Australian Shepherd separation anxiety: Why It Happens and How to Help
Australian Shepherd separation anxiety is one of the most common behavioral issues seen in this breed. In fact, up to 85% of Aussies may experience some form of separation anxiety.
While the condition can be frustrating and even heartbreaking, there are ways to help your Aussie overcome his or her separation anxiety. In this post, we’ll discuss what causes Australian Shepherd separation anxiety, the symptoms to look for, and how to resolve the issue.
What Is Separation Anxiety?
Separation anxiety is a condition that affects animals and humans.
It occurs when an individual is separated from a caregiver or loved one to whom they are strongly attached. In the case of animals, this can lead to a range of behaviors that can disrupt their daily lives, including barking, whining, salivating, soiling in the house, and even self-harming.
For humans, separation anxiety can manifest in a number of ways, including feeling panicked or overwhelmed when away from a caregiver, having difficulty sleeping or eating, feeling jumpy or stressed out, and in extreme cases, even experiencing full-blown panic attacks.
Australian Shepherd possess intelligence and high sensitivity to what happens around their owner and their surrounding. With high intelligence comes fear, anxiety and nervousness when things are not as they used to seem in their routines, and environment.
Causes of Separation Anxiety in Australian Shepherds
Dogs are social animals and form strong bonds with their family members. Australian Shepherds are particularly prone to separation anxiety because they are bred to be working dogs. They thrive on companionship and become anxious and stressed when they are separated from their family.
There are many reasons why a dog may develop separation anxiety. Some common causes include changes in routine, moving, or the death of a family member or pet. Aussies may also become anxious when left alone for long periods of time.
Whatever the cause, separation anxiety can be very disruptive for both the dog and the family. The following are causes in detail.
1. Being left alone for a long time repeatedly.
Australian shepherd separation anxiety could be triggered if you leave them alone for too long. They don’t enjoy being left alone–they more than anything, enjoy the company you provide them as their owner or another person they are familiar with.
The way the system has been fixed, we can’t just sit in our homes, except our jobs required us to work from home. We sometimes have to work hours away from home and that means hours away from our dog.
Leaving your Aussie alone for too long will impact his overall behavior, as he would be looking for stimulation, lack of this stimulation will lead to boredom. Boredom will eventually make your Australian shepherd separation anxiety kick in.
Over time, your dog will get very anxious if it notices you’re making motions that depict you’re about to leave. This is usually when the case has become worse.
2. Lack of exciting mental and physical dog stimulation.
Your dog will usually require a bit above two hours of exercise daily. This will help cater to their physical needs.
The physical needs aside, you need to cater to your dog’s mental health by stimulating your dog with a new trick. Since they are highly intelligent dogs, don’t be afraid to introduce new things to their training sections.
Mental stimulation will help your dog calm down. You can refer to this video to see ways you can stimulate your dog.
3. Lack of proper socialization.
Lack of proper socialization will make your dog quiver at the sound of the pizza delivery man, the sight of other dogs when you take them on a walk, and the sight of strangers.
If you don’t want the Australian shepherd separation anxiety to kick in, we encourage you to socialize them properly by introducing them to sound, and other dogs. This will help them build their social skills.
4. Trauma from your dog’s past.
The issue some people will face from adopting a dog from a shelter is the trauma they may have faced from their previous owner. The abandonment faced by your dog could let separation anxiety to develop.
This doesn’t mean your dog is now useless, if you love dogs as I do, there are a few things you can do to help them out, keep reading.
5. Underlying health issues
Your dog may be unfortunate to be having a health challenge that could have started up the anxiety. Since some symptoms are tied to different illnesses, you may not be able to pinpoint what exactly is wrong with you Aussie.
A checkup with the vet if you notice symptoms like vomiting, loose stools, lethargy, or things your dog doesn’t experience on a normal day will help tell if the Australian Shepherd separation anxiety is a result of underlying health issues.
6. Your Aussie is anxious about the presence of someone in the house.
This is the funnies cause of Australian shepherd separation anxiety, but it’s actually a real thing with your dog. This is one of the most common causes of anxiety in dogs.
Since they are very smart and intelligent, they tend to pick up vibes given by everyone in the house. As little as a change in the way a person walks can be interpreted as a wrong vibe depending
I had this nephew that always shouted at my dog to leave whenever he is around, I had no idea of this until I witnessed it happen before my eyes, I now saw the reason why my dog always goes to stay on its own whenever it sees my nephew. A** hole!
Symptoms of Separation Anxiety
Symptoms of separation anxiety can vary from dog to dog, but typically include excessive barking, whining, howling, or scratching at the door; pacing or restlessness; elimination accidents; and general signs of agitation or distress.
Dogs who are experiencing separation anxiety may also exhibit specific behaviors that are aimed at gaining attention or preventing abandonment. For example, they may become overly clingy with their owner, follow them around constantly, or bark, whine, or howl for extended periods of time when left alone.
If you’re concerned that your dog may be experiencing separation anxiety, it’s important to be aware of these symptoms and look out for them when you’re away from home.
How to Resolve Separation Anxiety
If your Australian Shepherd is experiencing separation anxiety, there are a few things you can do to help resolve the issue.
The most important thing is to remain calm and patient. Australian Shepherds are intelligent dogs and will pick up on your emotions. If you’re stressed out, they’ll be even more stressed out, and the problem will only continue to get worse.
Try to create a routine for your dog and stick to it as closely as possible. This will help them feel more secure and know what to expect when you’re not around.
If your dog is having trouble adjusting, consider bringing them to a daycare or having a friend or family member stay with them while you’re gone. This will help reduce their anxiety and make the transition a little bit easier.
Australian Shepherds are a wonderful breed, but like all breeds, they can suffer from separation anxiety. If you’re experiencing these issues, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. With patience and diligence, you can help your Aussie overcome their separation anxiety and live a happy, healthy life.
When to See a Vet for Separation Anxiety
If your Australian shepherd is experiencing any of the following symptoms, it’s time to see a vet:
-Urination in the house
-Chewing or scratching at everything in sight
-Trying to escape from the house or yard
Highlights on Australian shepherd Separation Anxiety
Separation anxiety is common in many dog breeds but is especially prevalent in Australian Shepherds. Australian Shepherds are bred as working dogs and thrive on companionship. When left alone, they can become anxious and destructive.
There are a number of factors that can contribute to separation anxiety in Australian Shepherds. Some common causes include being left alone for long periods of time, changes in routine, or lack of exercise.
Symptoms of separation anxiety can vary from dog to dog, but typically include excessive barking, whining, chewing, and salivating.
If your Australian Shepherd is experiencing separation anxiety, there are a number of things you can do to help resolve the issue. Some tips include gradually increasing the time your dog is left alone, providing plenty of exercise and stimulation, and crate training your dog.
Final thoughts on Australian Shepherd Separation Anxiety
If your Australian shepherd is experiencing separation anxiety, there are some things you can do to help. First and foremost,
it’s important to understand the root of the problem. Once you know what’s causing your dog’s anxiety, you can take steps to resolve it. Some simple things you can do include:
-Making sure your dog has plenty of exercise and playtime
-Giving them plenty of attention and affection when you’re home
-Making sure they have a quiet, comfortable place to retreat to when they’re feeling anxious
-Providing them with plenty of appropriate chew toys and treats