Does your black Maltipoo experience stress and anxiety? If so, you are not alone. Millions of dogs experience stress and anxiety every day. Living life in fear can cause a lot of distress for both dog and owner. Dogs who are afraid may become agitated or anxious when left alone, leading to destructive behavior such as chewing on furniture or barking incessantly. It can put a strain on your relationship with your furry friend.
Overview of the Black Maltipoo Breed
The black Maltipoo is a cross of Maltese and a Poodle. Overall, Malitpoos are great family pets that are low-maintenance and easy on the eyes. One look at these adorable little teddy bears can melt the coldest of hearts! These dogs make perfect emotional support dogs as they are loving, easy to train, and protective. Maltipoos are extremely bright, and they are thought to have inherent intelligent traits. After all, they are half Poodle (the second smartest dog in the world). These charming Maltipoos have become extremely popular over the years due to their friendly personality and low-shedding coat.
Why Your Black Maltipoo Experiences Stress and Anxiety
Anxiety is common among small dogs, and the black Maltipoo is no exception. Observing behavior and managing your dog's environment can help reduce stress and improve the well-being of your furry friend. Additionally, it can lower your level of stress.
Common behaviors that may indicate separation anxiety in black Maltipoos include excessive barking or whining, pacing or restlessness, eliminating indoors, drooling excessively, and destructiveness. Some black Maltipoos will exhibit all of these behaviors, and some may only show one or two of these.
Symptoms could be mild, moderate, or severe. The behaviors described are also related to separation anxiety, which arises from feelings of neglect. It's essential to enrich your dog's environment as much as possible, and you don't have to invest a significant amount to create a safe zone in the house. Black Maltipoos love to lounge on soft cuddle beds with a few of their favorite treats.
Many Owners Are Wrongfully Blamed for Causing Separation Anxiety
Many black Maltipoo owners are concerned that giving their dog too much attention causes separation anxiety. However, every dog breed needs a certain amount of human contact to be happy and healthy. Black Maltipoos are very affectionate dogs who love nothing more than being with the family.
Too much attention alone is not the cause of separation anxiety in dogs. The bond between a human and a dog is identical to a child-parent relationship. A long list of studies on animal behavioral science determined that strong attachments are not the cause of separation anxiety, including one on "spoiling activities." Some of the most confident, independent dogs are attached to their owners at the hip and just fine when alone.
According to the cited scientific study, "Some studies have failed to detect any links between the quality of the owner-dog relationship and the occurrence of behavior problems, while others suggest that some behavior problems may be associated with certain aspects of owner personality, attitudes and/or behavior."
Triggers of Stress and Anxiety in Maltipoos
All breeds will exhibit certain behaviors when they are stressed or anxious. Behaviors include vocalization consistent with stress (whining, howling, or non-stop barking), urinating or defecating in off-limit areas, acting depressed, aggression, destruction, and exhibiting compulsive behaviors.
These behaviors alone do not necessarily mean that it's due to stress or anxiety. If any of the behaviors occur, your pup is probably stressed out. A 2018 article by Veterinary Clinics of North America outlined the following causes of stress and anxiety.
Exposure to unfamiliar environments can trigger anxiety. For example, if you have recently moved or are visiting a relative. If your black Maltipoo is separated from you or the other dogs in the household, or is left alone in a different environment, they could become stressed or anxious.
Loud noises (e.g., fireworks, snakebites, thunderstorms) disturb dogs. Even relatively minor sounds can be traumatic such as a fire alarm or attention from someone they don't know. It's a noble thing to adopt a rescue but we may never know what an abandoned or abused dog has been through. Dogs who have been through any type of traumatic experience or abandonment are prone to separation anxiety, and rescue dogs have often endured abuse and neglect. Many need special consideration and care to accommodate their needs.
Change in Routine
If something suddenly changes, it can be stressful for your dog. For example, if other pets leave or enter the home. Holidays can also trigger stress and anxiety if relatives come to visit, and new schedules can be scary too. If you suddenly have to go on a business trip or aren't getting in a morning walk because you are sick, it can cause restlessness.
