Top tips for separation anxiety

Sep 2, 2018

You know the deal. You leave for work and your dog goes nuts (with sadness). You come home and your dog goes nuts (with happiness). While you were out he’s rummaged in the bin, ruined another pair of shoes and ripped up the box of tissues. Oh and howled the house down. Sound familiar? Your dog may have separation anxiety.

Before you call doggy daycare for help, Doggy Grub has a few handy tips…

Dog behind a window- Doggy grub Blog


Start by leaving your dog alone for a few minutes, then gradually increase the time to 10, then 20 minutes and so forth – until you can leave for a day’s work. This will help your dog become accustomed to time on his/her own – and hopefully minimise the distress and destruction!


Have toys with food handy - this will take your dog at least 20-30 minutes to eat while you’re away, which will take his/her mind off things. Like you being gone! Better yet, hide your dog’s Doggy Grub so they have to find it – yup, another sneaky tactic to keep them distracted!

Also scatter some dog chew toys around the house, which will preoccupy your pooch while they’re home alone.


Before you head out, take your dog for a walk. Visit a dog park for a quick play (fetch or tug-of-war works a treat!). Try a new route for new smells and sounds. Jog down the beach. Whatever it is, your dog will love it because it’s bonding time, a change of scenery and best of all - exercise, which will tire out lil rover. Upon returning, give your dog water and a treat while she/he rests. This will allow for a better exit!

Dog looking out a window_ Doggy Grub Blog


Speaking of exits – try and make a swift exit and don’t draw out a loooong goodbye. In fact, don’t even touch, talk or make eye contact with your dog. The trick is to not make a big deal when you leave. Same rules apply for when you return. Upon returning, greet your dog softly and calmly and only attend to him/her when he/she is calm and quiet. This business as usual approach means you’re telling your dog that time apart is no big deal. If this (kinda cold) approach doesn’t work for you then say goodbye and give cuddles well before you leave.


Keep calm and carry on… Dogs can pick up on nervous energy so before you leave the house for the day, keep calm and carry on! Make like everything is going to be okay. This calmness will rub off on to your pooch! Trust us.

Apply the above (over some time) and hello happy, confident and independent dawg! And always remember ignore attention-seeking behavior, reward your dog for being calm and relaxed, and everyone wins. Woof!

Disclaimer: severe cases of separation anxiety may require the help of a behavioural dog trainer.

Want to be the first to get your paws onto the hottest topics? Subscribe to our newsletter!


The Doggy Grub blog is dedicated to help dogs and their owners achieve happier, healthier lives, changing the way we feed our dogs one bowl at a time! If you would like to know more about our fresh food head to Doggy Grub

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.