Dealing with your Dog's Separation Anxiety

Have you ever come home to find your pillows reduced to white fluff all over the floor? Your dog may be suffering from separation anxiety. Separation anxiety in dogs is more common a problem than many people think. According to the University of Illinois, 20 to 40% of dogs suffer from this. It can have detrimental effects on your dog, such as aggression, lack of house-training and other anti-social behavior. 

You may wonder – how will I know if my dog is suffering from separation anxiety if I’m not around to see it? There are some telltale signs that you can look out for when you come home:

  • Destruction of furniture, door frames, etc
  • Indoor “accidents”
  • Howling or barking heard by neighbours
  • Self-trauma (excessive licking of paws, back-end)

It is natural for young animals to experience some sort of anxiety when separated with their parents and you can help reduce this by getting your puppy used to being alone for increasing amounts of time. There are multiple ways you could do this

Conditioning

Getting your dog used to you being away can be difficult, but breaking it up into small amounts of time can make this task easier.

  1. First, leave your dog alone for 5 minutes, even just by waiting outside your door quietly.
  2. Then, when you come back, reward them with a treat.
  3. Repeat this several times and then increase the time to 10 minutes.
  4. Once again, repeat this several times.
  5. Do this a few times a day and keep increasing the time you leave your dog alone.
  6. Don't forget to keep rewarding your dog with treats every time you come back

This process requires patience and will take a few weeks, but it is extremely effective.

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The Blue Cross suggests doing this with a stair gate when you are going upstairs as “practice” for when you actually leave the house. 

Crate Training

Keeping your dog in a crate when you leave limits the space they have to pace in and the things they can destroy. A crate gives them a quite, safe place they can stay in while you are gone. Partially covering your crate with a towel or blanket can provide them with even more comfort. Some dogs, however, do not take well to the crate and it actually increases their anxiety. Monitor your dog in the crate first before leaving them alone to see if this method will work for you.

Exercise

This method is important for large dogs that have a lot of energy. Your dog is less likely to be anxious and pacing when you leave if it has been exercised, as it will be more tired and content. Providing toys for your dog to play with when you leave is important. This method alone may not be enough, and can be combined with the two above methods.

Music

Believe it or not, playing music can also help calm your dog. The Journal of Veterinary Behavior published a study that showed that kennel dogs spent more time sleeping if they were listening to classical music. So next time you leave your dog alone, maybe put on some Chopin! 

Helpful Hints

It is important to remember to not pay too much attention to your dog’s whining and barking, no matter how hard that may be! Rewarding their bad behavior with attention will condition them to think “barking = attention”, and so it is important to “play it cool”, as the American Kennel Club says. 

Medical treatment is always a last option if nothing else has worked. Vets can prescribe medication that can treat depression, anxiety or panic disorders. Natural supplements can also be given, such as chamomile, however these have not been officially proven to reduce a dog’s anxiety.

Felcana can monitor your pet’s activity – an increase in activity and pacing when you are gone may indicate that your pet has separation anxiety. Tracking these patterns on your phone will help you identify this and bring it up to the vets so they can provide you with solutio

The Influence of Felcana on the Veterinary Industry

How many times have you taken your pet to the vet, only to be unable to accurately answer questions such as “has your pet been eating/drinking more?” or “how active is your pet usually?”. With the ongoing movement to a primarily technological world, it is no surprise that pet technology is a quickly-developing field. Felcana’s digital pet health centre not only monitors your pets’ activity but also tracks their habits – including drinking, urination and sleeping patterns – and allows you to access these activities or behaviours daily on an easy-to-use app on your phone. Meet Felcana.

As a pet owner, you naturally want to be able to provide the best care for your animal and treat their problems as quickly as possible. Equally, it's difficult to accurately monitor your pet's daily activities. Unfortunately, many diseases start as subtle changes in your pet's behaviour, such as a variation in food consumption or urination that are usually difficult to accurately pick up on as a pet owner. Felcana wants to change that. 

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Felcana’s method is straight-forward: Predict, Simplify, Treat. Identification of early changes and disease improves prognosis. Owners will not only be able to take action before medical treatment is necessary, they will be able to predict if their pet is likely to develop problems in the future – such as diabetes or arthritis. This will assist you in choosing the right insurance plan for your pet. Being able to identify issues earlier means that owners will also be able to save money on vet visits and avoid pet travel stress by speaking to one of Felcana’s veterinary professionals online. Although the average person visits the vet 3-4 times a year, one cannot predict when disease processes can occur. Did you know that a total hip replacement (THR), a treatment for late-stage hip dysplasia, can cost up to £10’000. Not only will Felcana allow you to identify disease processes like this earlier on, but it will give you the option to speak to a veterinary professional online, which will save you money on consults and late-stage treatment. 

From a vet’s perspective, Felcana understands the importance of accurate record keeping in the veterinary industry and because of this, vets will no longer need to guess your pets’ habits. Felcana will help them achieve a quicker, more definitive and streamlined diagnosis. Vets will also save time on unnecessary consultations, improving time management and client satisfaction. Many diseases can be prevented with good management and a proper diet and Felcana aims to move the veterinary industry to prevention-based medicine, as opposed to treatment after disease diagnosis. Felcana will also give the vet the ability to monitor an animal post-treatment to see if it is reacting well to treatment or whether another treatment or management change is necessary.

Felcana aims to provide a simplified and quicker way to identify and treat problems for both owners and vets, ultimately creating a digitally seamless veterinary care model. Felcana will improve animal welfare and prognosis by diagnosing diseases earlier, and will reduce costs for owners, vets and insurance companies, all while making the transition of veterinary medicine into the future of modern pet care.

Big Milestone Achieved!

