HELP! Dog Separation Anxiety

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Bushcraftsman

Native
Apr 12, 2008
1,368
5
Derbyshire
Good Morning All,

I know this isn't really the right place to ask this, but a lot of you have dogs and might be able to help.

I recently bought a springer pup, and I can't for the life of me get him to stop howling at night and when we leave him in the kitchen (to try and get used to being on his own)...it's not just little baby whimpering whines or anything...I could deal with that, it's like he's being mauled by bloody lions and I'm losing the will to live! This morning he started at 3am and I left him to it thinking he'd calm down, 2 hours this went on for with absolutely no signs of slowing down, I know you're supposed to leave them but I HAD to go down, my neighbours are going to go mad otherwise. I've had him for a week now. I've tried putting a radio on, leaving a light on for him, hot water bottle in his bed, gave him a kong with some food absolutely nothing works, having puppies is supposed to be a pleasure and this is absolutely killing me. :aargh4: I didn't get a blanket or anything from breeder with mums scent, and it's too late now this is a learnt behaviour. We have a babygate between the kitchen and living room that we close at night and he goes mental, hates it, attacks and chews at it. It's to 1) thought it would act like a "safe area" keeping him in the kitchen at night 2) keep him away from all the chewable furniture and doesn't mess on the rug in the living room. 3) give our 9y/o cocker some peace. We tried leaving it open the other night to see if that would quiet him down and we heard what sounded like her (the 9y/o cocker) attacking him when he probably tried to climb in her bed with her. She's not possessive over her toys or food with him, and cuddles when they sleep on the rug, she's just very particular about her bed. I'm getting a crate tomorrow, I have feeling he'll just attack that like he does the babygate and wont like it. Any advice to help ease his separation anxiety because this is turning into a nightmare. And incase the crate doesn't work, what would be my next option to help him settle?

Thank you
Kind Regards

Jordan
 

Dogoak

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jan 24, 2009
2,100
139
Cairngorms
Not easy mate, it's just a stage he's going through and hopefully won't be for long. At his age, he feels he's been abandoned by the pack!

Puppys need a lot of sleep, don't let him sleep in the evenings and make sure he's had some exercise before bed time. It might help if you have the crate near the older dog.
 

kpeter20

Forager
Mar 24, 2011
242
7
Runcorn
The crate should help the pup and other than leaving for short periods at first and going back and then leaving longer gaps before going back then it's something the pup should get through. Good luck, it's stressful at first!!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Emdiesse

Settler
Jan 9, 2005
624
1
Surrey, UK
I totally understand why you are not following the 'self soothing' option if your neighbours are getting upset so here are some thoughts of mine - I'm no dog trainer so take them with a pinch of salt (I'm sure you'd appreciate any ideas at this point!) - Got a 2 1/2 year old cocker myself :)

Our cocker, she howled, but we used the 'self sooth' option (we were lucky and had very understanding neighbours who put up with it in return for puppy cuddles!)

During the day time we would leave her in a room, allow her to whine and whine and then go in only when she stopped whining - gradually increasing the time we waiting before going in and giving her fuss.

Initially, you could try taking his crate up to your room where he can see you and allow him to sleep in there - hopefully this will bring you peace and quiet immediately.

Gradually you could try positioning his crate further and further away until he is comfortable where you want him to sleep.

In the day time, choose a spot for the crate to be and cover it in blankets and make it comfy and inviting - this is his 'safe space' - ideally this would be where you want him to sleep.

Use his safe space as a positive space, give him treats in there, put his bowl in there when you feed him, praise him for going in there, etc.
 
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Macaroon

A bemused & bewildered
Jan 5, 2013
7,115
270
70
SE Wales
Initially, you could try taking his crate up to your room where he can see you and allow him to sleep in there - hopefully this will bring you peace and quiet immediately.

Not in a million years - that'd be about the worst thing you could do. Making a rod for your own back?
 

Emdiesse

Settler
Jan 9, 2005
624
1
Surrey, UK
Worked for us. Our pup cried at night, we put her in our room at the end of our bed in her crate and there was not even a peep. After a few nights we just plonked her crate downstairs and she didn't make a peep. (Granted we didn't do the creep the crate out the room thing and went made her go full on 'cold-turkey' after a few days)

I'm not sure it's the worst thing you could do, but to make sure I'm not making duff suggestions I have done some brief research on the thought I had.

Granted there are many ways to skin a cat, and what works for one might not work for another - but I don't think it's the worst idea in the world - equally, it could be, who knows, the mind is a complicated beast which I guess is why there are two main schools of thought when it comes to training dogs. We've taken the 'no force', 'positive reward based training... but equally, I have seen others who have taken a forceful domineering approach and yielded similar results.

An except from Pippa Mattinsons website states the following:

How to avoid night crying in puppies
The answer is to pre-empt the fear screaming that some puppies (not all) do during their first few nights away from home by keeping them next to you at night.
That means having the puppy in your room while you sleep
During that time, the best solution is usually to have the puppy in a crate or sturdy box, next to your bed.
- http://www.thelabradorsite.com/how-to-cope-with-a-crying-labrador-puppy/

Pippa Mattinson is the founder of the UK's national gundog graded training scheme, director of the Gundog Trust and Author of the 'Happy Puppy Handbook' and 'Total Recall'

Locking a puppy in a room on it's first night in its new home, after its previously established maintenance set has been removed and letting it cry until it is worn out is not good for its welfare. It could sensitise it so that it reacts negatively when left alone on future occasions, increasing the potential for seperation problems such as destructiveness, vocalisations and elimination. New owners can gradually accustom their puppy to being on its own by getting it used to an indoor kennel and placing this next to their bed and gradually moving the kennel away from the bedroom once the puppy has learned to settle at night or they can sleep near the puppy downstairs for the first few nights, gradually withdrawing their presence once the puppy has adapted to its new environment.
- David Appleby, The APBC book of Companion Animal Behaviour

David Appleby Msc CCAB is a full member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors inturn governed by the Animal Behaviour and Training Council who are the regulatory body that represents animal trainers and animal behaviour therapists in the UK. CCAB is a Clinical Animal Behaviourist qualification and is recognised by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and the British Psychological Society.
 
