If you plan to be away from home often, it’s a good idea to know which dog breeds have the worst separation anxiety.
Or if you already have a dog, maybe you want to know if your dog breed is prone to separation anxiety?
I’ve personally experienced the trauma associated with dogs being left home alone. I don’t think any dog, regardless of their genetic predisposition to separation anxiety, like to be left alone.
Dogs are companion animals and want to be entertained, loved and comforted. They look up to us humans as leaders of the pack and depend on us to make the best decisions for them.
Although any dog of any breed, age, or gender can be anxious, there are certain breeds where separation anxiety is more common. This is important to note when bringing a new dog into your home.
Generally, the more hyperactive the breed, the higher the chance for mental illness including anxiety and dog depression. Therefore, working dog breeds are most susceptible to anxious behavior. Additionally, it is likely that the more intelligent the breed, the higher susceptibility for mental illness as well.
Dog Breeds With Worst Separation Anxiety
The dog breeds listed below as having the major separation anxiety should always be considered a generalization and in no way a certain fact. There are many factors that contribute to dog anxiety and can be mitigated with environmental changes and dog anxiety supplements like CBD. With that being said, the following dog breeds have been found to have some of the worst separation anxiety.
#1 German Shepherd
German Shepherds are known for their intelligence. This is why you see them as police dogs and seeing-eye dogs. On top of that, they tend to thrive off of companionship; they enjoy leading and directing others. This combination of traits means bad news if you plan to leave your dog alone for long periods of time. However, these attributes make for a wonderful watchdog!
#2 Labrador Retriever
Commonly viewed as the happy-go-lucky, family dog, Labrador Retrievers are, in fact, working dogs. They are generally physically active and excel in environments where they have friends i.e. family members, children, or other pets! If you don’t think that you can provide enough exercise or entertainment for your lab, you should consider bringing another playful, friendly pet into the home. This companionship will help keep any anxiety at bay.
#3 Australian Shepherd
Australian Shepherds need a job to do. As a working dog, they are commonly used to herd livestock or assist in search & rescue. When living as a domestic pet, they often don’t get the amount of exercise they were made to do! As a result, all that pent up energy can emerge as destructive, loud, or even aggressive behavior.
Before leaving your Aussie alone for a significant amount of time, consider taking them to the park for a game of catch or going for a long jog.
#4 Basset Hound
As a hunting dog, the Basset Hound has a very specific job to do. This instinct causes them to be exceptionally devoted to their handler or owner. Therefore, if they are not given enough attention, they can develop anxiety. An anxious Basset Hound’s howl/bay is quite the sound, too!
If you’re leaving your Basset Hound alone or do not have time to give them attention, a good task for them to complete is a treat search. Hide treats around the house, and they will use their super sharp nose to sniff them out!
#5 Border Collie
Border Collies are high energy and very intelligent. Due to these amazing qualities, they can easily get bored. If you plan to leave your young Border Collie at home for 8 hours while you are at work, you might want to reconsider that plan. When bored, dogs can become destructive. With anxiety growing if left alone too long, Border Collies have even been known to develop depression.
To avoid a depressed doggie, try hiring a sitter or walker while you are away. Additionally, you can give your dog a task or something to work on like a challenging new toy or puzzle!
#6 Bichon Frise
Although not quite known for their intelligence or working dog status, the Bichon Frise is incredibly affectionate. They love cuddling up in a lap or traveling with you out in the world. Due to this desire for constant affection and companionship, they can become quite anxious when left alone.
When you’re ready to bring a new dog into your home, consider the kind of lifestyle you lead. How often are you home? How active are you? Will your dog have other family members to interact with?
It’s common to desire a certain breed based on their looks, but remember that temperament is a far more important factor when picking out the right pet for you. This will make both your life and your new dog’s life the happiest and healthiest!
But remember, always adopt don’t shop. If you find any of these dog breeds at your local shelter and can’t help yourself, go ahead adopt!
If the dog is prone to anxiety, now you already know it before making the decision.
No matter what breed, if you do find that your dog is anxious, there are plenty of tips and tricks you can begin to implement to help them live a happier, calmer life.
So don’t let an anxious dog keep you from saving his life!