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Solutions to Separation Anxiety

By Kravelv @kravelv

How CBD and Training Create The Perfect Treatment

As I sit here writing this I can hear my neighbor’s puppy barking because they are gone. He’s getting close to being a year old now and he still barks every time they leave, though he’s getting a bit better as he gets older. I feel bad for the little guy because he’s all by himself and he’s anxious and scared. Separation anxiety is an extremely common issue among dogs, and dogs reaction to it can create a whole lot of problems which we don’t always best handle.

Destructive behavior is a common reaction to separation anxiety and our first reaction is to always yell and scold. But this is terrible because it will escalate the situation and can make your dog’s anxiety even worse. When they are experiencing extreme anxiety, they’re not able to control their behavior. No amount of yelling is going to go to make them “come to their senses” when they are having a panic attack.

Solutions to Separation Anxiety

Signs your pup is experiencing separation anxiety

The first step is recognizing there is an issue:

  • Urinating and Defecating – If you are seeing accidents in the house even though they are housebroken then your pup may be experiencing anxiety. Healthy adult dogs can hold their bladder for around 8 hours at a time, so make sure to factor that into the equation when diagnosing.
  • Barking and Whining – This can be tricky because your pup may wait until after you’ve left before they start whining. It is normal for puppies to whine a bit right after you leave.
  • Destruction – Destruction most likely happens because they are bored, young, or feeling anxious. It’s normal for a dog to be two years old before they can be safely allowed to roam the house without fear of them chewing or destroying something. Boredom is another big culprit, so make sure they have toys to play with when you leave them. This is all normal, but serious destruction or all of a sudden destructive behavior may be a sign they are experiencing separation anxiety.
  • Pacing – This is another hard one to recognize because it’s normal for your dog to get excited when you leave and come home. We end up making a big deal about it as well, and that only reinforces that something is wrong. Dogs may also pace in a pattern when you are gone and this is a clear give away they are anxious.

Since some of these symptoms may be difficult to catch because we aren’t around, so you might have to do some sneaking and catch them in the action. Or I guess you embrace the 21st century and leave your computer camera on. Your choice!

How we can help

We often don’t have the ability to prevent separation anxiety from happening because life gets in the way. Things like moving, changing your work schedule, relationships starting and ending all can cause anxiety to occur. Then there is the time when your dog had another person caring for them when they were younger, and perhaps they experienced a traumatic event.

I’m guessing you’re reading this because you’re worried your dog already has separation anxiety, so let’s focus on how we can help them.

The two-step solution: CBD oil and Training

Training is the best treatment, of course, but that takes some time and if the behavior is destructive you might not have time.

Why I started giving my dog CBD oil

In the case of my pup, he was anxiously rubbing his eyebrows against his cage, but he was too young and couldn’t be left out long enough without finding something to chew on, so in the cage he had to stay. Because of my schedule, I could only train him to be left alone to roam the house once a week, so training went slow.

That’s when I came across cannabidiol, better known as CBD oil, for helping with pet anxiety. I saw a lot of people passionately raving about it, so after learning it was safe, I gave it a try.

After giving it to him a few times, I tried it on a day when I was gone for awhile and had to lock him up in this crate. I could tell that he was calmer after the first time I gave it to him, so I had hope. After rushing home, I eagerly went to let him out only to see his little eyebrows left unscathed.

Not only did it stop him from rubbing the hair off his eyebrows, but to my surprise, the CBD oil decreased his training time because he was able to stay out longer without getting anxious. It’s perfect too because CBD lasts for 6-8 hours and that exactly the time I needed.

He’s now completely crate-free, and it’s collecting dust in the basement as I’m writing this. He no longer suffers from separation anxiety, and I only give him CBD oil when I’m gone and there is a storm or some chaos happening outside. Even then, I just give it to him more as a treat to calm any potential anxiety or discomfort he may have while I’m gone.

I did worry that while it improved his training and anxiety, his anxiety would come back once I stopped giving him CBD oil but I’m happy to say that that never happened.

The Quick Facts on CBD Oil

Training and CBD oil seem to just go hand in hand when treating separation anxiety. Training works in the long run, while CBD improves the condition immediately and will provide great short-term relief while training sets in.

When I first started reading about CBD I had a lot of questions and felt overwhelmed, so here’s the lowdown on the common questions most people have, myself included.

    • CBD oil is not marijuana – You should purchase CBD oil derived from hemp and not cannabis, because hemp contains essential no THC, which is what causes the high when smoking marijuana.  
    • CBD is safe – If your pup is on pharmaceutical medication then you’ll want to check with your veterinarian first as CBD may affect the absorption rate of other medications. But besides that, CBD is completely fine to give.
  • CBD oil is legal – CBD oil is completely legal across the United States and most of the world. Again, it needs to be derived from hemp as CBD oil derived from cannabis will depend on your marijuana laws and not hemp laws.
  • CBD is easy to give – CBD oil often comes in a dropper bottle which is easy to give and most dogs like the taste. You can also put drops in their food if they are picky eaters.  
  • Where to find it? – It took me awhile to find a company I liked, but I ended up going with Innovet pet because they have really good reviews and they are super transparent about where their hemp came from, how much CBD is in the bottle, and answered a lot of questions I had.

I hope you found this article helpful and good luck in treating your pup’s anxiety. I know it’s a process, but giving CBD can make it so much easier for both you and your furry best friend.


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