What is Separation Anxiety?
Dogs who suffer from Separation Anxiety are having a true panic attack. They become panicked and uncontrollably anxious when left home alone. Owners may feel that their dog just needs to “get a grip,” but for dogs suffering from Separation Anxiety the panic is real, causing mild to intense distress when left home alone.
No other behavioral issue has the impact that canine separation anxiety has on dogs and their people. Separation Anxiety is a devastating condition that affects 15% of the 70 million dogs in the United States. People who live with and love dogs suffering from Separation Anxiety often feel trapped in their own home, or guilty knowing their dog is suffering when left home alone. Living with a dog who suffers from Separation Anxiety may seem hopeless, but it is not. Let us help you and your dog find peace of mind.
Signs of Separation Anxiety
Signs of Separation Anxiety can vary from one dog to another. Some dogs may display minimal signs of Separation Anxiety, and others may be completely out of control with panic and display multiple signs. Common behaviors associated with Separation Anxiety are:
- Vocalization that can begin before you leave, while you are leaving or after you’ve been gone for a while. It can be chronic and non-stop or occur in a cyclic pattern. For example: a repeated pattern of howl – bark – howl – whine (each pattern may be followed by a period of silence).
- House soiling in dogs that are normally house trained
- Chewing or pawing with destruction
- Escape behaviors such as chewing or scratching at doorways and windows, breaking out of crates/kennels.
- Sweaty paws
- Pacing around the house or from window to window, often in an attempt to find their person.
- Excessive water consumption (upon return home)
- Trembling prior to departure
- Excessive greeting behavior (upon return home)
- Anorexia (lack of interest in food/eating)
- Aggression (upon leaving and/or returning home)
- Excessive shedding
What Causes Separation Anxiety?
Separation Anxiety can have numerous underlying triggers. It can be caused by a nervous or anxious disposition. It can be caused by a scary experience when left home alone, such as a severe thunderstorm or loud construction work being done nearby. It can also be triggered by changes in the home environment such as someone moving in or out, a move of residence or a change in schedule. Dogs who are rehomed, spend time in shelters or rescue, can also be susceptible to Separation Anxiety.
Remote Training Works Best
Separation Anxiety is best treated remotely. When helping your dog overcome Separation Anxiety the goal is to get you out of the house. By using technology like Skype or Zoom, we will be able to accomplish much more than if I were to come to your home in person. Remote training will allow me to be right there with you via live camera to observe your dog in real time. This will allow me to give you customized daily training plans that fit your dog’s individual and progressing training needs. This process accentuates progress. Don’t worry if you’re not tech savvy; it’s easy and I will help you every step of the way. Remote training makes it possible for me to work with clients across the country or around the world, without compromising progress.
Why Use a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (CSAT)?
Helping dogs feel safe, secure and relaxed when home alone is my passion. No dog should feel panicked when home alone. And no pet owner should have to worry about their precious four footed furry companions safety and comfort when they have to leave their dog home alone.
As a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer (CSAT) I have completed over 100 hours of intense study in the causes and rehabilitation of Separation Anxiety, and science supported, rehabilitation of Separation Anxiety. My knowledge and abilities as a CSAT have been tested and accredited. As a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer, I have the knowledge, experience and compassion to help your dog learn to be calm, self-controlled and anxiety-free when left home alone. Using science-supported, gentle training methods that build ability and trust, I have helped countless dogs throughout the USA find peace and comfort in being home alone.
With over 38 years of experience as well as countless hours of education in canine behavior, the science of how dogs learn, stress in dogs, canine ethology, and other canine related behavior concerns, I can help your dog learn self calming skills and comfort when home alone.
The Home Alone - Separation Anxiety Program
Every dog is unique and individual. For this reason, we offer each client an individualized custom training program that is designed to their dog’s specific training needs. Each 4-week training program will include:
- An initial assessment to observe and evaluate your dog’s behavior when left home alone. This is conducted via live camera, such as Zoom or Skype, to ensure that my presence does not have an effect on your dog’s behavior.
- Daily individualized training plans that are designed to teach your dog calm, self-controlled, and anxiety free behavior as you practice leaving your home and increasing your duration of absence. (up to 5 days a week).
- Weekly, live, one-on-one, reassessment meetings. These meetings allow me, your trainer and coach, to consistently reassess your dog’s progress and build the next week’s training sessions for a custom fit.
- Daily support and feedback of your training sessions.
- A customized program to teach your dog Self Relaxation Protocol, and the ability to self sooth and relax when home alone.
- Customized enrichment guidance that suites your dogs individual needs to help your dog release stress and anxiety.
- Coaching and support via e-mail, phone or text, as you progress through the training program.
Four Week Package: $750 - Includes initial 90 minute consultation/evaluation. Twenty personalized daily training plans (Five per week) plus four live 30-60 minute reassessment consultation (One each week).
Daily individualized training to suit your dog’s individual training needs.
Subsequent monthly (four week) packages are discounted at a rate of $650. Includes 5 personalized daily training plans (updated to your dogs individual needs daily), plus a live 30-60 minute reassessment and consultation each week.
Living with a dog who suffers from Separation Anxiety can be exhausting. I can help you and your dog find relief from the suffering.
From the very beginning of your customized Separation Anxiety training program, there will be an end to your dog’s suffering. No more neighbor’s complaints or landlord’s eviction warnings, no more destruction. No more worrying if your dog will break out of his/her kennel, or worse, injure themselves trying. This peace of mind frees you to focus on creating lasting change.
Once you complete and send me the Contact form, I will contact you to schedule a free, no-obligation initial phone consultation. This call will generally take 20- 30 minutes and will allow us to get acquainted. It will also allow you to get acquainted with how Separation Anxiety training works before engaging in a life-changing program with me.
Separation Anxiety and Puppies
Although some whining, crying, and mild distress is normal when puppies are becoming acclimated to their new families and homes, extended or intense whining, crying and distress is not. The old adage of “Just them cry it out” is greatly outdated. Scientific studies have shown that letting puppies whine and cry in extreme distress can actually cause lifelong psychological and emotional damage.
Helping puppies overcome Separation Anxiety takes skill and attention that only comes with the specialized training and experience of a Certified Separation Anxiety Trainer. If you think your puppy is suffering from Separation Anxiety contact me today to discuss your unique situation and learn how I can help.
” I can not say enough about Linda and her passion for what she does as a CSAT! Her compassion to both our precious young puppy and ourselves was beyond anything I could have expected. Our puppy, Jax, was having a horrible time settling as we left him alone either in the house or even another room. He screamed and cried, pawing at his crate, and even pottied in his crate each time he was left in there. It was obvious to us that Jax was panicked and fearful of being left alone. With Linda’s help Jax quickly learned how to relax and feel safe in his crate, and as we left him alone and left the house. Now Jax just sleeps or plays with his toys as we are gone. Thank you Linda for your expert help, dedication and compassion.”
– Sue and Thom (Salt Lake City, Utah)