Attached at the hip

Tricks, obedience, behavior, and more.
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Newborn Bully
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Location: Rhode Island

Attached at the hip

Postby LouDiamondz401 » Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:49 am

Ive noticed my 9 week old pup Athena, who ive now had for a solid 2 weeks is becoming so attached to me that when i leave the room she quickly follows or when its time to eat she will only eat if i am in the room with her. My roommate is home with her from 8-4 as i work and even if he stays in the room during her lunch she barely picks at her food. i was just wondering if this is normal behavior or some type of separation anxiety?

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Newborn Bully
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Location: Central Illinois

Re: Attached at the hip

Postby creiter » Sat Dec 29, 2012 10:15 am

From my experiencing fostering puppies, this is pretty typical behavior. Even if I would only have the pup for a week, they would constantly follow me around even if food was in the other room. It's just natural for them to take comfort in your company (more comfort than the food offers).

If you think her appetite is lowering then that could be another problem to address, because a puppy that young should be able to eat multiple times throughout the day. I suppose she could feel more comfortable with you there and thus eats more, but I wouldn't go so far as to say it has evolved into separation anxiety. If she refused to eat and starved herself to death until you were there, that would be a bigger problem. However, I have a feeling she's just kind of testing the lines. I would suggest separating her for her meal times (in her crate perhaps?)... give her some time to eat/think about eating, then remove the food and let her play etc. A little bit later, try again; separate her, offer food, wait, see what happens. Don't reinforce the "if you don't eat when I'm not there, then I will come so you can eat AND have me". Trust me, in the end the puppy will eat when the puppy is hungry, with you there or not! She is learning it is okay to eat even without you there.

Of course, keep in mind she is so young that food intake is extremely important. She needs to be eating. Make sure she intakes the correct amount of food each day.

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