. I am going to send you information on how to correct this issue. Correcting separation anxiety is a multi-fold process, so there is a lot of info coming your way! The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Rocky
Terrier mix
2 Years
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Question
0 found helpful
Rocky
Terrier mix
2 Years

Myself and and my part ee got rocky off a family friend about 4 weeks ago. He's a lovely little fellow with a beautiful personality, great with people and children and a joy to snuggle with. But we've have the following issues
Pulls and lunges on the lead
Barks at other dogs until he can say hello. Often scaring many of them off! Even though all he wants is to play.

When we first got him if we left the house he would: pace, drool, howl bark and whine Constantly.
Weve been working on desensitisation training and leaving triggers.
Now he no longer barks drools or paces. But will sit or lay by the door and whine quietly. We've not left him for more than 5 mins. Is this an improvement? As the erratic barking and pacing seems to have stopped. But he still whines and waits at the door. (we have a doggy cam.)
We leave him with a stuffed kong and leave treats out. Hell eat the treats and just wait at the door. Often hell ignore the kong.
When he pulls we change direction and praise for him walking calmy on lead. But he still racts to other dogs.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello! So it sounds like you are doing everything correctly. Continue doing what you are doing, and I am also going to send you quite a bit of info. It sounds like he has some separation anxiety going on. Though, not too severe, it is still something you want to work on so it DOESN'T become severe. Separation anxiety is a multi-fold issue, hence all of the information you are about to receive. I am also going to send you info on the barking/lunging while on walks. It IS a fear based behavior, eventhough he wants to engage and play. Working on the tips for separation anxiety will also help him with his overall responses to everything, including the walks. But I am still sending you separate info on that, just to cover all the bases. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan. Barking/lunging The first step is to reframe what an oncoming dog means to your dog. From a safe distance — your dog determines the distance, not you — have your leashed dog view another dog. As the new dog comes into view, drop a lot of enticing meat treats just in front of your dog’s nose. Ignore any hysterics for now, but back up and create more space if your dog is unwilling to eat. This part is hard for humans — I understand. It helps to see your dog’s behavior for what it most likely is: fear vs. disobedience. The training reinforcer MUST be a great one, such as real meat. It is critical that the appearance of the new dog causes meat to fall from the sky. When the other dog is out of your dog’s view, all treats stop. We want your dog to predict that other dogs near him means that YUMMY FOOD will appear! As you are reframing your dog’s opinion of seeing other leashed dogs, be careful where you take your dog, and be protective of what he is exposed to. One fight can create a reactive dog. Consider not walking your dog for 30 days as you reprogram his opinions of other dogs. Instead, sit on your front porch or in your garage with your dog on leash, and practice treating every time another dog comes into your dog’s line of sight. During this time, engage your dog’s mind with mind puzzles, obedience work, and fun stuff like games in the house or yard. You know you have made great progress when your dog sees another dog, and he turns his head away from the once-threatening dog and looks into your eyes, expecting a treat. Once your dog is looking at his (former) trigger and then looking expectantly up at you for a treat, you can begin to put this skill on cue. Tell the dog, "sit" or "watch me" or whatever command you want to use for this setting. After he starts automatically sitting or watching you when he sees another dog, you know you have success! Remember to go slowly! It could take up to a month or longer of consistent practice before you see an improvement with his behavior.

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Nala
Terrier/lab mix
18 Months
0 found helpful
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Nala
Terrier/lab mix
18 Months

We just adopted her less than 2 weeks ago. She is fine when I am around but when I leave and my wife and daughter are home she starts to bark and run around as my wife says "goes wild". As long as she is with me she is fine. At night as well the first few nights when we brought her home she slept fine in the crate, now she is whining every night trying to get out. I have even been sleeping on the couch near her and have tried calming music as well. The crate is spacious with a comfy bed and a cover on it.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, I would have your wife and daughter take a big part in Nala's training, as you do. Have them feed her and take her on walks. Perhaps one of them can each take part in one of the walks for the day. Have them do this every day for weeks until she feels the same trust and connection she does with you. As well, have them help her get started in her obedience training: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-pitbull-puppy-to-be-obedient. They'll give Nala treats as they train her, which will help also. As for the crate at night, you may have to let her cry for several nights to break the habit. You can try dog appeasing pheromones, and a fan (not pointed at her) as white noise. Alternatively, you can put the crate in your room, teach her to sleep through knowing you are right there. Once she starts to sleep, you gradually inch the crate out of the room. This takes place over several weeks, by moving it just inches each night and she won't notice. Then, she'll be back in the living room again. Good luck!

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Chewie
Poodle x chihuahua
10 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Chewie
Poodle x chihuahua
10 Months

We got chewie from the pound 5 weeks ago. My partner had been working from home until this week but now we are both back to work so chewie is on his own from 9-1 and 2-5.

I get up with Chewie at 7am, have breakfast, have a little play and leave at 8. My partner gets up at 8:15 and so chewie stays downstairs until he is up and scratches at the door for the full 15 minutes until my partner comes down.

My partner brings him for a 20-30 minute walk then before he leaves for work at 8:55. We are both home for lunch at 1pm so chewie is on his own until 9-1. We watch him on the camera and he just lies by the door waiting for us for this whole time. He will intermittently go to the window and cry for a few minutes at a time.

We have got the kong toys which we fill with treats but he won't eat at all when we are gone. I've given him my pajamas top from the night before. I leave the TV on. But he just goes into a depression when we are gone. We both leave again from 2-5 and it is the same story.

When we come back he gets soo excited - he little heart is racing. I potter around the kitchen for a few minutes until he calms a little before giving him a cuddle. I am probably more upset than Chewie and I cannot bear to watch him. Will it improve in time? What else can we do?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Thank you for all of the details. The image in my head of him sitting by the front door, sad makes ME sad. Poor guy! So I usually tell my customers it takes about a month or so for a dog to adjust to a new setting or change. He may need a little more time. It sounds like you are doing everything correct as far as helping to make your absence a little more pleasant for him. One of the only few solutions for a scenario like this which is called separation anxiety, is to make your arrivals less exciting. And you are on track with that already. This is where the humans struggle. Our behaviors are so different from dogs. We provide physical affection and words of affirmation to HELP eachother. In the canine world, all that does is reinforce their behaviors. Give completely ignoring him for 30 minutes to an hour after you come home this week. Ask him for a sit or any training command he knows, then you can love on him all you want. I know that is incredibly difficult. But your "arrival" will be gone from his brain. He will think he's getting loves for sitting and that will reformat his brain and associated behaviors a bit.

