If you've recently adopted an adult dog from an animal shelter or rescue organization, you're probably looking forward to many fine years with your new furry friend. However, it is not unusual for dogs that have come from shelters or rescues to experience separation anxiety once they get established with new owners. Fortunately, strategies exist to help ease this condition -- following are four of them.
Low-Key Hellos and Goodbyes
Some dog owners feel that they're reassuring their dog if they make a point of saying goodbye when they leave the home. However, this approach simply causes the animal to feel more anxiety, and elaborate greetings have the same effect. Keeping your comings and goings low key helps, and it's also a good idea to change your routine when you leave home in order to desensitize your canine companion to the usual signs that you're about to leave the house.
Antler Dog Chews
Although chewing is generally associated with puppies when they are teething, it also occurs in adult dogs, particularly those that are under stress. Having access to antler dog chews will keep them from destroying personal items and chewing on furniture legs as well as provide them with a way to work off some of their stress. Antler chews last for a long time, and unlike many other chews, they don't crumble easily and leave a mess in your home. For more information, visit websites like perfectpetchews.com.
Your Worn-Out Clothing
Leaving worn out clothing that contains your scent is another way to help your furry friend stay calm in your absence. Have a basket full of old tennis shoes, t-shirts, sweatshirts, and other articles of clothing and discreetly place one or two of them in the room your dog will be in when you leave.
Dogs with extreme cases of separation anxiety may be able to benefit being given calming supplements on a temporary basis. Some of these are available over-the-counter from pet supply retailers, while others are available by prescription only from a professional veterinarian. Even if you decide to go the over-the-counter route, you should nonetheless check with your vet to make sure they won't react badly with any existing medication or would otherwise be an inadvisable choice for your particular dog
Getting separation anxiety in an adult dog under control may take a few weeks, and some dogs may always experience it to a small degree. However, with the help of aids such as antler chews, it can be minimized to the extent that it doesn't have a big effect on either the dog or owner's quality of life.