dogs adjusting to a new family or separation anxiety

Hey guys! I wanted to start a thread about leaving your pug home alone. The first day I left Baxter home alone he didn't bark or anything, that I heard. The next day I spent th night at my brother's house and my boyfriend hung out with Baxter all night. When I got home Baxter had been alone for 2 and a half hours and appeard to have just woken up from a nap. Then I left like 30 minutes later to get a cup of coffee and go to the bank and Baxter freaked! He scratched the door and barked and howled and acted like he thought he would never see me again when I returned! I did a lot of research before getting a dog and must have missed any information about an "adjustment period" when you first bring your dog home. So I got on the internet and googled what Baxter was doing and of course pathalogical separation anxiety was mostly what came up! That was really really upsetting to me. Then I started asking around and it turns out like all dogs do this when they move to anew home and eventually I did find information about this phase of "separation anxiety" during the adjustment period and that made me feel a lot better. Baxter is doing A LOT better being left alone but I am looking for some new stuff to try with him. Right now I give him a peanutbutter filled Kong (this is very distracting at first but once he has licked all the peanutbutter out he realizes he is alone and whimpers and does a little barking, the door scratching has stopped thank the lord lol) If it is frozen he isn't interested in it so I can't use that. I also leave classical music on for him and leave without saying good bye and return without saying hi. Oh also I gave him an old shirt. I read about the DAP plug in and this thing called a Thunder Shirt and I am wondering if any of you have tried either of those? Also how long did it take for your dog to not freak out while you were gone. I have heard mostly a month or two but some say 6 months to a year. Oh also my little guy is well exercised and thinks I am the alpha! I guess I'd also just like to hear some stories and tips about leaving your pug alone?Thank you!


KatB (about 8 years ago)

CaliBug, You have really done your home work. Bless your heart. A separation anxiety dog, can be a problem. I would like to say the it can be corrected completely, but with some it can't. I own one. My Minpin. It has taken years for her to settle down and be trusted in the house without a human. All the things you have done with your Baxter are all things I would do. My advise is don't give up, when one thing doesn't work, try another. Pugs don't like being left alone. They are companion dogs. That is what they were made to do. Being alpha is great, but, remember that dogs are pack animals, and when the alpha is not in the picture the pack falls like a deck of cards. HA! Keep doing the things your doing, and always look for new things to try. One thing you can do is, when you must leave? LEAVE! Don't make a fuss, OH Baxter you be good now. Don't make a big ta do out of goin. He is watching you and your behavor. And picking up on how you are feeling. Dogs can do this. So he already knows that you are getting ready to leave, and he is getting anxieous already. If he feels you are not anxieous about leaving he will learn not to be. So be calm. Just grab your keys and go. Hope this helps ya.

Mom2Pugs (about 8 years ago)

Welcome Calipug and Baxter! I can totally relate to your issue with seperation anxiety! My male pug, Desi has it. When anyone leaves he starts huffing and puffing and twirls in circles sometimes even hitting the wall next to the door. One thing that has helped him is someone pretends to leave when he starts the fit someone distracts him by making a loud noise. We had to do this over and over! LOL. But it helped leaving the TV on also helps. But he still cued off of the sound of keys, so we walked around with keys 24/7. Now we are dropping a treat he can't resist in a bowl I the kitchen just before leaving he goes to the treat...we leave! Wow! Finally something that keeps him from throwing his fit!
My name is Marti and my two pugs are Desi and Bella!

CaliBug (about 8 years ago)

Thank you guys! I am glad I don't seems to have a dog with legitimate separation anxiety. He has been doing great being alone except today he pooped in the house because he didn't get to go outside long enough before I left. At first I had a hard time just sneaking out because he is a pug and followed me everwhere! He gets really exicted for me to leave now because he getsPEANUTBUTTER! I am going to leave him with my friend's pug sometimes during school which actually makes me think of another question. I know pugs don't do well in heat or very cold temps but would it be okay to leave a pug in a yard when it is like 60 or 70 degrees? I live in southern Arizona and while it gets VERY HOT here it never really gets too cold.

KatB (about 8 years ago)

CaliBug, That temp. is fine, but remember to pug proof any yard. If it were me. I would NOT leave a pug unattended in a yard. They are companion dogs and like being with their human, and also they are very nosie little dogs and can find trouble when they least expect it. I let mine out to do the do's for only about 10 to 15 min. when I can't watch them. When out longer I am always with them. Pugs are NOT outside dogs.

RosienMikeysMom (about 8 years ago)

my guys have always been great when i leave them alone as long as i say " i'll be right back, be good babies, rosie's in charge". if i don't say that, they go hysterical...crying, barking, going nuts, even if i'm just going to the mailbox. i think they need the whole routine, this way they know that i am coming back cause i always did. silly pugs!

as far as leaving your pug outside, i'm just not a fan of leaving any dog outside for an extended amount of time unsupervised. i have a fenced in yard but i still worry what trouble they can get into, if someone or something gets into the yard or even someone stealing them...yes, i know, i'm a bit over protective. i'm always checking on my guys when they are out even though they are usually just snoozing on the deck.

RedRoss9 (about 8 years ago)

I'm so happy to see that someone else puts a pug in charge when they leave!  We rotate who is in charge, and we're working up to leaving the two fosters in charge!  When Stan, Buggy, or Big Biscuit are in charge, things seem to go very well.  When Molly is in charge, however, we run an 80% chance of finding the house littered with cleverly placed poop traps.  Behind the front door, so that you drag the door through it then step in it.  In the corner behind the end table, where you can smell it but can't see it.  Under a nicely arrange pile of newspapers.  In the hallway that is always dark.  Gotta love my Molly-girl!

CaliBug (about 8 years ago)

Yeah I think I'm going to try and get my friend the bring his dog over to my house where they can stay inside! I really don't wanna leave my sweet little guy outside. I can't stand the thought of anything happening to him. On the plus side since I'm a student I have lots of breaks between classes and usually go home since I live like 3 minutes from campus. He did GREAT while I was gone today! I am si happy he is getting comfortablewith his new home.

KatB (about 8 years ago)

CaliBug, I am so happy you get to spend so much time with your pugger. That all they want. And it sure shows how much you care.

RedRoss! Those poop traps are not for you! Those are for the burglars. Remember home alone????? HAHAHAHAHA!  Smart thinkin Molly.

Zuji (9 months ago)

~ The descriptions of separation anxiety sound frustrating for all concerned.

Pugs are so social, needing to be a part of whatever is going on.