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Samantha
German Spitz
8 Months
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Samantha
German Spitz
8 Months

My dog has separation anxiety whenever my husband leaves home. When she was younger, she was quite attached to me, but has since grown greatly attached to my husband. She will follow him from room to room, and her demeanor will change when he addresses her (ears back/down, head bowed and eyes big, tail wagging - completely submissive). When he leaves the house, the dog will bark and cry incessantly, even if there are other people home. I usually have to sit in the bathroom with her and talk soothingly for about 10 minutes right after he leaves; she’ll still whimper but will calm down. If I don’t do this with her at first, she’ll hysterically jump and scratch at the door. Once I let her out of the bathroom, she’ll immediately begin sniffing for my husband and trying to trace his tracks. She won’t bark much at this point but will whimper. I’ve tried distracting her with treats for being quiet, by getting her to play with me, by talking to her, and even ignoring her. However her behavior remains unchanged and she’ll constantly be on edge from every little noise and run to the door, thinking it’s my husband. She’ll repeat all this for usually at least an hour, if not several, before finally falling asleep from exhausting herself. Sometimes my husband won’t return for several days, and by then she seems used to it, but the anxiety of listening for him and sniffing for him and running to the door is still there. When he finally comes home, she always urinates uncontrollably due to her excitement. Even if he’s gone for just a few hours, she’ll still go crazy and urinate when he returns.
We are soon moving to an apartment complex, and I’m concerned that she’ll bark and cry whenever he, or worse, both of us have to leave her alone. I don’t want to cause a disturbance for neighbors, because she can get quite loud and hysterical. She’s never really been left alone before (there’s always been other family members around her), so I’m worried about how she’ll behave when no one is around to comfort her.

**Apologies for such a long entry, but I wanted to provide as much detail as possible. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello there! No apologies needed for the long entry. The more details the better. Separation anxiety is a multi-fold issue. Treating it involves many items. So the information I am going to send is quite a lot to take in! But given a few weeks of consistent practice, you should see improvement. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Colden
Dachshund
9 Months
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Colden
Dachshund
9 Months

My husband wants my dog to be outside the yard without a leach but don’t run away what advice can I get to teach him to stay near and come when I ask him

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Leame, First, start working on a reliable Come. Check out the Reel In method from the article linked below. Reel In method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-whippet-to-recall More Come - pay attention to the PreMack Principle and long leash training sections especially once pup has learned what Come initially means. These need to be practiced around all types of distractions like dogs and kids at the park to ensure pup is reliable before attempting true off leash. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/train-dog-to-come-when-called/ Another activity you can practice is walking around places like your yard or a field with pup on the long training leash and changing directions frequently without saying anything. Whenever he takes notice (at first because the leash finally tugs, but later just because you moved), then toss a treat at him for looking your way or coming over to you - without calling him; this encourages him to choose to pay attention to where you are and associate your presence with good things on his own, so he will want to be with you. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Electra
pitbull
7 Years
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Electra
pitbull
7 Years

So in less than a year i will be moving from my parents home to an apartment, and bringing her with. The challenge is that she cries everytime i leave the room, to go to the bathroom etc.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Tori, First, pup needs to be crate trained to help build independence. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. She also needs to build her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give her something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while you are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate and leave. Spy on her from outside or another room. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her crying or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at her side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where she is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while she is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give her a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy alone time more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice her staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with her clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Hero
Rottweiler
4 Years
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Hero
Rottweiler
4 Years

Hi there

Hero is a rescue, we've had him for almost 2 weeks. He cries(not consistently) during the day when we are away at work. He is incredibly well behaved. He doesn't ruin property or defecate anywhere. He only cries, this however is disturbing the neighbours.

We keep the radio on, have tried a kong filled with treats, a large bone to gnaw on during the day and even a large pillow with a t-shirt on that has our smell. He goes for a 3km walk in the mornings, and still...

We think only time will help, but we wanted to now if there is anything else we can do to ease his crying and let him know that we're coming home?

Many thanks and licks from Hero

Daniel & Shane

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Shane, First, pup needs to be crate trained to help build independence. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while he is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. He also needs to build his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Continue to give him something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while you are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. Purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate, and leave. Spy on him from outside or another room. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him crying or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at his side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where he is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while he is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Sean does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give him a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it even if he didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help him to enjoy alone time more. First, he may need his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice him staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with him clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ari
Pit Bull Border Collie
3 Years
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Ari
Pit Bull Border Collie
3 Years

1. Crying and howling when i leave the house and does not stop.

2. My male dog fights her because of dominance and hierarchy

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Emily, For the aggression, I highly recommend hiring a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issues like aggression and fear, and can help with both the aggression and separation anxiety, and come to your home to train these things. There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. The first step is to work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that she does not anticipate alone time and build up her anxiety before you leave - which is hard for her to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give her something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some dogs with more severe separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. Something like E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. You can also use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar that has vibration to try first and stimulation in case you need stimulation instead. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Any stimulation based collar should have very low level options to work off. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on her while she is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on her, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if she responds to the collar at all (if you use a collar like mini educator, most pup's can't even feel the first few levels out of the 100 levels - you are trying to find the level where she begins to feel it without going too high for her). Look for subtle signs such as turning her head, moving her ears, biting her fur, moving away from where she was, or changing her expression. If she does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when she is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing her reaction at that level until she indicates a little bit that she can feel the collar. This should be done with the help of the trainer. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and she will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for her and have it correctly fitted on her, have her wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate. Put her into the crate while she is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on her from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her barking or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate her collar again. If her fur is long, make sure the metal contact points are both touching her skin, and be sure to order longer contact points - many come with a short and long set). If she does not decrease her barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. She may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator, or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because she has not learned what she is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if her level is 16 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 19 right now. The level you end up using on her on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first fifty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for her before proceeding at a higher level. If she continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting her from outside when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when she is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy the crate more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Oli
French Bulldog
9 Weeks
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Oli
French Bulldog
9 Weeks

Hello, We have only had Oli for 5 days now, she is doing well at her nighttime crate, cries for a little bit but then settles, she sleeps in our room. During the day, if we leave the room, she is left in a large exercise pen with her bed, toys, food/water (this is where we feed her), we play with her in there. She will cry if she is in there, even when she can still see us, we dont plan on leaving her all day long but stil need to get to the shops or even take a shower. She cries, howls, tries to escape her pen, had peed a couple of times. We have left the tv on, given an old shirt with our smell, tried giving her a treat when she goes in and we go upstairs in hopes she will associate us leaving with a treat, and given her a kong, but only keeps her quiet for about 2 minutes and then cries. Any suggestions? Thanks

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello. Have you tried leaving her in the crate when you have to leave? Dogs are denning animals and they actually prefer smaller spaces. When left in larger areas, some dogs become highly anxious. I would try crating her while you are gone and see how she responds to that. You can put toys in the crate and do everything you are doing with the exercise pen. She still may cry the first few times, but she should settle down fairly quickly.

