Identify the behaviour. Is it boredom, anxiety, loneliness, their breed tendency?

  • Would having company help?

  • Meaty lamb or beef raw bones

Good old fashioned meaty bones or pigs ears can also help. Dogs behaviour can change during the stay and can be different from a Meet & Greet.  However, researching the dog's breed beforehand and having a Meet & Greet will help you determine early on whether you, your pets, your property, and your family are a good match for the potential pooch to stay with.

  • Use a Barrier - Be resourceful, if another pet is causing them to react, can you use a barrier to separate the pets?

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Use Plywood scrap, or an outdoor table on its side

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Use a Baby Gate to block off no-go zones

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  • Long walks around the block twice a day.

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  • Balls, chew toys, ropes, kongs.

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  • Don't reinforce bad behaviour, reward good behaviour
  • Use enrichment toys to stagger feeding (rather than a whole bowl of food).

Slow feeder - put soft mince on this and get the dog to lick it


Dogs that don't like being left alone can be given a Kong as a distraction, containing cheese or 100% peanut butter and so they can be used as a tool for mild separation anxiety as the licking action also increases serotonin from the brain.

Stuff a kong with 100% peanut butter, or cream cheese

Kibble dispenser

Snuffle Matts 

Snuffle mats are an enrichment feeding mat, that is fantastic for brain stimulation, slowing down fast eaters and keeping them entertained.   They have to 'snuffle' to find pieces of kibble throughout the mat.

Thunder Shirts

Thunder Shirts works by applying a gentle, calming pressure around your dog’s torso. It’s like a “hug” and relaxes most dogs. 

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Pheromone Collars & Diffusers

These items mimic the pheromone that the mother dog produces to calm and reassure her puppies. Dogs recognize these Pheromones throughout life. It mimics the natural way to help dogs cope with new and fearful situations. The Lavender and Chamomile provide a soothing fragrance. There are a range of collars and sprays available from Pet Stores and some Vets stock plug in diffusers.

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Zylkene (made by Vetoquinol) is a capsule taken orally by pets and is an all-natural, non-sedating, drug-free nutritional supplement that can help to decrease anxiety in both dogs and cats. The active ingredient in Zylkene is alpha-casozepine which is derived from a protein in milk called casein.  You are able to pick up Zylkene from any Greencross Vet.

Chews - Complete Calm (made by Blackmores) are kangaroo based chews that contains Tryptophan, B group vitamins and a blend of multivitamins and nutrients to support the general health and nervous function in dogs.  You are able to pick up Complete Calm from any Greencross Vet.

Powders that added to food - Anxiety Aid make by Rufus & Coco is a dietary supplement for dogs and cats that aids in relieving anxiety which you can add to your pet's food.  Anxiety Aid is a professionally formulated palatable powder to help relieve anxiety in cats and dogs. It contains Tryptophan, an essential amino acid which converts to serotonin once consumed; along with other B group vitamins and minerals.

Medication under Vet Advice

In extreme cases when other non-medicinal methods have been exhausted, you may find that drug therapy may be your only solution. As this solution comes from your vets expert guidance, you should try not to feel guilty about using them, knowing that your vet always has your pet’s best interests at heart.

Vets may prescribe drugs, which tend to calm a dog’s senses a little, but they are not a cure. Drugs only provide a support mechanism to assist the owner in rehabilitating the dog, it is only a temporary fix for the underlying problem. You have to treat the root cause

You may also like to try calling RSPCA School for Dogs 0438 728 110

Be Resourceful:

How To Make Your Home Calming for Anxious Pets

Join our exclusive PetCloud Facebook Pet Sitters Group to get support and tips from other Sitters and the PetCloud team


What triggers separation anxiety?

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