Whose heart does not melt at the mere sight of an enchanting Westie? Their deep-set, bright, and almond shaped eye along with its distinct white coats, make the Westie a popular and adorable breed to pet.
However, Westies have been known to exhibit significant signs of possessing separation anxiety. This (of course) is a common trait in almost all the different breed of our canine companions. But how is it true? And, how does that affect your decision making, if you are considering buying one yourself?
So, Do Westies Show Signs of Separation Anxiety?
Separation anxiety with regard to dog behavior is referred to as the condition of restlessness and showing visible signs of distress when it gets separated from its owner. This can develop as a result of the dog’s over-attachment to its owner.
In general, all dog breeds are naturally prone to exhibit separation anxiety. Some more than the others. Some specific breed of dogs that have been known to show signs of separation anxieties more than the others are German Shepherd, Australian Shepherd, and Labrador Retriever.
As compared to those breeds, Westies do not manifest as many significant symptoms of separation anxieties. However, that does not necessarily mean it is resistant to such behaviors.
As one enthusiastic owner posted her experience about the severe separation anxiety of her Westie.
“The separate anxiety got so severe; my Westie would bark and cry, and even urinate on the couch where I sit. He would even tear up my blankets and sheets, and follow me around everywhere.”
This is a clear indication that even though your Westie may not come with the tag of displaying separation anxiety naturally, they are none the less susceptible to it no matter how small.
How Do You Check For Separation Anxiety Symptoms in Your Westie?
There are some crucial symptoms you can check for if you want to determine whether your Westie is showing signs of separation anxiety.
Your Westie Learns to “Sing”
Well, not conventionally, that would be rather creepy! Instead, singing refers to the excessive howling and barking behavior. This is especially crucial if your Westie does this when you stand next to other people.
You Come Home to Accidents
If you come home to torn sheets, blankets, or couch, especially around the places where you usually spend time, it is a relevant indication of your Westie’s separation anxiety.
How often do you see your dog panting frantically and moving about restlessly when you are getting ready to go to work? If it’s more than frequent, it is again another crucial indication of separation anxiety.
When your Westie starts accepting you and starts following you everywhere, it’s cute…..At first! However, if your Westie starts following you everywhere, and every time, and also starts barking excessively when you stand next to other people, it is again another crucial indication.
Causes of Separation Anxiety in Westies
Westies are considered “highly energetic” by nature. However, that does not qualify to be categorized under separation anxiety. That is an obvious indication that separation anxieties in Westies are primarily due to various external factors. Knowing these contributing aspects can help you implement appropriate behavioral changes to avoid the development of such anxiety-related conditions in your canine companion.
Lack of Socialization
Initially, Westies are treated as a gem of a possession. Owners carry it around everywhere they go for socializing. This obviously enhances their social-friendly nature, as they are exposed to new people, and they get glimpses of their own species as well. However, once the process stops abruptly, they start developing separation anxiety, due to lack of socialization, and their overall active nature.
A simple, yet effective concept of ensuring your Westie does not develop separation anxiety as per Cesar’s Way is to exercise a basic mantra: “Exercise discipline, and then only, affection.” Unfortunately, a vast majority of Westie owners approach the concept in an adverse fashion. They shower their dogs with affection initially, and that is the primary contributor to separation anxiety development in the later stages.
Our canine companion is “programmed “to follow a certain routine to function efficiently. A precise set of routines for Meals walks, recreational, and bedtime are all important. Any disruption in such routine creates a sense of confusion and instability. This ultimately affects their stress level and contributes to the development of violent behaviors.
How to Prevent Separation Anxiety in Westies
An ideal solution to prevent separation anxiety in Westies is to ensure a balance between affection and discipline. Of course, you can dot him/ her with all your affection and adoration. But, also make sure to draw a line when it comes to discipline.
You can undertake various obedience and discipline training programs or just simply implement it yourself. You can teach your Westie to stay, lie down or sit on a regular basis to let them familiarize with the process.
Start the Separation Gradually
One of the best way to let your Westie adjust with your disappearance for a prolonged period is to start the process gradually. You can start by going out of sight for some seconds, and work your way up to minutes, hours, and so on. This is one of the easiest, yet one of the most effective solutions as well.
Ensure Regular Walk/Exercises
Whenever you get back home, make sure you take our Westie out for a good walk in the park every day. This can help immensely in elevating its socializing nature, and suppress its separation anxiety syndrome.
Consult Your Vet
There are only so much you can do to prevent your Westie from developing separation anxiety. Seek help from someone who actually has certified knowledge about your dog to help you take the best decision.
Westies are an adorable, highly active, and most importantly a non-violent breed of dogs. However, as nature has it, owners can easily “trigger” separation anxiety in Westies, either due to their negligence or just simply due to insufficient knowledge.
The article has covered all aspects regarding the symptoms, causes, and the ideal solutions of separation anxiety in Westies to help you stay vigil. If there are any more additional queries regarding the topic, please feel free to contact us or post down the comment section.