In one word? Yes, but, Cockapoos, and most other dogs for that matter, suffer from separation anxiety, which means they won’t react too well to being left on their own all day. That being said, there is nothing wrong with leaving your Cockapoo for probably a maximum of 4 to 5 hours.
There are ways of telling if your pooch stresses when you’re gone by his behaviour. Whining, barking, or howling are typical signs. Scratching doors and windows, chewing the furniture, and even urinating or defecting are also signs that your cockapoo has separation anxiety.
Does your Cockapoo Have Separation Anxiety?
Does your dog’s behavior change when you leave the house? When you’re home with him does he follow you around like a shadow from room to room? Do you get a frantic hello when you arrive home from work, or come back from the store? Do you notice he acts differently when you grab your car keys, put your coat on or grab your bag?
If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to any of these, there’s a good chance your pup suffers from separation anxiety.
Why Do Cockapoos Have Separation Anxiety?
This is a tough one, because we don’t completely understand what causes it, why some dogs experience it and others don’t. Like people, every dog is different, with different personalities and different emotional triggers. If your pup doesn’t like being left alone, it’s important for you to understand his destructive behaviour is a panicked response to his anxiety; he’s not doing it to punish you for leaving him on his own.
How To Deal With It
You can manage minor separation anxiety by playing it down. For example, when you get home from work, don’t immediately make a fuss, even though you’ve missed your pup just as much. Leave an item of clothing that smells like you. He won’t feel as alone if there’s something familiar. You could even buy a calming product that reduces anxiety in dogs.
As with all things, handling anxiety is going to take a while but there are some short-term solutions. For one, you can talk to your vet about anti-anxiety medications. There are loads of natural remedies that will calm him down, and can also be used in any situations where he gets stressed.
As long as your pup hasn’t been traumatized in the past by being left at a kennel, this is an option if you’re away going away for a few days or for an extended period of time. There are also kennels that offer day-care options so that your furry friend isn’t home alone during the day. Another option is using a sitter service that takes care of your dog, should you be going away on holiday.
What Not To Do
We’ve told you what you can do to help your cockapoo with separation anxiety, now here’s what you shouldn’t do.
Run out and get a second dog
Separation anxiety is about you for your pet, it’s not necessarily about canine companionship. The worst thing you can do is get a second dog, as this could make the entire situation worse.
Punish your pup
Whatever you do don’t punish your dog. His destructive behavior isn’t deliberate and he isn’t doing it to ‘get back at you’.
Taking your dog for obedience training is always a good idea, but not when it’s in response to his separation anxiety. He isn’t being naughty so training won’t help in this instance.
While your intentions might be in the right place to keep some background noise going when you leave the house, your cockapoo is smart enough to know when you’re there and when you’re not.
As hard as you try, there are going to be instances when you and your dog are going to be apart. If you’re unable to alleviate his anxiety with our suggestions, it might be worth consulting with someone who specialises in animal behaviour.