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Hi... I'm Susan, and I'm a homeschooling wife and mother of six in British Columbia, Canada. About a month ago, we added a 2 yo beagle girl, Lulu, to our family. She's a lot of fun, and we love her dearly, but HOKEY DOODLES, the separation anxiety! In a month, she's only been left alone twice, but both times were a nightmare. The previous owner told me I should never leave her alone, and would have to hire a sitter if we went out, but I guess I'm just a little too stubborn to believe I can't help this little girl learn to feel comfortable in her crate for a few hours at a stretch. Any tips?
 

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<span style='font-family: Comic Sans MS'> </span> <span style='font-size: 11pt'> </span> Don't know if this will help or not, but found it on another beagle group!
By the way, Welcome to Beagle World!

"Dogs with separation anxiety exhibit extreme behavior problems when they are left alone. The most common behaviors are destruction of property (sometimes injuring themselves in the process), especially around doors or windows, howling and barking, and urination and defecation from distress. The destruction and house soiling is not an attempt to seek revenge on the owner for leaving, but is actually a panic response.

Separation anxiety sometimes happens when

A dog has never or rarely been left alone.
Following a long interval, such as a vacation, when dog and owner are constantly together.
After a traumatic event (in the dog's mind) such as time at a boarding kennel or shelter.
After a change in the family's routine, like a move to a new home, or a new person in the home.
Dogs that exhibit separation anxiety follow their owners around from room to room and become anxious even if a closed door separates them from the owner. They dislike spending time alone outdoors. They act depressed or anxious to your getting ready to leave the house.

For minor separation anxiety problems the following may be helpful:

Keep comings and goings low key. Ignore the dog the first few minutes when you come home, then calmly pet him.
Leave your dog with an article of clothing that has your scent on it-- one that you don't mind if it gets chewed on.
Provide enriched environment to keep the dog busy while alone. A Kong toy (even several) that is stuffed with soft food is good-- unstuffing it will occupy the dog. Hide favorite chewies in the house for the dog to find.
Sometimes leaving the radio or TV on is helpful, if the dog associates it with your presence. Or make a tape of family kitchen noise and play it while you are gone.
Provide aerobic exercise before leaving, but let the dog calm down before you leave. A tired dog will rest better.
Teach a sit or down stay (or use a tether) and gradually increase the distance you move away from your dog. Your goal is to move briefly out of sight while he remains in position. You want your dog to be comfortable about spending time apart from you.
Some dogs may be more comfortable in a crate - if the dog has first been trained to regard the crate as a safe haven. However, in many SA cases, confinement only worsens the dog's panic and hysteria.
Some dogs do better if they have a companion animal to keep them company. But this is not always successful, so be sure you actually want another pet.
Punishing a dog for destructiveness is not effective and may actually make things worse, since it could increase his anxiety.

Severe cases require systematic desensitization to being alone. This can take a long time. Sometimes veterinary prescribed drugs are used as a temporary measure along with the behavior modification program. Because a dog with severe separation anxiety can do damage to himself and/or your home, you may have to figure out some interim measures, such as leaving the dog at a daycare facility, or with a neighbor or family member.

Copyright © Pat Scott"

Hope it's helpful.
 

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Welcome to BW! Thankfully, I have never had to deal with separation anxiety with my now 12 year old Maggie -- I think I have more separation anxiety leaving her than vice versa ... We do have many BW members who have, or have had, this problem -- if you type in "separation anxiety" in the search box, you will have more posts to read than you have time, especially with your responsibilities (6 kids plus homeschooling!!). Maybe you can make this into a research project for your kids? If you get a chance, we would love to see some pics of your Lulu.
 

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Welcome to the group - I'm fairly new here myself, a couple of days, but have had Beagles for the last 5 years. In the pic above - Shiloh is the bigger one - he will be 5 years next month, March 26 - I have had him since he was 8 weeks old. Shiloh has really come a long way - even pass the point where people were telling me that he was too much for me and maybe I should think about a different pup - Shiloh is now a registered visiting therapy dog and we go to our city library where children can take turns reading to him. The other dog is my little girl Shasta - she is 16 months old. She is also a niece of Shiloh's which was the main reason I specifically wanted her. She has successfully completed her basic level of obedience training and will start her intermediate level next week. I am planning(hoping) she will pass her evaluation for therapy dog this fall.

<u>NOW - let's talk about your question.</u> First, I guess I have been blessed - altho I have had dogs in my life (50 years) I never had one with separation anxiety. I have kept the tv or a radio on whenever I am gone. Now, with Shiloh who has the run of the house and Shasta, who stays in her crate - I never have problems with things being destroyed like some people do. There are alot of people in this group who have had Beagles longer than me - they may be of more help. I might also recommend talking/visiting with your vet about the separation anxiety - not for medication but he/she may have ideas for behavior modification training - sometimes obedience training of some type will help too.

Anyway, I guess that's it for me and welcome to this wonderful world of the Beagle kingdom.
 

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Welcome to Beagle World. Separation Anxiety isn't a problem I have needed to deal with but there have been many posts here from others facing the same issue. Hopefully you will find some help.
 

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Welcome to BW!!!

I just saw an episode of "Barking Mad" on animal planet and it addressed Seperation Anxiety. I found it very interesting how the channeled the dog obsessive behavior of following her owner around into a Kong toy. Then they started working on the crate and leaving her in the crate. But they sort of broke her of the habit.

It was just on either Saturday the 23rd or Sunday the 24th.

Hope this helps! /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/grr.gif
 

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Howdy Welcome to Beagle World and a big arroooo welcome to Lulu. I don't have an advice. I give my beagle a job to do when I leave for work and it keeps him occupied till I return. I'm sure others can help!
 

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Welcome to BW!!!

Hi Susan, My name is Lorie and I'm the beagle mom of two awesome little fur babies. My Henry who is a 5 year old tri has the same proplem you have. He came to me out of Canada back on May 9th of 2007. The first night I had him home he came after me and tried to bite me. He was ok around Rusty but was haveing a hard time dealing with people. The first week came and went and things were not getting any better. The old owner faild to tell me he could not be left by him self. Anyway I contacted my dog trainer and we started doing some work with Henry. We changed his dog food started going to the dog parks and started bringing him and Rusty to work with me. I notice things started to change. For the good! He became more friendly. Listening skills were getting better. He was much more a happy dog. We all go every where togather now. To make a long story short one of henry's biggest problems was his dog food. The old dog food he was on was high in sugar. just like giving candy to a baby. Now he is on Martin's dog food witch is a all natural dog food. Good for dogs with high levals of eveything. Best move I ever made. If there is anything I can do for you please e-mail me. [email protected]. Take care and good luck with everything.
 
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