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Separation Anxiety
Old 08-04-2012, 07:47 AM   #1
perrinc
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Separation Anxiety

Looking for suggestions on separation anxiety. Our boy will bark and whine and howl, whether we leave him for 5 minutes or 2 hours. There are times we need to go out without him. Looking for suggestions. Tried calming scents, music, even tried after he is exhausted from a walk, not working. He is crated when we go out and we leave him some water. He is fine if he can see us moving around from room to room. But not if we go upstairs and leave him. He is "accident free now at 8 months old". Not sure what to do ... any suggestions............???
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:16 AM   #2
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Have u tried leaving him a treat or toy that he only gets when you leave? Also you could try separating him from you with a baby gate, stay in his sight (give him his special treat/toy) move out of his sight, then come back in sight before he starts to whine, gradually building up the time you stay out of sight. I know It's hard to hear them cry
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:47 PM   #3
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I feel your pain. my little guy would throw up he'd be so upset as a pup when I left him. initially b/c he was so small, I separated him from my 125lb dog, but that didn't fly. he was fine as long as he had another heartbeat near him. and he's doing better when I leave with a co-worker (he's a therapy dog and I work at a school), I would ask him to stay and my co-worker would tell me he wouldn't move a muscle till I came back. now, he'll work the room, but keep an eye out for me.

SA comes up a lot here, so there are lots of helpful hints:

http://www.havaneseforum.com/search.php?searchid=811051
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Old 08-05-2012, 10:47 AM   #4
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I did try giving him a food treat, he could careless, which says a lot because he is a food motivated dog.

I also tried leaving him from my/his sight, for 2 minutes, 5 minutes, 20 minutes, nothing seems to be working.

We did have him baby gated in a room, one night we went for 1 hr. when we returned
he had jumped the gate (24 inches). Thankfully he then locked himself in the bathroom
so he did not hurt himself. So at that point we bought a large metal crate (he has lots of room to move around), that he can't get out of. I couldn't take the chance he would hurt himself when we were gone.

Does it get better with age ?? Cause I almost find he is getting worse. The link would not work that was input. I am at the point where we do not leave him alone now(one of us is with him), so I would really like some thoughts.................anything that worked for anyone... letting him cry and bark for that long can not be good for him..............?
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Old 08-05-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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Forgot to ask, I looked at him becoming therapy dog he love kids, people and attention. The sites I saw said he has to be one year before they will even start training.....what type of job do you have that you can take him to work ??? I would love to be able to find work that I could include him in.......if you wouldn't mind telling... I would appreciate that very much !!!
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Old 08-05-2012, 12:07 PM   #6
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fyi In order to pass the Therapy dog test, they have to be able to sit/stay with you OUT of sight for 3 minutes ... just a heads up. along with 4 pages of other behaviors...
Tillie is 2 and we are preparing for the test in October. AND therapy dogs are NOT service dogs, they can't go everywhere with you. They are specifically trained to go into nursing homes or R.E.A.D. with children.
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Old 08-05-2012, 12:25 PM   #7
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I didn't have any trouble with Rosie. But I left her in other rooms from the start. I treated her like a baby that could crawl. Back in the day, I put the child in the playpen while I hung the clothes on the line or mowed the lawn. At first they would cry, then they got used to it. Same with Rosie, I had a playpen that I put her in if I just ran to the store or mowed the lawn. I always said, "I'll be back." Then when I came back I would tell her something like see Mama is back. Same at the office. I left her in the office with the door shut and said the said thing. Sometimes I was just going to the copier or bathroom and was right back. She got used to me going and coming within just a few days. You just have to put them somewhere safe at that age (because they get into everything) and leave. Try leaving and coming back in say five minutes or so. Then don't make a big deal of it when you come back. What does your dog do when you go to the bathroom? I never let Rosie follow me in the bath. She still sits outside the door, but never cried or scratched the door.
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Old 08-05-2012, 11:17 PM   #8
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therapy dog stuff -

sit stay and then come from I think 20 ft. and a separate test item is the 'leave with a friendly stranger for 3 minutes'. other fun items include grooming, tolerates being pet (not by you).

