Separation Anxiety Steps 6-8

Stage 6: In order to have better control over the dog when you step across the door, avoid exciting him. We recommend that you make him "SIT + STAY" a few feet away from the door, feign departure. Touch the knob without opening the door, and return. If the dog shows no signs of excited behavior, congratulate him.

The owner must ask the dog to "SIT and "STAY" before stepping over the threshold. preferably with the door open, and return immediately. Repeat this exercise as many times as required before you increase the time period in which you remain on the other side of the door. When the duration increases, it is recommended that you vary the amount of seconds and minutes, for example, 1-2-3-2-1-4-5-3-1-5-6 etc.

Stage 7: Hints at desensitizing the dog to a departure often elude the master, but not the dog. There are many unconscious gestures which confirm an imminent departure in the dog's perception. One must be vigilant in identifying and analyzing ritual behavior patterns, and de-condition the dog to these:

  • Give the commands "SIT and "STAY"; at the same time, present him with a stimulus which provokes his anxiety (your keys, for instance).
  • Accustom your dog to these hints by showing him a variety of "anxiety stimuli" such as keys, boots, coats, a leash, etc...

Stage 8: The technique in this stage aims at getting the dog accustomed to staying alone for longer an longer periods of time without his manifesting signs of anxiety. To begin with, the separation must be short (no more than one or two minutes). so as the dog has no time to begin showing anxiety. The increase of the duration of the absence must be very slow and depends on the reaction of each dog. Hence, do not increase the duration of the separation until there are no more signs of anxiety or excessive welcoming behavior.

Notice that this behavior manifests itself thirty minutes after departure. Therefore, it stands to reason that the longest and hardest period to accustom the dog to remain alone is thirty minutes. If the dog can remain alone for ninety consecutive minutes, he can do it for hours. Here's how:

  1. Thirty minutes before departure, tell the dog to go to his isolation area.
  2. Give him a Kong or a bone.
  3. Simulate your departure by taking your coat and keys.
  4. Open the door, go out, and close it without saving or doing anything else
  5. If the dog is agitated or demonstrates any signs of anxiety, ignore him and don't give him any attention whatsoever.
  6. If the dog remains calm after returning from isolation, congratulate him immediately with the SR "SOUND + GOOD!".
  7. Repeat this exercise as often as possible.

The dog will lea rn to eagerly anticipate all these departures which are bringing him so many rewards. Moreover, the dog always ignores how long the master will be gone - 10 minutes? 3 hours?

Note: We advise that you not leave the dog alone in the house far more than 8 hours after you have started desensitization. If you cannot we suggest that you have a friend watch aver the dog or that you allow your dog to go with you.

In order to avoid having your dog hang around with nothing to do, leave him some toys. Preferably, select a toy which will keep your dog busy for as long as possible. There is a toy called the kong(r), in which you place pieces of food; the dog must find a way to get to the food, and this takes hours! You can also place certain toys in strategic places around the house, and the dog must find them. The dog will become eager to see you go! Bones or a buster cube(r) is also recommended.

In extreme cases, so me people opt for a cage, a muzzle (to prevent destruction), or a daycare service. Another solution is available: the Spray Barrier (see the manual dedicated to this device). Even if this device eliminates messes, it will do nothing for the problem of anxiety. The only way to tackle this problem is to practice the above exercises every day, until the problem is solved. If everything else fails, consult your veterinarian for some drugs which could be given to your dog.

Remote Controlled Dog Trainer Using Spray Commander: Preliminary Remarks Programming the Remote Control Dog Training The dog's place within the family Socialization Causes for Dog Disobedience Rules and Notions of Behavior Indicators for Good and Bad Behavior Two Categories for Positive Reinforcement (Primary, Secondary) The "SOUND" Option on Spray Commander When to stop using the sound How to Reward a Dog When to use the Citronella Spray The Warning Feature on Spray Commander How to Use Correction Wisely Play During and After Training Session Never Let the Dog Win Stress and Your Dog The Ten Basic Commands Sequence Chart 1: Primary Training Phase Sequence Chart 2: Obedience Training How to Begin Obedience Training Obedience Training "SIT' when the dog is standing "DOWN" when the dog is seated "SIT" when the dog is lying down "STAND" 1 when the dog is seated "STAND" 2 when the dog is lying down "DOWN" when the dog is standing Consolidation Exercises Practice the commands from a distance Positive Association "STAY" Command The "STAY" command from a distance "HEEL" Command How to obtain desired results with a leash When the dog constantly tugs at the leash The Gentle Leader Collar for Dogs "DON’T TOUCH" Command Biting Dog Games "STOP" Command Spray Commander: A Short-Term Training Tool Re-Educating Your Dog Dealing with Unacceptable Behavior How to Evaluate a Problem Counter-conditioning and systematic desensitization 2. Systematic desensitization 3. Immersion Problems with Soiling Possible causes for soiling Fears and phobias Urinating by submission or excitement How to solve the problem The importance of a cage in education for soiling Should you catch your dog in the act Underlying reasons most frequent in dealing with soiling problems: The pack leader controls the food Examples of dominant behavior How lo introduce your dog to strangers Dog Destruction Possible causes for destruction Games and investigating the environment The dog that demands attention How to prevent destruction Before leaving the house Make sure that the dog gets enough exercise How to Prevent Chasing or Running Away Typical causes for running away or chasing Game investigation social contact Procedure to counter chasing The dog that Jumps and Grabs at People Picking up or Stealing Objects How to Stop Your Dog from Stealing Coprophagia - The dog that eats his stools The Agitated, Excitable Dog The Dog Cries to Obtain Attention or Food Separation anxiety Treating Separation Anxiety Separation Anxiety Steps 4-5 Separation Anxiety Steps 6-8 Conclusion regarding Separation Anxiety Fear of men The difference between a fearful dog and a dominant aggressive dog Fear of certain people or other dogs How the Dog reacts to Change Automobile Rides Dog Tricks and Games The search for a person or an object : "Bring to", "Bring the in" "SNIFF / FETCH" Game "JUMP" Game "ROLL OVER" Trick "GIVE YOUR PAW" "THERE'S A BISCUIT ON YOUR NOSE!" How to establish limits with Spray Barrier How to prevent the dog from leaving his territory and running away Excessive barking How are undesirable behaviors reinforced? Feline Problems Feline vocalisation Inappropriate Elimination Behavior Inappropriate Spraying in Cats Aggression among Cats How to select a good educator if you need help Dog Behavior Glossary