Dog With Separation Anxiety Finds Comfort In Mannequin

Shorty the senior pug and his owner Marc are a dynamic duo.

“The relationship between Marc and Shorty is very special. Marc is Shorty’s person. He just adores him and is the happiest when he is in Marc’s arms. When he was younger, Shorty would travel with Marc everywhere, but it’s not possible now with his age as he has developed dog anxiety. Marc calls Shorty his ‘angel’ dog. Shorty really taught Marc how to love and care for another living thing,” Marc’s wife, Kristen.

Together Kristen and Marc founded Vintage Pet Rescue in Rhode Island. At this non-profit, the couple provides hospice care and a loving home to senior and terminally-ill pets who have found themselves without a family.

“We are currently home to 34 adorable senior pups who get 2 meals a day, lots of supervised outdoor time, hours of cuddles, and comprehensive medical care,” Kristen says.

“Unfortunately, Marc has to travel a good amount for work and Shorty gets very anxious when he is away. Shorty will bark and cry and nothing will calm him down. He won’t even calm down if I am holding him. In the past, I tried putting one of Marc’s shirts on a pillow, but it didn’t really work. I felt so helpless trying to calm him down when Marc was away,” Kristen shares about Shorty, who is now too old to travel with his dad.

Fifteen-year-old Shorty, who Marc adopted when the pug was just a few years old, lives happily among his fellow grey-haired roommates. The only time Shorty has a bad day is when Marc travels for work.

While the pillow wrapped in Marc’s shirt didn’t provide much comfort, Kristen’s mom had another, more in-depth idea to help Shorty with his separation anxiety.

“She was over one day and saw how upset Shorty was. That day she went home and ordered a life-size mannequin from a Halloween store. When she told me about it, I thought she was nuts! But, it was worth a shot,” Kristen says.

 

Kristen dubbed the mannequin Farc, short for “Fake-Marc,” and dressed the dummy in Marc’s already-worn shirts and hat, “so it would have his scent.” She also added fake tattoo sleeves to the mannequin, since Real-Marc has real tattoos on his arms. After getting Farc styled, Kristen sat the mannequin on the couched and waited to see what Shorty would do.

 
Senior Dog with Separation Anxiety Finds Comfort and Cuddles in Mannequin Dressed Like His Dad Shorty used to be inconsolable when his dad Marc was away, now he cuddles up to Farc (Fake-Marc) the.

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One of the most common issues dog owners encounter is separation anxiety. Some puppies have a hard time dealing with being left alone without their favorite human and can become very frustrated. While most dogs begin to bark, whine, howl, or chew on pillows others get so anxious that they begin to.

Unfortunately, sometimes separation anxiety just isn't preventable, especially with an older dog. Experience or genetics may have already triggered the onset. But, thanks to desensitization, crating techniques, and an understanding of the disorder, it's treatable. In fact, a diagnosis of separation.

In simulated separation anxiety, the dog knows that he will get attention if he acts badly. For some dogs, even being verbally reprimanded for such behavior is rewarding because he feels he was noticed. Negative attention can be a reward in many cases, if the owner is unaware that certain needs.

My previous dog had an extensive collection.

he took while at a shelter. Like an anti-anxiety shirt made for dogs, or my arms wrapped around him tight, a blanket warms Trucker and cradles him with.