20 Apr Shadowing versus SA
“My dog follows me around all day. She doesn’t even let me go to the restroom alone.” Does that sound familiar to you?
There is so much information out there that puts shadowing and separation anxiety in the same bag.
The truth is that they are not necessarily correlated. Some dogs (many of them) shadow their owners around the house, but once they are left alone they are totally fine. Others don’t shadow their guardians at all, but they do suffer from separation anxiety when left home alone. And there are also the ones who do both.
That is why a proper assessment is needed before thinking that our dog might suffer from separation anxiety because he/she follows us around the house all the time.
Also, if we find out that our dog suffers from both, focusing primarily on a “home alone” training program instead of spending big part of our energy by implementing “no follow routines” will provide a higher rate of success, and it will likely still help decreasing the shadowing over time, as a side effect of the dog being relaxed when you leave him/her alone.