Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Travel Do’s and Overcoming Separation Anxiety


Hi Y’all,

The other day I was reading observations about us, dogs, and how we behave (to read it yourself go here).

The article is about how we pawed ones love routine.  My Humans are VERY routine oriented.  Having spent so much time with horses, who demand routine, they obey my schedule pretty well. 

It’s very comforting to us pawed ones to know when our next outing or feeding will come.

Y’all remember when you got your new puppy?  Remember for the housebreaking that you were told to take the puppy out shortly after eating, drinking, playing or immediately upon awakening?  It works for us old guys too. 

Yep we can “hold it” longer than a puppy, but if you want us to “go” “on command”, take us out on a schedule.  I go out within 15 minutes of eating, take a short walk, signal to Human it’s time for some privacy and go off in the bushes for a few seconds.  Human goes on her way, so I always get a good run to catch up. 

Same routine goes with meals.  I can tell time.  I know, sometimes I try to trick my Human into feeding me early.  However, she shows me her watch and tells me “too early”.  With a sigh I have to go off and lay down to wait.    

It’s much less stressful for me when I know what to expect.  I know when I call my Human too early in the morning, she’ll get up and take me out, then, when we’re back inside, she’ll send me back to bed.  Then she goes back to bed. I’ve tried asking for food, but she has a great way of ignoring me.  I rattle the bowl on top of my crate, but my Human just walks back and returns to bed. 

When I call her at the correct time, she’ll get up and start the Humans’ breakfast, then feed me,  always within a minute or two of my proper feeding time. 

Okay, now that I know my routine, what happens when you suddenly change it?  You know, y’all have to do people stuff and we’re not included…unless of course, you’re a working/service dog. 

My Humans let me know ahead of time time when I’m not going to be included, so I’m not stressed out…which I do tend to get…can’t help it , sometimes I feel like I’m comin’ out of my skin!!!

First, I can tell if they are just off for the day without me or we’re going on a trip. 

My Human gets up, usually before I call her, and goes straight to fix my breakfast before starting breakfast for her and Papa.  When she is dressed, she puts my collar on and we go outside for my walk.  Usually by now Papa is up and either dressing or helping finish their breakfast.  After they eat, I get another quick “pee run”.  This time when I come in, my Human removes my collar.  This only happens when they are leaving me at home.  So, I just settle down.  No point in getting excited, ‘cause I won’t get to go. 

When it comes time for them to leave, each Human gives me a “treat” on the way out the door.  You might be thinking “bribe”, but I consider it payment for watching the house in their absence.

Tomorrow find out how my Humans handle my excitement and the suitcases. 

Y’all come back now!






  1. Hey we try tricking our humans into feeding us early too and it never works. Maybe we should try to come up with a better plan together?

    the 2 brown dawgs

  2. We agree that routines are good for dogs..we even stick to our routine while camping with the dogs!

  3. Woof! Woof! Can totally relate ... we are a very ROUTINE oriented. I think it is very very important for both for dogs n owners. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

    FYI: It's Tasty Tuesday on my blog today + giveaway. Check it out. Golden Woofs, Sugar

  4. Hawk you are very wise as always!

    We have a feeding routine here and Hannibal and Uncle Fred are the real time-tellers. Hannibal usually tries to cheat though and convince the parents the clocks must be wrong. It hasn't worked yet.

    As for potty schedule....well we do have a schedule and Hannibal is super-behaved and Butter is pretty good, but I am only 9 lbs so don't always feel I should have to dirty my paws outdoors! As a result my girl Kats bedroom door and all the bathrooms have to stay closed. Ridiculous!

    Sugar the Who

  5. Routines are good for everyone : ) Love the detail in this post and the photos.

  6. Great post! You're right, it is very comforting to have routines. When I'm late sometimes, Kiva flings a sock over the screen to remind me to step away from the computer! ;)

  7. Really enjoyed the "What Dogs Do" post and yours, Hawk! I like the idea of giving a treat as payment for watching the house! I'm going to start doing that with Mason. Thanks for the tips!

    -Chandra at Daley's Dog Years

  8. That's so nice of you Hawk to go and lay back down when it's too early for a meal. I wish my dogs were as considerate as you! They just stare at me until I give in, haha.