Signs your pet has separation anxiety

And how to soothe them.

Does your couch have bite marks, or your bed post have cat claw marks on them? Chances are your pet is acting up when they don’t find you in the house and are left alone. Next to aggression, separation anxiety can be seen in many pets.

Who can have separation anxiety? Pets you’ve adopted during a time when you were always around them might get this when you go back to your normal routine of going to an office. They get used to being around you all the time and shows behavioural changes when they have to spend time with no one around.

Here are a few signs that might mean your pet has separation anxiety:

Exhibit behaviour that are destructive: Your dog might be the most well-behaved dog on the planet who has never chewed on a shoe, or claws at doors or windows or objects in the house, but when they do, it’s a sign your dog has separation anxiety. It is not meant to be vindictive but are just signs that they do not do well in solitude.

Do not chide your pet for their destructive behaviour.

Urinating/defecating in the house: Again, your cat or dog might be litter-trained but pets suffering from separation anxiety might have little “accidents” inside the house. Them urinating, defecating or urinating inside the house is disobedience but a symptom.

Do not punish them for doing it. It might heighten their anxiety.

Change in pace: You might notice change in pace in your pets. If you notice your cat or dog unusually pacing around the house when you are not there, it could mean they have separation anxiety. They usually tend to walk the same path, in an attempt to look for you.

Talk to a vet who can help you and your pet through it.

Out of character: Has your neighbour complained about your dog barking all day when you are not there? Especially when they never bark when you are around? Chances are they stressed out for being left alone and are trying to voice their anxiety.

It could be helpful to find a pet-sitter or a friend to visit your pet when you are away for many hours.

How can you help your pet?

To help your pets, leave treats in their favourite toys when they are away. The treats might keep them busy.

Have calm entrance and departures. No elaborate hellos or goodbyes. It helps to not announce your exit.

Train them into believing that it is common for you to leave. Continuously come and go. Even pace outside the house before coming in. It will get your pets more comfortable.

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