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Bailey
German Wirehaired Pointer
6 Months
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Bailey
German Wirehaired Pointer
6 Months

Hi, I bought Bailey last week and had her in my bedroom for the first two nights. I've since moved her to a crate (which she happily stays in when I'm present) but she barks and howls at night. What can I do to stop this?

Thank you

James

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hello! Here is some information on night time crate training. Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night and you'll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Once your dog is sleeping comfortably through the night with the crate near you, you can begin to gradually move it to the location you prefer, although time spent with your dog—even sleep time—is a chance to strengthen the bond between you and your pet. Potential problems Whining: If your dog whines or cries while in the crate at night, it may be difficult to decide whether they’re whining to be let out of the crate, or whether they need to be let outside to eliminate. If you've followed the training procedures outlined above, then your dog hasn't been rewarded for whining in the past by being released from their crate. If that is the case, try to ignore the whining. If your dog is just testing you, they'll probably stop whining soon. Yelling at them or pounding on the crate will only make things worse. If the whining continues after you've ignored them for several minutes, use the phrase they associate with going outside to eliminate. If they respond and become excited, take them outside. This should be a trip with a purpose, not play time. If you're convinced that your dog doesn't need to eliminate, the best response is to ignore them until they stop whining. Don't give in; if you do, you'll teach your dog to whine loud and long to get what they want. If you've progressed gradually through the training steps and haven't done too much too fast, you'll be less likely to encounter this problem. If the problem becomes unmanageable, you may need to start the crate training process over again.

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Eady
Boxer
5 Months
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Eady
Boxer
5 Months

My puppy quite literally screams any time I am gone. It doesn't matter if she has another dog with her or is in or out of the crate, she cries. I live in an apartment and I'm about to start a job where I will be gone 8 hours a day once or twice a week. She cries even if I leave her in my room and go to the kitchen quickly, so I can imagine how bothersome it is when I am gone for longer periods of time. I am stressed to the max with college, but this puppy is my best friend and I don't want to have to give her up. I am also on a small budget, so I can't afford to buy a bark collar or tons of products that may not even work. Please tell me you can help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Kailee, First, pup needs to be crate trained to help build independence. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get her used to you being out of the room while she is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. She also needs to build her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give her something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while you are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use citronella, only unscented air. (Citronella is actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Pet Convincers are much cheaper than remote training collars also. Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones or computer with a camera, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you, without buying anything additional. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate and leave. Spy on her from outside or another room. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her crying or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at her side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where she is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while she is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, open the door partially and close the door again if she tries to rush out, repeating until your dog is not rushing out, then tell her Okay and let her come out calmly. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. Also, for longer alone times give her a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy alone time more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice her staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with her clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Mia
Dachshund
10 Months
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Mia
Dachshund
10 Months

I got my dog when the pandemic started and I had never really gotten the chance to leave her alone, but when I have tried to leave she cries and barks non stop. I recently got a job and I will have to leave her alone for a couple of hours. What is the fastest way to train her to stop crying everytime I leave?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Elena, First, work on teaching the Quiet command during the day using the Quiet method from the article linked below. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Second, during the day practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As she improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating her during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever she cries in the crate, tell her "Quiet". If she gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if she stays quiet. If she continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at her side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever she cries. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Hershey
toy poodle
5 Months
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Hershey
toy poodle
5 Months

EEverytime I leave, he howl's. Today, he howled for 12 hrs whle ii was atworj according to mynei ghbor. It breaks my heart

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello, First, is pup crate trained? If so, how long has pup been doing the whining (did they just come to live with you, or since 8 weeks old for example)? If all of this is new to pup and it's been less than 2 weeks, I recommend practicing the Surprise method from the article linked below while home to help pup learn to be by themselves. I also recommend teaching Place and practicing pup working up to staying on Place for 1 hour and you being able to walk in and out of the room, to build independence. Crate train pup as well, to keep them safe while away and to practice settling, alone time, and potty training. When pup is being crated for longer, give them a dog food stuffed chew toy to ocupy themselves with in the crate. If pup has been doing this behavior for months and neighbors are starting to complain, I recommend the below protocol, but do what I mentioned above for 3 weeks if being alone is new to pup first, before trying the below if you can - if being alone is new to pup. Surprise method https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Work on building her independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into her routine. Things such as making her work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching her to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction to help you implement the training. Building her independence and structure in her life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on her. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear her but she will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on her while she is in the crate and leave. Spy on her from outside or another room. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear her crying or see her start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at her side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time she barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where she is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when she barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when she stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while she is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to her or pay attention to her for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When she is being calm, then you can let her out of the crate. When you let her out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want her to be calm when she comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore her when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give her a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with her. Once she is less anxious she will likely enjoy it even if she didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help her to enjoy alone time more. First, she may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that she is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give her a food stuffed Kong in the crate for her to relieve her boredom instead of barking, since she will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice her staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with her clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Winnie
Chihuahua
15 Weeks
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Winnie
Chihuahua
15 Weeks

Whines and cries when we leave the room whether she’s in her crate or not. Tried putting in crate as she’s relaxed in it overnight but doesn’t want to use it in the day. Tried leaving treats in the crate but she’s not bothered about Eating them. The same with toys, she doesn’t want to play when being left alone. She will eventually settle and sleep but not for long then cries again.

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, Winnie is pretty young and no doubt missing her mom and siblings. She may still be settling in, and many dogs just want to be with their pet parents all of the time. Have you tried some of the tips that are listed on the page where you posed the question? https://wagwalking.com/training/not-whine-when-you-leave. Suggestions are dog appeasing pheromones, which are calming scents that help to put a pet at ease, mentally stimulating toys which are interactive, and plenty of exercise throughout the day. If you know you will need to put Winnie in her crate take her for a long walk first. You can also consider an exercise pen area, where Winnie will not feel quite so confined, yet you will know she is safe and sound. Take a look here: https://www.preventivevet.com/dogs/how-to-set-up-puppy-long-term-confinement-area. Many dogs will love this personal space. Remember, it is normal for a dog to protest when they don't want to be alone. You may have to persevere. Another tip is to give Winnie a kong filled with mushed kibble mixed with a little peanut butter (all natural, dog-safe, no xylitol as it is toxic to dogs!). Fill the kong, put it in the freezer, and give it to Winnie only when she will be in her crate for a while. Use it for these occasions. Most dogs cannot resist the peanut butter! Good luck!

