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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was reading the last post (jealous doodle) and it got me thinking about a small problem we have with Dexter. He doensn't act jealous, but rather gets so upset if he is separated from one of us. For example, we are in the car and stop at the food store. If either me or my husband get out of the car Dexter will cry and bark (not continuously, but off and on). One of us always stays in the car with him so he is not alone. How could we deal with this?
 

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Denver has just started to do this as well.
So far I have been ignoring it to a point. as I do not want to
make it a big deal. If he continues, I start talking to him about where we are going to go just to redirect his attention. This may be wrong as maybe I should stay quiet the whole time but as I said this is new to me as well so I am not sure yet. He does stop crying when I talk to him. I do not soothe him,( rather I just talk normal,) if he cries or barks because I know it will reinforce this behavior.
Believe me I want to just hug and kiss away his fears but I know that is not good :cry: :cry:
Maybe this is just part of a seperation fear thing for a 1 year old?
If I am the one leaving the car then Denver behaves this way tenfold.
 

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So far so good, especially with Jonah....he waits patiently for me in the car. He is sooooo much better since we got the car harness. Miko still has her fear issues, so she is patient in the car also. guess I'm lucky....knock wood! :wink:
 

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I've been reviewing some training books to prep myself for the new pup, and Kilcommons' advice would probably be to ignore the dog but possibly put some music on or do something that wasn't obviously intended to distract him but was more as though you wanted it for yourself. The idea is that you want to reinforce his being calm and quiet by praising and playing with him then; also, if you soothe and reassure and pat when he's whining or barking it's very reinforcing, so it teaches the pup that this behavior will elicit all sorts of attention from you. Possibly distracting him and then rewarding him with attention once he's quiet might help. Does he know the command "Quiet" or "Hush"?

Another way to minimize separation anxiety, and something we always did with our dogs, is to make leavetaking and return very low key. When we walked out the door we'd just say quietly, "Be good," or something similar, and when we returned we'd first check the phone for messages or hit the bathroom or look at our email before we'd pay much attention to the pups. So they learned that we took departures calmly and in stride, and also that our return didn't herald all sorts of intense excitement. It made it much easier for them to transition. I don't know how you leave the dog when you're in the car, but you might consider whether that might be a factor. (This also works wonders with kids, too, by the way!)

Leslie
 

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I will just stay with the quiet treatment as I think this
makes the most sense.
Denver has never been left alone in the car without one of us there
so I do not know how he would be all by himself.
As far as being left alone in the house, he is awesome so
it really is a car thing like what Leslie is experiencing with Dexter
maybe they just prefer that the family stays together when in the car.
Haha!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
unfortunately this applies to Dexter all the time. If one of us leaves the house he barks and whines as well. He is terrible in the house alone (we've tried leaving him alone when we're in the garage doing something and we just hear him barking and barking. We have to try ignoring it more, but it's so bad when you're in the car w/him and he does it!!!
 

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Excellent article, Linda! Thanks! I'm also checking out Kilcommons'
http://www.mysmartpuppy.com/ to see whether those message boards are at all helpful. Here's a discussion on separation anxiety:

http://p073.ezboard.com/separation-anxi ... 4962.topic

One of their suggestions which I forgot to mention is giving the pup something to distract him upon departure. You could probably do that in the car, too. We used to use a dog biscuit or a pig's ear or something similar.

Leslie
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
it's weird with Dexter. He seems fine when we leave for work in the morning. He gets his daily treat and actually goes to the basement himself w/o a fight. When we get home he's a little hyper, but he's not barking or crying or anything (he's normally 1/2 asleep).

The problem is when he knows we're around but not with him or physically separated from him by a fence, window, etc. He has no problem playing by himself in the house (even in another room) but he kinda keeps track of and knows where we are.

That's a good idea though (having one of us hide in the house and then deal w/him when he starts barking/crying). I think I'll try that this weekend.
 

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Cinnamon had a problem with being left in the car alone for a quick potty break at about a year old. She didn't bark, but she would chew to get out. We've lost a couple of doggy seat belts & a harness to that. We now unbuckle her when we leave and it seemed to solve that.

I think she just knows now that I come back and when I do, it's her turn. I find her waiting patiently for me and she gets all wiggle butt to greet me when she gets out of the car.

I've never had a problem with her doing the whining or barking thing when I leave home though. I've not had a dog do that, so good luck.
 

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well we have Max who even if DAVE or one of my kids in in the car with him will still cry and get anxious if I go into a store without him.
he's always been this way but he seems to be getting a tad better as he doesn't HOWL anymore but they say keeps looking for me.


but in the house if i leave, Max is fine.
 
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