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It has been found that 20-40% of dogs suffer from separation anxiety. Like people dogs also react to stressful situations, and they display their emotions in different ways. Most dog owners have had some experience at try-ing to deal with their anxious pets.
Dog anxiety is triggered by a number of factors. Some of the most common reasons are separation from family members (their pack!), loud noises such as thunderstorms, and confinement which makes the dog feel trapped.
When a dog experiences fear it may stick in their memory and generate a negative response from your pet each time it happens.. Dogs may also develop phobias for certain objects, people or specific situations depending on past traumatic experiences.
Its hard to know sometimes if it is anxiety or plain old bad behaviour. Some of the symptoms you should look out for include constant barking and howling, toileting issues, aggression, withdrawal, and chewing (although all puppies go through this phase). Some dogs are escape artists, some bolt some dig. Before treating your dog for anxiety, it’s important that you first understand the source of stress.
How to help your dog
First, make a vet appointment to rule out rule out any medical issues. Second, always remain calm and consistent when dealing with an anxious dog. Punishment, or yelling will do little to change the behavior and will only in-crease the stress levels.