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Dogoak

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Jan 24, 2009
2,100
139
Cairngorms
Personally the bedroom thing would be the last resort. As in my previous post, having the crate in the same vicinity as the other dog would be my first choice.
 

Macaroon

A bemused & bewildered
Jan 5, 2013
7,115
270
70
SE Wales
Worked for us. Our pup cried at night, we put her in our room at the end of our bed in her crate and there was not even a peep. After a few nights we just plonked her crate downstairs and she didn't make a peep. (Granted we didn't do the creep the crate out the room thing and went made her go full on 'cold-turkey' after a few days)

I'm not sure it's the worst thing you could do, but to make sure I'm not making duff suggestions I have done some brief research on the thought I had.

Granted there are many ways to skin a cat, and what works for one might not work for another - but I don't think it's the worst idea in the world - equally, it could be, who knows, the mind is a complicated beast which I guess is why there are two main schools of thought when it comes to training dogs. We've taken the 'no force', 'positive reward based training... but equally, I have seen others who have taken a forceful domineering approach and yielded similar results.

An except from Pippa Mattinsons website states the following:


- http://www.thelabradorsite.com/how-to-cope-with-a-crying-labrador-puppy/

Pippa Mattinson is the founder of the UK's national gundog graded training scheme, director of the Gundog Trust and Author of the 'Happy Puppy Handbook' and 'Total Recall'


- David Appleby, The APBC book of Companion Animal Behaviour

David Appleby Msc CCAB is a full member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors inturn governed by the Animal Behaviour and Training Council who are the regulatory body that represents animal trainers and animal behaviour therapists in the UK. CCAB is a Clinical Animal Behaviourist qualification and is recognised by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and the British Psychological Society.
I can see the value of that approach if it was taken from the first day you had the pup, perhaps, but after starting off as you have I'd think that Dogoak's idea would be favourite.

The main thing is that you get the dog to feel secure and well and the main requirements for that are kind leadership and a lot of consideration; your posts show you care enough to make this happen and I'm sure you'll have a happy and contented dog before long :)
 

Emdiesse

Settler
Jan 9, 2005
624
1
Surrey, UK
The main thing is that you get the dog to feel secure and well and the main requirements for that are kind leadership and a lot of consideration; your posts show you care enough to make this happen and I'm sure you'll have a happy and contented dog before long :)
*thumbs up* to this!

best of luck bushcraftsman! :)
 

Bushcraftsman

Native
Apr 12, 2008
1,368
5
Derbyshire
YES!!! oh my god.

We moved his bed into the living room with our other dog, just on the other side of the room and we didn't hear a thing all night. Slept right through from 9.30/10:00 until I got up this morning for work at 5!! We did try extra hard yesterday to tire him out, played with him a lot, did training in the garden (consequently he now pretty much has "sit" nailed after a day of training, so he's very clever! but he's going to be a little nutter and I feel will be quite mischievous!) and we also tried to limit how much we let him sleep during the evening. Either way, I'm not going to count my chickens until he does it a few nights in a row, we might have just got lucky last night!

The only bad thing, because he had so much sleep, he was absolutely full of beans this morning whilst I was getting ready for work and was going mental with his toys and chasing the other dog etc haha, my girlfriend is at home with him today so she'll have to put up with it!

I'll take that as a small success though! :lmao:
 

richy3333

Full Member
Jan 23, 2017
217
54
Far NW Scoootland
We have sprinters. Definitely get a crate and train him to it. You can then cover the crate with a towel blanket to make it more den like and darker for him. The crate should be out and used in the day too so he gets accustomed to it and doesn't see it as a punishment. It also makes it easier for when he's crated in the car.

We crate s our last pup and put our older bitch in the same room with him. They then had company but couldn't get to each other. It's somewhat a battle of wills and you really have to try and not go to him.

Speak to the neighbors and explain what's happening. A bottle or two of wine can soon smooth the path with them.

For later on there's a really good book. It's called something like 'your gun dog as a pet'.
 

santaman2000

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Jan 15, 2011
16,705
984
63
Florida
Actually it's well trained, grown dog that's a "pleasure." A puppy on the other hand, is an ADVENTURE!
 

Nice65

Full Member
Apr 16, 2009
4,775
1,394
55
W.Sussex
I had the same with my yorkie puppy.

The puppy won:lmao:
I've got two Jack Russells that did too, though they stay in their beds (mainly!) at home. I wouldn't want a Springer in bed, but tucking a Jack down your sleeping bag on a cold night is pretty handy.

We had similar problems as the OP, Snippy is 14 now, and dog training advice is everywhere. At the time, it was a case of put her in the kitchen and let her cry. But we couldn't put up with it, or her pain, so she just has a bed in our bedroom.

Mimi, just 3, is a little minx. She waits for us to be well asleep and sneaks in our bed.




Thing is, she knows exactly what she's doing. A clever dog this one.


 
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Nice65

Full Member
Apr 16, 2009
4,775
1,394
55
W.Sussex
Ah, that's the window. There was a Wood Pigeon daring to wander across her lawn. She does watch TV though, loves a good doggy programme. I'll add a pic in a bit, Photobucket is glitching again.

 
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