Home alone - and happy! Essential life skills for preventing separation anxiety in dogs and puppies

Separation anxiety is the inability of a dog to cope emotionally when apart from us, and 30% of dogs - or possibly more - may suffer in some way.

Waiting for mum...

Dogs are sentient beings. They freely express their emotions, such as joy, friendship and play.

Joy
Friendship
Play

They form strong bonds with us and are our best friends. We spend large parts of our daily lives in their company, and they are part of our family.

This means that some struggle to cope without us and we often only attend to their home-alone needs when separation anxiety develops.

Disappointment that you are leaving can snowball into anxiety problems if you don't take action

This is especially true in puppies who are often left alone with little thought about how they may feel without us. Imagine being removed from your mother, brothers and sisters, placed in a strange country where no-one spoke your language, and left alone. And you are only little...

Some dogs don't show overt signs of anxiety such as barking or destructiveness, but still suffer disappointment and stress when you leave them alone. Severe separation anxiety is a serious problem, however you can take preventative measures before problems arise.

Mature dogs as well as puppies can benefit from having their home-alone environment enriched, too.
And Golden oldies may benefit from more home-alone comforts as they age.

Home alone - and happy! will give you the knowledge to teach your puppy and adult dog the skills he needs to enjoy his own company, and show you how to thoughtfully introduce these tools without them causing anxiety because they become associated with your leaving.

It will give you tips on creating a relaxing environment for your dog, and explain how to effectively use scent, toys, music and food to set your dog up for success. Evaluation assessment sheets will help you chart your dog's progress and level of home-alone comfort to keep you on track.

Foraging is an instinctive behaviour that engages your dog's mind, body and soul... and Snuffle Mats make a great home-alone activity!

Start teaching home-alone skills now! Chop up about ten highly scented treats. Place a treat in the middle of a large towel, fold the towel in half and then place another treat on it. Repeat until all the treats are gone and the towel is folded into a small square. Give this to your dog or puppy, and when he is happily engaged in foraging, leave the room. Practice regularly and your dog will soon look forward to you leaving him!

Home Alone - and Happy! will give you all the skills you need to make your dog's time alone an enjoyable one.

"Speaking from personal experience, I would not wish separation anxiety on any dog or owner. This problem leads to thousands of dogs being re-homed each year, and the more we can do to prevent it the better. This book educates owners about the risks of separation problems, and the importance of teaching their dog or puppy the valuable life skills of how to cope with – and even enjoy – their alone time before problems arise.” Lucy Aalders, trainer, Institute of Modern Dog Trainers & Pet Professional Guild
Over eighty colour photographs by professional photographer Cheryl Murphy.
Written by professional canine behaviourist Kate Mallatratt, member of International Canine Behaviourists and Pet Professional Guild for force-free training.
Foreword by professional dog trainer and TV personality Nando Brown, owner of the popular Facebook page Incredimal, charting the positive reinforcement training of his Malinois dog Fizz
"Separation anxiety is distressing for both the dog and his owner. The focus of Kate’s book is preventative ‘medicine', and it is full of practical tips. I highly recommend it for any dog owner, but especially the new puppy owner who would like to be able to leave their dog home alone – and happy! Nando Brown
This book will teach you the skills to help your dog or puppy to enjoy his own company and future-proof his emotional and physical well-being, for life.

Published by Hubble & Hattie. Release date 24 June 2016. Available from Amazon.

w: www.contemplatingcanines.com | e: kate@contemplatingcanines.com

© Text Kate Mallatratt Contemplating Canines 2016. © Pictures Cheryl Murphy 2016 www.cam-ography.co.uk

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