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how to teach your GSD to behave when you aren't home? i think we're regressing!

893 Views 5 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Castlemaid
We adopted our GSD about a year ago, and she just turned two. We crated her at first, but it turned out she had some issues with separation anxiety, so we axed the crate and started gating her in the kitchen. She was doing much, much better in there, but our neighbors were complaining that she barked at them a lot when we aren't home (she can't stand these people for some reason...she's fine with the other neighbors).

A while back, we moved her into the dining room. With the exception of a few incidents where we left something tempting within her reach, she was doing just as well in there as she did in the kitchen. And the neighbors stopped complaining. And yes, we leave her with toys.

Then about a week ago we came home and Sasha was in the living room instead of the dining room. All the baby gates were still up. Since then, she has started jumping the gate every single day, and the last few days she's starting tearing things up once she gets into the living room.

We have no idea what to do. How do we train her to stay put while we're away? We gated her in the dining room tonight while we're in the living room and she hasn't tried to get over the gate once.

Any tips? In terms of training, products to try, anything? Ideas about why she's suddenly jumping gates and destroying things? We're desperate.
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Unfortunately you dealt with the symptoms of the separation anxiety, but not the anxiety itself. Separation anxiety will usually keep reasserting itself unless we deal with the root issue-- the anxiety from being left alone. The issue of dealing with it has been dealt with a lot on this forum, do a search and you'll find a lot of wisdom.
In all honesty one of our dogs had seperation anxiety pretty badly. It got to the point that she was a crate escape artist. We had to muzzle her when we crated her and tie the door shut with 550 cord. She couldnt be in a wire kennel when we left either. it HAD to be the plastic. After a little while we were able to stop muzzling her but still had to tie her in. She no longer barks and howls and throws a fit. I know its not the best way to go but we got desperate and a level 3 escape proof crate is out of our price range right now. My husband accidently left her out in his rush to bring me something at work one night and came home to find NO damage. With her, i think we've just convinced her we always come home. We tried the leaving the TV on for her but she KNEW we were not home so it didnt work. We tried leaving the radio on, again didnt work. You have to find out what works for them. Its work but i can be done.
Get two baby gates for the room you are trying to keep her in and double them up or get an extra tall gate she can't jump.
Double gate the doorways and work on ending the SA. Don't just manage it, cure it.
Get two baby gates for the room you are trying to keep her in and double them up or get an extra tall gate she can't jump.
That's what I do for my gate jumper: one on top of the other.
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