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Chewy
Dachshund
8 Years
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Chewy
Dachshund
8 Years

He does great when he’s with me but once I leave him alone to go do something either inside or outside he will look around for me and if he doesn’t see me he’ll start crying or barking, but sometimes when I give in I’ll go up to him and pet him and then he’ll start crying to me while I’m comforting him.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Daniela, For the barking, I suggest combining a few things in your case. You need a way to communicate with him so I suggest teaching the Quiet command from the Quiet method in the article I have linked below - don't expect this alone to work but it will be part of the puzzle for what I will suggest next. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Next, once pup understands what Quiet means you will choose an interrupter - neither too harsh nor ineffective. A Pet Convincer is one example of an interrupter. A pet convincer is a small canister of pressurized, unscented air that you can spray a quick puff of at the dog's side to surprise them enough to help them calm back down. (Don't use citronella and avoid spraying in the face!). In situations where you know pup will bark or is already barking, command "Quiet". If they obey, reward with a treat and very calm praise. If they bark anyway or continue to bark, say "Ah Ah" firmly but calmly and give a brief correction at their side. Repeat the correction each time they bark until you get a brief pause in the barking. When they pause, praise and reward then. You are teaching pup that the correction is for barking, and rewarding the quiet so that pup understands that the way to get a reward is stay quiet, and that corrections are for barking and not just random. Work on teaching pup a Place command also to build pup's independence. Place command: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O75dyWITP1s Work up to pup staying on Place while you are in another room. I also suggest practicing crating pup in a room away from you for at least 2 hours a day with a dog food stuffed chew toy. Since pup is If pup barks in the crate during the day (which they likely will by your description), practice the Surprise method from the article linked below. Whenever pup stays quiet in the crate for 5 minutes, sprinkle some treats into the crate without opening it, then leave the room again. As he improves, only give the treats every 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 1 hour, 1.5 hour, 2, hour, 3 hour. Practice crating him during the day for 1-3 hours each day that you can. Whenever he cries in the crate, tell him "Quiet" (once you have taught it as described above). If he gets quiet - Great! Sprinkle treats in after five minutes if he stays quiet. If he continues barking or stops and starts again, spray a quick puff of air from a pet convincer at his side through the crate while calmly saying "Ah Ah", then leave again. Only use unscented air canisters, DON'T use citronella! And avoid spraying in the face. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Repeat the rewards when quiet and the corrections whenever he cries. Gradually space out the rewards until pup is staying quiet the entire 2 hours with just the dog food stuffed chew toy to chew on - whether you are home or on your walk/errand/in the backyard without pup. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Pepper
Jack Russell Terrier
9 Weeks
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Pepper
Jack Russell Terrier
9 Weeks

Pepper get's so upset when we leave her alone even for such a short time, how can I stop her from whining and crying so loudly? It's very distressing for her and for me!

We've only had her a week, so I know she is still settling in, but I don't want this to become a bad habit!

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Bear
Huskie
6 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bear
Huskie
6 Months

He cries the moment we are out of sight and doesn’t stop. He’s destroyed my sisters carpet and my moms screen door. We’ve tried crate training and leaving him outside but he just whines and will destroy anything to escape back to us. He has a large backyard to play in, but he just stays at the back door whining

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Coleton, First, pup needs to be crate trained to help build independence. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get him used to you being out of the room while he is crated. I will address the barking that happens below. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate He also needs to build his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine if you haven't already done so. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets by obeying a command like Sit first. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give him something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while you are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ If doing the above is not sufficient, I recommend doing the below in addition to it, as needed. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of pup's life too. Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella spray, make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate and leave. Spy on him from outside or another room - whatever normally triggers the barking. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him crying or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at his side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where he is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while he is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, open and close the door again whenever he tries to rush out, until he will wait in the crate with the door open. Once he is waiting calmly, tell him "Okay" or "Free!" and let him come out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home - so that he isn't building up those emotions habitually anticipating your arrival home each time. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away also. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give him a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it even if he didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help him to enjoy alone time more. First, he may need his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice him staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with her clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark When you are home, also make sure you are exercising him both mentally and physically - regularly teaching and practicing obedience commands or tricks, and incorporating those commands into his day is one way to stimulate mentally - such as practicing heel, sit, and down during a walk or game of fetch, having pup do a command before giving him something he wants, and feeding meals in dog food stuffed chew toys or or things like automatic treat dispensing devices like autotrainer or pet tutor, or kong wobbles. Finally, I would consider a trainer who is experienced with the above, to help in person. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Loki
cockapoo
4 Months
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Loki
cockapoo
4 Months

Everytime I leave a room he crys. He is fine going to bed and is now sleeping through the night without crying. However if I leave anytime in the day he crys and doesn't stop until I return.
I have tried leaving treats. He eats these first and then starts to cry and bark. I have tried building up the time he is left alone. None of it seems to make any difference.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Betto
Goldendoodle
8 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Betto
Goldendoodle
8 Years

We just got our first noise complaint from our Building. I need help to teach him to quiet down after we leave

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
104 Dog owners recommended

Hello, work with Betto to get him used to you leaving in small spurts, gradually working up to longer times with you away. To start, a few tips: leave white noise such as a radio and a fan (not pointed at Betto) when you are away. Do you crate him? Is there a chance he is anxious and nervous in the home when no one is there? You can also set up an exercise pen area with a new comfy bed and a few toys. Give him interactive toys that will keep him busy while you are out. The kong is a great option. Take a kong and fill it with moistened kibble and a smear of peanut butter (no xylitol in the peanut butter - it is toxic to dogs!). Freeze the kong overnight. Give it to Betto in his new exercise pen area when you leave. It should keep him busy for quite a while. Have one prepared in the freezer for every time you go out. Soon, he'll see the kong when you take it out of the freezer and run straight for his pen in excitement. Make sure that you exercise Betto very well before you leave - a long walk with plenty of mental stimulation or even a run is ideal. He is the type of breed that needs to be exercised a lot and mentally stimulated as well. All of the methods here are excellent; start with the Desensitize Method: https://wagwalking.com/training/not-bark-when-left-alone. But read the entire guide for lots of good info. Good luck!

