Boston Terriers and Separation Anxiety

Boston terriers have been known to develop behavior problems dealing with separation anxiety.

So what exactly is separation anxiety?

Separation Anxiety is an anxiety disorder characterized by a state of extreme panic induced from the dog’s separation or detachment from his owners.

So to put simply, when you leave the house, your BT launches into a state of nervous anxiety which escalates exceedingly quick.

Boston terriers are social animals and need plenty of companionship and social interaction to keep them happy and pleased. No Boston terrier likes to be left alone for prolonged amounts of time, but some handle it a lot worse than others.

The number 1 cause of separation anxiety for Boston terriers is neglect. If you are gone a lot more than you are there in your BT’s life, separation anxiety is pretty much unavoidable. Your Boston requires your companionship, affection, and care to be pleased and satisfied.

Symptoms of separation anxiety are pretty distinguishing. Your Boston terrier will generally determine when you are going to leave (he’ll hear your keys jingling, he’ll see you putting on your coat, etc) and will get very anxious. He might follow you from room to room, whining, shaking, and weeping. Some BTs even become aggressive trying to stop their owners from leaving.

Once you have left, the anxious behavior will quickly worsen and normally will peak within a half an hour. He might bark endlessly, scratch and dig at the windows and doors, chew inappropriate objects, and even urinate or defecate inside the house. In intense cases, he may even self-mutilate by licking or chewing his skin until it has become raw, or pulling out his fur.

Then when you return, he will be overly excited, and will bounce around you in a frenzy of delight for a drawn-out period of time (more than the usual thirty seconds of a pleased, well-balanced Boston terrier.)

This lengthy greeting is a source of some misinterpretation. Without understanding that such a greeting actually stands for the presence of a psychological disorder, a lot of owners actually encourage their Boston to get more and more worked up upon their return (by firing up their Boston’s excitement, encouraging him to bounce around, and so forth.)

Whenever you are doing this with your Boston, you should really stop. I know that it can be tempting and very easy to do, and it seems harmless – but in actuality, you are just supporting her belief that your return is the greatest moment of the day. So he is as happy as can be when you return, but when it’s time for you to leave again, his happiness at your presence is under threat, and he gets even more distressed when you leave.