Suppose your black Maltipoo is exhibiting any symptoms of too much stress. In that case, it is essential to seek veterinary help to rule out the possibility of an underlying health issue before you begin treatment for anxiety. Your Maltipoo might just be trying to tell you something is wrong, and they are scared. Many mild to severe medical conditions cause stress and anxiety. Sometimes the solution could be as simple as taking your dog to the vet.
Observe Your Dog's Behavior and Body Language
Understanding how a dog generally behaves "normally" allows an informed interpretation of changes in behavior once a pet parent leaves or returns home. Many dogs will show some signs of anxiety, but not all will exhibit severe signs of distress. To properly treat your black Maltipoo's stress and anxiety issues, it is vital to accurately assess the severity level and tailor a plan accordingly.
Keep a diary to track your dog's symptoms, including the frequency and severity of the episodes, as well as any external factors that may have influenced them.
For example, did your black Maltipoo show signs of anxiety when you left for work in the morning or after returning home? Was there something specific that preceded each behavior episode? It takes some detective work to figure these things out. Don't hesitate to hire a professional to help.
Emotional Support for Fearful, Nervous, or Timid Dogs
Once you've identified the cause of your black Maltipoo's stress and anxiety, you can start working on a plan. According to Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice, an effective treatment plan may include a combination of the following methods.
Management strategies include creating a safe space and providing plenty of exercise and playtime before you leave. Training exercises will also help your black Maltipoo associate certain situations (such as being left alone in a room) with positive outcomes such as treats or favorite toys.
Desensitization therapy is another effective approach that involves gradually exposing your dog to the triggers that cause him or her to experience separation anxiety. Other behavior modification techniques, such as positive reinforcement for calm behavior, aversion therapy, negative reinforcement, or response substitution are all effective treatments for stress and anxiety.
Create a Routine
One of the best ways to help reduce your black Maltipoo's anxiety is to create a solid routine for him or her. Dogs like knowing what will happen next and having a predictable daily schedule will help reduce stress. Ensure plenty of time for exercise, play, and training in your routine. These activities give your dog much-needed physical and mental stimulation, which can also help reduce anxiety. You should also try to keep his or her schedule the same while you are away, so he or she is less likely to get anxious.
Provide a Healthy Diet
Like people, black Maltipoos need a healthy diet to stay healthy and happy. Dogs that have a balanced diet may have lower stress and anxiety. Good dog food contains a balance of meat, vegetables, grains, and fruits. The best dog foods contain high-quality versions of these ingredients that are appropriate for your dog's digestive system.
Black Maltipoos that eat good dog food are less likely to develop obesity or other health problems. A balanced diet will help to keep your black Maltipoo's immune system strong, their coat healthy, and their energy levels up. Choose dog foods with sources of protein and low carbohydrates.
It's essential to make sure that your black Maltipoo is getting all the nutrients they need, so you may want to consult with your veterinarian about the best diet for your dog. There are also many high-quality commercially available dog food companies. See the American Kennel Club's nutrition guidelines for more information.
Playtime and Exercise
The American College of Veterinary Behaviorists says in "Decoding Your Dog," "Domestic dogs, for instance, are highly social species and do best with regular companionship, adequate mental stimulation, and exercise." Exercise helps to tire out your dog both physically and mentally. When black Maltipoos don't get enough exercise, they can become anxious and restless when left alone, leading to destructive behavior.
Black Maltipoo puppies will play hard on their own for hours until they get tired out, which means owners may have to come up with ways to calm them down in between activities. Calming Spray is an excellent tool to help your dog to relax. Not only does exercise help keep your black Maltipoo physically healthy, but it also has several benefits for their mental well-being.
Provide a Feeling of Safety When You're Away
Another way to help reduce your black Maltipoo's separation anxiety is to provide them with a safe place to go when you're not home. This is a designated spot in the house where they feel safe and can see their surroundings. Make sure to give your dog plenty of positive reinforcement when using the safe place so your furry friend will continue to use it.
