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1.5 year old dog suddenly clingy?

586 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  3GSD4IPO
Hello! I have a 1.5 year old 5lb rescue chihuahua mix that we got at 11 weeks. He is extremely well socialized (goes to work with my wife with tons of dogs, including a great dane, his best friend is a 50lb doodle, and he runs with he best of em at the park like he owns the place). He was clingy as a pup (when we moved, he moved, like even shifting our weight caused his head to pop up) but since he was about 6 months old, has been a dream. We can leave the room and he sleeps through it, and if we go out he just sleeps or waits patiently up to 4-5 hours (we have a Furbo to watch). He has always had free range of the house and isn't destructive or stressed out. Then suddenly as of a few weeks ago he has been glued to my wife...I'm like chopped liver when he used to stick by me more. He is not ill, eating well, playing, mischievous as ever, etc. The only thing that changed is she went on an overnight business trip last month and since then its like a switch had flipped. Today she left for the store across the street and by the time she was at the corner (less than 30 seconds), he was howling. She was gone all of 15 minutes and when she got back he freaked out like he hadn't seen her all day (even though they were together allllll day playing and snuggling and napping). This has not happened in well over a year since he was a baby and we aren't sure how to correct it. Even though he has been clingy lately, he hasn’t had issues with us leaving the house, even as of few days ago so it feels like its escalatinf. We are worried because we plan to leave him for a few weeks with the grandparents this fall for a big international work trip and now more than ever we are stressed at how he’s going to take it and don't want this clinginess to get worse either before we leave or when we return from the because we “abandoned” him for 2 weeks (even though he loves it there since we visit them often). ?
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Don't make a big deal out of going or coming back. If he goes nutz when she gets home, she should ignore him.

I would not hesitate to use a crate at times even when you ARE home. The idea is that he needs to learn (all over again) that being alone is not the end of the world. I would definitely crate when you leave together and I would crate at night.

After about 8 weeks if he is not better you may need to add medication (go to your vet). This will help him to be less anxious and could improve his life (and yours).
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