Separation anxiety is a complex behavioral issue in dogs. If your dog gets anxious or panics any time you leave home, then most likely he’s suffering from separation anxiety. Since this is a behavior that often gets worse if not managed properly, it’s very important that you consult a professional trainer or behaviorist to help you come up with the right management plan for him.
Perhaps you’ve thought about getting a second dog for your anxious first dog to make him feel less lonely when you’re not around. But is a second dog really the cure for separation anxiety? Continue reading to find out:
In Practice, It’s Not That Simple
In theory, a the second dog will provide your current dog with the much-needed company when you’re at work, thereby alleviating his loneliness, anxiety and stress. It makes perfect sense, right? It’s not that simple.
While it’s true that bringing another dog home may make your first dog feel less alone, his presence alone will not help change your first dog’s behavior if he suffers from separation anxiety from you.
The following scenarios are likely to happen when you bring a second dog home:
· Your first dog will feel less anxious because of the new companion.
· The first dog will still experience separation anxiety even when the second dog is around.
· The second dog will learn from the first that panicking and getting stressed when you leave is normal.
I understand that you’d like the first option to happen, but unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that it will.
Separation Anxiety Is A Complex Behavior
A dog that suffers from separation anxiety usually gets anxious any time his owner leaves. This happens even if the house is full of other animals or children. Sure, other pets may bring some temporary comfort to him, but they can’t cure his behavior. That’s because the anxiety comes when he’s separated from you (its owner) and not when he’s alone.
This behavior is complex and requires multiple methods, consistency and patience to get it under control. That’s why it’s recommended that you seek the help of a professional dog behaviorist or trainer to help you manage your dog’s separation anxiety.
Get Another Dog For The Right Reasons
Before you bring in a second dog, know that dogs learn from each other very fast. It’s possible that the new addition to your family will learn from the first dog that feeling anxious is normal when you’re not around. Do you want to deal with two dogs with separation anxiety? I hope not. So, what’s the way forward?
Work with a certified dog trainer or veterinarian to bring your dog’s problem under control first before bringing another one into the equation. Also, be sure that you and your family are ready to love and care for the new addition for as long as he’s alive. When you’re ready to get another dog, do so because you want to, and not because you hope he’ll cure your first dog’s separation anxiety.
All in all, there’s nothing wrong with bringing a second dog into your home. However, you should do so for the right reasons. Always remember that another dog requires at least 10 to 15 years of your commitment, so if you’re okay with this, then, by all means, go ahead and get him.