How many people come home every day to find what look like a tornado or a hurricane had visited the inside of their house? The weather called for sun and clear skies! Wheat the weather man didn’t forecast was the system on four legs that lives inside your house. Many call it separation anxiety and it can manifest itself in many different ways. When you leave your house and leave the dog loose or in the crate, you return to find unspeakable damage, excrement excessive salivation etc. It leaves you to ponder – “why?” and “what should I do?”. Lets first think about what we do when we come home. What is the first thing a lot of people do when their dog runs to greet them? It’s followed by high-pitched squeaky voices and rough-housing much of which many deem as acceptable both on the the dog’s part and the human’s. Or how about when we are at home and the dog keeps whining or barking while in the crate. Much of the time people will respond to the crate and give a verbal correction, or let the dog out in hopes that annoying behavior will stop. Sound familiar? In all these cases, what we as humans are actually doing is encouraging the behavior despite the fact people may see it as “My dog is glad to see me”, or “he’ll stop when I tell him no or let him out”. as it pertains to the crate. The dog sees it as getting a response to his call for attention. When we make a big deal when we come through the door, we are actually rewarding the dogs concern, fear or whatever other issue may be the center of yes, his MISBEHAVIOR.

Much of this can be remedied in increments – starting with more and more down time in the crate both when you are home and are away. But even before that, learn the proper methods in training your dog as to what is acceptable behavior and what is not. For example, when you come through your door, ignore your dog. Ignore him until he settles down and absorbs the fact that there is nothing to be concerned about. Give your dog plenty of exercise. Good structured walks, treadmills and obedience routines can not only physically challenge your dog but mentally. All this will help relieve and chase away all that stress that you K9 companion was occupied with. Teach your dog that calm and quiet earns reward. Not chaos and destruction. If you are at your wits end, and feel your problem is beyond your capabilities – contact a local reputable dog trainer to get you on the right path to a calm, more peaceful life for you and your dog.

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