Separation Anxiety
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Thread: Separation Anxiety

  1. #1
    lucylu's Avatar
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    DefaultSeparation Anxiety

    Our lab, Lucy, is 14 weeks old. We have done crate training with her since the day she came home (7 weeks). She did great at night in her crate and, in fact, is either sleeping through the night, or only getting up once, now. So she's on a big dog bed of her own in our bedroom now. No more crate at night. I work from home and my husbands job is pretty flexible so she's not left alone very often. Not because we're catering to her but just because she doesn't need to be. I have 2 children, 9 and 11 and a big fenced in back yard. So needless to say, Lucy gets LOTS of love, attention and play time. I can get her in her crate very easily with a few treats and she doesn't really protest when I leave. But when I get home she is so worked up that when you let her out of her crate she just cries and whimpers and kisses you and won't leave your side. I'm talking she'll practically pee on my foot when I take her out b/c she wants to stay close to me. This continues for like 15 minutes. Today it was longer. A walk on her lease seemed to calm her down. It makes me feel so bad for leaving her. Is there something I'm doing wrong? Or something I can do to make this separation easier for her? Thanks!
    Lucy 8/24/12


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    LuvBrown is offline Senior Member
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    That's not separation anxiety. That's "I am happy to see you" and you can be gone 1 minute or 1 day, and it will be like you have been gone for years and they are dying.

    Stop thinking too much about it. She goes in the crate when you leave, and she comes out when you come home, and don't make it a big deal. The more you worry and think that something's wrong, the dog can pick up on the vibe. She's fine. Pups can be over-dramatic. Just do the routine day in and day out and they'll realize that's the way life it.

    My 2 year old that gets crated when I am at work FREAKS when I get home. I open the door and let all the dogs outside to pee, and then I open his, and ward off his mile high jump...and usher him out to pee with his buddies. No fussing.

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    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    That's normal behavior for any dog. Nothing wrong here.

    And - you did not ask but - having a 14 week old puppy out of a crate overnight is very premature in my opinion. They all go through some difficulties when they are in older puppyhood and the liklihood that she will be destructive at some point is very high. She could wind up injuring herself or ingesting something dangerous while you sleep.

    Since she is OK in her crate, why tempt fate? Most dogs who are crate trained LIKE sleeping there.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

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    DJsMOM is offline Member
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    DJ is no different I could be at work all morning or pop for a pee & when I come back he runs in circles, jumps, spins & almost somersaults. Its one of the things I love most about him. I make sure to get him straight outside because the excitement does mean that if I'm not quick enough he will 'dribble' pee on my feet! He actually pees running because he can't keep his backside still enough. No-one else will ever consistently greet you with this much enthusiasm, embrace it!


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    Quote Originally Posted by LuvBrown View Post
    That's not separation anxiety. That's "I am happy to see you" and you can be gone 1 minute or 1 day, and it will be like you have been gone for years and they are dying.

    Stop thinking too much about it. She goes in the crate when you leave, and she comes out when you come home, and don't make it a big deal. The more you worry and think that something's wrong, the dog can pick up on the vibe. She's fine. Pups can be over-dramatic. Just do the routine day in and day out and they'll realize that's the way life it.

    My 2 year old that gets crated when I am at work FREAKS when I get home. I open the door and let all the dogs outside to pee, and then I open his, and ward off his mile high jump...and usher him out to pee with his buddies. No fussing.
    Thanks for the advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by BigBrownDog View Post
    That's normal behavior for any dog. Nothing wrong here.

    And - you did not ask but - having a 14 week old puppy out of a crate overnight is very premature in my opinion. They all go through some difficulties when they are in older puppyhood and the liklihood that she will be destructive at some point is very high. She could wind up injuring herself or ingesting something dangerous while you sleep.

    Since she is OK in her crate, why tempt fate? Most dogs who are crate trained LIKE sleeping there.
    Thanks. She is in our bedroom and the door is shut. We're very careful about keeping things off the floor but I hear you. I will definitely reevaluate. It's hard to think ahead when she's bigger b/c she's so small right now but you're absolutely right. She's really good at this point about only chewing on her toys but then again, we're very good about not leaving anything where she can get it. No furniture or molding chewing yet though.

    Quote Originally Posted by DJsMOM View Post
    DJ is no different I could be at work all morning or pop for a pee & when I come back he runs in circles, jumps, spins & almost somersaults. Its one of the things I love most about him. I make sure to get him straight outside because the excitement does mean that if I'm not quick enough he will 'dribble' pee on my feet! He actually pees running because he can't keep his backside still enough. No-one else will ever consistently greet you with this much enthusiasm, embrace it!


    DJ&Ace_Oct12.jpg
    Thanks. I definitely do. I just feel bad when she continues to cry/whine for 15 minutes. Those puppies pull at your heart strings
    Lucy 8/24/12


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    My dogs go bonkers when I get home, but I don't let them jump on me and I don't pet them until they calm down a bit. Otherwise when the dog is full grown, it will be jumping on your, knocking you down, etc.

    And to be careful letting a puppy sleep outside of a crate at night. I tried it with Abbey when she was younger and she chewed an (unplugged) electrical cord while I was sleeping. Thankfully it was unplugged, but after that, back in the crate at night she went!

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuvBrown View Post
    Pups can be over-dramatic.
    Seconded... sometimes Bilbo just cries and won't leave my side when he is just bored... it's not like I don't play with him enough, it's more when I'm trying to get something done and he's being ignored. Of course I do ignore the whining and crying, and it stops after about 10 minutes, but I do think "what a drama queen!"

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    So back to this thread, lol.

    When I get ready in the morning, make up, blow drying hair, I let Lucy hang out in my room with me. She barks at me the whole time. This is the ONLY time she barks. So it surprises me. If I walk over to her, she gives me kisses. So she's not being territorial or angry. Is it b/c she knows it means I'm leaving??
    Lucy 8/24/12


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    Maybe she is barking at the blow dryer...
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    Could be the drier. Could be saying are you leaving soon, could be just happy.?

    I keep coming and going a rountine. No big fuss. No matter where I am going I say "going to work" and they know I will be back.

    They know when I clean my teeth I am leaving so go to their crate, or kennel. I say going to work, give them a little treat and go.Once I went without my bag for the first time and it confused Ernie. He played up for the minder looking for me. I didn't realise something that small could be a cue so often don't let him see it.


    My guys go nuts when I come home so I don't say anything or look at them until they settle and sit on their mat. Erns gets my slippers and they both get a treat and lots of cuddles.

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