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10 Things I Did To Cure My Dog's Separation Anxiety

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    1. We walked every day for at least 20 minutes

    Most days this turned into 30-45 minutes. It was good for him and it was good for me.

    2. I got him an Impact Crate

    He was damaging plastic veri kennel type crates and wire crates. The Impact Crate is solid and come with a lifetime guarantee in the case a dog can actually damage one.

    Two reasons I believe this crate was instrumental in my dog getting over separation anxiety:

    1. I knew that when I left he couldn't bust out of it and do damage to the house, himself or bark at the door insensately, disturbing my neighbors who weren't happy about it when it happened in the past.

    2. He quickly realized that this crate was indestructible and his attempts to escape faded quickly.

    3. I put a licky mat with frozen whole food in his crate

    I prepared licky mats with whole food that I froze ahead of time in his crate. He'd spend time licking it to get the food which was both soothing and distracted him from going into a fit that I'd left him alone.

    4. I put a Nandi bone in his crate

    After he was done with his licky mat this Nandi bone kept him busy for hours

    5. I left music playing in the house

    There are studies that say classical music works to calm dogs. I left country music playing in the house.

    Why did I choose country music?

    I believe our dogs are attuned to our own comforts and ways of being beyond explanation. I love country music. It's about love, adoration and being cared for.

    6. I put my dog in the crate randomly for short periods of time even when I was home

    Dogs tend to look at crates as a safe place sort of like a crib for a baby when used correctly. If you only put your dog in the crate when you leave, you're setting yourself up for a freak out session for sure. I used the crate randomly throughout the day when I was home for short periods of time. He got his Nandi bone when he went in it. *Note: don't leave the bone out for access whenever your dog wants out of the crate. All good things come from the crate!

    7. I fed my dog in the crate

    Again, all good things come from the crate. He likes his breakfast and his dinner. He got it in the crate.

    8. I got Wyze camera

    I wanted a quick solution I didn't have to wire into my house plus easily be mobile to move to different rooms if I wanted to. I was able to see what he was doing and talk to my dog through my phone. The wyze camera worked like a charm.

    9. I mediated every day with my dog in my presence

    Our dogs are picking up on our own anxiety, which is one of the reasons he had a separation anxiety breakdown at 5 years old to start with. As I worked on my own anxiety through mediation, diet, and exercise, my dog got better too.

    10. I changed his diet from processed kibble albeit "premium" to a raw whole food diet

    I do Puppy Power Classes at Pet Power Studio on Saturdays. I also spend every Tuesday in the store helping customers and talking to them about their dog's needs. It was through education from Megan Stoll on the roll of food in a dog's life that brought me to change over completely. It changed my dog's life as well. Imagine what it feels like to eat total junk food every day on your nervous system versus whole food. It turns out it plays a big role in a dog's life as well.

    You can listen to our talk on Better Food, Better Mood here

    11. In my 22 years of training I've helped a lot of dogs and their people separation anxiety, but when it's your own dog, it was like the shoe maker with holes in my own shoes

    Dog Trainers tend to end up with dogs who teach us exactly what we need to help our toughest client case with. I believe that is why this happened with my dog at 5 years of age. I created Calming the Chaos to help others through this same problem. Join me here: Calming the Chaos

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