Training a Dog to Stay to Help Her Get Over a Case of Separation Anxiety

By: David Codr

Published Date: July 27, 2017

Daisy is a four-year-old Blue Nosed Pit who lives in Mar Vista section of Los Angeles. Her guardian reached out to us to set up a dog behavior session to stop separation anxiety, pulling on the leash and obedience; training a dog to stay.

After discussing the dog behavior problems with her guardian, I learned she didn’t have any rules, boundaries or limits in place. Additionally she was able to tell her guardian when to pet her or give attention. When you combine the two, its not a stretch for the dog to become clingy and in some cases, develop separation anxiety.

Some dogs with separation anxiety actually get so anxious about things that they can loose control of their bowels. Because Daisy was having accidents when left home alone, its possible this was no accident. However, I promised the guardian I would include a link to a video that has remedial potty training tips in case its a potty training issue and not Separation Anxiety. You can watch that video by clicking this link.

If this is a case of Separation Anxiety, adding in rules and structure will help her feel less responsible for her human and also help her develop more self control. I suggested a number of rules to implement and showed the guardian how to use the set of Escalating Consequences I developed to enforce them.

I also suggested her start Petting with a purpose and using passive training to reward her for desired actions and behaviors. These types of positive dog training go a long way towards eliminating dog problems as they teach the dog what you want and provide them with an incentive.

A great way to help Daisy develop self control is one of my favorite dog training exercises; teaching a dog to stay. Although I am primarily a dog behavior expert, I do some basic dog training. You can watch me train the stay in the video below.

It will be important to progress gradually. First mastering the stay for duration, then for distance and finally amongst distractions. The mistake most people make is pushing too far, too fast. But like any other skill, you need to take it one step at a time.

Once Daisy can stay consistently for all three D’s, her guardian will be able to help her practice being alone by asking her to stay while he gets a drink of water, uses the bathroom and eventually leave the home. Each time he should increase the duration progressively until he can leave for work and Daisy stays calm and content without having an accident in the house.

We wrapped up the session by shooting a roadmap to success covering all the dog training secrets I shared with her guardian in this in home dog training session.

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This post was written by: David Codr

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