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Little Love and Me
When I first got my puppy, Love, I was unemployed. I was home all day, and we had good times, playing in the bed, around the apartment and watching TV.
See: The Dogs Of Amazon https://wetnosecentral.com/the-dogs-of-amazon/
When I found a job, Love was about 6 months old, and the last thing I wanted to do was leave him home.
So, I packed him up and brought him with me. First day at work coulda easily also been Last Day at Work, if I’d brought him into the office; so, after I came back to Reality, I parked in the lower level garage, rolled the windows down, kissed Love and promised to come back in an hour or so. Orlando, the parking attendant really “gave it to me” when I came back!
See: What Is Rex Doing While I’m Gone? https://wetnosecentral.com/what-is-Rex-doing-while-im-gone/
My Sweet Little Love
When Love was older – almost 2 – I STILL had to work, of course, but Orlando wasn’t the parking attendant/co-caregiver any longer. There was no such thing as Doggie Day Care, and I had trepidation about leaving him home alone.
On the one hand, I didn’t want to leave my little Love at home because he was my baby. Who wants to leave their baby at home? Alone! When he woke up, he’d probably be miserable!
On the other hand, I was afraid to leave Love at home – alone. I could just envision that adorable little dog chewing his way through my little apartment like Sherman tore through Georgia!
Some Dogs Really Have Separation Anxiety
Either some dogs really do have Separation Anxiety or, as I read on Quora, they just haven’t been trained correctly from puppyhood.
A lady said she trained every dog she ever had not to “lose it” when she wasn’t there by teaching them, “I’ll be right back,” starting with a minute and, over time, extending it to all day. She adamantly expressed that NONE of her dogs ever had separation anxiety.
Others say that too effusively greeting your pooch when you come home contributes to the problem.
Why Do Some Dogs Develop Separation Anxiety and Others Don’t?
According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), “[t]here is no conclusive evidence showing exactly why dogs develop separation anxiety.”
“[B]ecause far more dogs who have been adopted from shelters have this behavior problem than those kept by a single family since puppyhood,” the ASPCA opines that it is the result of a “loss of an important person or group of people in a dog’s life . . .”
The ASPCA also provides a list of triggers associated with this problem. (See: Separation Anxiety, https://www.aspca.org.)
Alternatives to Leaving Her Alone
Apparently, I wasn’t in the minority, because, for those of us who are chilled by the prospect of leaving their own little Love alone (for whatever reason), today there are alternatives.
If you need some peace of mind, here are some ideas that either Never occurred to me or weren’t available at that time:
Hire A Dog Walker
If you are a working Mommy/Daddy of a fuzzy bundle of love, once or twice a week you might consider hiring a dog walker.
Doggy Day Care
Along the same lines as the previous choice, think about Doggy Day Care. Here are examples of establishments that provide Doggy Day Care:
See: Best Dog Day Care in Los Angeles
If care every day care is financially prohibitive, then think about this as a periodic option. I don’t know WHAT I would have done without Orlando!
Provide Mentally Stimulating Toys
Have you ever heard of treat puzzles? Well, they’re toys that stimulate your dog’s mind and keep her busy while you’re away. They develop her natural curiosity, reduce boredom and produce treats (when a problem is solved). Take a look at: https://amzn.to/2KnHcsD
Of course, these kinds of toys don’t take your place all the time. You still need to come snuggle, play tug-o-war, and fetch!
Get Another Pet
Of course, this idea only works for some families. Can you afford another pet? Is there room for another? It is also depends on whether the two dogs get along!
Crate Train Them
Provided they’re properly crate trained, dogs who love their crates can generally stay alone longer.
This can be so, if Roxie feels comfortable in his crate. It should never represent a place of reprimand. Instead, some of his toys can “live” there, and he should get treats and be played with when he’s in there. Roxie’s crate should feel like his personal den, where he’s safe and protected.
Leave On The TV Or Radio
As you can see, some dogs – like this one named Luna – really do get “into” the onscreen activity.