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Duke
Hound
3 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Duke
Hound
3 Years

Cries as soon as I leave, I can't even walk out of the room without him crying

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Puzzles
Rat Terrier
10 Years
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Puzzles
Rat Terrier
10 Years

Whines & cries when my son leaves his apt

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sharon, Has pup always done this or is this a recent behavior? If it's recent, I actually recommend a trip to your vet because there can be various bodily changes that happen at this age that can make a dog feel more anxious, such as loss of vision, loss of hearing, mental decline, or pain sources. If pup has always done this, it's may be separation anxiety. First, pup needs to be crate trained to help build independence. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get him used to you being out of the room while he is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate He also needs to build his independence and confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine like mentioned above. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give him something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while they are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ If doing the above is not sufficient, I recommend doing the below in addition to it, as needed. This second part is best done with a private trainer's help. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair corrections. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If they have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, they can Skype or Facetime them to one another with pup’s end on mute, so that she can see and hear him but he will not hear your sister. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate, and your sister leave. Spy on pup from outside or another room. Leave however they normally would. As soon as you hear pup crying or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at his side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where he is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while he is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to pup or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give him a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it even if he didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help him to enjoy alone time more. First, he may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Regularly practice him staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with him clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Onni
toy poodle
2 Years
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Onni
toy poodle
2 Years

He crys when i leave the house very loudly and howels. He escapes the house by opening windows and sits in the driveway waiting for me to come home, i dont know what to do. Crate traing just makes him wine for the whole time hes in there. Help

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Caleb, Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below and work on that method to get him used to you being out of the room while he is crated. https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate He also needs to build his independence and her confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine like mentioned above. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open as well as closed. Give him something to do in the crate or on Place during the day while they are out of the room (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on). Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair corrections. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Second, purchase a Pet convincer. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If they have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, they can Skype or Facetime them to one another with pup’s end on mute, so that she can see and hear him but he will not hear your sister. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate, and your sister leave. Spy on pup from outside or another room. Leave however they normally would. As soon as you hear pup crying or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, quietly return, spray a small puff of air from the pet convincer at his side through the crate wires, without opening the door, then leave again. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, correct, then leave again. After five minutes to ten minutes of practice, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back into the room where he is and sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes a session at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, while he is quiet, go back into the room and sprinkle more treats. This time stay in the room. Do not speak to pup or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Also, for longer alone times give him a food stuffed Kong into the crate/room with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it even if he didn't pay any attention to it in the past, and that will help him to enjoy alone time more. First, he may need her anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking/crying to do at that point. Regularly practice him staying on Place and in the open crate while you are home and leave the room as well. Finally, teach pup the Quiet command to make communication with him clearer. Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Bruno
Yorkie
6 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bruno
Yorkie
6 Months

Bruno is used to having someone home nearly 24 hours a day. My mom and I have opposite work schedules, so when I'm at work she's at home and vice versa. We are now working 10-12 hour shifts. So Bruno is typically left home alone for 2-4 hours. I bought him a kennel and we have started to put him in there when we head out for work. He was doing well-- cried for a bit then stopped. But as of lately, my neighbor has been texting me stating that he has been howling and crying longer. What do you recommend I do?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Question
bell
Mix
8 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
bell
Mix
8 Years

she is a large breed, chow retriever mix ...since we moved into a new house, we have her outside much of day in a fenced in yard.. we have to keep her on a cable tho because she is pulling the fence thru trying to get out. on the cable, shewill bark for hours.. HOURS .. but its a high pitch scream bark that sounds like she's panicking constantly. we have to be at work and cannot keep her inside as she destroys things, and she also has chewed / destroyed a crate .. actually bent the metal bars in and got out while we were gone. i have tried "training collars " and the buzzing noise seems to bother her but not really.. and we have ot be here to do it. she screams and barks for hours on end and we will get kicked out if it does not stop . i have had her since she was born and she has always had weird tendencies, anxious etc. scared of a lot of noises .. but im not sure what to do now. this has been going on for weeks and is escalating instead of getting better

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Pegi
Labradoodle
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
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Pegi
Labradoodle
10 Weeks

My dog cries, whines then barks and gets completely worked up when putting her in the crate to sleep. Takes ages to calm her down and get her to sleep (then sneak upstairs to bedroom). Wakes in the night and have to go through the whole thing again. Not sure what to do. She wont go in the crate of her own accord in the day. Have tried placing her in there for naps but she just gets back up and out. Have been closing her in for 5-10 minutes and leaving the room to teac hher to be alone, but she never stops crying durngi this time. How can I help her?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Ffion, Check out the Surprise method from the article I have linked below to practice helping pup adjust during the day. At night unless it has been at least 2-3 hours since pup last went potty, ignore the crying in the crate as long as pup is safe. It's normal for it to take pup a couple of weeks to adjust to the crate, and the more consistent you can be at night and the more often you can practice the surprise method during the day the easier the process should be for pup, but there will probably be some crying no matter what you do, since this is new to pup. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Crate training can prevent future separation anxiety in adults by helping them learn some self-soothing, self-entertaining, and independence skills. It can also make travel and boarding easier and less stressful for pup. Give pup a safe place to go when things are chaotic or new later on. Help with potty training and prevent destructive chewing habits. Try to remember the ways crate training can earn pup freedom as an adult by keeping them safe and helping with the above areas, to help you stay consistent with the hard work of crate training right now. When you do take pup potty at night, take pup on a leash and keep the trip as boring as possible - no treats, play, and little talk, then immediately return pup to the crate after and ignore that crying. Keeping trips like this will help pup learn to go back to sleep sooner and not wake up for attention unless they need to truly go potty - which helps pup learn to sleep through the night quicker as soon as their bladder's can make it all night. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Snoop
Doberman Pinscher
9 Months
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Snoop
Doberman Pinscher
9 Months

We got Snoop about 4 months ago when he was 5 months he came from kennels in Serbia, if you leave him alone even for 5 minutes he whines and Barks constantly, i have tried giving him a toy filled with treats only when i go out and hoped he would associate this as a positive thing. It hasn't helped that i now work from home 4 days a week, he has got use to someone being their almost all the time so on the days i go to work he whines and barks and destroys door frames and window cells, On the day that i work someone comes into feed him and walk him but as soon as they leave he starts again, need to sort this out before i have to go back to the office full time

Kind Regards

Nancy

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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phoebe
Beagle
8 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
phoebe
Beagle
8 Weeks

she cries every time i leave and howls and doesn’t stop until i come back she can’t sleep without me and she won’t stop chewing i need help before it gets out of control

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Bella
Beaskie
2 Years
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Bella
Beaskie
2 Years

I just moved out of my house and I can’t keep my dog where I’m at now. I’m only going to be gone for a few months and I just wanted see what I can do to help her with her anxiety. She’s at my moms with her dogs and lastnight my mom told me she whined and howled the whole time. My mom keeps her dogs in their crate at night to sleep but my dog isn’t used to sleeping in crate. She always slept with me in the bed and the only time I put her in her crate was when I left the house. I’m taking my shirt their today so she can have something to comfort her but I was wondering what I could do to help or my mom could do to help. Would it be a bad idea to visit her everyday or should I wait? I work in the evenings and planned on her seeing her everyday before work for at least 2 hours.

