Severe Separation Anxiety

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Severe Separation Anxiety

This is a discussion on Severe Separation Anxiety within the Dog Training and Behavior forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Dogs category; I am going to try and make this as brief as possible, but I really do need some advice. Big time. I am partial leasing ...

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Old 08-04-2013, 03:20 PM
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Exclamation Severe Separation Anxiety

I am going to try and make this as brief as possible, but I really do need some advice. Big time.

I am partial leasing a 6-acre farm that I moved to last year. There was a maintenance man that lived on the property, but he was asked to leave the property because he was a drunk. He also had a dog that was abused and malnourished. I ended up taking in the dog - seriously this dog chose me. I renamed him Stetson.

Stetson is an 85 lb lab mix. He's quite skittish (he's gotten so much better though); he's more so skittish around men than woman (for obvious reasons) and he's VERY clingy to me. I adore the fact that he is loyal to me, but when I have to leave him indoors for a couple of hours he gets FRANTIC. Absolutely out of control FRANTIC. Now, he's primarily an outside dog - he spent his puppyhood here on the farm that I am leasing (he's about 2.5 years old).

When I leave for the day from the farm, he is way more relaxed and he doesn't have a panic attack when I come home at the end of the day. Now, when I leave him indoors anywhere else for a couple of hours (like my boyfriend's house), he goes CRAZY.

He's already ripped through dry wall at my boyfriend's house and the other night he went through a glass window. A GLASS WINDOW. Thank the Lord that he didn't get hurt in the process. My boyfriend was very upset as you might imagine.

Now, Stetson will behave inside the house if another dog is with him (and usually my boyfriend's dog is there at his house - but she wasn't the other night).

I also need to mention that he's been to the kennel several times now while I have been out of town, and when I come to pick him up he makes a HUGE scene in the lobby. It's almost embarrassing because he just gets SO WORKED UP. He cries, whimpers, jumps up in the air, circles me, almost knocks me down, I mean the whole nine yards. And I do my best to settle him, but he just gets in such a tizzy. I am honestly concerned that one of these days he is going to drop over from a heart attack.

Here's what I am worried about. By the end of this month I am going to have to move. I got a wonderful new job (I am a recent college graduate) and I might be moving closer to town. I have been trying to find properties to rent with at LEAST 1 to 2 acres for my horse and do. I am not having much luck. There is a very high possibility that I am going to have to go back to apartment living for the time being. And my horse is going to have to be boarded at a stable. Which I am not thrilled about, but I have to make due for the time being.

I don't know how my dog is going to handle apartment living. He is probably going to have to be crated during the day (which I HATE the idea of that but I can't have him destroying my rental). He will be able to go to the stable with me and of course he can go walking and running with me as well.

I am just in desperate need of advice because I must get a handle on this situation. I am wondering if he should be on some type of anxiety medication for dogs or maybe give him some calming herbs? I am honestly surprised that my vet office hasn't recommended anything for his nervousness. I feel like I am at a loss here. I love Stetson with all my heart and I am worried about how he is going to transition.
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Old 08-05-2013, 01:59 PM
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There is Help


From what I've read, there is medications for dogs that suffer from severe Separation Anxiety, as it seems your dog does. (By the way, that is great that you took him in!).

It seems as if he may have no control over the type of panic that he feels. So, medicine can help. I'd guess that this is sort of like claustrophobia, in a way. So, maybe a big gated off area instead of a crate will help.

There's more info here: 101 Facts About Dogs | The Dog Fact Information Center
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Old 08-05-2013, 02:14 PM
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I had 1 like this she would rip her own teeth out.... Time, consistent routine & a little mate(Maltese) worked for her.
Good luck & I feel for you with the having to move to town & board your horse etc but sounds like your young & should grab hold of your best chance of a good future with 2 hands & the rest really will work its self out.
I be looking for a good vet local to where your moving & make an appointment as they are likely to know the better trainers etc in your area as well as help with meds if needed.
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Old 08-05-2013, 03:05 PM
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Have you ever tried a Thunder Shirt?
Thundershirt | The Best Dog Anxiety Treatment
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