Train Your Dog to Deal with Separation Anxiety
Considering investing in a puppy for your family? Start training your puppy early on to deal with separation. Put them in an enclosed space such as a kitchen or bathroom that still gives them enough room to move around. Leave the area until the puppy is quiet. If you return while the puppy is still whining it will reinforce the behavior even more. When you return to the quiet puppy, greet and praise him.
Repeat this process and slowly increase the time you stay away. Always praise the puppy and give lots of affection when you return. Keep in mind, bored dog can become a destructive dog. As your time away gets longer, you may want to leave your puppy with a puzzle toy that keeps their attention. If your dog does chew something when you are gone, do not reprimand the puppy unless you physically catch them in the act. Otherwise they will associate your return with punishment and develop anxiety.
Even when left alone for fifteen minutes, always make sure your puppy has fresh water and is in a comfortable environment. Don’t leave them in a freezing cold or sweltering hot space.
All that being said, not all whining is created equal. Sometimes dogs whine if they can’t reach a toy, they’ll whine if they need to go to the bathroom, or they might whine if they’re in pain or not feeling well. So it is important to take the time to figure out the cause of the whining.
One last note: dogs are pack animals so they need interaction and attention. Leaving a dog home alone for many hours day in and day out can result in behavioral problems down the road.