I'm a single-dog-mom of Poppy who's 4.5 months old. We are doing pretty well together, but lately I've noticed she gets more and more anxious every time I walk out of sight. These past few days I've noticed that when I put her in her crate at night and then walk around the corner and through the kitchen into my bedroom, she begins to bark her head off, panicked, as I'm leaving (even if I usually give her a treat to have in her crate before I go). I try to do the same thing every night (Treat, she runs in her crate, I shut the door, say "Goodnight Poppy" and turn off all the nights to indicate it's bedtime (then I go to my room to stay up on the computer or something). That's when she starts barking - it's not for very long (unless she has to go out one last time
before bed, but usually I can figure that out) but LOUDLY for a few minutes before settling down. In the past she's sort of whimpered or whined until quieting down but it's like she has discovered that she has this great bark and does that instead. She will cry and fuss if I put her in the crate and stay in the living room with her, and sometimes will bark occasionally, but nothing like the "Goodnight Poppy" barking.
Question is: is there anything I can do to make this experience easier on her? Is there more socialization I should be doing? Is it a fear thing? I have left her with other people overnight a few times and have heard that she's fine after I walk away for awhile, but it's hard when I'm not quite leaving for overnight but still have to have a friend hold her while I run into a store or something like that.
(weirdly enough, she will sit quietly in my car if I have to run into a store quickly...)
She is FINALLY all vaccinated and has her kennel cough etc and will be going to doggie daycare twice a week so I'm hoping that having more dog-socialization will help? At least she will be able to spend time with people other than me!
When we go out and about she is super friendly to everyone we meet, she will play with kids and is SO gentle with little ones (I am always crouched with my hand near her collar in case she makes any kind of move - no chances).
The thing is, even though she gets upset when I'm out of sight, she still gives me attitude and likes to bite at me, or snarl a little (playfully if that's possible?). A lot of the biting is still puppy-ish so I'm hoping she will grow out of it. But it definitely feels sometimes that we are roommates not owner/dog. Ack!