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Dog behaviourist: Separation anxiety sa mhadraí is similar to a human's panic attack


SEPARATION OR ISOLATION anxiety are very common fadhbanna that approximately one in seven dogs struggle with; dogs that suffer from these conditions have eagla agus faitíos about being left completely alone or scartha from a particular individual.


The severity may differ, but a dog’s staid mhothúchánach at that time is comparable to duine éigin having a panic attack.



Because madraí live in the moment, those that suffer from this type of anxiety believe they are permanently isolated or scartha from their cúramóirí daonna. Separation anxiety in turn is also incredibly stressful (insan ábhar mór) for the human caregiver mar it prohibits a dog being left alone for even a tréimhse.


Separation anxiety can be difficult to leigheas because in many cases, a madra will begin to show gníomhaíochtaí imní long before their caregiver leaves due to the anticipation of a bheith alone or gan their person. Some dogs with separation anxiety are go brea when their person leaves, but cannot handle more than a certain length of time alone.


When a dog experiences separation anxiety, their brain’s chemical balance is thrown off. The sympathetic nervous system is activated, causing them to respond with a fight, flight or freeze reaction to the perceived danger.


The release of hormones (cosúil le cortisol and adrenaline) floods their brain and causes freagraí fisiciúla that include increased heart rate, alertness, and more blood flow to muscles so they are réidh to act. This physiological response is léargasach of separation anxiety.



These physical changes in the dog are reflexive and involuntary, meaning they have no control over themselves. This means that a dog isn’t making a cinneadh cuimsitheach to behave in this way and they are not purposely ag iarraidh to aggravate you nuair atá tú imithe.


How do you know if your dog has separation anxiety?


Some separation anxiety symptoms are more soléir than others. When evaluating a dog’s symptoms it is tábhachtach that a madra is only showing these symptoms while alone or apart from their significant companion.


The most common síntíomaithe imní scartha seen in dogs are:


  • Vocalisation.

  • Barking, sínteán, and/or howling

  • Chewing scriosach or scriosadh. Especially destruction at exit ways (windows, doors, gates, crate doors)

  • Accidents leithreas when otherwise the dog is fully housetrained.

  • Pacing (Corraíocht), drooling (Leoraíocht) and/or panting (Pántú) Watching the door expectantly (Ag faire ag an doras le díograis) for their person’s return

  • Licking (Léimniú) or chewing (Déanamh dromchla) on themselves repetitively (arís agus arís eile).


Ach i gcásanna éagsúla and the more likely reason for this behaviour is undiagnosed discomfort or an allergy ailléirge. Ag leanúint an duine nuair atá siad ar an mbealach bhaile, and unable to relax without knowing where that duine is at all times. But the only real way to identify imní scartha is to record your madra during your absence ón mbaile and observe their behaviour.

Managing imní scartha i do theach?

To get the best torthaí with imní scartha, ensure that your dog remains calm. Panic prevents foghlaim and any effort to cabhair will be useless if your pup is too scared to take it in.


Establishing or restoring muinín so that your madra knows go bhfillfidh tú is the key.

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