If you were looking at TDI, therapy dogs international, yes, the rules say 1 yr old, but depending on the assessor you can go younger. ollie was intact the first time I took him, I think 6-8 months old. the 'greet a friendly dog' was an intact lab male.

Ollie not only lit him up with a big psycho growl, but in hopes of desensitizing him, we hung out near the male, he had a tent he'd wait in b/t exams... ollie marked the tent. twice, with the male in it.

He still doesn't like intact males. he'll greet them, but if they sniff him too long, or linger around him for more than a minute (after an initial greeting), he'll growl at him.

Girl dogs, totally different story. he's loopy for females. I can even tell if the dog is male or female by how he initially greets the dog.

ok, anyway, I am a speech therapist at a public elementary school. I finally got a new principal last school yr (previous one was NOT a fan of dogs on campus), so Ollie comes once a week and works. he's a little more than a traditional therapy dog, he has so many tricks we actually teach academics to the kids. or we use him as a reward (kids can call out a trick if they get the answer right).

of course Ollie is paid in food, and only works if he gets paid. he's awesome around campus, I don't put him on leash, unleash a co worker is fearful (lame he's so little) but usually he's off leash, and walks at a perfect heel around campus.

He'll work up to 4-5 classrooms in one day, usually a 1/2 hour session, but sometimes we go 45 minutes. he even was a fundraising auction item for the PTA, where he would come visit the winner's classroom for 30 minutes. he's the perfect size to put on the desks, so he'd walk around greeting all the kids at their desks and do tricks in different spots. we have a 'intro' session where we talk about dogs, how to greet them, how to tell if they are friendly, we talk about what the difference is b/t a therapy dog and service dog, and of course tricks. in the upper grades, 4th and 5th, I've shown students how to teach their dog a trick, like waving hello.

anyway, you can PM me for more info. you don't have to go to a training class, you can work on items yourself. Ollie is my third therapy dog, and both my boys are certified therapy dogs. My female anatolian is unfriendly with new dogs (big, deep growl) so she wouldn't pass that item, 'greet a friendly dog' unless it was under 25 lbs and a male, lol!

Last edited by sprorchid; 12-25-2012 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 08-06-2012, 12:43 AM   #9
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Have you actually left and stayed outside to hear if he cry's the whole time? Eight mo is a hard age at least my two acted different. They seemed a lot more vocal. Maybe a kitten a little friend if you have to work would keep him company. Or try dogie day care to get him used to being away from you. It sounds like you are very protective and might be adding to the problem by always having someone around him. I know about climbing out of gates Maddie got hurt doing that. You can get taller ones. I had to use a large painting and furnature to make a safe place in my kitchen dinning area. Mine always hated being created and cried. They both liked more space much better. Or try a bed room with a closed door. Hope he is just going threw adolescents.
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Old 08-06-2012, 08:19 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the info. about Therapy Dogs, I will look further into it.

My guy goes to doggie daycare once or twice a week, in order for him to get use to being away from me. The rest of the time, he is with me pretty much all the time. My husband travels a lot for work, so I am pretty much with him alone at home. He is VERY attached to me, so I know I am definetly part of the problem. I have been working to become his leader. The trainer we contacted said I need to establish leadership and then he will be less anxious when I leave him. I do sometimes put him in his "pen" in my husband's office with hubby there and then do house work out of his site, he whines(no barking) most of the time.

I have done the 5 minutes, 10 minutes in and out of the house with him in the large dog crate and he barks and cries the whole time. I can hear him from outside the door. I guess I need to do it everyday for him to get use to it. The trainer said to leave and come back in silence and do not look at him and only go get him when he is quiet.

He does sit in the large crate when we eat dinner so he is use to being in it with us in the room even. So I know he is not afraid of it.

I have heard Havie's have separation anxiety. I guess I was looking for ideas from the people who have them themselves to see if there is something that worked for one person. I just figured by 8 months he would be easier to leave..........All and any suggestions are appreciated !!
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