Dachshunds are sociable pack animals. As such, they love being around people and other animals. While this makes them a friendly breed, it can lead to separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is when a dog becomes overly stressed and anxious when their owner(s) leaves home. This condition can range from mild to severe, but thankfully, it can be cured with training.
How to spot separation anxiety in your dachshund
Unfortunately, our dachshunds cannot speak to us. That makes it hard to tell what is wrong. When it comes to separation anxiety, then, you need to keep an eye out for the tell-tale symptoms. Each dachshund will portray their anxiety in different ways, but there is a general list of symptoms:
- Urinating and/or defecating
- Barking and/or howling
- Chewing, digging, and other signs of destruction around the house
- Trying to escape, scratching at the doors
- Defecating and then eating it
Your dachshund will likely bark or chew things for other reasons, too. So, it’s important to note that these symptoms will only appear when you are away from home or about to leave.
What to do
Separation anxiety is distressing for both your dachshund and you. Thankfully, there are ways to treat it. Below are the steps you should take:
- Go to the vet: Your vet may be able to provide medication, advice, and other resources to help you treat your dachshund’s separation anxiety.
- Keep to a schedule: Keeping to a schedule will teach your dog when you leave the house and when you’re home.
- Predeparture treatment: Your dog may get anxious as they see you picking up your keys or putting on your coat. Teach your dog these cues aren’t something to be afraid of by, for example, picking up your keys and then sitting at the kitchen table for a while. Do this repeatedly until your pup is no longer anxious when you pick up your keys.
- Graduated departures: Get your dog used to your absence by gradually increasing the amount of time they’re left alone. Start small, such as a few minutes, and work your way up.
- Go to a professional dog trainer: For moderate to severe cases, you may need professional help. Dog trainers can help you reduce your dog’s separation anxiety.
- Leave items to distract them: If your dachshund is occupied, they won’t realize they’re alone. Leave them with toys such a stuffed Kong toy or items that smell like you such as an old t-shirt.
- Tire them out: If you exercise or walk your dog before you leave, they’ll likely fall asleep and won’t realize you’ve left.
For more advice on how to care for your dachshund’s separation anxiety, contact Patti’s Dachshund Farm today!