My cats would never do this


Our dog Sonny loves us.  A lot.  If we’re on the couch, he’s on the couch.  If we’re in the yard, he’s out there too.  When we go to bed, so does he.  When we’re in the shower, he’s sitting outside the tub and when we step out, he’s right there to lick the water off our feet. (I know, kinda gross.)  I think it’s cute how he follows me around the house on Saturdays.  Room to room, up and down, load after load of laundry, he never gets tired.  Sometimes he gets stepped on, but never tired. 

Lately though, he’s taken his love to a different level.  Now he’s like the dog equivalent of Glenn Close and it’s making me nervous.  He freaks when he picks up on the cues that we’re leaving the house – with him in it.  When I go to put my shoes on, he snatches one and runs.  If he can’t do that, he attaches himself to my leg and does the dirty even though he’s now fixed.  If he sees my bag go over my shoulder, he jumps and jumps and jumps to try to get me to pick him up.  And when I grab my keys, that’s when he loses it alltogether.  Watch this video to see what I’m talking about.

Pathetic, right?  Well, that was mild.  What you can’t see in the video is that he squirmed his way out the door so I had to drop everything and chase him around the front yard yelling, “wanna go bye byes?  wanna go bye byes?” til he finally came close enough for me to grab him.  Then I went through the whole thing again two more times.  It makes me sad and mad and insanely irritated at the same time.  I mean, I have enough trouble getting out the door to work.  And home is not the only place he pulls this shit.  Now I can’t even leave him in the car while I run into the store.  I tried that on Saturday and came back to find he had worked himself into such a frenzy that he threw up.  Thanks, Bobo. 

I love Sonny.  I really do.  He has brought so much joy into our lives.  But I just have to say, my cats would never do this. Embarrass themselves by begging for my attention that way?  Hmph.  Never.  Before Sonny, I’d leave them in the morning and come back at night to find them in the exact same spot.  Just looking at me.  The only way I knew they had moved at all was the evidence they left in the litter box. 

Anyway, I told my vet what was going on and he said it sounds like Sonny has separation anxiety.  Of course he does.  But what can I do about it?  He suggested not making a big deal out of leaving or coming home.  Just walk out without saying bye.  Seems kind of rude, but OK.  Just walk in without saying hi.  Again, rude, but OK.  He told me to put my shoes on, grab my keys and bag and just sit on the couch sometimes to throw Sonny off.  That way he doesn’t think that EVERY time we do those things he’s going to be left.  You know how stupid I feel sitting there with my bag over my shoulder and keys in my hand?  The best part, he freaks out EVERY time just the same. 

 Has anyone else ever dealt with dog anxiety?  Any advice?


7 thoughts on “My cats would never do this

  1. Monica, I went thru this everytime I took Shorty with me to the island. Everytime we would leave him behind to go to the beach he would have a heart attack. It got so bad that we would have one person leave thru the front door and while he sat there howling we would all sneak out thru the basement. I suppose I should have been understanding, after all the island home was new to him and he felt we were abandoning him and never coming back, but nonetheless it was infuriating.

    What I finally decided to do was to sit down with him prior to leaving and telling him we were just going to the beach and would be back in a few hours. it took a while but he finally got it (maybe because, after a few time, he realized we would always come back) Don’t get me wrong, he still cries when we leave, but at least he doesn’t look pathetic while doing it. One thing I would suggest with Sonny, when you take him out in the car, is to get him a carrier, that way at least he feels protected. I use it with Shorty all the time and believe me IT WORKS.

  2. Wow! Sonny just reminded me of Isabella. Ya, I know I’m comparing your dog to my daughter.. Like they say Pets are like kids.. They do the same thing.. As long as Sonny realizes you ALWAYS come back, he will get used to it..It will take some time. Before you know he will come up and give you a hug and kiss goodbye and say I’ll see you later mom.. Oh wait that’s Isabella..LOL Good Luck!

  3. um, you need cesar milan, the dog whisperer. here’s what i think the DW would say: be the pack leader. sonny is a dog, thinks like a dog. he’s completely in charge of the situation and senses your anxiety and guilt about leaving him alone. do you get all worked up just thinking about leaving? he feels that energy and has already figured out he’s in charge, not you. you’ve got to assert yourself as pack leader, calm yourself, then him. you need to get him in a calm state before you go and that means getting yourself in a calm state first. eh, but what do i know.

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