It is estimated that 15% of dogs have separation anxiety. It takes patience to help them improve their stressful habits, so that that they are no longer a danger to themselves, or to your home.
Signs and symptoms
The signs of separation anxiety are excessive barking when you are leaving, and whilst you are out. This can be particularly disruptive to neighbours. Many dogs are destructive in the home, will dig, pace and attempt to find a way out to come with you. Toileting indoors is also common and is another symptom of their distressed and agitated state of mind. There will often be times that you have to leave your Dachshund at home (even though we'd like to take them everywhere), it is important to deal with separation anxiety so that they feel happy and secure.
Have a leaving routine
When you leave the house, there is a routine. It may be putting on your shoes and jacket, picking up your keys and bag. Your clever Dachshund knows exactly what is going on and will react accordingly. Often there is barking, or they will be getting under your feet. It is very effective to desensitize them to your leaving routine, and this can be done over a number of weeks. Even when you're not leaving the house, pick up your keys and jangle them. Or put your shoes on and sit back down again. Go out of the house through a different door. You are essentially tricking your Dachshund, and helping them to be calm about the leaving routine. Over time, they will learn that the signs that they associated with going out, are nothing to worry about.
Create a safe space
It is important that your dog has its own bed to sleep in, a safe space for them to nap in whilst you are not there. Many dogs with anxiety issues respond well to being in a crate during this time. Try not to think of it as caging them in, you are merely providing them a secure area. It will also help if your Dachshund is destructive in your home. Finally, make sure that your little pet is getting plenty of exercise. It will make them happier and calmer.
Helping your Dachshund break the habit of separation anxiety may take a little time, but it will be worth doing. You and your dog will be less worried, and you will be able to leave the house knowing that your pet is safe and happy.