Seperation Anxiety


Completed behavior looks like: A dog that calmly tolerates the process of being left alone.


There is no simple answer for making anxiety disappear.  In fact, I would be hard to convince that it’s even possible to eradicate once experienced habitually.


This tutorial isn’t a cure all.  This is simply a suggested routine that has worked to calm a lot of dogs.  For further help, talk to a certified trainer, a behavioral vet and read books by Patricia McConnell.


Lowering anxiety is a tricky thing.  It’s all about expectations, which more simply put is routine.  So, it’s all about routine.


I personally would just leave my keys, purse and shoes in the garage so as not to jump-start the pending panic attack, but if that’s not an option, leave them all in a place your dog can’t see you pick them up, like your bathroom.


20 minutes before you leave put your shoes on and put your keys and bags by the front door.  As you walk around, secretly drop treats in different places.  Your dog might see, which is okay but try to hide them in plain sight.  10 minutes before you leave, point out a few of the treats so the dog begins to spend time sniffing around.


Walk in and out of the house a few times, I usually get the mail, water the plants and put the bags in my car. I come inside between each chore and point out a few more treats, hide a few more.  I always easily hide a FORSTA filled toy too.


If you live in an apartment, just walk down the hallway and come back after a minute or two. The first 10 minutes are generally the hardest for the dog.


After your final time coming inside, allow your dog to watch you prepare a toy filled with FORSTA treats.  Tell him goodbye; give him the treat filled toy and leave.