Updated: Oct 8, 2021
During the pandemic with so many people working from home, we get a lot of questions from dog owners worried about separation anxiety. Some have pups who are already experiencing symptoms, and others are just worried about the future if they go back to working from an office.
So we were THRILLED to catch up with Tracy Krulik, Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (of Separation Anxiety and Beyond) last night for a webinar alllllll about Separation Anxiety. Tracy is one of the true experts on treating dogs with problems being left alone, and she packed this webinar full of ways to help your dog succeed. You can watch the webinar below, but here are some tips we picked up:
It's not all about leaving- there are lots of small things that your dog notices before you leave. So you need to help them get comfortable with things like picking up the keys, grabbing your bag, putting shoes on, or even just standing up and walking toward the door. So start small, and work on these individually!
If you absolutely have to leave your dog alone while you're still working on training, don't let it "poison" your training. Say your dog was previously crated when alone, but you've been working on having them calmly lay on a mat during your training. If you HAVE to go somewhere and know your dog isn't ready for it in your training yet, use the crate. That way you don't "break" the work you've been doing with the mat by bringing a bad association to it.
Make sure your dog has enough brain stimulation throughout the day! Boredom and frustration can make alone time super hard for some pups, so add lots of enrichment. (Check out our Resources page for enrichment ideas)
Look, working through Separation Anxiety can be tough- but you don't need to do it alone. Schedule an initial behavior consultation or reach out to us for a list of specialists.