Posted by: steph | 2008/12/29

separation anxiety daxie

my family bought a daxie from a petshop after seeing her there for 3 months, we eventually bought her as we could no longer bear to see her in the tiny cage. the owner told us he locked her in the back of the shop at night during the week and took her home on the weekends. she such a delightful little dog and we love her dearly, but are struggling with her a bit. she does not like us to leave her at home. at the moment we have her on some meds from the vet for anxiety, we also have a diffuser with Dog appeasing pheromone and a little collar that we clip on when we go out which gives a spray of citronella when she barks, as she was barking terribly when we went out. she has stopped the barking now when the collar goes on. we ONLY use the collar when we are out. she is mostly ok now with the idea of us leaving as we use a routine and she seems happier with the routine. but sometimes she still cries and frets when we leave. she is 2 years old now. i would like to know whether the collar could perhaps make her more anxious or whether the spray of citronella in fact distracts her when she barks, thus changing her focus when she barks. we want to stop this habit, but the biggest concern is her anxiety. we also take her for along walk before leaving her at home so that she has used up a bit of energy and is usually keen to nap.

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Our expert says:
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Dear Steph

You are on the right track and think you should see a behaviourist at this stage.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: Chill | 2008/12/30

I agree you' re on the right track, so maybe you know this already, but try to make as little fuss as possible when leaving and coming back home. Give the dog a cookie or some treat as you leave (bribe and distraction, plus a small pleasant association with your departure) and ignore her for the first few minutes after you return home (see, it was no big deal for us to be gone).

Well done for taking on this dog, under the circs - it' s surprising, given her history, that she doesn' t have far worse behavioural problems!

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