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Duffy
schnauzer
1 Year
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Duffy
schnauzer
1 Year

Slept all night with owner for first time. Put him out to do business and eat. Put in crate because I had to be gone a few hours. He barked and yelled fir an hour. Have I done things wrong?

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Lemon
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
3 Years
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Lemon
Pembroke Welsh Corgi
3 Years

Lemon barks when I leave the apartment and tries to block the door/run out with me. (She has done this since she was about 6 months old, so it's not a new thing) However, she is quiet as a mouse as soon as I am out of sight, and does not have any other typical separation anxiety issues like destroying things, peeing inside, and is not particularly overjoyed when I return home. It seems to only bother her when I (and sometimes other guests) leave. I feel like I've tried everything at this point - bark collar, place command, quiet, crate, no crate, distractions, desensitization - the whole nine yards. She does not seem to love or hate anything enough to not bark at and chase me when I'm headed out the door. And it's even worse if I have stuff in my hands (garbage, recycling, etc) Any recommendations?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alyssa, This actually sounds herding related. With pup's breed, their instinct are to not allow the livestock to leave the range - when you leave pup probably is reacting to you being somewhere that they feel they can't keep an eye on you. Since you have tried several things on your own already without improvement, I highly recommend hiring a private trainer to work with you in person at this point. Look for someone who has experience with behavior issues, and especially someone with experience with herding breeds and their instincts. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ryker
Blue Heeler
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
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Ryker
Blue Heeler
10 Weeks

When I leave he doesn’t settle and still won’t when someone is home with him

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alyssa, Check out the Surprise method from the article I have linked below. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Also, check out the free PDF e-book After You Get Your Puppy, which can be downloaded at this link - for some additional tips and general puppy raising information. www.lifedogtraining.com/freedownloads How long has pup been with you? If you are still within the first 2 weeks, it's normal for it to take pup at least 2 weeks to adjust to more independence after being used to being with littermates constantly. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Hugo
French Bulldog
6 Months
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Hugo
French Bulldog
6 Months

We cannot leave Hugo home alone, he just screams the whole time. He doesn’t start until we are out the door though. We are also struggling leaving him in a different room even when we are at home

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Teagan, I would start by practicing pup being alone in a crate while you are in another part of the house - where you can still hear him but he can't see you. Check out the article linked below. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate I would also work on teaching pup a Place command, and Down Stay command, and gradually working up to pup being able to stay there while you go in and out of the room. There are a couple of routes you can take with the separation anxiety. Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Down-Stay: https://www.thelabradorsite.com/train-your-labrador-to-lie-down-and-stay/ If you have had pup for less than a month and you don't have neighbors complaining or an unhappy landlord, I would practice the above for a couple of weeks, occassionally spying on pup with a camera or by listening from outside, to see if things improve. Most puppies will cry for a couple of weeks when first adjusting to being alone more. Many tend to calm down as they adjust, especially if you provide pup with a dog food stuffed chew toy to entertain himself with. If pup has true separation anxiety, additional training will likely be needed also at the end of the two weeks. The first step is to work on building his independence and his confidence by adding a lot of structure and predictability into his routine. Things such as making him work for rewards like meals, walks, and pets. Also working on "Stay" and "Place," commands while you move away or leave the room, and teaching him to remain inside a crate when the door is open. Change your routine surrounding leaving so that he does not anticipate alone time and build up his anxiety before you leave - which is hard for him to deescalate from, and be sure to continue to give him something to do in the crate during the day (such as a dog food stuffed Kong to chew on); this is the general protocol for separation anxiety. It is gentle but can take a very long time on its own for some more extreme dogs. Another protocol involves teaching the dog to cope with their own anxiety by making their current anxious go-to behaviors unpleasant, giving them an opportunity to stop those behaviors long enough to learn something new, then rewarding the correct, calmer behavior instead. This protocol can feel harsh because it involves careful correction, but it tends to work much quicker for many dogs. If you go this route, I suggest hiring a trainer who is very experienced using both positive reinforcement and fair correction. Who is extremely knowledgeable about e-collar training, and can follow the protocol listed below, to help you implement the training. Building his independence and structure in his life will still be an important part of this protocol too. First, check out this video from SolidK9Training on treating anxiety. It will give a brief over-view of treating separation anxiety more firmly. This trainer can be a bit abrupt with his teaching style with people but is very experienced working with highly aggressive, anxious, and reactive dogs. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Make sure you are implementing what he teaches there in other areas of his life too. Second, purchase a remote electronic collar, e-collar, with a wide range of levels. I recommend purchasing E-Collar Technologies Mini Educator or Garmin Delta Sport or Dogtra for this. If you are not comfortable with an e-collar then you can use a vibration collar (the Mini Educator and Garmin should also have a vibration mode) or unscented air remote controlled air spray collar. DO NOT use a citronella collar, buy the additional unscented air canister if the collar comes with the citronella and make sure that you use the unscented air. (Citronella collars are actually very harsh and the smell - punisher lingers a long time so the dog continues to be corrected even after they stop the behavior). The vibration or spray collars are less likely to work than stimulation e-collars though, so you may end up spending more money by not purchasing an e-collar first. The Mini Educator has very low levels of stimulation, that can be tailored specifically to your dog. It also has vibration and beep tones that you can try using first, without having to buy additional tools. Next, set up a camera to spy on him. If you have two smart devices, like tablets or smartphones, you can Skype or Facetime them to one another with your pup’s end on mute, so that you can see and hear him but he will not hear you. Video baby monitors, video security monitors with portable ways to view the video, GoPros with the phone Live App, or any other camera that will record and transmit the video to something portable that you can watch outside live will work. Next, put the e-collar on him while he is outside of the crate, standing, and relaxed. To learn how to put the collar on him, check out this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLxB6gYsliI Turn it to it's lowest level and push the stimulation button twice. See if he responds to the collar at all. Look for subtle signs such as turning his head, moving his ears, biting his fur, moving away from where he was, or changing his expression. If he does not respond at all, then go up one level on the collar and when he is standing and relaxed, push the stimulation button again twice. Look for a reaction again. Repeat going up one level at a time and then testing his reaction at that level until he indicates a little bit that he can feel the collar. Here is a video showing how to do this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cl3V8vYobM A modern, high quality collar will have so many levels that each level should be really subtle and he will likely respond to a low level stimulation. It's uncomfortable but not the harsh shock many people associate with such collars if done right. Once you have found the right stimulation level for him and have it correctly fitted on him, have him wear the collar around with it turned off or not being stimulated for several hours or days if you can (take it off at night to sleep though). Next, set up your camera to spy on him while he is in the crate. Put him into the crate while he is wearing the collar and leave. Spy on him from outside. Leave however you normally would. As soon as you hear him barking or see him start to try to escape or destroy the crate from the camera, push the stimulation button once. Every time he barks or tries to get out of the crate, stimulate him again. If he does not decrease his barking or escape attempts at least a little bit after being stimulated seven times in a row, then increase the stimulation level by one level. He may not feel the stimulation while excited so might need it just slightly higher. Do not go higher than three more levels on the mini-educator or two more levels on another collar with less levels right now though because he has not learned what he is supposed to be doing yet. For example, if his level is 13 out of 100 levels on the Mini Educator, don't go past level 16 right now. The level you end up using on him on the mini educator collar will probably be low to medium, within the first forty levels of the one-hundred to one-hundred-and-twenty-five levels, depending on the model you purchase. If it is not, then have a professional evaluate whether you have the correct "working level" for him. If he continues to ignore the collar, then go up one more stimulation level and if that does not work, make sure that the collar is turned on, fitted correctly, and working. After five minutes to ten minutes, as soon as your dog stays quiet and is not trying to escape for five seconds straight, go back inside to the dog, sprinkle several treats into the crate without saying anything, then leave again. Practice correcting him from outside when he barks or tries to escape, going back inside and sprinkling treats when he stays quiet, for up to 30 minutes at first. After 30 minutes -1 hour of practicing this, when he is quiet, go back inside and sprinkle more treats. This time stay inside. Do not speak to him or pay attention to him for ten minutes while you walk around and get stuff done inside. When he is being calm, then you can let him out of the crate. When you let him out, do it the way Jeff does is in this video below. Opening and closing the door until your dog is not rushing out. You want him to be calm when he comes out of the crate and to stay calm when you get home. That is why you need to ignore him when you get home right away. Also, keep your good byes extremely boring and calm. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5GqzeLzysk Continue to put a food stuffed Kong into the crate with him. Once he is less anxious he will likely enjoy it and that will help him to enjoy the crate more. First, he probably needs his anxious state of mind interrupted so that he is open to learning other ways to behave. Once it's interrupted, give him a food stuffed Kong in the crate for him to relieve his boredom instead of barking, since he will need something other than barking to do at that point. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Ivory
Great Pyrenees and aussie
5 Months
0 found helpful
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0 found helpful
Ivory
Great Pyrenees and aussie
5 Months

