Back to School Separation Anxiety

It’s time to go back to school! That means the kids are now out of the house, the days get shorter, and the house gets quieter. Back to school season can affect pets more then we know.

Symptoms of separation anxiety:

  • Agitated or seems anxious or depressed as owners prepare to leave.
  • Urinating and defecating.
  • Barking and howling.
  • Chewing, digging or destruction of the household.
  • Escaping from where confined when left alone or separated from the owner.
  • Pacing in a fixed pattern when separated.
  • Dog defecates and consumes all or some of their excrement.
  • If these actions are done out of separation anxiety, they typically aren’t performed in front of owners.

Ways to help your pet cope with separation anxiety:

  • Before any changes, ease into it ahead
  • Leave them with their favourite toy, an old t-shirt or even their favourite treat to snack on.
  • Leave them with interactive toys to keep them busy. (Treat puzzle/balls, a treasure hunt with treat throughout the house).
  • A daily routine of exercise (Morning and evening walk, quality playtime, training).
  • Consult with an experienced dog trainer or animal behaviourist.
  • Talk with your veterinarian about anti-anxiety medications.

If you are concerned that your pet might be suffering from separation anxiety, talk with your veterinarian for the appropriate treatment plan for your pet.

Written by: Monica Blanchard, RVT