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Dog Friendly Tips: Avoiding Separation Anxiety

If you don't notice your dog needs to be let out a lot when you're home, yet your dog has 'accidents' when you are out, your dog may be feeling separation anxiety.

Dogs not used to being left alone can become destructive, may bark, or may urinate or defecate when they are perfectly trained not to.

To help your dog feel good about being left alone: Leave the house quickly. Avoid your typical routine of good-byes, putting on shoes, gathering your bags, or locking doors. Return after 1 minute. Then leave again and extend the time in 1 minute increments.

Whenever your dog shows anxious behavior, such as urinating, cut the time in half and build up again. Spending more one-on-one time with your dog and going to obedience training may also help build up your dog's confidence.

If you notice that your dog needs to spend pennies often when you are home, he or she may have a urinary infection or other condition.

Dog Friendly Article: How to Stop Your Puppy From Jumping on Your Sofa

My sister has a dog named Chase who used to jump and sleep on her sofa. When she decided to get new sofas, she knew she had to stop this behavior so he wouldn't ruin the new sofa. She finally got Chase to behave with time and practice. However, if you train a puppy to stop jumping on your sofa, you can control this behavior from the start.

Below are some tips to help stop your puppy from jumping up on your sofa.

1: The sofa is a forbidden area

Don't ever invite your puppy on the sofa even just for a minute as this can send the wrong message. It is equally important to make sure that all family members or friends refrain from inviting your puppy on your sofa. If one person allows your puppy on the sofa and another doesn't, it will confuse your pup.

2: Correct your puppy if he jumps on the sofa

If you catch your puppy in the act, then correct him or her. Tell your pup 'no' or 'off' the moment he or she jumps on the sofa. Lift your puppy off the sofa and place him or her on the floor. Once your puppy is on the floor, reward him or her with a dog toy. Make sure to use the same command each time, so your puppy starts to understand what you mean. Always lift your puppy off the sofa, because if he or she jumps off the sofa, your puppy can injure himself.

3: Provide comfortable alternatives for your puppy

Offer your puppy good alternatives to sleep and relax. Place cozy dog beds in areas of the house where your puppy might jump on a couch. Show and redirect your puppy the comfy pet bed after correcting his couch-jumping behavior.

4: Reward the good behavior

If your dog goes right to his bed, reward or praise your pup for good behavior. Leave toys on the bed and/or a t-shirt with your smell on it so your puppy feels comfortable and happy on the bed. Place your puppy's favorite bone near the bed to keep him busy chewing on that while he rests.

5: Make the sofa off limits when you are gone

In order to be consistent, it is important that the sofa is off limits even when you are not home. If your puppy is crate trained, place him in his crate when you are away. You can also place your puppy in a room that doesn't have access to a sofa, or provide a baby gate around his sleeping area so that your puppy can't even attempt to jump on the sofa. Your puppy has to know that even if you aren't at home, the sofa is always off limits.

With patience, training and consistent behavior on your part, your puppy can learn not to jump on the sofa.
Sarah R Sherlock

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