Make sure to leave your black Maltipoo with access to food, fresh water, and activities to keep them happy. This could be a favorite chew toy, their favorite treats, or a visit from one of their canine pals.
Take a Training Class
Training is an integral part of black Maltipoo ownership. It will help teach your dog how to behave appropriately and will also help to strengthen the bond between you and your dog.
Many different types of training can be beneficial for black Maltipoos. Obedience training can help to ensure that your dog knows how to behave when around other people and animals. Agility training can help to improve your black Maltipoo's physical fitness and coordination, while scent detection training can teach your dog how to use their nose to find objects or people.
Training is not just beneficial for your dog; it can also be a lot of fun! Training provides an excellent opportunity for you and your dog to spend some quality time together and learn new things. So, if you're looking for a way to strengthen the bond between you and your pet, consider enrolling in a training class. It's a prominent confidence builder, and it's fun for you too.
Help Your Dog Get Used to Being Alone
If your dog prefers to be with friends when you are gone, doggy daycare may be the perfect solution (assuming your dog is okay with meeting new friends). Dogs who attend daycare are surrounded by people and other dogs, which can help to reduce social anxiety. They also get plenty of exercise and socialization, vital for dogs who suffer from separation anxiety.
Many dog owners find that pet sitters or daycare facilities can keep their dogs happy and healthy while they're at work. It also gives them peace of mind knowing that their dog is being well taken care of during the day.
Find a Dog Sitter
If you're unable to take your dog with you when you are away, a caregiver may be the best option. A good dog sitter will keep your dog safe and happy while you're away, and they'll also provide him with plenty of exercise and attention.
If you're looking for a dog sitter, be sure to ask around for referrals. You can also check online reviews to see what other people have had to say about a particular sitter. It's essential to find someone you trust, as your dog will be in their care for an extended period.
Good Ol' Fashion Home Cooking
Tasty, fresh food is an excellent way to show your dog affection and express love. Providing your pup with high-quality dog food can also be a positive way to help him overcome anxiety. Homemade food is great because it gives you complete control over what goes into it, especially for dogs who suffer from separation anxiety.
When you're making meals, try adding some extra-tasty treats like a few pieces of a favorite snack or a dollop of peanut butter on top of his usual food. While your Maltipoo may not understand the words "I love you," they'll certainly get the message!
Take Your Black Maltipoo for a Swim
Swimming is excellent for all dogs, but it's especially beneficial for those who have lots of energy. Swimming is a fantastic cardio work-out and a useful alternative for older dogs who can't handle weight-bearing exercises.
Swimming helps release endorphins, which have a calming effect on the body. It's also a great way to expend energy, and dogs who swim regularly are less likely to become anxious or restless. Not only will it help him stay physically healthy, but it will also help him stay calm and relaxed.
Set Up a Playdate When You Are Away
A playdate with other dogs can help your dog overcome the stress of being alone. Having other dogs to greet at the end of the day may help your dog rest and relax when he comes home. If your Maltipoo plays well with others, set up a fun-filled day (or a partial day at first) at a doggie daycare facility.
You may make it a habit to visit your friend's home and yours, alternating between them. The necessity of dog presence depends on various factors, including the amount of destruction that your dogs are prone to in their home environment. If your neighbor has a safe, enclosed yard without a pool and the weather is moderate, you might be able to leave your dogs outside.
Empower Your Black Maltipoo and Improve Your Relationship
Try some of these tips and see if they work for your pup. Remember, every dog is different, so what works for one may not work for another. But don't give up; you can definitely get through this together! Above all, be patient with your best friend. It takes time and patience to overcome stress and anxiety, but you can help your black Maltipoo lead a happier and more relaxed life with dedication and perseverance. Thank you for reading this guide on separation anxiety in black Maltipoos. If all else fails or you are just too busy, there are always professional behaviorists or dog trainers who can help your black Maltipoo overcome stress and anxiety.