Ivory screams in the kennel as we’re leaving. We don’t know if she does it still after we leave. But as we get home we can hear her screaming from outside the house. So my guess is she does it all day. Help!

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Poppy
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
4 Years
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Poppy
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
4 Years

Whenever poppy is left alone she whines in this horrible high pitched sound, this is when she is either in her crate or if I leave her outside a shop, she also does this when she is about to go for a walk, I have no idea how to stop it,

Alisha Smith
Alisha S., Dog Trainer
220 Dog owners recommended

Hi there. It sounds like there may be some separation anxiety going on. Because this behavior issue is complex, I have a lot of information to send you. With some time and practice, this is something that can be turned around over the next month or so. The first step in treating separation anxiety is to break the cycle of anxiety. Every time a dog with separation anxiety becomes anxious when their owner leaves, the distress they feel is reinforced until they become absolutely frantic any time they are left alone. Owners should give the dog an acceptable item to chew, such as a long lasting food treat when they go out. The goal is to have the dog associate this special treat with the owner’s departure. Treats might include hollow bones stuffed with peanut butter or soft cheese, drilled out nylon bones, or hollow rubber chew toys such as Kong toys with similar enhancements (place these in the freezer before giving them to your dog to make them last longer). Give the bone to your dog about 15 minutes before preparing to depart. The chew toy should be used only as a reward to offset the anxiety triggered by your departure. Hiding a variety of these delectable food treats throughout the house may occupy the dog so that the owner’s departure is less stressful. In an effort to prevent destructive behavior, many owners confine their dog in a crate or behind a gate. For dogs that display “barrier frustration,” the use of a crate in this way is counterproductive. Many dogs will physically injure themselves while attempting to escape such confinement. Careful efforts to desensitize and counter condition the dog to crate confinement before leaving them alone may be helpful in some cases. However, some dogs rebel against any form of restraint, including restricting barriers and, for them, crate training may never be a positive experience. Crate training and utilizing the crate while people are home can be a positive way to make the crate a safe place. If you utilize it when people are around, your dog won’t necessarily associate the crate with departure and being left alone. Creating nap time in the crate throughout the day can also be helpful. Building Independence Independence training can help fight separation anxiety and loneliness. Independence training can help build confidence and instill obedience. “Doggie Daycare” or hiring a pet sitter may be a better alternative for dogs that are initially resistant to treatment. It can be expensive, but prices vary. Independence training is one of the more important aspects of the program. It involves teaching your dog to “stand on their own four feet” when you are present, with the express intention that their newfound confidence will spill over into times when you are away. You need to make your dog more independent by reducing the bond between both of you to a more healthy level of involvement. Decreasing the bond is the hardest thing for owners to accept. Most people acquire dogs because they want a strong relationship with them. However, you have to accept that the anxiety your dog experiences in your absence is destructive. Essential components of the independence training program are as follows: Your dog can be with you, but the amount of interaction time should be reduced, especially where attention-seeking behaviors are concerned. You should initiate all interactions with your dog, and they shouldn’t be permitted to demand attention. If you give your dog attention every time they whine, it helps to foster the dog’s dependence on you and increases its anxiety in your absence. You should ignore your dog completely when they engage in attention-seeking behavior, and avoid catering to them when they appear to feel anxious. This means no eye contact, no pushing away, and no soothing talk or body language, all of which will reward their attention-seeking mission. Attention is encouraged only when your dog is sitting or lying calmly. The goal is not to ignore your dog, but to stop reinforcing attention-seeking behaviors so that your dog develops a sense of independence. Minimize the extent to which your dog follows you by teaching them to remain relaxed in one spot, such as their bed. To accomplish this, it is helpful if you train them to perform a sit-stay or down-stay while gradually increasing the time that they hold the command and remain at a distance from you. Providing a treat or toy and encouraging individual play time can be helpful. Once your dog has learned basic obedience commands, you can train them to hold long down-stays while you move progressively farther away. First, your dog should be trained to perform a “down-stay” on a mat or dog bed using a specific command, such as “lie down.” Your dog may have to be gently escorted to the designated spot the first few times. Initially, they should be rewarded every 10 seconds for remaining there, then every 20 seconds, 30 seconds, and so on. Once they have figured out what is wanted, you should switch to an intermittent schedule of reinforcement [reward], as this will strengthen the learned response. Each time your dog breaks their “stay,” issue a verbal correction, indicating that there will be no reward, and then escort them back to their bed. First, your dog can be made to “down-stay” while you are in the room. Next, they can be asked to stay when you are outside of the room, but nearby. The distance and time you are away from your dog can be increased progressively until your dog can remain in a down-stay for 20 to 30 minutes in your absence. Your dog should be warmly praised for compliance. Of course, they need to accept the praise without breaking the stay. Your dog should become accustomed to being separated from you when you are home for varying lengths of time and at different times of day. You can set up child gates to deny your dog access into the room you’re occupying (i.e. reading, watching television, or cooking). Instruct your dog to lie down and stay on a dog bed outside the room. As previously mentioned, you can provide an extended-release food treat or toy to keep your dog calm and distracted. Once they are able to tolerate being separated from you by a child gate, you can graduate to shutting the door to the room so your dog cannot see you. Allowing a dog to sleep in bed with the family can increase dependence. If you decide to prevent your dog from sleeping in your bed, there are some steps to take to establish this routine. First, you need to train your dog to sleep in their own bed on the floor in your bedroom. They may have to be taken to their bed several times before they get the message that you really want them to