View Full Version : 1st time leaving dog anxiety

06-20-2016, 03:51 PM
It's been just over a month that we adopted our sweet puppy. She'll be 2 in October. We're taking her with us on a short camping trip and also to Southern Cal for a week to visit family. But, we do have one trip where she'll be staying with friends, since we can't take her. They have met her and spent time with her and their three kids all adore her. But, I’m having such a hard time with it! What if our pup is unhappy? She’s so attached to us and I’m having separation anxiety from her too, I guess. We’ll take her toys and blanket and other familiar things with her to our friend’s place, of course. She just saw them this morning and they are SO excited to have her for a week. They have dog-sat for our mutual friends and I know that they know what they are doing and LOVE dogs. Still, I’m having trouble with this. She is SO attached to our family. I’m not sure what I’m asking here. What can I do to make the trip emotionally easier for our pup? Anyone care to share their experience of the first time they left their puppy in someone else's care? It's still a month away and I can't get it out of my mind.

06-22-2016, 07:43 PM
We (well, I) feel like that when we leave our dogs too (both are rescues). I don't want them to feel abandoned again. They have been FINE when we left them, though. It sounds like she will have a ton of fun while you are gone! I'm not sure what else you need to do, but she will be fine. Some dogs do get a little depressed while their owners are gone, but it sounds like they will keep her occupied and busy, and she will be so happy to see you when you get home!

06-22-2016, 08:02 PM
Aww..I understand! I have cried when leaving a puppy and I have taken some crazy flights just to minimize time away. I had many sleepless nights while going through a divorce and worrying about who would take care of dog when I traveled. But, the dog has always been fine! Truly... I have done it all.. Boarded at vet, posh "pet spa", country kennel, friends, pet sitters and the dog is always fine! I would try to relax about it...the dog can pick up on your anxiety so just know that she will be fine & enjoy your trip!

06-22-2016, 10:41 PM
Bring a dirty t-shirt from your smelliest family member--helps make them happy. I know dogs that go to boarding/dogpark like places and they are sort of depressed when they go back home--all of the high intensity fun is gone--sort of like people coming home from vacation. She will be fine.

06-22-2016, 10:49 PM
Thanks guys. Good idea about leaving a smelly tee-shirt of ours for her. Intellectually, I know she'll be fine. My parents used to board our dog growing up, or leave him with an aunt or uncle and he was always happy to see us and totally fine. Maybe I'm more anxious since it feels like we've barely had her (2 1/2 months when we leave her) and we're already leaving her with someone else. I hope she's not too confused or worried. I wish I knew what she was thinking!

06-23-2016, 03:04 PM
Have you left her before? GoldPup has been left once for 8hours by himself (plans went south on us) and he was fine. He gave us the same happy dance we get when we come back after being gone an hour. OTOH, when DS & DH went to summer camp last year, the dog clearly missed them, watching the door and waiting. I was able to distract him and he seemed happy enough, but I could see he missed them, as did I. We both survived fine.

If there is truly separation anxiety, find out now and discuss with your vet. (Our previous dogs had separation anxiety regarding each other.) Would it be feasible to take the pup over to the family for a day away from your family?

eta: we sent a picture of GoldPup with DS when he went to camp per his request to combat DS missing GoldPup. Not rec'd by the camp, but you know yourself and if that would make your missing her better or worse.

07-04-2016, 06:31 PM
OP here, thought I'd report back. We left our sweet pup with a friend while we went on a two day camping trip. We dropped her off and came home to load up the car. It felt so strange to be in the house without her underfoot! But, while we were camping, I thought of her some, but not excessively. Our friends and their kids had a great time with her. I was so modified that she had an accident inside their house, but they didn't seem like it was a big deal to them. The first night, she apparently cried so long that they let her sleep with them. Usually she sleeps downstairs in her crate, at our house. The next night, they didn't even try to crate her and took her straight to their bed. Thankfully, she didn't expect that treatment last night when we were back at our house and willingly went into her crate to sleep. All in all, it wasn't as traumatic to us or to her, as I had worked myself up for. She did go crazy when she saw us and it was a endearing, mutual feeling. Next up, leaving her for 7 nights at the end of the month!

07-04-2016, 10:20 PM
Just remember--they act like you have left them for a week when you have simply been gone all day! Mine was really, really excited when i would pick him up from the kennel. This dog can stay at home with a sitter and he is still quite excited--although he gets a bit conflicted because the sitter is his "other mommy". Poor thing, it looks like his head will explode when both the sitter and I are in the room at the same time!