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I'll be Home Soon: How to Prevent and Treat Separation Anxiety. Paperback – June 1, 2000

4.2 out of 5 stars 151 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This little booklet saved both my life and the life of my Weimaraner, Misty. Misty's separation anxiety was so serious that she went through a glass window, badly lacerating herself in the process." --Sharon Stern and Misty the Weimaraner

About the Author

Patricia McConnell, Ph.D., CAAB is an Ethologist and Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist who has consulted with cat and dog lovers for over twenty years. She combines a thorough understanding of the science of behavior with years of practical, applied experience. Her nationally syndicated radio show, Calling All Pets, played in over 110 cities for fourteen years. She is the behavior columnist for The Bark magazine ( the New Yorker of Dog Magazines ) and a Consulting Editor for the Journal of Comparative Psychology. She is Adjunct Associate Professor in Zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, teaching "The Biology and Philosophy of Human/Animal Relationships." Dr. McConnell is a much sought after speaker and seminar presenter, speaking to training organizations, veterinary conferences, academic meetings and animal shelters around the world about dog and cat behavior, and on science-based and humane solutions to serious behavioral problems. She is the author of ten books on training and behavioral problems, as well as the critically acclaimed books The Other End of the Leash: Why We Do What We Do Around Dogs, For the Love of a Dog: Understanding Emotion in You and Your Best Friend and Tales of Two Species.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 38 pages
  • Publisher: McConnell Publishing, Ltd.; 1st edition (June 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1891767054
  • ISBN-13: 978-1891767050
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (151 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,213 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Aeron Noe on March 17, 2004
Format: Paperback
My new puppy didn't have a full-blown case of SA. But she barked incessantly everytime I left her alone in the house, which needless to say drove the neighbors nuts. By following the techniques in this book, I was able to replace the habit of barking with the habit of chewing on a specific treat - a kong filled with peanut butter in her case - so that now she actually looks forward to my leaving the house. It wasn't a change that happened over night. It took about a month to train her, but it was well worth it. The advice in this book is incredible, but it does require patience, especially if your dog is already displaying behavioral problems (such as chewing on things in the house or barking).
I think this book is helpful for anyone who has guilty feelings when leaving their dog alone. Whether your dog has behavoiral problems or not, this book can give you advice on how to turn your daily departure from the house into a positive experience.
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It pains me to give anything by Patricia McConnell less than 5 stars. However, after adopting my beagle mix, who turned out to have strong separation anxiety, this little volume was not immediately useful for my situation.

Key to this program is the ability to leave your dog with someone (or leave someone with your dog :) while working in the tiniest increments imaginable to desensitize (and perhaps counter-condition) your dog to your absence. Both leaving my dog with human company and counter-conditioning her (given her fear was so extreme she would not think of eating) did not work out for me. Thanks to the Web, I was able to find advice better suited to my circumstance. When I had no choice but to leave her for longer periods, I used one location. When I was actively working with her, I used a different location. I also implemented an "independence" program of rewarding any voluntary efforts on my dog's part to be somewhere other than glued to me.

Later, when with the help of medication her frantic state lessened, I did actually include most of the suggestions in this book in our program. After 6 months, we were able to wean off the meds. She still doesn't enjoy seeing me go, and she is still confined to limit her powers of destruction (I give her acceptable outlets for her "need to shred") but together we have survived one of the hardest trials in doggiedom.

I do agree that the level of detail in this book is exceptional, as is the section on deciding whether your dog has SA, or other issues. But you may still need to shop around for additional advice to fit your needs.
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I adopted a pit-mix from a shelter who had a SEVERE case of separation anxiety. All pitties love people (despite popular ignorance), but my girl literally could NOT be without people. Didn't matter who it was, she just couldn't be alone (even with another dog present). I was at my witts end after mutiple classes, training sessions, and very unhappy neighbors. This book finally turned the corner with helping me understand what was going on. I bought it at 3:00am one night in a panic off Amazon (with overnight shipping). It was easy to read and very helpful. It taught me what true separation anxiety was, and what it was not. I had a case of true separation anxiety. I would highly recommend this book. Below are my personal best tips below on separation anxiety and how we overcame it together (I now have the best, sweetest doggie ever!). These are in the book as well. BUY IT - it will help you, and you need the full background and ALL tips to understand what will work best for your dog (this is just what turned the corner for us).

1. Make your comings and goings uneventful and routine. Commit to practicing leaving the house for intervals of 5, 10, 30, 60 SECONDS (yes, that's right, seconds) until you are working up to 2 hours successfully. The research is right - if you can get up to 2 hours successfully alone, you are on your way.
2. Give your pup extra special treats when you are leaving the house. Frozen kong stuffed with salmon treats and banana, and a hollowed out bone filled with wet dog food and frozen worked well for us. She only gets this when I leave the house and we finally have the reaction the research said to look for - "they will be happy for you to leave because they know they are getting their special treat". This only works for food motivated dogs however.
3.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
Patricia McConnell knows how little time many of us have which is why she makes this series of books only 30 or so pages long. She is direct and to the point to solve your training problem without lots of fluff and cute little dog stories. When we have a dog training issue very few of us have time to read a novel on how to solve it. I for one want to cut to the chase and start solving the problem right away. The methods used in this book are clear and easy to apply and they work. My dog has stopped destructive chewing when I'm away and is clearly much happier. Thank you Ms. McConnell (oh and Daisy my APBT thanks you too) A few reviewers gave these books a low rating because they are short. Amazon clearly indicates how many pages this book has and it's priced accordingly.
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