sleep in their own bed. Alternatively, you can train your dog to enjoy sleeping in a crate to prevent unwanted excursions. Do not use a crate if it causes more anxiety and distress for your dog. Once they tolerate sleeping in their own bed in your bedroom, you can move their bed outside of the bedroom and use a child gate or barrier to keep them out. Always remember to reward your dog with praise or a food treat for remaining in their bed. Develop Departure Techniques Many owners erroneously feel that if separation is so stressful, then they should spend more time with their dog before leaving. Unfortunately, this only exacerbates the condition. Everyone in the family should ignore your dog for 15 to 20 minutes before leaving the house and for at least 10 to 20 minutes after returning home. Alternatively, your leaving can be made a highlight of your dog’s day by making it a “happy time” and the time at which they are fed. Departures should be quick and quiet. When departures (and returns) generate less anxiety (and excitement), your dog will begin to feel less tension in your absence. Remember to reward calm behavior. Teach your dog that your departure and return are just normal parts of the day and are not times to be stressed. You should attempt to randomize the cues indicating that you are preparing to leave. Changing the cues may take some trial and error. Some cues mean nothing to a dog, while others trigger anxiety. Make a list of the things you normally do before leaving for the day (and anxiety occurs) and the things done before a short time out (and no anxiety occurs).Then mix up the cues. For example, if your dog is fine when you go downstairs to do the laundry, you can try taking the laundry basket with you when you leave for work. If your dog becomes anxious when you pick up your keys or put on a coat, you should practice these things when you are not really leaving. You can, for example, stand up, put on a coat or pick up your car keys during television commercials, and then sit down again. You can also open and shut doors while you are home when you do not intend to leave. Entering and exiting through various doors when leaving and returning can also mix up cues for your dog. When you are actually leaving, you should try not to give any cues to this effect. Leave your coat in the car and put your keys in the ignition well before leaving. It is important to randomize all the cues indicating departure (clothing, physical and vocal signals, interactions with family members, other pets, and so on). The planned departure technique can be very effective for some dogs. This program is recommended only under special circumstances because it requires that you never leave your dog alone during the entire retraining period, which can be weeks or months. Timing is everything when implementing this program. If your dog shows signs of anxiety (pacing, panting, barking excessively) the instant you walk out of the door, you should stand outside the door and wait until your dog is quiet for three seconds. Then go back inside quickly and reward your dog for being calm. If you return WHEN your dog is anxious, this reinforces your dog’s tendency to display the behavior, because it has the desired effect of reuniting the “pack” members. The goal is for your dog to connect being calm and relaxed with your return. Gradually work up to slightly longer departures 5 to 10 minutes as long as your dog remains quiet, and continue in this fashion. Eventually, you should be able to leave for the day without your dog becoming anxious when you depart. When performed correctly, this program can be very helpful in resolving separation anxiety. Other Treatment Options Obedience Training Obedience training helps to instill confidence and independence in your dog. You should spend 5 to 10 minutes daily training your dog to obey one-word commands. It may be helpful to have training sessions occur in the room where your dog will be left when you are gone. All positive experiences (food, toys, sleep, training, and attention) should be associated with this area of the home. Exercise Your dog should receive 15 to 20 minutes of sustained aerobic exercise once, preferably twice, per day. It is often helpful to exercise your dog before you leave for the day. Exercise helps to dissipate anxiety and provides constructive interaction between you and your dog. It is best to allow your dog 15 to 20 minutes to calm down before you depart. Fetching a ball is good exercise, as is going for a brisk walk or run with your dog on a leash. Even if your dog has a large yard to run in all day, the aerobic exercise will be beneficial since most dogs will not tire themselves if left to their own devices. This is incredibly helpful in dogs that are working breeds that need a job to expend energy and work their brains. Supplements Recently, supplements have been released to the public that can help dogs with anxiety. Purina created a probiotic that has been shown to reduce anxiety and provide a calming effect on some dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this product for treating anxiety, or other products that contain L-Theanine or L-tryptophan.

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Wesley
French Bulldog
15 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Wesley
French Bulldog
15 Weeks

Can leave him ok, will start to whine after around four minutes when he has locked his Kong and can’t get any more peanut butter out!
We have a camera so I can see him.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Lauren, Check out the Surprise method from the article I have linked below. I recommend practicing that method with you either outside watching camera or in another room while he is crated (if he also whines when you are home but not in the room). Work on extending his quiet times gradually using that method, so that as he improves he has to stay quiet for a certain length of time before you will return and sprinkle in more treats before leaving again. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Know that at this age, it's normal for pup to still be adjusting so try not to feel discouraged, most puppies do adjust with practice, it can just take more time for some. If pup continues to struggle just as much as he is now after a month of daily practice, you can check back here. Sometimes another more intensive method may be needed, but that's more rare. The Surprise method and time and practice are generally all that's needed for most. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Rolo
duchound
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Rolo
duchound
3 Months

He goes on a full blown cry as soon as I exit the door. He has a sibling but don't have the same issue. I'm at home most of the day and only leave for short periods of time. They have plenty of toys and food, also the Radio is also

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
819 Dog owners recommended

Hello Riaan, It's completely normal for puppies to cry when first getting used to time alone, some puppies cry more than others. To help pup adjust to the time alone, I recommend practicing the Surprise method from the article I have linked below during the day while you are home in another room. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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