Big Milestone Achieved!

Last week, we received the first batch of our Felcana Kit from China! This means we are one step closer to getting our amazing product in your hands! We are currently carrying out coordinated testing to make sure the Kit is perfect. In the meantime, check out some photos from our China trip visiting our manufacturers and suppliers.

Giveaway time! Part 2/3 - Facebook prize draw

Giveaway time! Part 2/3 - Facebook prize draw

Felcana will be participating at the Ideal Home Show at Christmas this year, the biggest and best Christmas home show in the UK! To kickstart the festive celebrations, Felcana is giving away a pair of free tickets to Ideal Home Show on our Facebook page. We are also giving you a special discount code as long as you participate! Our last sweepstakes of the series is next week, so stay tuned!

Giveaway time! Part 1/3 - Instagram prize draw

Giveaway time! Part 1/3 - Instagram prize draw

This year, Felcana will be showcasing at the annual Ideal Home Show, the biggest and best Christmas home show in the UK! To celebrate the most loved holiday of the year - Christmas! - Felcana have decided to give away three pairs of free tickets to Ideal Home Show over the next two weeks. This marks the first of the series, so make sure you stay tuned to our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or our blog!

Quick Checklist and Tips When Adopting A Shelter Dog

Quick Checklist and Tips When Adopting A Shelter Dog

Adopting a dog or a puppy is a big commitment - in terms of the time, money, and effort you need to put in. It's not a decision that should be made hastily. If you have finally decided to adopt a dog from the shelter, Felcana has put together a checklist for you on the big day! In the same post, we have also write down a list of tips before and after your new family member arrives home. 

17 Tips for What You Can Do for Your Dog This Winter

17 Tips for What You Can Do for Your Dog This Winter

"Winter is coming, but what do I do with keeping a dog in the winter?" Luckily, Felcana's vet team has put together 17 useful tips that will help you prepare for what's coming and make sure your dog stays healthy in the cold weather.

Dog Diet: What to feed my dog?

Dog Diet: What to feed my dog?

How do you know if your dog is eating a healthy, balanced dog diet? And what food is better for them - dry, canned, or semi-moist? 

It can be a bit of a maze working out how to feed your dog nutritious and healthy meals. So, we thought we'd make things simple and break down the different types of food available, and what nutrients your dog needs to be at his fittest and healthiest! 

11 tips and tricks for a healthy cat diet

11 tips and tricks for a healthy cat diet

Having some doubts about creating a balanced cat diet for your furry friend? Felcana’s brand new series of top cat care tips are here to help! 

Keeping your cat healthy with a balanced diet isn't as difficult as you might think. We've asked out specialist cat vets for their top 11 tips to help you keep your cat fit and healthy with the right food.

Dogs Diabetes: What is canine diabetes?

Dogs Diabetes: What is canine diabetes?

Most of us are aware of diabetes and the risks it poses to our own health. But did you know that you can also find diabetes in dogs?

In this mini-series, the Felcana veterinary team will be covering all the main questions you might have about dogs and diabetes, from how to detect the signs and symptoms of diabetes in dogs, to prevention, treatment and disease management.

A guide to your pet's vaccinations

A guide to your pet's vaccinations

August is National Immunisation Awareness Month!

We at Felcana always want you and your pets to be healthy, happy, and connected. As responsible pet owners, we need to make sure that we keep on top of our pet’s vaccinations every year. Your vet can go through it with you in more detail, but here are some of the vaccines you’ll likely receive on your visit.

Say Cheese! - Pet dental care explained

Say Cheese! - Pet dental care explained

You brush your teeth every day, but do you brush your pet’s teeth every day? Just like with in humans, dental care plays a vital role in the overall health of your pets. By taking a few minutes a day to spend on your pet’s oral hygiene, you can help fight off dental diseases and keep your pet’s teeth shiny and healthy!

Is my cat too fat?

Is my cat too fat?

More and more often, cats that present to the vets are overweight or obese. It’s estimated that between 40-55% of cats in the UK fall into the overweight or obese weight category. Chubby cats may look cute, but excess weight and body fat is dangerous and can predispose cats to disease like arthritis, urinary tract disease, and diabetes. Thankfully, being aware that this is a risk makes it easier for cat owners to assess their own cats and keep them fit and healthy.

Am I ready for a puppy?

Am I ready for a puppy?

 It seems no matter where you go or who you talk to, everyone has puppy fever nowadays. From group play dates in the park to puppy Instagram accounts, you can’t get away from the little paws and wagging tails. With all the cuteness around, maybe you’ve thought about getting a puppy of your own. But how do you know you’re ready?

How do I know that my pet is getting enough water?

How do I know that my pet is getting enough water?

Many of us lead hectic, busy lives where we’re out of the home for a portion of the day and not able to monitor accurately how much our pets are drinking. But as dedicated pet owners, we always want to make sure that our pets are getting enough fresh water to keep them healthy.

Firework friendly tips for your pet

Firework friendly tips for your pet

We all know that one of the most exciting parts of the 4th of July celebrations are the huge, beautiful fireworks displays all over the USA. However, fireworks aren’t very popular with pets.

In fact, research by the RSPCA has shown that 45% of dogs in the UK exhibit symptoms of fear when they hear fireworks. Felcana's vets have put together our top tips to keep your pets calm and safe during fireworks.

Keeping your pets cool this summer!

Keeping your pets cool this summer!

We're in the middle of a heatwave!And whilst the weather might seem glorious to you, for our fur covered friends it can get uncomfortable. In fact, high heats can even be very dangerous for them. 

It's important to understand that cats and dogs can't regulate their temperatures in the same ways we can, and what you can do to keep your pet healthy and comfortable during the hot summer months.