Is this separation anxiety?

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by AmyLou4220, Sep 6, 2006.

  1. AmyLou4220

    AmyLou4220 Guest

    We have had our 9 month old now about 2 months. He is being crate trained. At bedtime, he goes into his crate without any problems. At the most he will whine for 5-10 seconds and very occasionally will let out 1 or 2 barks (he only whines at bedtime at the most 3 days per week). That's it - then he goes to bed and we don't hear a peep out of him for the rest of the night. (The crate is in a separate room from the bedroom, all the way on the other side of the house).

    He spends 3 days per week at daycare. On those 2 weekdays when we leave him in the crate to go to work, he will bark and whine and paw at the cage door for 15-20 minutes after we leave (we have videotaped him several times to verify this). We leave a frozen kong in there stuffed with hot dog pieces, other misc. treats and capped with frozen yogurt (all his favorite stuff!!). We also leave in there a couple of his favorite nylabone chew toys.

    When we leave, he will be quiet - the barking doesn't start until we are out the door for 30 seconds to a minute. We don't at all make a big deal about leaving. We matter-of-factly put him in the cage and don't say a word to him. We just gather up our things and out the door we go. We also never make a big deal about coming home. We let him out of the cage, and we ignore him for a few minutes while we get situated and put our things away.

    He will eventually calm down and go to work on his kong and his other toys. But for that first 15-20 minutes he goes nuts!! Once he calms down though, he is fine. Is this separation anxiety or normal behavior? Should we try and work on this or let it be?
     
  2. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    I wouldn't call that severe seperation anxiety. I think it's normal to be sad and anxious to some degree since dogs are social animals and being left alone is not normal. He's still young and will probably get more use to it in time. If he quiets down in 20 minutes, that's pretty good. Does anyone come mid day to let him out or is he in there all day? It sounds like you're doing everything you can.
     
  3. AmyLou4220

    AmyLou4220 Guest

    One of the days someone will come home to let him out, take him on a 20 minute walk, and maybe play a bit. The other day he is in there for about 8.5 hours.
     
  4. Herschel

    Herschel New Member

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    No wonder he whines and paws at the cage! 8 and 1/2 hours is a really long time to be stuck in the same space, especially since he'll be out of the crate for a few hours before having to go back in there at night.
     
  5. AmyLou4220

    AmyLou4220 Guest

    That happens once per week. The other weekday that he is in there we come home during lunch. And 3 days per week he goes to daycare. He is rarely in there at all on the weekends.

    You are saying one day per week for him to be in there while we are working is too much? It is not an option for us to come home that day.

    Every night he goes on a 30-45 minute walk/run with us around the neighborhood. This walk is always followed by a 25-30 minute session on the treadmill at speeds ranging from 5-7mph. Every morning before breakfast he gets a 15-30 minute walk around the neighborhood followed by 25-30 minutes on the treadmill.

    Once he calms down after the initial 15-20 minutes, he is completely fine the remainder of the day. Sometimes he only whines for 5 minutes at the most.

    Seeing it is not an option to come home that 1 day per week he is in the crate for 8 hours straight, what do you suggest we do?
     
  6. sourjayne

    sourjayne New Member

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    There are people who make a living going to people's houses to let their dogs out, take them for walks, etc. They are usually licensed and will have references for you to check so you can feel confident that it is safe to trust them with your dog and a key to your house :) I'm not sure where you live, but you might be able to find online listings for dog walkers/pet sitters or ask your doggy daycare if they know of anybody.
     
  7. AmyLou4220

    AmyLou4220 Guest

    Way too expensive... They all want 16-18 dollars for a 20-30 minute visit. Three days of daycare is enough. We don't want to spend money for another day of daycare, or spend 18 dollars to have someone let the dog out.
     
  8. Polimedes

    Polimedes New Member

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    Yes but still 8 1/2 hours is too long...

    a Vet once explained to me that if you spend 6 hours away from your dog and he is alone ...that is the equivalent to us being confined in a small room for 7 to 10 days. Like Doberluv said that doesnt sound like sever seperation anxiety.

    If i was confined for such long periods of time i probably would go nuts wouldnt you?

    is there no close family/friends that can let him out on that day alone?

    or Perhaps as a last resort you could get make him an outdoor Kennel and run.. it doesnt have to be too big. just enough to stretch his legs and goto the toilet??
     
  9. AmyLou4220

    AmyLou4220 Guest

    Interesting. Our vet told us that it is not a problem to leave the dog in his crate for ~8 consecutive hours one day per week. Conflicting info is so frustrating!!!
     
  10. girlbuffalo1

    girlbuffalo1 New Member

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    Personally I think you pup has it pretty good. One day a week ain't gonna kill 'em! Generally we never try to leave him crated for that long during the day however from time to time it happens..it happened tuesday evening when we went to a baseball game (he was crated from 4:30pm until 2am) or yesterday my husband (who 99% of the time is done with work between noon-2 did get off work until after 5)--so he was in the crate from 7:30-5. We try not to make it a habit but I don't think it irreprably harms him or anything.

    Wrigley doesn't get daycare--just generally 7:30-1pm in crate every day and then someone home...so I think your pup is lucky!
     

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